The Associated Public Schools Old Collegians Amateur Athletic Association Inc. conducts cross-country and road races in and around Melbourne during the winter season (April to September).
Runners of all ages and abilities are welcome. APSOC race fields include athletes aged from under 10 to over 70 years of age. Female runners comprise up to thirty percent of total competitors and there are team premierships and individual awards for both men and women. APSOC provides a vibrant, exciting competition for both elite runners and “honest battlers” alike.
There are currently twelve races on the APSOC calendar, ranging in distance from 3.2 km to a half marathon (21.1 km). The race links in the box to the right provide course maps and event information.
Several of the APSOC events offer short or long course options, allowing participants to choose the distance that best suits their level of fitness. All races are scheduled so as not to clash with the Athletics Victoria winter series so that athletes can easily compete in both competitions, and many APSOC members take the opportunity to do so by joining APS United.
Member clubs host the events in the APSOC series. There is afternoon tea after every race, at which athletes and friends mingle and swap stories about racing, training and club social events. This highly popular tradition of keen competition, followed by friendly social interaction between club members, has now endured for more than eighty years.
Eight of the APSOC races are handicap events, based on carefully compiled statistics of each athlete’s previous performances. Most of these are “time after go” races, where the slower runners start first and are pursued by the faster competitors, giving every runner in the field the chance to be first over the line.
There are five “grand slam” team events, where the clubs compete for points towards hotly contested divisional premierships. These team races comprise three scratch and two relay races. This unique mixture of scratch, relay and handicap races provides a variety for competitors not found in other winter running competitions.