British Orienteering continues to keep our guidelines for event organisers, coaches and participants under review as the government COVID-19 guidance evolve across the UK. Protecting the health of all our participants, members, volunteers and staff, and ensuring that we play our part in suppressing the spread of COVID-19, remain our highest priorities.
Our initial understanding is that the new Government restrictions announced in England on Tuesday 22 September will continue to permit orienteering events to be held in line with the current British Orienteering guidelines. However, we will review the detailed Government guidance as it emerges and will make any necessary changes to the British Orienteering guidelines as soon as possible.
British Orienteering will also continue to work with SOA, WOA and NIOA to review the impact of the restrictions announced by the Scottish Government, Welsh Government and Northern Ireland Executive.
We will issue a further update once the revised Government guidance for sport has become available. In the meantime, you can visit our COVID 19 Safe Orienteering webpage for further information.
Following the review of the Return to Orienteering guidance in England by the Board of British Orienteering on Tuesday 1st September, please find the link to the full document.
The key changes are:
Subject to a further review of the implementation of these revised guidelines, British Orienteering will aim to move in future revisions towards a higher start rate of up to four starters per minute from each start location, with allocated start times.
British Orienteering would welcome further feedback from clubs about their experience of operating within the current COVID-19 guidelines, and about any challenges they have encountered in obtaining permissions from landowners or local authorities.
The Board plans a further review of the guidance in October, subject to any further changes in the government guidance.
To view the current guidance visit: COVID Safe Orienteering
Report by Helen Errington
There is a short summary of the results of the JK2021 Survey available here:
I am so sorry that the situation with regard to land access for JK2021 overtook us before we were able to publish these results. Please be assured that the results of the survey have not influenced the decision to cancel JK2021 – this has been done purely on the grounds that the land access for days 2 and 3 was revoked in the first week of September. The JK2021 organisers have explored every feasible option for securing access to suitable terrain in the South West for an orienteering event of the standard and popularity of the JK, but have found it impossible to do so. Landowners have indicated that they are unable to give permission for an event such as the JK while the Government and other local organisations restrictions relating to the COVID-19 pandemic continue.
British Orienteering and the JK2021 team would like to thank everyone for their responses – for the messages of support for the event and also since the news of cancellation. It is clear that there is a great deal of support for the JK2021 team and goodwill from orienteers who appreciate that these are difficult times.
The middle distance final today saw another fiercely fought race in another physically and technically demanding area in the Finnish forest of Viitapohja. Five British runners ran the A race, with Fiona Bunn, unfortunately, choosing to not compete, due to illness.
The highlight of the day came from Sasha Chepelin, who limited time losses in the tricky first section and made next to no errors in the second half while running at high speed, completing the section after the spectator run-through quicker than the eventual clear winner, Olli Ojanaho. Sasha was rewarded with an impressive 7th place but was excruciatingly just 2 seconds behind 5th and 1 second off a podium.
Meanwhile, Alex Carcas used his flat speed to great effect by taking a good path route choice on the long leg and finished in 30th place in his first JWOC. Harrison McCartney was let down in the first half of the race by some mistakes in tricky areas, but will, alongside Fiona, be looking to put in a good performance in the Long on Friday.
There were 2 top 25's out of 2 in the Women’s A final, with Jenny Ricketts navigating accurately and running hard through the terrain to take 24th position in a strong field. Grace Molloy backed up her 4th place in her qualifying heat, delivering an outstanding performance, despite a few errors, to finish in 19th place. This secures her first top 20 in her first JWOC final, even though, as a bottom year W18, she is the youngest member of the team and still has 3 more JWOCs left.
Full results are available here.
Tomorrow is the sprint race, which should be fast and furious in the hilly area of Pispala. Follow the team live from 08:00 BST using the JWOC 2017 website.
Credit - David Bunn