In yesterday’s ACTVAC handicap results I have included the AST% figures, and will do so in future, because they are an interesting way of comparing the times of each runner which takes their age into account.
What are AST percentages?
AST stands for “Age Standard Times”. They are calculated against the actual age of each competitor in an event.
In 1989 the World Association of Veteran Athletes (WAVA) developed the first age-graded tables in one-year age increments and they have since been updated.
The tables are composed of world class standards as a function of both age and distance. That means that for every age starting at age 8 and going to age 100 there are standards for every long distance running event, for every common track & field event, and for race walking.
Using the data in the tables it is possible to determine an age graded time (as seen in the results of the Australian Masters Championships in Hobart) and the equivalent percentage (as provided yesterday and with most ACTVAC results.)
Here’s an example of how the calculations are done for three masters men in a 10K race.
In the above example, the 64 year old man had the best performance, even though he had the slowest finishing time.
Rough “classifications” are recognised to be as follows:
100%= Approximate World Record Level
Over 90%= World Class
Over 80%= National Class
Over 70%= Regional Class
So when you see the AST% listed, you know that the higher scores are the better results. The scores give everyone a new incentive to improve their performances in a measurable way. And provide you with new rivals to challenge as you try and get a higher AST% than someone who has been ahead of you. Not to mention an extra reason to celebrate your birthday every year, not just every five years!
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