5. CONGRESSES

5.1 TYPES OF CONGRESSES

The Scheme recognizes 4 types of Congresses:

5.1.1 State-controlled Congresses (grade B4)

Any club wishing to run a Congress must obtain prior approval from the State Association, which is conditional on compliance with the following basic requirements:

The Congress shall be played over a minimum of two sessions.

The same requirements apply to Novice Congresses which are special promotional events, restricted to novice players with less than 100 masterpoints, although organizers may select a lower limit. Novice Congresses are treated in the same manner as Congress Restricted events - see clause 5.3.2.

5.1.2 Bridge Tours and Cruises (grade B4)

Red masterpoints for Bridge Tours and Cruises may be issued subject to the following stipulations:

5.1.3 Super Congresses (grade B3)

These are major events which include championships with large, strong fields. Although controlled by State Associations, these Congresses must also satisfy the following additional requirements:

NOTE: A side Congress run in parallel with any Australian National Championship is automatically granted B3 status.

5.1.4 ABF Super Congresses (grade A2)

These major gold events require ABF approval. Entry to these competitions is limited to players who are either registered with the ABF, or else are visitors from overseas.

NOTE: When an International Championship (played under the auspices of the World Bridge Federation) is hosted in Australia, all minor (open entry) events and side Congresses are granted grade A2 status.

5.1.5 Bridge Festivals (grade B4)

These red point events are customarily held over several days, often with several competitions. If all the requirements of 5.1. are satisfied then masterpoints shall be awarded at the following rates:
• Single session events receive red masterpoints at the B5 rate
• Multi-session events receive red masterpoints at the B4 rate
• Only two events, one pairs and the other teams, get the Congress Acceleration factor, unless the conditions of section 5.3.3 are met, then additional minor championship(s) may receive the same acceleration as the major championships.

5.2 CONGRESS TOURNAMENT GRADES

5.2.1 Grade B5 - Red

This grade is for events, other than the major championships, within a B4 Congress. It is also used for walk-in events in B3 Congresses, and some Bridge Tours major events sessions (see clause 5.1.2).

5.2.2 Grade B4 - Red

This grade is for major Championships in State-controlled Congresses, Bridge Tours, and for minor events in Super Congresses. It is also used for walk-in events in A2 Congresses.

5.2.3 Grade B3 - Red

This grade is for Super Congress Championships and for minor events in A2 Congresses.

5.2.4 Grade A2 - Gold

This grade is solely for ABF Super Congress Championships.

5.3 CONGRESS EVENTS

5.3.1 Congress Championships

Each grade B4 Congress may include two major championships, each of at least two sessions:

Each grade A2 or B3 Congress may include these two championships and one additional major championship, provided it is of at least 4 sessions.

An exception occurs in the case of Congresses run in parallel with any National or International Championship (see clauses 5.1.3 and 5.1.4) when the number of major championships may be increased to 6 (excluding single session events). No side Congress event may be played at A2 level.

These championships have a tournament grade as defined by the Congress type (B4, B3 or A2) and are subject to the session acceleration described in clause 5.4.2.

5.3.2 Restricted events

Restricted events retain the same grade and session acceleration as Congress Championships, but are subject to an adjustment by the appropriate Master Factor (see clause 4.4.9). The previous requirement that there be an accompanying Open event no longer applies.

5.3.3 Minor events

All other events conducted at a Congress drop one grade, i.e. B4 to B5, B3 to B4 and A2 to B3, in the last case changing from gold to red points. An exception occurs in the case of walk-in events which are grade B5 in the case of B4 and B3 Congresses, and grade B4 in the case of A2 Congresses. If a walk-in final (open only to place-getters from the heats) is played, no final premium applies, but an outright award based on the average number of tables in all heats and S = 2, will be given.

In the case of large Congresses (number of table-sessions for the whole Congress exceeding 200), one additional (minor) championship of at least two sessions may be nominated for every 100 table-sessions in excess of 100. Such minor championships receive the same acceleration as the major championships.

5.4 MASTERPOINTING CONGRESSES

5.4.1 Procedure

The masterpointing of grade B4 and B3 Congresses is the responsibility of State Masterpoint Secretaries. The secretaries may delegate this responsibility to nominees, who must have a thorough knowledge of the Masterpoint Scheme.

The results should be forwarded to the ABF Masterpoint Centre using the procedures in Appendix C. The Centre shall prepare and issue a report to the Congress convener, with a copy to the State Masterpoint Secretary.

Masterpointing of grade A2 Congresses is the responsibility of the ABF Masterpoint Unit; it should be done under the supervision of the Goldpoint Coordinator, who will then forward the credit files to the Centre - ref. clause 7.5.1.

5.4.2 Congress acceleration factor

Congresses are masterpointed in the standard manner, except that the outright award for Congress Championships (apart from Bridge Tours and Cruises) benefits from an acceleration factor of one session. Thus for a two session event use the outright award quoted in Table 3C for S=3, for a three session event use S=4, etc.

A congress can have only one competition of the each format (i.e. Teams, Butler pairs, or Matchpoint Pairs) for each 10 sessions. Should a congress have more than this number then the additional competition(s) shall not be entitled to the Congress acceleration factor.