I'm looking at taking part in the Rhein-Ruhr Marathon coming up in May and I noticed that part of the starter information requires you to have a timer chip (OK, so that's normal) but there is the option to either buy one or "rent" one. Here's an extract from the starter info:
The Rhein-Ruhr-Marathon uses the Real-Time Champion-Chip for time measurement. It can be bought for € 31 or rented. For renting you can make a deposit at the starting card distribution point. When returning the chip after the run on 20 May 2012 you will be given back € 25. If you keep the chip, it is bought and you can use it worldwide for runs
with time measurement by chip. It is not possible to participate without the chip. The chip is not transferable.
What I was wondering is, is there any point in buying the chip?
I can see the advantage of having your own in terms of kit worries and not having to mess with laces just before a race but is it really as universally usable as they suggest - i.e. if I turned up to a different race with it then would I be able to use it even if they were running a different system?
Is it common for people to buy their own timing chips? As of yet I've only done a few races and never been charged for the use of one that's given to me for the race - is it something I should be expecting to happen as I do more races?