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Headstarts

So that people of all ages can compete in this race on a more or less equitable basis some runners are allowed to begin the race before others. The following table indicates how many Headstart minutes each entrant will receive based on gender and age. Headstart minutes are based on years of historical data of actual times and records of male and female runners. Compiled and interpreted by "Birdman", the race's official handicapper, the information is presented to the committee for review annually. Typically at least eight of the ten top finishers have been from different handicap groups.

2017 Headstarts

Eight runners – four women and four men – established new single age records in the 2016 Dipsea.

Women: Fiona Cundy set a record at age 29, good for 12th place, but her time was more than two minutes slower than the existing record for age 28 and a bit slower than existing records for women age 31 through 39. Three older women also set single age records. They were Jamie Rivers at age 65, Melody-Anne Schultz, and Eve Pell at age 79. None of the new women’s records justify revisions to the 2017 head starts.

Men: Rickey Gates ran :49.45 for men age 35, good for 5th place in the race. Right behind him in 6th place was Galen Burrell, who ran :49.56 at age 36. These two times are excellent but they do not threaten the handicapping “line.” Brian Pilcher won the 2016 race by 58 seconds, recording a time of :56.58 at age 59. His 2016 time was 28 seconds faster than his winning time in the 2015 Dipsea. The new record by Pilcher is within one minute of the “line” but not superior to past performances by Sal Vasquez and Russ Kiernan in the same general age range. Finally, Hans Schmid ran 1:15.55 at age 76. This record is very impressive, making Schmid the oldest runner ever to run faster than his age (in minutes). Hans finished in 14th place in 2016, compared to 17th place in 2015.

Overall, no adjustment to last year’s head starts is needed in 2017.

Head Start Table and Start Times for 2016
Age
Group Minutes Head Start Section
MEN
WOMEN
INV DR
6 & under, 74 & over
7 & under, 66 & over
AAA
25
8:30
8:57
73
65
AA
24
8:31
8:58
72
8, 64
A
23
8:32
8:59
71
63
B
22
8:33
9:00
7, 70
62
C
21
8:34
9:01
69
9, 60-61
D
20
8:35
9:02
68
59
E
19
8:36
9:03
67
58
F
18
8:37
9:04
66
56-57
G
17
8:38
9:05
8, 65
10, 55
H
16
8:39
9:06
63-64
53-54
J
15
8:40
9:07
62
11, 52
K
14
8:41
9:08
9, 61
49-51
L
13
8:42
9:09
60
12, 45-48
M
12
8:43
9:10
10, 58-59
13-14, 44
N
11
8:44
9:11
57
15, 41-43
P
10
8:45
9:12
11, 56
16-18, 40
Q
9
8:46
9:13
54-55
19-39
R
8
8:47
9:14
12,52-53
---
T
7
8:48
9:15
13,50-51
---
U
6
8:49
9:16
14,48-49
---
V
5
8:50
9:17
15,45-47
---
W
4
8:51
9:18
16,42-44
---
X
3
8:52
9:19
17,38-41
---
Y
2
8:53
9:20
18,31-37
---
Z
1
8:54
9:21
19-30
---
SCR
0
8:55
9:22