17 May 2012

Understanding the ISU World Standings


We've often heard about the World Standings of late, but have you ever wondered what exactly it is?

The ISU Council decided to implement two types of World Standings/Ranking, namely
  • the “ISU World Standings” which is taking into account results of the preceding two seasons and the current season and remains the basis for the draws at ISU Events;
  • the “ISU Season’s World Ranking” which is based on the results of the current ongoing season only. It has the main purpose to reflect the current competitive performances of the skaters.
A skater/couple's World Standing (WS) is hence based on results over the current and preceding two seasons. Competitors receive points based on their final placement at an event and the event's weight. The following events receive points:
  • ISU Championships (World, European, Four Continents, and World Junior Championships) and Olympic Winter Games. The best result by points per season, the best two results by points over the three seasons.
  • ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating and Final (senior and junior). The two best results by points per season, the best four results by points over the three seasons.
  • International senior calendar competitions. The two best results by points per season, the best four results by points over the three seasons.
Weight (Factor) per season:
  • current and intermediate season’s earned points will count 100 %
  • previous season’s earned points will count 70 %
Following the current season's World Championships, the results from the earliest season are deleted.

A new partnership starts with zero points – there is no transfer of WS points if a pair or ice dancing couple split up and form a new partnership. For pairs, either senior or junior Grand Prix events are considered (they can compete at both levels in one season).

These standings do not necessarily reflect a skater/couple's capabilities. Due to limits on entries to events (no more than three from each country), and varying competition in each country, skaters from some countries may find it more difficult to qualify to compete at major events. Thus, a skater with a lower SB but from a country with few high-level skaters may qualify to a major event while a skater with a much higher SB but from a country with more than three high-level skaters may not be sent. As a result, it is possible for a skater who regularly scores higher to end up with a much lower world standing.

A skater/couple's Season's World Ranking is calculated similarly to overall world standing but is based on the results on the results of the ongoing season only.

Source: ISU Communication 1629

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