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Oxfordshire Cross Country League

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Race Results Recording & Delivery

Below are the details of how results are recorded for the Oxfordshire Cross Country League.

Marshalling & Recording Guide (– last reviewed and updated: 19th July 2023)


This information below details exactly what is required in terms of recording results at the finish funnel for the purposes of the Oxfordshire Cross Country League (OXL).

Target Audience

This document is intended for those clubs that host a race as well as those individuals tasked with fulfilling the tiemkeeping, race number recording and funnel marshalling roles at a cross couuntry fixture. However, it will also be useful for all runners as well, so they understand requirements as they compete in the League.

Results Overview

Since the 2006–07 season, the results for the OXL have been produced in a manner similar to virtually all other running races – runners wear race numbers, which are recorded at the finish funnel. Prior to this, discs were handed out to each runner, and subsequently collected, along with the runner name. During the course of the 2018–19 and 2021–2022 seasons digital timekeeping and race number barcode scanning was trialed with a view to its introduction for the long term. Those trials were largely successful, however, producing results over the course of those seasons by comparing the traditional and digital recorded results showed that both methods were and are prone to error.

The League positions a Referee on the finishing line, who will ensure runners enter the funnel in the correct order. Nonetheless, runners will sometimes break order, leave the funnel, or act otherwise to make recording their numbers hard! This is where the Funnel Marshals important (particularly in the larger races). The Funnel Marshals are deployed at the finish line and just afterwards to ensure runners remain in the correct finishing order as they cross the line and slow progression through the funnel is maintained so that all numbers can be recorded.

For the results recording system to work therefore, the finishing times and race numbers need to be recorded as the runners progress through the finish funnel. Providing individuals to record race numbers is a responsibility of the club hosting the race. The recording of multiple sets of results allows us troubleshoot any mistakes or queries. Details of the number of the volunteeer requirements to record and deliver the results are provided below under the Summary for Race Directors section.


  1. The officials and recorders should be cordoned off from spectators.
  2. An inspection will be carried out before the first race to ensure the finish funnel is the required length (80m) and that the officials’ and recorders’ restricted zones are in place.
  3. It is important to ensure that spectators, coaches, parents and other athletes do not encroach into those zones. It is imperative that any such encroachers are warned to move away to allow the recording process to proceed unhindered.
  4. Both sets of timekeepers (traditional and digital) are to be deployed either side of the finish line; the Oxon AA traditional Timekeepers on one side of the line finish and the digital Timekeepers on the other.
  5. The team of manual race number recorders should station themselves towards the middle of the finish funnel being prepared to adjust their position depending on the volume and flow of the athletes through finish funnel.
    Note: If the finish funnel looks like it is starting to get congested the manual funnel recorders normally located mid–way along the finish funnel should move further backwards to ensure the runners are allowed to cross the finish line. This is particularly relevant to the adult races.
  6. It is also critical to ensure runners are recorded in the order they cross the finish line for the accuracy of the results.
    Note: If any runner is seen to have jumped ahead of (an) earlier finisher(s), the Funnel Marshals need to tell the runner(s) to move back to the position(s) in which they crossed the finish line.
  7. The digital race number barcode scanning team members are to to be stationed at the far end of the funnel under a gazebo (to avoid scanning issues) to scan the barcodes of the finishing race numbers. Two sets of scanners are to used to
  8. of recorded results.
  9. A total of 3 sets of recorded finishing times and race numbers are to be generated; 2x sets of digital recorded finishing times and scanned race number barcodes and 1x set of manually recorded finishing times and race numbers.

Calling & Recording of Results

  1. It is important that each team of two recorders designates one person to be the Caller (calling out the finishing times or runners’ race numbers as they cross the finish line) and the other to be the Recorder (writing down the runners’ numbers).
  2. It is imperative that the person writing down the runners’ race numbers should face away from the runners and simply record the race numbers as they are called out.
    Important: For the purposes of the efficiency and accuracy of recording the results the Recorder must concentrate solely on that task by listening to the Caller for the information to be recorded.
  3. Switching roles after each race can help to avoid tiredness and monotony.
  4. Neatly recorded finishing times and race numbers help make results processing the results significantly quicker and easier and are appreciated.
  5. All the materials required to record the race results will be supplied by the Results Co–ordinator at the marshals briefing before start of the first race. The materials provided will include results recording sheets, results recording reference guides, digital stopwatches, digital barcode scanners, pencils, pencil sharpeners clipboards with waterproof cover, course maps and fixture schedules.
  6. Pencils are supplied as they are generally more reliable and often produce clearer output than pens.
  7. In the event of any issues please notify the Results Co–ordinator and/or Fixture Referee as soon as possible.

Guest Runners

  1. Official Guest athletes are issued with race numbers that start with an ‘X’. Please record the race number as it appears i.e. X1, X23, etc.
  2. Any runner that crosses the finish line must be recorded. Record all such finishing athletes using a diagonal line ‘/’ through the box beside their position.

Return of Race Recording Sheets

  1. The manual funnel recording sheets are to be collected after each race by the Results Co–ordinator (currently Dene Stringfellow).
  2. The manual timesheets are also to be collected from the Timekeepers after each race by the Results Co–ordinator.
  3. The manual funnel recording sheets and timesheets are to be checked for any anomalies and resolved, if possible, straightaway by the Results Co–ordinator inconjunction with the recording team personnel.

The Results Co–ordinator will also be on hand at the finish area to help ensure everything runs smoothly, to assist in helping to ensure the runners stay in their finish order and to collect completed results sheets from the Timekeepers and Funnel Recorders. The digital stopwatches and barcode scanners are to be returned to the red tub at the end of the fixture for Den to collect afterwards.

Volunteers Summary for Race Directors

  1. Blank sheets for recording results are available to download under the Resources section of the League website.
  2. Due to the dependance of the results of a fixture on the accurate recording of finishing and race numbers, ideally, volunteers with suitable experience should be used.
  3. Races should not be started unless Timekeepers and Funnel Recorders are ready and in place.
  4. Ideally, host clubs will be able to provide proper clipboards with waterproof cover. Additionally, in poor weather, a conveniently positioned tent/gazebo/car can help to keep the recording sheets dry.
  5. Aside from the marshals required to marshal the courses the following volunteers will be required to record and deliver the results:
    1. 1x Fixture Referee (to be confirmed in advance of the fixture).
    2. 1x Race Starter to start the races using a horn or whistle + 1x person shadowing (– 2 people).
    3. 2x Manual Timekeeping Teams to record all race times as previous seasons (Oxon AA – host club(s) to be advised of these officials nearer the time) (– 4 Oxon AA people to be confirmed in advance of the fixture by the OXL).
    4. 2x Digital Time Keepers using digital stopwatches and 1x Assistant to cover overlapping races (– 3 people – 6 watches (equipment provided by OXL)).
    5. 2x Funnel Marshals - at funnel entrance to ensure runners stay in position in funnel as crossed line (– 2 people).
    6. 1x Manual Race Number Recording Team recording race numbers as previous seasons – mid funnel (– 2 people).
    7. 2x Digital Barcode Scanners and Assistant to record all race numbers + any no scans – end of funnel (– 3 people + 2 scanners (equipment provided by OXL)).
    8. Hares and Sweepers for the U9 and U11 races (1 hare and 1 sweeper per race) (– 4–6 people).
    9. In addition, for the Round 3 combined County XC Championships fixture only, further teams each of manual Timekeepers and manual Funnel Recorders are required to record the results for the County XC Championships (– 4 people).
    10. Results Runners for both the Round 3 combined County XC Championships and Round 5 fixtures (– 1–2 people).

Digital Timekeeping & Race Number Barcode Scanning Guides

  1. Please refer to the following guides available under the Resources section of the League website for full details regarding how the digital timekeeping and barcode scanning equipment is to be used:
  2. In addition, below is feedback that has been returned by those involved with the digital timing and barcode scanning at fixtures in the past for reference and convenience.
    • General Feedback
    • Those volunteers involved in the recording of results must ensure sufficient cover is in place at all times to avoid results not being recorded.
    • Where possible comfort breaks should be taken shortly after the start of longer races to ensure teams are not left short-handed to avoid results not being recorded.
    • Previous Barcode Scanning Teams’ Feedback
    • There is potential for rain and mud to hinder the scanner, so in bad weather a gazebo is needed.
    • Likewise, the sun can also affect the scanner so either a card can be used to create shadow over the race number barcode or the athlete can be turned away from the sun. Athletes need to prepare to do the following as they approach the scanner – straighten their race number so the barcode is clearly visible, face the person scanning the barcode so the sun is behind.
    • The X (Guest) numbers can be more difficult to scan – some may not scan at all.
    • The race number barcode scanning team needs to be positioned at the very end of the funnel to avoid the athletes backing up.
    • It is easy to forget to scan ‘no barcode’ when lots of runners are together. If that does happen, use the Unrecorded Barcodes Sheet contained in the Digital Race Number Barcode Scanning Guide both referred to above and supplied on the day to manually record the numbers.
    • The scanner seemed to change the beep noises which was strange! It would be good to have a clear explanation of the beeps.
    • It would be helpful to have a copy of the race times/order – this normally provided at the pre–fixture briefing on the day.
    • It’s helpful to have someone reminding athletes to stay in line (especially younger ones).
    • A gazebo needs to be placed over the end of the finish funnel.
    • At least one member of the race number barcode scanning team should be female.

Many thanks for your assistance and co–operation.