What is the difference between chip time and gun time?

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The difference between chip and gun time is the chip is able to register with the mats at the start and finish of the race and therefore gives you a time that reflects the true distance that you ran. Chip timing has become popular over the last ten plus years as mass participation events have grown and participants do not get to the start line when the gun goes off as they are behind thousands of people. However Chip timing is only for personal interest. It is not used for official results. Here is a quick official response to this common question: According to IAAF rules, race results and awards should be based on official time or GUN TIME (the time from the start gun to the crossing of the finish line). They should not be based on net times found by subtracting the time of crossing the start mat from the time of crossing the finish mat, if chip timing is used with a start mat. Chip times can be displayed on the official results as well as the gun times, but should not be used to ... more
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