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  4. I’m Timing a Race. What Zone4 Timing Hardware do I need?

I’m Timing a Race. What Zone4 Timing Hardware do I need?

Are you timing a race for your local sport club or community organization and are not sure what you need for that race? Use this guide to determine what your needs are.

Note that these are recommendations.Some sports or events may not fit perfectly into this criteria.

Do I need a ServerBox?

The short answer is, probably not. A ServerBox is an offline server that allows you to time a race with limited to no network access (Wifi or LTE). It is also required to integrate some types of timing Equipment. Most races do not need a ServerBox and will be able to use Zone4’s web based timing software.

A ServerBox is required when:

  • Your race venue has little to no network access.
  • You are using Summit Timers for your race (primarily used for sanctioned XC skiing races)

A ServerBox is recommended when:

  • You are using a Rapidcam photofinish camera (usually only used for high level sanctioned events and some road cycling events).

A ServerBox is not needed when:

  • The above criteria is not met. This means you have good network access and are not using summit timers. Most events don’t need a ServerBox.

Click here to find out more about Zone4’s ServerBox.

Should I use Zone4’s GoChip Timing System?

The short answer is yes you should, it is awesome and will make your job of race timing much easier. It will also help you to ensure that you can provide racers with accurate timely results.

That being said there are scenarios when a chip timing system is less crucial. If your race meets the following criteria then consider timing your race with manual timing using Zone4’s android app.

You don’t need GoChip timing system if your race meets the all following criteria:

  • Your race will have under 40 participants.
  • Your race will have only 1 Timing point needing individual times for racers? (your race is a mass start and you only want finish times)
  • Your race is a fun non competitive event that does not require very accurate timing.
  • Your race is taking place during the summer when below zero temperatures are unlikely. (getting volunteers to operate a phone keypad in the cold is a little cruel)

If your race meets all that criteria then you don’t need to use a chip timing system. That being said using the GoChip Timing system will make your life easier and give you some much need practice for bigger events you might be timing in the future.

You Should use Zone4’s GoChip Timing system when:

  • The above criteria is not met
  • You want your race to be a smashing success!!

The majority of races that use Zone4 choose to use the GoChip timing system.

To find out more about Zone4’s GoChip System and rental costs click here.

Do I need any other Timing Equipment?

Probably not. Using the GoChip Timing system is all that is needed for most events. That being said there are scenarios when additional timing equipment is recommended.

Also if you’re timing a race you will need some other equipment not provided by Zone4 such as a laptop. For a list of additional equipment not provided by Zone4 click here.


The Rapidcam is Zone4’s photofinish camera. It is recommended you use a Rapidcam if:

  • You are timing a high level sanctioned event that is likely to have very close finishes (FIS events, UCI events).
  • Sanctioned road cycling events.
  • Timed cross country skiing sprint heats.

To Find out more about Zone4’s Rapidcam click here.

XC Skiing specific timing equipment

XC skiing races may require some specific timing equipment. This is especially true for FIS sanctioned events. This equipment may include:

Note that though Zone4 does offer rentals for Star Wands, Summit Timers or photocells, we strongly encourage clubs and divisions across the country to share this equipment amongst themselves.

How much will all this cost?

Zone4 Offers weekend rentals, Season Rentals and purchase option for most of our timing gear. Weekend rentals are by far our most popular option. To find out more about how much it will all cost use our rental cost calculator or check out our full price list.

Are you in the USA? Check out our USA pricing here.

Updated on 2019-06-28

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