It’s finally here: An independent, international, mathematically-based onewheel rider ranking system that encompasses the diversity of riders, regions, event types, and board modifications in our community.

The International One Wheel Association (IOWA) has spent over a year developing a custom Elo rating algorithm specifically tailored to onewheel racing. Our goal was to deliver a comprehensive and unbiased onewheel rider ranking system that rewards participation in all competitive onewheel events, not just specific sanctioned ones, and which does not exclude those of our community’s fastest racers who prefer to compete on customized equipment.

The result is the IOWA Rider Ranking System. 

How we created the IOWA onewheel rankings

To create this system, first we collected and entered data from onewheel events as far back as 2017. This historical data provides context going into each season, making each season’s results more accurate than the last as point scores organically stabilize over time. However, we were careful not to put too much weight on the past; annual point regressions provide a more level playing field for new riders to enter the scene at the start of each new season.

Then, we teamed up with Danny Cunningham, a professional data scientist who had previously developed a multiplayer version of the popular Elo rating system. We worked with Danny to adapt the Elo system, which was originally created to rank players in one-on-one competitions, for the even-more complex sport of onewheel racing. 

As the algorithm neared completion, we shared it with our friends at The Float Life, who provided valuable feedback to help us make the results more accurate, fair, and easy to understand. We owe special thanks to Badger, who spent countless hours checking our math and working closely with Danny to ensure the final system would be as accurate and equitable as possible.

After all that work, we are pleased to share our top 20 rankings for the pro men and pro women categories. 

Top 20 Pro Men 2023
Pro Men IOWA rankings for 2023
Top 20 Pro Women 2023
Pro Women IOWA rankings for 2023

A onewheel ranking system you can trust

Because our rider ranking system is mathematically sound, we have a high degree of confidence in the results. The math behind the IOWA Ranking System allows us to make probabilistic predictions about race results (e.g., “based on their current ranks, there is a 75% chance Rider A will beat Rider B”).

When a model is well calibrated, the predicted probabilities match the actual frequencies of the observed outcomes. We measured the calibration of the IOWA Ranking System using all available pairwise head-to-head results. 

IOWA ranking system accuracy graph

Learn more about the IOWA Ranking System

Our teachers always told us to show our work! Visit our rider ranking system page to learn more about our methodology, which data we prioritized and why, what makes our system different from the point-based one used by the official Onewheel Racing League, or simply, what the heck is Elo anyway?