Step 1 – Complete the 2019/20 VAL registration form.
All entrants into the Stawell Gift must be a registered member of the Victorian Athletic League.
New Zealand or interstate athletes can register as long as they are a member of their local professional foot running association e.g South Australia Athletic League etc. Registered members of state amateur athletics associations e.g Athletics Victoria, Athletics New South Wales etc will still need to become a member of the VAL.
Step 2 – Enter your chosen events
Click HERE for all event/race information.
The 2019 event timetable is available to view here.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is handicapped racing?
Handicapped racing is designed to ensure that every athlete has a chance to win. This means that athletes are allocated a handicap according to their ability. The fastest runner is placed on a backmark and gives a start to slower runners – the front markers.
What do I need to do to qualify for the Stawell Gift?
Anybody over the age of 14 can enter races at the Stawell Gift – you do not need to have recorded a particular qualifying time or even have an athletics background. 14+ can compete in any races and 13+ can compete in junior races (eg. Under 17 or Under 20).
What about races for children under the age of 13?
There are a series of races for children under the age 13, which are conducted in conjunction with Little Athletics Victoria. These are subject to a separate entry process.
I’ve never run in a professional foot running race – how do I know what handicap I will receive?
Athletes who are new to the sport generally start from the ‘novice’ handicap which is somewhere in the middle of the field. Their handicap is then adjusted as appropriate after the handicapper has seen them compete a few times.
Will my amateur performances on the track affect my handicap?
The VAL handicappers may, at their sole discretion, take into account your amateur performances when they determine your handicap for a particular event. You will be asked to list your personal and season best times on your VAL registration form.
Do I need to run in other professional races before the Stawell Gift?
No it’s not a requirement to compete in any other Gifts prior to Easter, however many runners do in an attempt to gain a better handicap mark along with additional race practice.
Do I need to have a trainer or train with a squad to enter the Stawell Gift?
No you do not need to be coached by a registered trainer to enter the Stawell Gift. However if you are looking for a trainer or are interested in joining a squad, an updated contact list can be found on the VAL website.
What does limit mean?
The limit is the most a runner can be handicapped in that particular event.
What is a backmarker and frontmarker event?
Where entries exceed 150 for a particular event, it will be conducted in two or more divisions, in the form of front markers and back markers events.
What is a novice or restricted event?
Novice or restricted races are open to those who have never won a professional foot running event or an IAAF, Athletics Australia or an affiliated bodies title.
How old do you have to be to compete in a veteran’s race?
To compete in a veteran’s event, you need to be over the age of 35 on the day of competition.