Grand Prix Series

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The 2019 Grand Prix Series (GPS) will be divided in to two. Grand Prix 1 and Grand Prix 2 will be used to find the qualifying teams for the Home Nations (Top 8 Teams).

Grand Prix 3 will be used to find the teams for the EPA Inter-Regional Championship (Top 8 Teams).

The WPA Executive strongly recommends that teams consider their availability for the competitions before entering.

To register a team for the Grand Prix Series, please follow this link to register via this website.

To download a copy of the Registration form for GPs 1 and 2, please follow this link.

To download a copy of the Registration form for GP 3, please follow this link.

The Swiss Ladder System.

The preferred competition format is the SWISS LADDER SYSTEM and the Buchholz Number (BHN) and Fine Buchholz Number (fBHN) Ranking System to finalise overall positions in the GPS.  The ranking system rewards consistency and also the strength of the team’s opponents.

The position of the teams is calculated by the SPORT Tournament Software, which was developed for a range of competitive sports including pétanque.

The Swiss Ladder System format was first introduced to the game of chess and has become popular in other sports including pétanque.  The drawing mode assures that the matches, from about the third round onwards are between teams of nearly equal level.

The reason is if you lose your first game you will play against other teams that have done the same, i.e. potentially weaker teams. If you win your first game you play against others that have done the same, i.e. potentially stronger teams.

Swiss System - entries v rounds.
Swiss System – entries v rounds.

How does the ranking system work?

Buchholz Number (BHN)

The BHN or number of indirect points for a team is the sum of points of all that teams opponents.  It is a measure for the strength of the opponents played: a high BHN indicates that the team has played against strong players.

When two or more teams have the same number of wins, the team with the higher BHN is ahead in the ranking.

A team with a bye in a round receives the last entry’s number of points for this round.

Fine-Buchholz Number (fBHN)

The fBHN of a team is the sum of BHN of all their opponents.  It is a refinement of the Buchholz ranking.

The Bye

When there are an odd number of entries one team has to have a bye in each round.  In the first round the bye is selected randomly from the entered teams.  The competition organiser is asked to accept this decision because the bye should be granted to one of the weaker players.  In further rounds the team with the lowest score gets the bye.

No entry will get more than one bye in each round of the competition.


Ranking of teams in the GPS will be based upon the number of wins and the BHN. Where teams have the same number of wins and equal BHN, then the fBHN will be used to rank the tied teams. If the teams are still equal, then the points difference will be used, then points for (+), followed by points against (-) if required.