The Geoff Sanders Trophy

The Geoff Sanders Trophy

(Please click here for the latest season standings)

The Geoff Sanders Trophy is a series of races (“the Series”) in single and double junior racing kayaks for paddlers aged from 8 to 12 years. The boat used for singles races must be a Lightning- a stable, single, racing kayak. The boat used for doubles races must be a mini K2. Both the Lightning and the mini K2 are excellent, stable boats in which children can develop basic paddling and racing skills before moving into full sized racing boats. Both boats are also used in competitions at sprint regattas.

The Series is generally run alongside the Hasler Series and races for both singles and doubles are held at most of the regional Hasler races. Races are over distances of approximately 2 miles and are organised on an age basis in four singles classes – for boys and girls under 10 and boys and girls under 12 years – and two doubles classes – under 10 and under 12 years. The Series is an ideal way to introduce children to racing.

Points are awarded to each competitor and the Geoff Sanders Memorial Trophy is awarded at the Hasler Final race each September to the club that has gained the most points based on regional races plus the race held at the Hasler Final.

The organisers of races listed in the calendar will give you more details of their own races.
Juniors can also compete in Lightning races at the Marathon National Championships held each year. There are separate races for the four age groups mentioned above in which the competitors must race in a Lightning. Points are awarded to each competitor and the club that scores the most points is awarded the Spanish Galleon Trophy. Races at the National Championships are not part of the Series. There are no formal mini K2 races at the National Championships but race organisers may include a race outside the formal programme.


Rules for the Geoff Sanders Trophy

Rules applying to the Geoff Sanders Memorial Trophy (effective from 1 January 2011)

a) Race organisers of regional Hasler races are encouraged to include Lightning and Mini K2 races in their programme. These races will qualify for the Geoff Sanders Series in which teams compete for the Geoff Sanders Memorial Trophy. Races can also be run at other times as part of an inter-club event.
b) The Series will run from 1st September to 31st August the following year.
c) Races in the Series will not be awarded Hasler points.
d) Lightning races only will be included in the programme of the Hasler Final, but will not be used in scoring for the Hasler Trophy.

a) To qualify paddlers must compete in a Pyranha Lightning K1 or, in specified races, in a Mini K2 (maximum length 5.6m, minimum width 50cm).
b) Those who compete in K1 races in other craft will not be eligible for points. Race organisers will need to show these as a separate ‘Fun Race’ if they wish to include these craft.
c) Paddlers with a marathon ranking of Division 8 or above shall not be eligible to compete in the Series. (See rule 57)
d) Lightning races at the Hasler Final are open to all Lightning paddlers, whether their club has qualified or not.

a) The course shall be 2-4 kilometres in length with no hazards.

a) There will be four K1 classes in the Series: Boys under 10, Girls under 10, Boys under 12 and Girls under 12 and two K2 classes: under 12 and under 10.
b) All ages as at January 1st preceding each race.
c) Teams must inform the Series Coordinator (See rule 55) of the date of birth of each paddler.

a) Points shall be awarded in each class at each event with 20 points for the winner, 19 points for second and so on, down to 1 point for each paddler who completes the course.
b) Points shall be awarded in each class at the Hasler Final event, with 40 points to the winner, 38 points for second and so on down to 2 points for each paddler who completes the course.
c) Points are awarded in crew boats on a per seat basis.
d) Points shall be awarded to all paddlers in the Series irrespective of whether the paddler is out of region.
e) At August 31st each paddler’s three best scores from the season will be counted towards their team’s total. This will be added to the points won in the Lightning and Mini K2 classes held at the Hasler Final.
f) The winner of the Geoff Sanders Memorial Trophy will be the team with the highest score as determined in e) above.

a) Race organisers are encouraged to award prizes for the first three places in each class when holding a race. Marathon Committee certificates are available from Regional Marathon Advisors to give to all entrants, to encourage participation.
b) The Marathon Racing Committee will provide medals for the first three places in each class at the Hasler Final event.

a) Results of all races in the Series should be forwarded to Peter Jones, the Geoff Sanders Coordinator. Email: .

a) The wearing of life jackets or buoyancy aids is compulsory for all paddlers.
b) The requirements of Rule 5 must be observed in all respects.
c) Race organisers must conduct a specific risk assessment for Lightning and Mini K2 races and, taking into account their age and experience, provide adequate safety cover (e.g. rescue boats and signage) over the whole course where considered necessary.

a) The Geoff Sanders Series aims to introduce young paddlers into marathon racing but it is important that they do not remain too long in the class. Coaches and parents are best placed to decide when a junior is ready to race in the Hasler Series and the decision is for them to take.
b) As part of their long term development paddlers under 12 are encouraged to compete in Division 9 K1 or K2. However, should the paddler be promoted to division 8 or higher from either a K1 or a K2 race in the Hasler Series or at the National Championships, he / she will no longer be eligible to compete in the Geoff Sanders Series.

a) Lightning races are classed as Group C races: no race levy will be charged.
b) Paddlers who are not BCU members or not members of a BCU affiliated club with a registered youth section shall be issued with an Event Ticket to provide insurance cover. The BCU has agreed not to make a charge for the Event Ticket for Lightning paddlers.
c) To promote racing at this introductory level, the MRC recommends a standard entry fee of £2.50.

Regional Marathon Advisers

Regional Marathon Advisers are elected within each region by its marathon-racing clubs.

The purpose of the Adviser is to assist in all matters relating to marathon racing in his/her region, but especially with regard to the Hasler and Geoff Sanders Trophy series. A fuller description can be downloaded here.

The process for a region to select an RMA is as follows:-

  • The RMA to be elected each year by a majority vote of marathon racing clubs in that region (one vote per club).
  • The election to be organised by the current RMA, inviting nominations from clubs during September and October, in order that a simple vote can then take place and the name of the RMA notified to MRC for posting on the website.
  • The current RMA can be re-elected any number of times.
  • RMA to hold office for one year from January 1 to December 31 (this to allow current RMA to handle Hasler Final paperwork) with the intention that there be a handover period from election to January 1.
  • Current RMA to notify MRC Secretary of RMA’s name by December 1 each year.

Current Regional Advisors are as follows:-

Danny Beazley, 15 Gilbey Crescent, Stansted, Essex, CM24 8DS
Tel:  07912 741898

Jim Rossiter, 101 Whyteleafe Road, Caterham, Surrey, CR3 5EJ.
Tel: 01883 346631

Phil Roberts, 39 Thomas Av. Stone, Staffs. ST15 8FG.
Tel: 07710 610515

Brian Chapman, 193 Binniehill Road, Balloch, Cumbernauld, Scotland, G68 9JH.
Tel: 01236 457081

Ollie Harding, 12 Maidenhead Court Park, Maidenhead SL68HN
Tel: 01628 626795

Emma Pearce & Brian Greenaway and

Mick Nadal, 8, Melton Grove, West Bridgford, Nottingham, NG2 7NX
Tel: 0115 914 1824

David Jefferies, 37 Talbot Avenue, Huddersfield, HD3 3BQ
Tel: 01484 435862

Racing levy for 2018

Following discussions at the ACM at Pangbourne in July, the committee would like to increase the race levy for seniors & veterans from £2.00 to £3.00 from 1 January 2018, but to leave the levy for juniors at £2.00.
This would enable the committee to continue providing the current levels of support and services to both domestic and international racing whilst maintaining a balanced budget, as required by British Canoeing.

This decision is expected to be ratified at the MRC meeting of 18th November and implemented from 1st January. If you have any comments or questions please email the MRC Secretary.

Running a Hasler Race

Races that wish to be considered for the Hasler Series must apply via their relevant Regional Marathon Advisor, and respect the following guidelines:-


Race organisers are very strongly encouraged to use the latest Hasler Race Management software, which can be downloaded for free via the link below. You will also need the latest divisional ranking list, and may want to use the automated race finishers spreadsheet.

Finally, please read carefully the pages in this section on Insurance, Risk Assessment and the Race Levy Scheme.

Download the latest HRM Software from this webpage.


Competition Insurance (organised by British Canoeing)
Download the 2016-17 insurance schedule here: bc-insurance-16-17
Download the non-member event insurance form (previously “Day Ticket”) here


For those organising races, whether they are large national events or small club affairs, the importance of having a proper risk assessment cannot be overlooked and the committee wants to see that all race organisers have one in place in the future. This will apply particularly to any race that is listed in the published Racing Handbook calendar of events where it will now be mandatory. Whilst this alone will not eliminate true accidents from happening, it will deal with the uncertainties of how any risk or emergency should be dealt with on the day and ensure that WRITTEN evidence exists to show that the organisers have considered the potential risks beforehand, and taken, or are able to take, the appropriate action should circumstances arise.

We have attached a template of a suitable risk assessment (Document HereTemplate Here) that can be tailored for your event. This will be updated from time to time. Remember this should be specific for your race. Perhaps the most important point is that you fully consider the water and weather conditions on the day as well and REACT ACCORDINGLY. This may mean a change of course or more drastic action. An answer phone number on your race details or update on your website can be useful in cancelling an event up until the day before.


The MRC are OBVIOUSLY concerned with the effects of over zealous implementation of health and safety rules, and sometimes-questionable interpretation by those not directly involved in our sport. This has already started to have a limiting effect upon competitive racing e.g.: walking through portages. We are therefore making representations accordingly.


The organisation of Canoe Marathon Racing in the UK is funded in large part through a race levy on all entries “Class A” races (those listed in the Racing Calendar). This levy is not the same as the Day Ticket scheme, where paddlers without proof of BCU membership may use a one-off Day Ticket to enter a race. Costs of Day Tickets are paid to the BCU.

The 2018 Race Levy is £3.00 for senior and veteran paddlers, and £2.00 for juniors. The race levy for all categories of races is to be remitted by the Race Organiser to the Treasurer within 7 days of the race.
Cheques should be made payable to “BCU Marathon Racing Committee” and sent to
David Enoch, 102 Bingham Road, Radcliffe-on-Trent, Nottingham NG12 2GT.

Those clubs wishing to pay the levy by electronic transfer should remit to
Barclays Bank Sort Code: 20-63-25 Account No: 73066665
Account name: BCU Marathon Racing Committee.
When making electronic transfers please also email David Enoch with the race name and amount of levy to

Race Organisers Notes for 2017

Towards the end of last season, a number of new rules concerning K2 classes were introduced. These are now incorporated into the new handbook and include the modifications to start lists. The changes to rules previously requiring combining of races also modified in July/August are incorporated too.

The most significant additional rule concerns our environmental impact and reflects a growing concern about discarded drinks containers and energy bar/gel wrappers. Organisers should be vigilant and apply the disqualification included in the rule, should there be any proven infringements. See HRM below for the note on showing disqualifications in results.

Division 4 promotions/demotions are now added to the discretionary ones made by the ranking officer in collaboration with RMAs. Team Leaders may also assist in this process.

The committee are aware that some clubs have other organisations such as schools  youth organisations or universities affiliated to them. Some of these have their own colours for competitions.  However, in order for points to be allocated to a club racing in the Hasler competition, members of these groups should be wearing the colours of the club concerned. It is recognised that for non-Hasler events such as Watersides, Thamesides and DW, the affiliated members would choose to wear their own colours and be named according to the direction of the groups concerned.

Following experience at the Worcester Hasler Race last year, where marshals effected a successful rescue in an emergency situation, due to their preparedness and assistance from a fellow paddler allowing them to carry out  their emergency response plan, the committee strongly recommend the following at all events.  All marshals at turns and other vantage points on a course should carry certain basic rescue equipment comprising of a minimum of a mobile phone, throw bag or line and a “space blanket” or survival bag. Prevailing conditions may require additional equipment provision should the Event Safety Officer deem it necessary.

Following on from this, organisers should obtain signed disclaimers as part of race entry proceedure if at all possible. This should be from a team leader, coach, parent or the paddler themselves.

Risk Assessments

You will have agreed to complete and forward risk assessment to your Regional Marathon Advisor when you completed the online form for the calendar. (All group A events.) As yet there is no change to the process. Organisers should forward their RA to the RMA before their event. The RMA will forward this to the secretary who notes the date received and it is then filed. There is no assessment of the ones received, but they are there if required as evidence. I had hoped that by now the system would have changed, but as yet, this remains the process. There were very few missing last season, but please forward them as a matter of course. At the same time you need to inform the RMA of the Event Safety Officer for your race.


The new version of HRM is ready for the start of the season. From July onward there has been no requirement to combine races in HRM as far as points etc. making this part of the process much easier, although starts should still be combined on the water for Divisions with less than 3 boats where at all possible.




There is an additional function in HRM for indicating why disqualifications have been made. If a boat is disqualified for any reason, the rule number must be inserted in the appropriate place when completing finishes. Examples would be: no club vest – 30, illegible number – 15, invalid BC membership – 12, boat buoyancy and other safety rules – 5 and behaviour related disqualifications would be 2 unless another more specific rule is involved.

Result Files

Please remember to forward your race files promptly to the list of people needing it as shown in the handbook. Race Records and the Ranking Officer need the completed files within 2 working days so that the ranking list for Hasler Races on the following weekend is accurate. These files will also need checking by the RMA.


Carrying on from HRM above, when you send the result files please be sure that the BC number and renewal date columns are correctly completed before sending them. As yet we are unable to access the BC membership database, so we need to continue the process of obtaining the data from clubs and paddlers. Where a membership has been renewed, appropriate evidence should be shown. (The new card, or a copy of the online evidence of payment.) Entries must not be accepted without it and organisers must record it in HRM. Please ensure that this data is all included before you send the files. Please be aware that it was occasionally necessary to disqualify paddlers after events last year, where membership was not renewed and had not been recorded accurately.

Competition “event tickets”

There has been some discussion recently about competition ‘day tickets’.

The sole purpose of such a ‘ticket’ is to provide temporary insurance cover to take part in an event, normally issued by a race organiser in respect of their own competition. It is only payable by those unable to prove British Canoeing membership, and a marathon racer can use this facility only once in a season. The cost of the day ticket is remitted to British Canoeing directly. It is not something that is administered or collected by the MRC.

An Event ticket, which is officially the name, covers insurance only and is not a “day membership” or boat license for the use of waterways, as provided for most waters, with full British Canoeing membership.

Stan Missen, MRC Chair

Event Safety training – liability insurance benefits

Every club organising a racing event should have a nominated Event Safety Officer, and that person should have attended a British Canoeing event safety course. If your club doesn’t have one or you’re not sure, please find details here

A major benefit of having attended this course is that Event Safety Officers are then covered by British Canoeing’s Professional Indemnity and Public Liability insurance to a limit of £10m should a claim be made against them.