1Name and OrganisationThe event shall be known as the Garmin BSJ Malta-Gozo-Malta Open Water Swimming Competition, hereunder referred to as the event, and shall be organized by Birkirkara St. Joseph Sports Club, hereunder referred to as the Organizers, under the auspices of the Aquatic Sports Association of Malta.
2Date, Time, Route and FeeThe event shall be held on Saturday, 16th September 2023, starting at 6.30 a.m. from Marfa in Malta, proceeding on the shortest possible route towards the island of Comino on to a turn-around point at Ras il-Qala in Gozo and back on the same route to finish at Marfa in Malta.  The approximate distance is 11 kilometres. The event entry fee is Euros 70 per participant which does not include the accompanying boat.
3Schedule on Race Day5:30 a.m. Signing in of participating swimmers. 5.45 a.m. Roll-call of all participants and the systemizing of helpers in the accompanying boats. 6.30 a.m. Start of Race from Marfa, Malta.
4A. PrerequisitesTo participate in the BSJ Malta-Gozo-Malta Open Water Swimming Challenge 2023 an applicant should:   submit to the Organizers the Race Entry Form and the Agreement entitled “Events Registration, Release and Waiver of Liability and Assumption of Risk and Indemnity” issued by Birkirkara St. Joseph Sports Club in respect of events organised by the said Club, duly filled accompanied by the Race Entry Fee and any other fees as the case may be;  Entry applications and fees may be effected on line through the Club website;attach to the Race Entry Form a recent medical certificate at least issued during the previous month;.  (Upon a professional advice the organizers reserve the right to reject such a certificate.)
 B. InterviewAt the discretion of the Club’s Swimming Board, an applicant may be asked to sit for an interview with the said Board, before having his/her application approved and accepted.  Alternatively, an applicant could send a link to the result of a race s/he has completed on a similar distance.
5Time LimitA time limit of five hours shall be applicable for the event.  The Event Timekeeper shall communicate with the Event Judge the moment the prescribed time shall elapse.  Swimmers still in the water will be asked to abandon the swim and no official time will be given. 
6Closing Date of ApplicationsThe official event Entry Forms and the Agreement as mentioned in Para. 4.(i) of these Regulations, including payment and medical certificate, should be forwarded to the organizers by not later than Saturday, 2nd September 2023.  Late applications shall carry an additional fee of Euro 20.00.  No applications will be accepted after the 9th September, 2023.
7Entry FeeThe event’s entry fee should be Euro 70.00 and should be accompanied by the official Entry Form and the Agreement as mentioned in Para. 4.(i) of these Regulations.  Documents not properly filled shall not be considered. 
8Accompanying BoatsThroughout the whole event, swimmers should be accompanied by a motorboat, at least 13 feet long, but not longer than 25 feet.  Swimmers are to keep as close as possible to their respective escort boat without touching it at any time.  Swimmers are to ensure that they provide any safety equipment of their choice in case they would need it in an emergency. Swimmers with a gap of more than five metres from the escort boat, shall be given a warning to regularize their position.  A second warning for breaching this rule, will result in an immediate disqualification. (The Yellow/Red Card/Flag system should be applicable). The organizers shall provide a number, equivalent to the one assigned to the applicant, which number shall be attached in a prominent place on the escort boat, and which should be easily visible to the event referee. All escort sea crafts are to abide strictly with the relative Transport Malta Regulations.
9Finish BuoyThe event finish shall be at a point placed by the organizers at Marfa, Malta.  Finishing times are recorded the instant swimmers hit the Finish.
10Pre-Event MeetingA meeting for all participating swimmers shall be held on Tuesday, 12th   September 2023 at 7.00 p.m. at a venue to be advised by the organizers.  Helpers and boat owners are advised to attend this meeting. During this meeting the event shall be reviewed for the benefit of everyone involved. Applicants who shall be unable to attend to this pre-event meeting, should send their representatives (the persons who will be accompanying them during the event) who should agree to take full responsibility of explaining in detail to the respective applicants, the proceedings of the meeting. Should neither the applicant nor his/her appointed representative be present for this meeting, the relative entry form shall be withdrawn and the entry fee, less 20% administration charges, reimbursed.
11TrophiesTrophies shall be awarded to the first three places in the Male and Female categories, and to the first Male and Female in the other categories as specified in the entry form. A commemorative memento shall be presented to all swimmers finishing the event.
12Swimming CapsSwimming caps are to be approved and numbered at the meeting held by the organizers on the 12th September, 2023.  Participants shall not be allowed to wear any blue, black or silver coloured swimming caps. Swimmers turning up for the race without the approved cap shall be disqualified. If swimming caps are provided by the Organisers, it shall be compulsory for the participants to wear these caps during the event.
13WetsuitsSwimmers are not allowed to wear wetsuits.  Swimmers wearing a wetsuit may take part in the event, and although their timing will be taken, they will not be eligible to be included in the race result/classification.
14DisqualificationA boat assigned by the organizers, shall be patrolling, and marshalling the event.  The Event Judge shall be on board this boat.  On breaching of any rules of the event by a participant, this boat shall approach the said participant and a warning shall be conveyed to the swimmer.  (The Yellow/Red Card/Flag system should be applicable). A second warning shall result in an immediate disqualification from the event.  In such a case, the participant should abandon the swim immediately and board his accompanying boat. If, following a disqualification notice, a swimmer continues the event, the organizers shall not be held responsible for his safety, etc. and the swimmer shall not be allowed to participate the following year.
15Difficulties during the eventShould a participant encounter any difficulties during the event, s/he should abandon the swim immediately, board on or be given assistance by the accompanying boat and inform the organizers immediately on the mobile telephone numbers issued for such an eventuality.
16Cancellation of EventAs from two days prior to the event, arrangements shall be made by the organizers to be forwarded by expert analyses of the weather conditions on the event’s route. On the eve of the event, a decision whether the event shall be held or not due to the forecasted weather conditions, shall be taken.  Should the organizers be advised to cancel the event, the participants will be informed accordingly through the Club website and social media platforms, by not later than 6.00 p.m.  Should the event be cancelled, a refund, less 20% administration charges, of the payments made to the organizers shall be made. Full refund of payments forwarded to the Organisers in respect of the hire of an escort boat will be effected. Should the weather conditions be acceptable, but jellyfish are prevalent on the race route, it shall be up to each participating swimmer whether to compete or not.  The decision should be solely his/hers and the organizers shall not be held responsible for any eventual mishap. Since a decision to cancel participation due to jellyfish can only be taken just before the event, an applicant shall not be able to claim a refund of the payments made to the Organizers. 
17Advertising MaterialThe only advertising material of a commercial nature allowed to be exhibited during the event, should be that approved by the organizers.
18Interpretation of these RulesThe organizers are the sole interpreters of these Rules, and all decisions taken by them or on their behalf shall be final.

Race Categories

OPEN (18 years of age and older by Dec 31, 2023)

All official entries automatically qualify                      

UNDER 17 (Born 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009)              

MASTERS ‘A’ (Ages 30 to 40 by Dec 31, 2023)        

MASTERS ‘B’ (Ages 41 to 50 by Dec 31, 2023)        

MASTERS ‘C’ (Aged 51+ by Dec 31, 2023)