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Discussion: WOC qualification model

in: Orienteering; General

Apr 14, 2013 7:11 PM # 
14 out of 20 responses are critical of removal of the WOC qualification. Can the IOF overlook this opposition?

To me the proposed model is complicating things even more. How will you manage to explain this system to anyone outside the sport of orienteering? It is hard enough for orienteers to understand.
Apr 15, 2013 11:50 AM # 
My concerns are very close to AUT, DEN and IRL. We are still on fundamental level and FOC need to produce additional new backup documents, analysis, online surveys and based on that a discussion about the reasons, benefits and constraints for each proposed solution. I suppose we don't want to argue with the IOF for nothing. Results of this phase are not structured. If you look what IOF council member's countries think.....well they skip this unproductive phase.
Apr 15, 2013 12:29 PM # 
I support kofols' recommendation to do away with Austria, Denmark and Ireland. They are unproductive countries.
Apr 15, 2013 1:39 PM # 
I like your sense of humor but maybe AP needs an additional flagged feature for productive and unproductive comments.
Apr 17, 2013 3:58 AM # 
Can someone remind me of the bigger picture - I think I've forgotten where things stand. Is it something like: there is a new WOC format to be introduced in year XXXX at the latest though it could be in place by 2014 if host countries wish to adopt earlier. This new WOC format will require a method of selecting runners for middle and long finals. And this qualification method is what is under discussion now. Is that more or less correct?
Apr 17, 2013 4:54 AM # 
Under the current system; every nation is equal under it. In the proposal for a new system; not so much. There will never be agreement, it's very clear. Switzerland is already proposing that the top nations get 4 starts, while the less developed nations stay at 1.

The clear signal of the proposed system is that developing nations need not bother with forest orienteering, and better focus entirely on sprints. This is fundamentally flawed. If this proposal is implemented as it is worded today, in my opinion, it will have serious consequences for the High Performance Programs of the developing nations.
Apr 17, 2013 5:26 AM # 
@AZ, Italy has volunteered and been approved to implement the new (well, a new) programme in 2014. And. Yes.

I imagine IOF Congress could revert, but not until 2015 I suppose.
Apr 17, 2013 7:08 AM # 
Sounds too exclusive. Developing nations will never develop under systems designed to keep them out but it's likely the IOF only wants 'the best' in the world champs instead of having people getting caned.

This may be fine in Europe where orienteering is a pretty dominant sport and unlikely to fold anytime soon but in the outer countries where it's already dying, it'll prevent further growth.
Apr 17, 2013 11:28 AM # 
No matter how stupid was the idea that we voted about unfinished proposals, many voted for Council proposal only because of this detail: "all nations guaranteed one starting place"

It would be important to solve this problem first because the final rule could have different effects on number of free spots (and in case of introducing low key event how many free final spots would be available) and on basic definition who is elite runner and what should be the minimum quality for anyone to start at WOC middle/long.

If we all want the same in the future as NOR (It is important that the WOC is used as a strategic tool to create greater awareness of orienteering as a elite sport, increased media coverage and visibility) and SUI (At WOC the best runners must be able to participate. This has to be given top priority and not the aim to conduct politically correct WOC where everyone can participate.) then NOR and SUI must tell us how we should translate these terms:

- Make more of the top runners in the Long and Medium finals.

- orienteering as a elite sport


FOC border for minimum quality is at 500 WRE points, France wants higher and SAOF wants lower. FOC didn't ask federations with the list of these kind of direct questions but it would be good to know what federations think so we could find where to draw the line?
Apr 17, 2013 12:27 PM # 
500 WRE points is so far off elite it's not even funny. I have more than that and I'm pretty useless at orienteering!
Apr 17, 2013 2:22 PM # 
My only logical explanation why FOC lowers the limit here is that FOC or Council treats new exotic countries far more important than old - traditional - small - undeveloped countries for the overall image of the WOC. From their point of view it looks it is better to have 50 countries in the final and all these "500 points spots" go at the expense of 2nd and 3rd division countries.

They forgot to do a simple analysis to find out how strong is 80-100th best runner at WOC today? I probably will not miss much if I say 1000 Points. Do we need a higher border line? Yes. Do we need to convince each other about it? No, because it is already a standard we have achieved so far. SUI, NOR wants Elite event for the best runners but their representatives in FOC want "500 WRE points" (WOC for all).
Apr 17, 2013 3:41 PM # 
The '500 points' criterion is only intended to be a measure of basic competence - as andrewd says, anyone who's any good should be able to do that easily. Anyone who is not capable of doing that is also almost certainly not capable of finishing a WOC race under the time limit.
Apr 17, 2013 4:41 PM # 
Blair with all due respect but I've looked also to the consequences of this rule. With this rule FOC wants to tell us - Please understand that your second (~1100 points) or third runner (~1000 points) is irrelevant for the global IOF story and development of WOC. You are suggesting to us that our runners need to watch these (500 points) runners for the sake of a better WOC overall image or what? Do we need to applause to them if they will make it to the finish under the time limit in most prestigious orienteering event on earth - WOC FINAL!
I doubt that many countries support this rule.
Apr 17, 2013 9:18 PM # 
With 80-100 people and just elite courses there will be a massive track around the course in any remotely wet country. So I guess the plan is to send out some people early to make the tracks in the wrong directions...
Apr 17, 2013 10:31 PM # 
I wonder what Bjorne Daehlie thinks. Here he is after winning the gold medal in an event almost as important as WOC final, greeting the last place finisher... That is a famous moment that inspired a great number of people - and inspiring people is a big part of what major international competitions should be about

Apr 17, 2013 10:46 PM # 
btw: I agree with the NOR statement that (It is important that the WOC is used as a strategic tool to create greater awareness of orienteering as a elite sport, increased media coverage and visibility). I assumed that meant having more countries take part, but I see that other people might agree with the NOR position but think the way to achieve it is by adopting the SUI approach
Apr 18, 2013 12:04 AM # 
There was no-one left to greet me when I crossed the finish line for the long day at our Easter carnival.
Apr 18, 2013 8:03 AM # 
I assumed that meant having more countries take part
You are correct but to fulfill the IOC evaluation criteria number 20 we don't need to have participation from each country in each discipline.New-IOC-evaluation-criteria-for-sports-and-disciplines-2012

Technically, these "500 Points" starting spots at middle/long are WILD CARDS. It would be easier from FOC to say that we need some of them for one or another particular reason and then we could have a discussion why we need it. We all want to achieve these common goals but... 15-20 years of elite orienteering development is worth something vs Wild cards. Many people find inspiration because they love the sport and these "famous moments" are more or less meant to entertain the TV audience.
Apr 18, 2013 8:51 AM # 
Hey, 60 out of 74 member federations are not critical of removal of the qualification races. Should the IOF really listen to a small vocal minority...?
Apr 18, 2013 3:47 PM # 
Erik>> you could also argue that 54 Nations doesn't care. 14 Nations are against and 6 Nations agree. Should the IOF really listen to the minority of 6 Nations?
Apr 19, 2013 9:52 AM # 
elitecoach +1
Apr 23, 2013 11:13 AM # 
Many countries (AUT, DEN, IRL) have requested for more open division system (fairer comparison between divisions). Open system can solve many things way better than closed system. Presenting an open model in the same way as closed model (FOC proposal) would be very good for overall discussion.

What are the IOF Council ideas in this process? What do they stand for? beside that they rely on FOC to do the work.
Apr 23, 2013 1:39 PM # 
Could we step back for a bit... What were the reasons the current WOC program is not sustainable anymore? Could we make a proposition the current system continue to be used? Lets have that for a vote at IOC. The more I read and think about this mess the more I think what we have currently is working well. Just add a sprint relay to the program and make no other changes to the disciplines.
Apr 23, 2013 3:25 PM # 
A final vote was taken to resolve whether to retain the current WOC model or to introduce the new WOC model proposed by Council. By voting 22 in favour, 11 against and no abstentions, the General Assembly approved Council’s proposal to introduce a new WOC programme.

The problem is that Council wants to decide the final outcome based on Lausanne WOC guidelines. To introduce a new model in 2014, final decision need to be taken at least in January 2014. This is not acceptable. I always thought that Council has a mandate only to prepare a different WOC qualification models with all the details + backup papers based on Federations views and then seek a final support at extraordinary or ordinary GA.
Apr 23, 2013 3:53 PM # 
The decision in Lausanne was not to change the WOC program from 2014, but from 2016 as contracts for 2013-2015 was already signed by IOF and organizers. It was then up to the individual organizer(2013-15) to implement the new program or to keep the original program.
If the IOF wants a democratic process on this matter it would be no problem to present the ideas at GA 2014 and have the federations accept or reject the proposal. I guess they don't want this, as the whole program then would be up for debate again.
Apr 23, 2013 3:53 PM # 
Just to justify the SAOFs position on the 500 point rule... This is mainly for our female competitors because we do not have enough female ranked runners currently to score points at our WRE events. The idea was that at least we can run the sprint and score enough points to take part in the middle and long (since our runners would certainly not just come for the sprint alone).

South Africa is in a relatively good position with regard to the new system. As "continental champions" we are at least under the impression that we get 2 places.

However, one place in a WOC middle or long race definitely does not promote development of orienteering in nations such as South Africa. One of our runners brought up an example of someone that dominates the sport for many years, the other runners from the developing country do not get a chance to compete until that runner "retires". There is no way to build up experience at high quality events.

I agree that the previous WOC model would be a much better solution. It seems that the IOF wants the same runners to win every race and not specialise in their own disciplines (since 7 races in one week is usually too much for most athletes). Even with the mixed relay, countries without 2 places for men and women will not send teams. Hell, we probably wouldn't send a relay if we only had 2 places because the other runner would only be able to run the sprint.
Apr 24, 2013 4:47 AM # 
With respect to the WRE score issue, there is also a review taking place of the World Ranking system and, while any possible changes are still taking shape, one thing which is almost certain to happen is that it will be possible to get a score of some kind in any WRE whether there are previously ranked runners in the field or not. (Exactly how this will be done is still an open question).
Apr 24, 2013 12:06 PM # 
It was then up to the individual organizer(2013-15) to implement the new program or to keep the original program.

These are political words. Who makes such a vague decisions? The only correct decision would be: It is up to the individual organizer (2013-15) to implement the new program or to keep the original program after the final WOC model and qualification model is accepted by GA.

In reality we don't have so much time as it is evident that they plan to vote on final WOC model before GA 2014. As it stand now, new model was already implemented by WOC 2014 organizers and their intention is clear from bulletin 1. I read GA minutes from Lausanne but I didn't find any wording that IOF Council is responsible to decide how it will look the final Qualification model. I just don't understand how it is possible that IOF Council has a mandate to implement WOC model before it is agreed in all details? A step back would be a current WOC model for WOC 2014.
Apr 24, 2013 8:03 PM # 
I agree. Maybe Blair can put some light on who will decide and when?
Apr 25, 2013 11:31 AM # 
The decision as to what races will be run in 2014 has already been made. The decisions which remain to be finalised are over qualification methods, and starting order. I understand those will happen at this weekend's Council meeting.
Apr 25, 2013 1:28 PM # 
Meeting Summary 2-2012
WOC 2014 ITA, status report: Preparations have been altered to incorporate the “old” WOC model, meaning some new areas will be taken into account, and one new arena. Bulletin 1 will be released in time of WOC 2012.

I found only this news in FOC minutes but nothing in Council minutes. It would be good if you can explain the detail in this process. I assume that we all want that credibility of IOF is based on transparency of all accepted decisions. I think we (federations) should know how decision-making process is working and how the "old model" was replaced with a "new model" for WOC 2014.

The new programme takes effect from 2017, but the WOC organisers in earlier years have the opportunity to amend their contract with the IOF to incorporate all or parts of this programme.
It was written as part of the official IOF news. but from IOF-Congress-Binder-2012 (p.45) where is described the Council's proposal this sentence was not part of the official proposal which was put on voting at GA. Is this sentence the basis that ITA was able to change the WOC model or is any other rule that allowed Council to change the WOC model for WOC 2014?
Apr 26, 2013 6:53 AM # 
I'm not sure if it is actually documented in a rule anywhere, but it has long been standard practice in the IOF that any change to the WOC format is not binding on organisers who have already been appointed (as 2014, 2015 and 2016 had been at the time of the GA vote last year), but can be taken up at the discretion of those organisers unless IOF explicitly decides otherwise. This has been the case for at least 20 years - one example I can think of is that the increase in maximum WOC team size from 5 to 7 was decided upon prior to WOC 1995 but the 1995 organisers declined to implement it so it didn't take effect until 1997.
Apr 26, 2013 7:49 AM # 
I don't think the problems is if ITA, GBR or SWE can implement the new format when it is decided. The main issue is who can decide which qualification model to use. This is more important than the actual competition program and formats of competition. Who will make that decision, and if not at the next GA, when was the responsible body given that mandate?
Apr 26, 2013 8:10 AM # 
It's a Council decision, and as mentioned above, I'm expecting it to be made this weekend. The IOF Statutes give Council the effective authority to make any decision unless it is inconsistent with the Statutes or a decision of a General Assembly; no further mandate is required.
Apr 26, 2013 8:47 AM # 
"unless IOF explicitly decides otherwise."
Important strategic decisions shouldn't be part of a standard practice! I think it is still time for the Council to adopt a formal decision and document it.
Apr 26, 2013 8:52 AM # 
And... we are meticulous when it comes to WOC, WC competition rules, etc but when it comes to strategic decisions, Council uses "standard practice" which is above of all IOF rules, GA decisions and IOF Statutes. Nobody knows who makes decisions, when and what is the basis! The answer is: It is standard practice!

Even if standard practice is good sometimes when we don't have any guidelines or rules, decisions based on standard practice must be recorded. This is maybe good for operational issues and quick decisions on site but not for strategic decisions.

If IOF is not able to take a clear decision on this issue I think the ball is on federations' side. Many athletes have already expressed that this decision is irresponsible
I think in this case the ball is on federations to make a move and propose a Extraordinary General Assembly till end of May. By Statutes I think this must be done at least 1 month before the meeting. It is time that GA decides which issues are under responsibility of GA and which issues are under responsibility of Council and what to do with WOC 2014.
Apr 26, 2013 1:16 PM # 
It's highly likely the policy with respect to changes in WOC format is documented in minutes from either Council or a General Assembly when it was first made, but since that was no later than 1994 (and quite possibly much earlier) any record of it won't be that easy to track down (unless you can find an old Council member with a good memory who knows exactly when it was done).

Incidentally, an extraordinary General Assembly (which would require a petition of 40% of the IOF members, i.e. 29 or 30 countries depending on how you do the rounding) wouldn't have the ability to force further changes on a 2014 organiser unless that organiser agreed.
Apr 26, 2013 6:37 PM # 
It's highly likely the policy with respect to changes in WOC format is documented
This is a question for the IOF Office to find a document if it really exists. But even if the document exists it's clear evidence that it is time for a better definition of who is responsible for what types of strategic decisions. The Council has expressed a clear interest to govern the sport and make strategic decisions without interference of GA. It is a "standard practice" in many sport organizations and we are copying this practice! Great.

I think the Council has a full power to call the Extraordinary General Assembly instead of federations if they think it is time for voting but unfortunately their plain is to vote two months after the Presidents' conference. I think nothing will change in those two months. The problem is that proposal needs to be further analyzed with other options. Federations expect that.

to force further changes on a 2014 organiser unless that organiser agreed.
IOF has made a mistake to allowed ITA to use a new model for WOC 2014 and now it is a problem.
Apr 26, 2013 6:52 PM # 
The IOF council made its decision earlier today:

It looks like the council feels that the responses from the federations are "mostly" in agreement with the suggested scheme (i.e. only 14 out of 20 are critical). And of course there was no need to give any weight to the fact that the Foot-o commission is 'sympathetic to including a “low-key” qualification race' according to the minutes of the Foot-o commission's April meeting (

The road forward in this matter is now "discussions at the Presidents’ Conference in July" - discussions which the Council might ignore if they want to - and then the Council will take the final decision. This will finalize a marvelous WOC in the Future process.

It is also interesting to see how Emil Wingstedt, a former member of the WOC in the Future working group comments on the subject.
Apr 26, 2013 8:38 PM # 
Crap, sucks. A lot.
Apr 27, 2013 2:36 PM # 
What else to expect. When do the IOF really listen to people with insight? Decisions like the one in Lausanne is not done on knowledge, but on pure emotions but politicians who doesn't know what they are voting on and why they vote as they do.
Afterwards the IOF give the word go to the organizers of WOC 2014 without knowing the qualification scheme, a decision which deliberately was not taken in Lausanne as this would have made councils proposal fall big time.
Apr 27, 2013 7:52 PM # 
Seven out of twenty federations suggested that we should hold a qualification race just before the WOC week, but it was not something the Council felt it could support. However, the 500 World Ranking points limit was removed, so now every country can have at least one runner in each final. That is a good improvement!”

What a fiasco. They have a goal: Strong management. They must be joking.

Quality assurance
They are mixing apples and pears but they are smart and they know all the tricks. They know how to run the process. I don't know in which interest they are playing this comedy but from the perspective of a small federation I would say that big countries are playing double game or the bureaucrats are too long in the game and they don't see the reality anymore.

IOF asked for general overview = federations have made a couple of ideas and critical points for continuation of the work process but bureaucrats have seen the opportunity to take advantage to make completely different interpretation of the results. Anyone knows that only thru survey it is possible to get a clear answers to critical points. If this is not a low blow, I do not know what it is. Before Blair's proposal we were talking and focusing mainly on political aspects but now we have a basis for a discussion and that is a good part of the process. If Council doesn't want to analyze, listen, work on other options then we have a problem. They are probably doing a "standard practice" before the final move.

I would say we must put an end to this process of "bread and games". If there would be a petition for EGA I am sure I can convince our federation to sign it. That would be a "good improvement!”
Apr 27, 2013 9:41 PM # 
Be careful what you wish for.

The start list of 90-odd runners is too long. It's too long for a sensible start interval (so they cut the start interval). It's to big to avoid tracking up. When the call comes for WOC to be "real" orienteering again, we'll need to find a way to cut the list.

Top-30 straight to the final + 15 qualifiers from a low key race seems to fit the bill... and goodbye chances for smaller nations to run the WOC final.

@MCrone the IOF wants the same runners to win every race and not specialise in their own disciplines (since 7 races in one week is ... too much ...).
I actually quite like the idea that the best person might get to be the World Champion.
Apr 28, 2013 11:02 AM # 
I know it is little naive to expect there is an interest for a petition for EGA. Bureaucrats have played well and they have good cards in hands. They will sit back and wait. We are all in same boat so it is a little unfair that they are not able to communicate with the interested federations and orienteering community. A big applause for Blair who is the only one who understand that there should be an ongoing dialogue.

Can we start here?

1. To postpone a final decision of the final qualification model on GA 2014.
GA didn't give authority to Council to vote on final WOC model, GA only gave Council a green light for a further work on the project. It is not written in any document, proposal or GA minutes that Council will take control over the process if proposal would be accepted. I and probably all others would love to hear their version how it happened. One way to find out who is right is EGA.

2. To give FOC a full power for continue work on the draft proposal.
FOC needs to analyze & compare also other solutions (those pointed out by federations). Different solutions/models must be presented to GA and not just the one which has a support of Council or FOC or big nations. If Council/FOC for example think that low-key q race or Open division system is worse than what we have today then they must give an credible answer and not just: "but it was not something the Council felt it could support". Based on replies FOC can do a survey before the EGA which would be a better and easier way to get a clear, quick and focused answers from all federations.

3. To introduce a low-key qualification race or q races for WOC 2014
The Council has made a mistake, which is not willing to admit it. EGA must initiate a discussion with ITA organizers about possible solutions if Council doesn't want it. New qualification model is not an option for WOC 2014 if EGA would decide to postpone the decision on GA 2014.

4. A list of who is responsible for which types of strategic decisions (GA or Council).
We need to know how decision-making process is working. Simple, the »standard practice« is not an option for a strategic decisions.

5. Project management framework
Establish a projects framework so that everyone can know what is the goal of a certain stage of each project. It is evident that the goal of the last phase of the WOC in the future was not clear. This must be clear before Council/FOC send out any documents to federations.
Apr 28, 2013 1:43 PM # 
I couldn't agree more
Apr 30, 2013 12:04 PM # 
This developing nations focusing only on sprint thing could be easily fixed by removing sprint qualifiers too. It would also nicely erase the type of problems with qual race disqualifications/protests we had 2011, those need to be solved before the final to get start list done. And then final would be about who is fastest, being able to save energy in qual race couple of hours before would not play any part here any more. Same qual model would work equally well for sprints too, right?

Also it would be easy to change the one quaranteed start slot per discipline to one slot perl WOC in future. Draw would say is nation's slot at next woc sprint, middle or long. That would shorten the start lists nicely reducing tracking up.
Apr 30, 2013 12:23 PM # 
Jagge, then we have a slightly more serious issue of our top athletes in developing countries focusing on other sports.

I don't have a problem with the new WOC program in and of itself but it greatly reduces opportunities for our athletes to compete at a high level internationally and we're going to lose athletes to sports where they can do that. If this new qualification method was somehow balanced by more emphasis on Wold Cups or something to channel our non WOC elite competitors then I think the system would work.

In my mind WOC should be about choosing the best orienteers in the world but we do need something for developing competitive orienteering globally. Right now WOC is acting as both but with the new system we're losing that second aspect and that's the concern everyone seems to have.
Apr 30, 2013 12:36 PM # 
Noo, they would not be planning to use the approach to forest events either if it could end up that serious, right? ;)
Apr 30, 2013 1:10 PM # 
I might be missing the point in terms of opportunities for smaller nations, but aren't there a series of World Cup races that athletes from 'developing' nations can travel to each year if they want to get international experience? I would have thought the standard of competition there would be high enough to be challenging.
Apr 30, 2013 1:47 PM # 
Yes but we don't. At least in North America. Why not? Partially cost. They're spread out across a season so we either have to be dedicated enough and have the means to stay in Europe for most of a season to do them or have the money to travel back and forth. Also it's up to the individual athlete so whenever someone does go it's on your own which is logistically more challenging and not as fun.

Is that an IOF problem or a North American problem... hard to say.
Apr 30, 2013 1:48 PM # 
@fletch: This year the World Cup consists of:

* World Cup in New Zealand (3 races, more expensive than WOC for most countries + less competition)
* NORT (more expensive than WOC(?) + you need to run all races in order to get points + emphasis on sprint + less competition than in WOC, especially on the lower level),
* World Cup Final Switzerland (two races, only the best 40 in the overall World Cup are allowed to run on Sunday, so only one race for most runners from small nations)

Thus, the World Cup this year wasn't really an alternative. It might improve when NORT is removed from the schedule, but still I think it does not substitute what will be lost with WOC.
Apr 30, 2013 5:26 PM # 
we do need something for developing competitive orienteering globally.

I've never really understood why getting knocked out in the qualifiers at WOC is seen as so desirable for developing countries. For an athlete specialising in Long you didn't even get to run the correct discipline. And this idea that running a low key qualifying race before the best athletes had even arrived would be the year's target is even weirder.

I can see how running the relay would be pretty amazing, but that's not changing.

In the new system, at least one athlete gets to run in the final, and there's an extra place from Regional Champs so Long runners can even specialize in your own discipline.
Apr 30, 2013 8:48 PM # 
The problem is, that smaller Nations will not send more than the one runner in the final. Then why travel for WOC if only can participate in the relay?

The only other choice a secondary runner has with the proposed qualification model and WOC program is to focus only on sprint.

A much better model would be:
- all Nations can enter a maximum of 3 runners pr. Distance
- all of those runners in let us say top 50 or 100 on the World ranking are qualified for the final. The rest compete in a qualification race, the 10 Best qualifies for the final.
- the defending World champion has a spot in the final
- regional Champions has a spot in the final if in top 50/100, otherwise in the qualification race

The qualification races are held in conjunction with spectator races, which are nesessarry to fund WOC.

- the Best runners are always in the final and avoid extra unnessesarry qualification race -> higher level in finals
- all Nations can send more runners for WOC
- all runners has a chance of qualifying for a WOC final
Apr 30, 2013 9:01 PM # 
Couldn't agree more.
Apr 30, 2013 11:06 PM # 
Are you now wanting two qualification races? Or to qualify in one discipline for a different discipline's final?

why travel for WOC if only can participate in the relay?
I think it would be pretty good to run in the WOC relay, and in reality most people would want to run sprint and sprint relay too.
So what surprises me is this idea that running day 1 of the spectator races would be the clincher as to whether you'd go to WOC or not (given that you get to run sprint and relay).

At the moment, a small country like, say, USA, rates to get three relay spots, one regional champion (both finals), plus one person in middle and long final. That's two forest finals each, much more than at the moment. And you can run the spectator races and two Sprint WOCs.

I'll believe in people refusing to go to WOC just to run sprint and relay when I see it...
May 1, 2013 12:50 AM # 
"- all Nations can enter a maximum of 3 runners pr. Distance
- all of those runners in let us say top 50 or 100 on the World ranking are qualified for the final. The rest compete in a qualification race, the 10 Best qualifies for the final"

How does this work?
At any given time I think it is fair to say that there are numerous nations with more than 3 in the top 50, even top 40 or 30 or less.
What happens to the 4,5,6 but still top 50/40/30 runners from strong nations?
Do they get shut out?
Do they get to qualify? If so they will still dominate the 10 qual positions.
Or somehow both included and eliminated?
May 1, 2013 1:11 AM # 
I believe he is saying that those who make their nation's team (ie the three selected for that displicine) who also are in top whatever 50/100, automatically qualify for the final. Then remaining runners go into the qualifier.

Not the worst idea, again decent world rankings are harder for those outside of europe. Still, the fall back qualifier gives the other the chance to qualify.
May 1, 2013 1:42 AM # 
why travel for WOC if only can participate in the relay?

Imagine if orienteering were an Olympic sport. Would someone be willing to go knowing they could only participate in the relay? Of course. Hell, they'd probably be willing to go as a reserve, running only if someone else got hurt.

It's not an Olympic sport, but it's still the World Championships. Why are the feelings so different? Why isn't it still an honor and a privilege to be able to participate in even one race?
May 1, 2013 3:55 AM # 
I might not be the decision of the athlete. The administrative fogeys in charge of some federations might decide not to send a team if thay will only get to run in a limited set of races. There is a history of that sort of thing.

(On the athlete's side, you certainly see people traveling long distances on their own nickel just to run a single leg at Tiomila or Jukola.)
May 1, 2013 4:00 AM # 
PG >> orienteering is no Olympic sport and never will be. Funding is s huge issue, well maybe not in Scandinavia or switzerland, but for the rest of the World it is. This means it is too expensive only to travel for one race. Then of course as a countrys secondary or third Best runner why bother with forrest orienteering. Your only chance running a WOC final is the sprint.

As for my proposal. No nation will have more than 3 spots + maybe the Champions of the given distance. In reality this could crepet a WOC Final of 40-60 runners depending on the Cut off level chosen.
May 1, 2013 4:03 AM # 
I forgot one thing. A model like this would be much easier to explain and understand for anyone, orienteers as non-orienteers. The divisional system is way too complex, only mathematical analysts can understand it in detail.
May 1, 2013 4:30 AM # 
A model like this one was looked at in the early stages of discussion a couple of years ago and fairly quickly dismissed - the main issue being that (even with regional championship spots) it severely disadvantages countries outside Europe because of the difficulty of getting really high ranking points (enough to get top 50 rankings) from there, and would effectively turn the early-season World Cup races into de facto WOC qualifiers for those who went.
May 1, 2013 7:45 PM # 
Not necessarily. Just eliminate all best runners for each country out of Rankings and go down the list to find 45 best runners. Something similar like MTBO WOC qualification method.
May 2, 2013 6:48 AM # 
Blair >> Is it a problem that value is added to World Cup results? As the current program looks like, the World Cup has no real value other than it is another race in the calendar. Next year I guess most European countrie will skip the round in Spain, and there is a high risk of more or less nobody will be there. The same could happen in Turkey as there is only race. Compared to the Spain world Cup Turkey though has an advantage of a possible combination of World Cup and a training camp.

Back to WOC qualification and WOC participation in general.
WOC must be about crowning the World Champion and having the highest level of competition for the year, secondly WOC is also about promoting Orienteering world wide. These two goals are conflicting, and I think the only way to combine them is both to ensure the best runners are in the final(by automatic qualification based on lever, fx. World Ranking) and two inspire as many smaller nations to come with as big a team as possible (having a qualification race with 3 starters per distance). As Emil Wingstedt wrote in his comment on Jan Kocbachs news on WorldOfO, the new program and qualification races should be possible to combine. Low-key qualification races has the advantage of the best runners being able to focus only on the finals, and the second best runners still have a chance fighting for some spots in the finals(great motivation).
May 2, 2013 1:05 PM # 
It would be very easy to combine having the best athletes there and also allow smaller nations to come with as big a team as possible. You just have an Open championship like the World Masters.

Be careful what you wish for.
Jul 14, 2013 9:26 AM # 
So, has anyone done the sums for divisional places in 2014?
Jul 14, 2013 11:33 AM # 

it's in german though.
Jul 14, 2013 12:42 PM # 
So does Canada and the US each have one man and two women each for 2014? No regional champion spot for north america until 2015? (NAOC 2014 as qualifier).
Jul 14, 2013 9:13 PM # 
The proposal says A personal place for the Regional Champion at the WOC following the Regional Championship. Since the proposal is about the new WOC, you might argue that the next new WOC after 2012 is 2014...

Either way, you'll get your extra places for Scotland :)
Jul 15, 2013 4:18 AM # 
Pink Socks:
Can someone give me the quickie version of how points are calculated?

Looks like a country earns points based on how well the runners do in all 3 events, and those points are added up for 2 years. The top 8 get 3 spots in the middle and long, the next 14 get 2, etc?

How will points be calculated next year, when the amount of entries are no longer equal? If you only have 1 runner, seems like it would be hard to bump out a nation with 2, since they'll have twice the point earners.

Also, if the NAOC 2014 winners get a bonus entry to WOC 2015, I assume that we lose that spot in 2016 unless we have another NAOC? Or would a NAOC winner get a golden ticket twice?

Does a regional champion have to determined by a single race (like NAOC)? Or in 2015, can we determine a 2015 champion (for 2016 WOC) in another way; for example a points-based, end-of-season ranking (which we kinda already calculate).

In other words, each region gets 1 extra middle start and 1 extra long start at WOC per year. Can the region determine how those spots are earned, or must it be through a singular event like NAOC?
Jul 15, 2013 8:29 AM # 
Top country in each "division" gets promoted, so if you get more points than the other 1-spot countries, you get two spots next time. Staying up looks more difficult because, over two years spanning promotion, your three scores (1+2) have to beat their four (2+2). But in fact the simulations on past results suggest it doesn't make much difference.

Some things still aren't clear. If you get a bonus runner from Regional Champs, (giving say 2+1), you only count your best two. BUT, if you're promoted, its not clear whether the third person would count in the second year. That would be an advantage to non-European countries.

As written, the place goes to the Regional Champion, and only for the year following the Championship (i.e. alternate years). This seems unsustainable. What would happen if you had annual NAOC is unclear: there seems a big incentive to do that, at least for elite classes: combine the US and Canadian team trials, call the winner Regional Champion, and collect an extra place. In the alternate year model, if NAOC moved from October to April, the year you get an extra place would change.

With sprint relay there are 5 sprint slots for all nations, so there should always be something for a reserve to do.
Jul 15, 2013 9:01 AM # 
Has there been any suggestion of a compromise model? The impact scheduling of the various races seemed to have this year on long and sprint entries suggests there is something to the argument that qualification races for each event make it too hard a week for the athletes, but personally I don't think the middle qual races have anywhere near the impact as the long. So what do people think about introducing the divisional system for the long but retaining qualification+final for the middle? (either the current system or the pre-qualified group topped up by the top tier from a single heat as suggested somewhere in the above thread) The minimum standard for countries allowed a single runner in the long could be tightened up significantly (reducing the threat of all-day start lists if the IOF membership continues to grow) as every country still has the opportunity to have runners in a forest race in the middle.
Jul 15, 2013 11:39 AM # 
Interesting to note that shows different total points for most (all?) countries.
Though, possibly more interestingly, it seems the countries in each division are the same, even if the ordering and points scored are not!
Jul 15, 2013 12:04 PM # 
I don't think its clear how to allocate the last few points to the qualifying races, which may be the source of confusion.
Jul 15, 2013 2:08 PM # 
How to allocate the points to the spots 16-20 in the qual races is quite clear. 15-12-9-6-3
I have no clue why there are so many differences in both calculations. My excel sheet is looking okay though.
Jul 15, 2013 2:32 PM # 
So I'm slow to figure things out. The mixed relay is in for 2014, right? So if the regional slot is not in effect for 2014, then the U.S. gets a total of 10 men's, 12 women's race slots. If the regional is in effect, then it's 12 + 14. Correct?

Just thinking about how (if at all) the U.S. Team Trials should (or not) be different for 2014. In the latter case (regional in effect), the U.S. has more slots on the women's side than in the 2000s/early 2010s.
Jul 15, 2013 2:40 PM # 
Boycott the event.
Jul 15, 2013 2:44 PM # 
How much of a difference to the divisions/country order does changing the scoring system so the winners receive less of a benefit? E.g. 1st gets 60 points, 2nd 59, 3rd 58... 60th 1.
Jul 15, 2013 3:43 PM # 
Pink Socks:
Just thinking about how (if at all) the U.S. Team Trials should (or not) be different for 2014.

Of the 10 men's spots, 5 of them are Sprints, 5 of them are forested (3 relay + middle + long). Sprints just got bumped up from 25% of the spots in 2013 to 50% in 2014.

Do results in the 2014 sprints score points to get more runners in the middle and long? Or is it just middle and long points that matter?

(I apologize for asking stupid questions. I haven't read how the points and number of starts are supposed to work.)
Jul 15, 2013 3:46 PM # 
@krügerol: My (o-zeugs) calculation contained an error (RUS down 80 pt. GBR up 80pt). The other differences might come from the different handling of dsq./dnf. competitors.
Jul 15, 2013 3:52 PM # 
alright, spotted some errors as well (ITA missing one runner in middle 2012 men f.e.)
DSQ/DNF in final is worth 16 points (last place in final) in my calculation, should be as in the iof document.
Jul 15, 2013 3:59 PM # 
Pink Socks:
Of the 10 US men's spots, you can have a team of 5 and everyone runs twice:

Runner A: sprint, sprint relay
Runner B: sprint, sprint relay
Runner C: sprint, trad relay
Runner D: middle, trad relay
Runner E: long, trad relay

For that, you'd probably want a team trials that identifies two sprint specialists, two terrain specialists, and then one guy that runs both. I'm curious how the 5 US men this year would have split up the races.
Jul 15, 2013 4:07 PM # 
... I interpreted all disq./dnf as last in the final so if two do not finish (men middle woc 2012) then they get 17.

"those who qualify
for the final but do not
record a result in the final would receive the poin
ts for last place in the final
(normally 16). "
Jul 15, 2013 5:56 PM # 
i gave them 16 in any case.

so 2012 men: SUI 1 DNF in middle, 1 DNF in long (16vs17 and 16vs21 points) - 6 points difference
same for SWE (1 DNF in long)
Jul 15, 2013 8:06 PM # 
Yes, good point about the regional-Champ slots not being subject to Trials, since these runners qualify personally. So regardless of whether the regional-Champ slots are available in 2014 or not, it is 10 men's (5× Sprint, 5×Middle/Long), 12 women's (5×Sprint, 7×Middle/Long).

With this, shouldn't the Trials emphasize Sprints more?

I am asking since Get Lost!! has submitted a feeler for the Trials on the 3rd weekend of March. One map by Ben Legg, one by us, one by BAOC. We can probably add a second Sprint venue but would appreciate knowing.
Jul 15, 2013 8:11 PM # 
I was actually going to ask you about the possibility of adding a second sprint venue, just to see if it would be possible were we do go that route. Seems like having two sprints and two forest races might make sense.
Jul 15, 2013 8:21 PM # 
We can. The additional venue won't be new. Thus there will be complaints. Alternatively we can go with two SF Sprint maps for the Sprint day, instead of East Bay. These will be less used, but still not new (new or so for this December). It almost certainly makes no sense to do one SF and one East Bay venue on the same day; technically possible but will stretch us to the limit.
Jul 15, 2013 8:26 PM # 
Pink Socks:
Is there a website or document or something that 'splains all of this?

Also, Vancouver would be a great location for the North American Sprint Team Trials.
Jul 15, 2013 10:47 PM # 
Mr Wonderful:
Just put some fences out to make them new.
Jul 16, 2013 4:14 AM # 
New Zealand has had this ploy sorted for years. The fences are already there, courtesy of the landowner. Sometimes they are passable, and sometimes the electricity is turned on.
Jul 16, 2013 6:12 AM # 
Jul 17, 2013 3:46 AM # 
Yeah map change at the flick of a switch. They control the fences with a computer so it updates the OCAD file at the same time.

This discussion thread is closed.