Competitors, having advanced from one of the tryouts in the prior months, race in heats of four skaters, with the top two advancing from each heat. Racers, typically ice hockey players, outfitted as such, speed down the course’s turns, berms, and jumps.
From 2010 onwards a points system was introduced. After the season, the skater with the most points is crowned the world champion. Points are awarded for the top 100 racers. Points are awarded starting with 1000 for the winner, after that 800, 600, 500 and decreasing to 0.5 for place 100.
For the 2015 season, the Riders Cup events were instituted. The events were designed to make the sport more accessible to more skaters. For these events, skaters can earn up to 25% of the points that the main events are awarded, with percentages decreasing with each placing. Meaning that the winner receives 250 points, which is 25% of the main event 1000 points and it decreases to 1% of the main event points for the 64th finisher, who receives 2.5 points. Any placings 65th and beyond do not score any points.
As well, a new wrinkle was added to the overall championship called the "throw out" rule. If a competitor competes in all of the stops, up to a maximum of 12 events in future years, the lowest main event score and the lowest Riders Cup score will be thrown out. This will give the skater an adjusted score for the overall championship. Thus, meaning that it is in the skater's best interest to compete in all events.