The MRC has conducted a review of its international strategy and selection policy, and made some changes with the aims of:-
- making the selection processes and athlete “pathways” clearer; and
- increasing the opportunities for top senior athletes to progress by competing abroad.
This document summarises the policy and changes for 2019. It is not the Selection Policy, and must be considered as GUIDANCE ONLY. The full policy is published on the MRC website here: MRC Selection Policy 2019 final, and details the full process, team composition, selection criteria, eligibility and appeals process.
INTERNATIONAL TEAMS & ASSESSMENT RACES
We intend to send a team to each of the following internationals, grouped by the assessment race associated with them:-
WATERLANDS MARATHON (13 April):
This team will be for our top eight available seniors and U23s, based exceptionally on the 2018 National Championships singles results.
EARLY SEASON INTERNATIONALS
ASSESSMENT ROUND 1, READING:
A single K1/C1 assessment race on Easter Monday 22nd April, with teams selected from this event only, for:-
WORLD CUP, NORWAY (31 May – 2 June):
This event will be a best-available ‘A’ team of 8 seniors only.
GERMAN NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS (11-12 May):
This event will be for 12 U23s and U17s outside the criteria for ‘A’ team selection to the World Cup.
ASSESSMENT ROUND 2:
K2 assessment at Worcester on 15th June, and…
K1 assessment at Reading on 22nd June, with teams selected from these two events only, for:-
EUROPEAN CHAMPS, FRANCE (25-28 July):
This event will be a best-available ‘A’ team of 20 available athletes across all classes.
SPANISH K4 SERIES (dates tbc, usually late July):
This event will be for 8 seniors and U23s outside the criteria for ‘A’ team selection to the European Championships.
LATE SEASON INTERNATIONALS
ASSESSMENT ROUND 3:
3.6km short course race, seniors only, date tbc, plus…
National Championships on 10/11 August, with teams selected from this event only, for:-
WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS (17-20 October):
Our best available team of 8 athletes across all classes. For this team, the National Championships results will take precedence in selection, but results from the European Championships will be used to balance the team across classes.
FRENCH NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS (14-15 Sept):
Our best available team of U16s, racing both singles and doubles.
WATERLANDS 2020 (OR SIMILAR EARLY INTERNATIONAL):
Our top eight available seniors and U23s
ASSESSMENT RACE FORMATS
There are two major changes to previous assessment race schedules. First, most internationals will only have ONE assessment event counting towards them, requiring athletes to compete at the nominated assessment race if they are seeking selection for that event. Mitigating circumstances can be accepted with specific conditions (see full Selection Policy online)
Second, the MRC has decided to adopt a new format for Assessment 1 and 2, to gather more information about different aspects of performance. The total distances involved are similar to international race distances, but broken up into shorter races and a time trial.
Assessment round 1 (singles only), 22 April (Easter Monday), Reading CC
10.30am 3.6km races by class, two portages
12.00pm 20km races by senior class. Seniors race with U23s.
13.35pm 14km races by junior class
3.00pm 5km time trial, no portages, seniors only.
Assessment round 2 (singles and doubles)
K2 Worcester 15th June
K1 Reading 22nd June
10.30am 3.6km races by class, two portages (no portages in short K2 race at Worcester)
12.00pm 20km races by senior class. Seniors race with U23s.
12.10pm 14km races by junior class
3.00pm 5km time trial, no portages, all classes.
Assessment round 3 (singles and doubles)
National Championships, Norwich, 11-12 August:
Normal class races. Athletes should race in the class for which they are seeking selection unless given express direction by the Chair of Selectors to do otherwise.
Additional 3.6k short course race for seniors only, date/venue tbc, for consideration for Worlds team.
Athletes will be required to submit their availability for each set of internationals at least five days in advance of the relevant assessment event. Lists of available athletes will be published before the assessment event so it is clear who is available.
Late withdrawals, where an athlete withdraws from a team after they have been selected, cost the MRC money every year. To discourage these as far as possible, athletes withdrawing from a team after their selection will forfeit their athlete contribution, unless they can demonstrate that they were unable to foresee the problem causing their withdrawal.
As ever, requests to travel at a different time to the rest of the team are entirely up to the athlete to fund and organise.
Finishing positions in the races, and times across all the races and time trials at an assessment event will be used by the Selection Committee to select the best available team for each event. The selectors will publish results with ranked comparisons across classes.
It should be noted that selectors’ expertise will still be used to decide on the best possible team composition, albeit with improved, published evidence. Marathon racing combines speed/power, endurance and tactical skill, and testing international potential in a domestic race environment is not easy. The new assessment formats, along with feedback from experienced athletes as independent observers will help us test and evolve this selection process.
Given the limited number of athlete places across multiple classes, the Handicap system, described here, will be used to compare times across classes. This will be based on a total elapsed time of all races and time trials at the event.
Assuming the attendance of our current national champions at assessment events, the winners of the Women’s Kayak race will be handicapped as a 6.0 and the handicap of all other performances extrapolated from there.
The following Handicaps across classes will be considered as equivalent.
The 2019 Selection Committee is comprised of the following:
Chair: James Smythe (BSF)
Kat Wilson (RDG)
Roland Lawler (ELM)
David Enoch (NOT)
Dyson Pendle (NOR)
Observers (dependent on availability): Graham Warland (BAN); Dave Sackman (RDG); Keith Moule (CLM); Tom Sharpe (RIC); team manager for each event.
If you have questions, please first read the Selection Policy in full. Discuss it with your parent or coach. Please contact the Chair of the Selection Committee, James Smythe if you have any questions after you have done this.