U.S. Orienteering Rules of Competition

Download the Rules for Orienteering USA Sanctioned Events

Revised January 1, 2014

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NOTE: January 1, 2014 Revision posted below

The updated Rules for Orienteering USA Sanctioned Events have been posted. The PDF document version may be downloaded (see link above).

The HTML version (below) is posted for your convenience; however, if there are discrepancies between the two versions, the PDF version is the definitive source. If you find such discrepancies, please notify the webmaster.

For general comments and questions about the Rules, contact the Rules Committee chair.


 

Rules for Orienteering USA Sanctioned Events

January 1, 2014

Table of Contents

A Rules for Foot Orienteering Events

A.1 Application and Enforcement of the Rules
A.2 Definitions
A.3 Classification of Competitions
A.4 Sanctioning
A.5 Key Personnel
A.6 Reports and Fees
A.7 Secrecy and Embargo
A.8 Event Announcements
A.9 Orienteering USA Calendar
A.10 Course Designations
A.11 Classes
A.12 Eligibility
A.13 Entries
A.14 Training
A.15 Terrain
A.16 Maps
A.17 Courses
A.18 Sprint
A.19 Middle
A.20 Long/Classic
A.21 Ultra Long
A.22 Relay
A.23 Night
A.24 Control Set-up
A.25 Punching Systems
A.26 Control Descriptions
A.27 Out-of-bounds
A.28 Start
A.29 Finish/Timing
A.30 Awards
A.31 Protests and Jury
A.32 Fairness
A.33 Competitor Conduct
A.34 Equipment
A.35 Intercollegiate Special Rules
A.36 Interscholastic Special Rules
A.37 North American Orienteering Championships
A.38 Appendix – Course/Class Structure
A.39 Appendix – Course Split Guidelines
A.40 Appendix – Orienteering USA Championship Awards Guidelines
A.41 Appendix – Sanctioning Fee Schedule
A.42 Appendix – Foot Orienteering Change History

B Rules for Rogaine Events

B.1 Application and Enforcement of the Rules
B.2 Definitions
B.3 Sanctioning
B.4 Key Personnel
B.5 Reports and Fees
B.6 Secrecy and Embargo
B.7 Event Announcements
B.8 Orienteering USA Calendar
B.9 Class Structure
B.10 Eligibility
B.11 Entries
B.12 Maps
B.13 Courses
B.14 Control Set-up
B.15 Refreshments
B.16 Administration areas
B.17 Start
B.18 Scoring
B.19 Awards
B.20 Penalties and Protests
B.21 Respect for Land and Property
B.22 Competitor Conduct
B.23 Checkpoints
B.24 Safety
B.25 Appendix – Rogaine Change History

Rules for Ski Orienteering Events

C.1 Application and Enforcement of the Rules
C.2 Definitions
C.3 Classification of Competitions
C.4 Sanctioning
C.5 Costs for consultants
C.6 Reports from the event and course consultant
C.7 Course vetter
C.8 National rankings
C.9 Ranking awards
C.10 Classes
C.11 Eligibility
C.12 Entries
C.13 Training
C.14 Terrain
C.15 Maps
C.16 Courses
C.17 Sprint
C.18 Middle
C.19 Long
C.20 Ultra Long
C.21 Relay
C.22 Sprint Relay
C.23 Control Set-up
C.24 Control Descriptions
C.25 Out-of-bounds Areas and One-way Travel
C.26 Start
C.27 Finish/Timing
C.28 Awards
C.29 Protests and Jury
C.30 Postponement and Cancellation
C.31 Fairness
C.32 Competitor Conduct
C.33 Equipment
C.34 Appendix – Ski Orienteering Course/Class Structure
C.35 Appendix – Ski Orienteering Change History

Rules for Trail Orienteering Events

D.1 Application and Enforcement of the Rules
D.2 Definitions
D.3 Classification of Competitions
D.4 Sanctioning
D.5 Key Personnel
D.6 Reports and Fees
D.7 Secrecy and Embargo
D.8 Event Announcements
D.9 Orienteering USA Calendar
D.10 Classes
D.11 Eligibility
D.12 Entries
D.13 Training
D.14 Terrain
D.15 Maps
D.16 Courses
D.17 Timed Controls
D.18 Control Set-up
D.19 Control Cards and Punching
D.20 Control Descriptions
D.21 Out-of-bounds Areas
D.22 Start
D.23 Finish/Timing
D.24 Scoring and Results
D.25 Awards
D.26 Protests and Jury
D.27 Fairness
D.28 Competitor Conduct
D.29 Equipment
D.30 Appendix A – Guidelines for Timed Control Maps
D.31 Appendix B – Official Results Format
D.32 Appendix C – Solution Sheets
D.33 Appendix D – Trail Orienteering Change History

E (Rules for Mountain Bike Orienteering Events)

Rules for Orienteering USA Rankings

F.1 Foot Orienteering Rankings
F.2 Trail Orienteering Rankings
F.3 Appendix A – Rankings Change History

G Rules for Orienteering USA Teams

G.1 Senior Team
G.2 Junior Team
G.3 Ski Orienteering Team
G.4 Trail Orienteering Team
G.5 MTB Orienteering Team
G.6 Appendix A – Teams Change History
 


Rules for Orienteering USA Sanctioned Events

A Rules for Foot Orienteering Events

A.1 Application and Enforcement of the Rules

A.1.1 Foot Orienteering Competitions and events sanctioned by Orienteering USA shall be organized in accordance with these rules.

A.1.2 These rules shall be binding on all organizers, competitors, team officials and other persons connected with the organization or in contact with the competitors. The Orienteering USA Sanctioning Committee shall supervise the application of the rules. The Orienteering USA Rules Committee shall interpret the rules and any questions should be so addressed.

A.1.3 Event organizers, competitors and team officials must know these rules and the Event Instructions. Ignorance of the rules will not be accepted as a valid excuse for any infringement.

A.1.4 These rules take precedence over the Competition Rules for International Orienteering Federation (IOF) Foot Orienteering Events except for:

  1. IOF sanctioned events hosted in the United States
  2. International events when so agreed by the participating nations

A.2 Definitions

A.2.1 Orienteering is a sport in which the competitors navigate independently through the terrain. Competitors must visit a number of control points marked on the ground aided only by map and compass. In standard orienteering competition the task is to run this course in the shortest possible time. Orienteering competitions are held primarily in terrain that, ideally, is unfamiliar to the competitors.

A.2.2 An Event is a set of races and their attendant festivities and organizational aspects.

A.2.3 The term A-meet is restricted to events that include races sanctioned by Orienteering USA.

A.2.4 A Race is a single event component that consists of competitors starting and finishing a course.

A.2.5 A Competition is one or more races that are used together as the basis for making awards.

A.2.6 The term Championship in this section of this document refers only to the following events:

  1. United States Individual Orienteering Championships
    (includes separate Sprint, Middle, and Long format competitions)
  2. United States Two Day Classic Orienteering Championships
  3. United States Relay Orienteering Championships
  4. United States Intercollegiate Orienteering Championships
  5. United States Interscholastic Orienteering Championships
  6. United States Ultra Long Orienteering Championships
  7. United States Night Orienteering Championships

A.2.7 A Bid Event is any of the Championship competitions listed above, the North American Orienteering Championships, or any event requiring IOF Sanctioning. The Orienteering USA Sanctioning Committee first sanctions these events and then the Orienteering USA Board of Directors awards the bid. In the case of IOF events, the Board approves the submission of the bid to the IOF.

A.2.8 A Restricted event is not open to all classes of competitors, but shall have at least one class for men and one class for women. Restrictions shall be approved by the sanctioning committee.

A.3 Classification of Competitions

A.3.1 A Day competition shall be run entirely in the light. The first start shall be at least one hour after sunrise, and the last at least the time limit plus one hour before sunset.

A.3.2. A Night competition shall be run entirely in the dark. The first start shall be at least 15 minutes after the end of civil twilight, and the last at least the time limit plus 15 minutes before the beginning of civil twilight.

A.3.3 Competitions including both day and night may have two forms:

  1. One race is run in the light and another in darkness.
  2. A race may begin in the dark and finish in daylight or vice versa. In this case, a mass start shall be used to ensure equal amounts of daylight for all competitors.

A.3.4 In an Individual competition each participant competes independently, and the results are based on each individual's performance.

A.3.5 In a Team competition each participant competes independently and the team result is based on some combination of individual results (times or place numbers or points based thereon). There shall be individual results as well.

A.3.6 In a Multi-race competition a competitor's results (times or place numbers or points based thereon) from at least half of the competition races shall be combined. If the sum of the times for every competition day will not be used the organizer shall describe in the Invitation the precise procedures which will be used for scoring the event.

A.3.7 A Relay competition has two or more runners who run in sequence. Each runner completes his/her course independently.

A.4 Sanctioning

A.4.1 Applications to hold Orienteering USA sanctioned events shall be made directly to the Orienteering USA Sanctioning Committee Chair using the standard Application for Orienteering USA "A" Meet Sanctioning. Applications shall be submitted no later than eight weeks prior to the event.

A.4.2 The hosting group must be a Regular Orienteering Club as defined in the Bylaws of the United States Orienteering Federation or must enter into the Orienteering USA Sanctioning Agreement (Third-party sanctioning contract).

A.4.3 The host shall pay the necessary sanctioning fees within four weeks of the closing of the event.

A.4.4 Within two weeks of receiving the application the Sanctioning Committee shall respond to the Meet Director. When the Sanctioning Committee determines that the applying organization can successfully host a sanctioned event it shall sanction the meet.

A.4.5 If the host requests exceptions to these rules, or if after sanctioning is received the host does not follow these rules and the procedures of the Sanctioning Committee, then the Sanctioning Committee may deny or remove sanctioning, or in extenuating circumstances authorize exceptions to these rules or Sanctioning Committee procedures.

A.4.6 When the Sanctioning Committee authorizes an exception to these rules these exceptions shall be clearly stated in the Invitation. In addition the Chair of the Sanctioning Committee shall notify the Orienteering USA Executive Committee and the Chair of the Rules Committee as to the exceptions that were authorized.

A.4.7 Decisions of the Sanctioning Committee may be appealed to the Executive Committee of Orienteering USA by sending a letter stating the reasons for the appeal to the President of Orienteering USA and a copy to the Chair of the Sanctioning Committee.

A.4.8 In the event the meet is sanctioned before the map is completed, the Event and/or Course Consultant shall oversee and assist with the production of the map to assure it is suitable.

A.5 Key Personnel

A.5.1 The Meet Director is appointed by the host and listed on the sanctioning application and is responsible for overseeing all aspects of the event. The Meet Director shall insure that all the officials and assistants know and abide by these rules. The Meet Director shall obtain all necessary permission from landowners, and forestry, state, and other pertinent officials and should aim for a good relationship with other users of the event site and site officials.

A.5.2 The Course Setter is appointed by the host and listed on the sanctioning application and is responsible for designing and overseeing the setting of all courses.

A.5.3 The Course Vetter is appointed by the host and listed on the sanctioning application. The Course Vetter shall be a different person than the Course Setter. The Course Vetter is responsible for checking all aspects of the course setting, including:

  1. Checking the quality of the map in relation to the specific courses and control locations and assisting with any overprinting which may be required.
  2. Checking the correct position of the start, map issue point, control flags and finish location.
  3. Checking the correct codes on the control flags against the codes on the control description cards, and the location and visibility of the marking equipment (i.e. punches).
  4. Making sure that the control descriptions are appropriate and that they correctly describe the positions of the control flags.
  5. Making sure that the courses and other information pre-printed on the maps are properly drawn.

A.5.4 The Meet Registrar is appointed by the host and listed on the sanctioning application and is responsible for handling the entries for the event.

A.5.5 The Map Coordinator is appointed by the host and listed on the sanctioning application and is responsible for insuring the accuracy, appropriateness, and proper formatting of the maps used for competition in accordance with ISOM and/or ISSOM.

A.5.6 The five positions listed above shall be covered by no fewer than three different people (Course Setter, Course Vetter, and one other key staff member).

A.5.7 A Course Consultant is appointed by the Course Consultant Committee within two weeks of sanctioning and is responsible for reviewing the course designs and providing advice to the course setter:

  1. To make sure that the courses will be proper for their level and consistent with these rules.
  2. As to the suitability of the courses for the particular event and area.
  3. As to the suitability of the start, the map issue point, and the finish location.

A.5.8 An Event Consultant may be appointed by the Sanctioning Committee depending on need and availability and coordinates with the Meet Director as follows:

  1. Ensure that all rules are followed.
  2. Check that the map is progressing satisfactorily.
  3. Check that the course consultant and course setter are performing their duties properly.
  4. Check that the entire event organization is properly coordinated, including support and logistics as well as competitive functions.

A.5.9 An Event Controller and/or Course Controller may be appointed by the Sanctioning Committee or the Board of Directors and has responsibility for overseeing the Meet Director’s or Course Setter’s work. In contrast with a consultant, a controller has final responsibility for the quality of the event and/or courses and as such has final authority over these areas.

A.5.10 The Event Consultant, Course Consultant, Event Controller, and Course Controller shall each send a short informal report to the Sanctioning Committee and Meet Director outlining any procedures that worked particularly well and might have application at other events as well as pointing out any problems and how they could have been avoided.

A.5.11 Consulting for events is done on a volunteer basis without reimbursement from Orienteering USA. Event organizers may provide reimbursement to consultants at their own discretion.

A.6 Reports and Fees

A.6.1 Within one week the official results shall be made publicly available and sent to the Orienteering USA Ranking Committee Chair.

A.6.2 Within four weeks sanctioning fees shall be remitted to Orienteering USA for each sanctioned race for each competitor entered in a competitive class. For events that have multiple races on the same day as part of a single competition (e.g. a sprint course competition that has a qualifier and a final), the races can be considered as one for the purposes of fees, but this must be expressed on the sanctioning application. A fee computation form shall be provided by Orienteering USA.

A.6.3 Sanctioning fees are set by the Orienteering USA Board of Directors and are shown in Appendix A.41.

A.7 Secrecy and Embargo  

A.7.1 All those who are involved with the organizing of the event shall maintain the strictest secrecy regarding aspects of the venue, terrain and courses not officially publicized.

A.7.2 Team officials and spectators shall not influence the competition, and shall remain in the areas that are assigned to them.

A.7.3 The organizers shall ensure that unauthorized people stay out of areas where they would interfere with the competition.

A.7.4 When a Bid Event is submitted to sanctioning, the area is closed to orienteering competitions and training until the event takes place. Individuals or groups visiting the closed venue shall not be eligible for competition, awards, or rankings, but they may nevertheless participate in the event.

A.7.5 When a sanctioned event takes place on a new map the area shall be closed to orienteering training and competition for a minimum of 12 months prior to the event or when the sanctioned event is placed on the Orienteering USA Event Calendar or Planning Calendar, whichever is shorter. Individuals or groups training or orienteering in the closed venue shall not be eligible for competition, awards, or rankings, but they may nevertheless participate in the event. The Sanctioning Committee may be approached to modify this embargo time.

A.7.6 When a sanctioned non-bid event is placed on the Orienteering USA Event or Planning Calendar, the area is closed to orienteering competitions and training for four months prior to the event, or longer at the discretion of the event director. If the embargo is to be longer than four months, it shall be published in all announcements regarding the event.  

A.8 Event Announcements  

A.8.1 Preliminary Information shall be publicly available within two weeks of sanctioning. Details can be found in the Orienteering USA Sanctioning Guidelines. 

A.8.2 An Event Invitation including all details necessary for event registration shall be publicly available at least three months before the event. Details can be found in the Orienteering USA Sanctioning Guidelines. 

A.8.3 Courses and course lengths, and/or lengths of relay legs shall be published with the invitation or as soon thereafter as they are known.

A.8.4 Event Information that a competitor will need prior to traveling to the event shall be publicly available at least one week before the event. Details can be found in the Orienteering USA Sanctioning Guidelines.

A.8.5 Additional event information shall be provided to the competitor upon check-in at the event. At a minimum, any information that was not published by one week prior to the event shall be provided to each competitor in hardcopy format at the event.

A.8.6 All information required by this section shall be published on a publicly accessible website in a standard format readable by commonly used free software.

A.8.7 All information shall be available at least in English.

A.8.8 The host shall honor all published information unless extenuating circumstances necessitate a change.

A.8.9 In extenuating circumstances information may be supplied orally at the event.

A.9 Orienteering USA Calendar  

A.9.1 The Sanctioning Committee shall maintain the Orienteering USA Orienteering Event Calendar and Event Planning Calendar.

A.9.2 The Orienteering USA Orienteering Event Calendar shall list all sanctioned events for the current and following year and National Orienteering Week. For each meet it shall contain at least the following:

  1. Date of the event
  2. Classification of the event
  3. Location of the event
  4. Hosting organization
  5. Website URL
  6. Contact information

A.9.3 The Orienteering USA Orienteering Event Calendar shall be published on the Orienteering USA website and periodically distributed to the membership through Orienteering USA publications.

A.9.4 The Orienteering USA Event Planning Calendar shall list all sanctioned events, National Orienteering Week, events currently in sanctioning, events that are known to be in the planning stages, and other significant National or International Events that potential event hosts might want to work around.

A.9.5 The Orienteering USA Event Planning Calendar shall be readily accessible by the public from the Orienteering USA website.

A.10 Course Designations  

A.10.1 White level courses are intended for novice orienteers.

A.10.2 Yellow level courses are intended for advanced beginners.

A.10.3 Orange level courses are intended for intermediate level orienteers.

A.10.4 Brown level courses are technically advanced and physically designed for older orienteers in terms of distance, climb and terrain.

A.10.5 Green level courses are technically advanced and of a moderate distance.

A.10.6 Red level courses are technically advanced with high physical difficulty appropriate for Elite female competitors.

A.10.7 Blue level courses are technically advanced with high physical difficulty appropriate for Elite male competitors.

A.10.8 Any event that uses alternative designations for the courses shall also include the closest matching color designation in the event information.

A.11 Classes 

A.11.1 Competitive Classes

A.11.1.1 Individual competitors are divided into classes by gender (M for male, and F for female) and age as of December 31 of the current year.

A.11.1.2 Every course level except White and Blue shall also have competitive non-age specific open classes for each gender (M or F followed by the course color).

A.11.1.3 The White course level shall have a single competitive open class that is open to competitors of any age or gender (M/F White).

A.11.1.4 Women shall be allowed to enter age appropriate male classes.

A.11.1.5 Competitors may participate non-competitively on an additional course after finishing with their competitive course.

A.11.2 Orienteering USA Standard Foot Orienteering Course/Class Structure

A.11.2.1 The following Orienteering USA Standard Course/Class structure is the minimum that a sanctioned event must offer, except as approved for Restricted Meets by the Sanctioning Committee.

A.11.2.2 A Restricted Event shall have, at a minimum, competitive classes for both men and women.

A.11.2.3 U.S. Champions shall be declared in all age classes represented at U.S. Orienteering Championships. Open color classes are not Championship classes.

A.11.2.4 Intercollegiate and Interscholastic events have additional classes not in the standard Orienteering USA classes. The special classes are described in the sections for these events.

A.11.2.5 A Dash (-) before an age indicates that competitors that age and younger may enter that class.

A.11.2.6 A Plus (+) after an age indicates that competitors that age and older may enter that class.
A.11.2.7 In Orienteering USA sanctioned meets this nomenclature shall be used to describe the classes and courses.

A.11.2.8 If desired, age divisions may be further divided into additional classes by course difficulty and skill level.


Individual Championship Classes

WhiteYellowOrangeBrownGreenRedBlue
F-10F-14F-16F-18M65+F-20F-21+M-21+
F-12M-14M-16F55+M70+F35+M-20 
M-10  F60+M75+F40+M35+ 
M-12  F65+M80+F45+M40+ 
   F70+M85+F50+M45+ 
   F75+M90+M-18  
   F80+ M50+  
   F85+ M55+  
   F90+ M60+  

Non-Championship Competitive Classes
M/F WhiteF YellowF OrangeF Brown F GreenM Red 
 M YellowM OrangeM Brown M Green  

Age class ranges are indicated by a "-" and/or a "+".  A "-" before the age means "and younger"; the "+" after the age means "and older". Gender classes contain M for male and F for female.  Classes containing the course color are open to any age. Classes containing M/F are open to any age or gender. See Appendix A.39 (Course Split Guidelines) for information on class assignment when multiple courses of the same color are planned.

A.12 Eligibility 

A.12.1 General Eligibility

A.12.1.1 Any person desiring to compete is eligible except as set forth below or in special cases designated by the Executive Committee.

A.12.1.2 Persons with prior knowledge of the competition area that they or the meet organizers believe will give them unfair advantage are not eligible to compete for awards, titles, or national rankings. In the event of a protest, the matter shall be decided by the Jury.

A.12.1.3 Persons not eligible for awards, titles or national rankings may participate.

A.12.1.4 Interscholastic and Intercollegiate events have additional eligibility requirements that are found in their respective sections.

A.12.2 Championship Eligibility

A.12.2.1 The title of U.S. Orienteering Champion in any class as determined at an officially designated U.S. Orienteering Championship Event shall be limited to any person who meets both of the following criteria:

  1. Is a regular member in good standing of Orienteering USA
  2. Is either a citizen or lawful permanent resident of the United States of America

A.12.2.2 Requests for clarifications based on eligibility criteria may be submitted to the Orienteering USA Office in writing 30 days prior to a championship/s.

A.12.2.3 Eligibility rulings shall be made by vote of the Orienteering USA Executive Committee. Requests for eligibility rulings received by the Orienteering USA Office at least 30 days in advance of an event registration deadline shall be ruled upon prior to the entry deadline.

A.13 Entries

A.13.1 Competitors shall submit entries as specified in the Invitation.

A.13.2 The entry fee shall be paid as specified in the Invitation.

A.13.3 No competitor shall compete in more than one class for any race.

A.14 Training 

A.14.1 Bid Events shall offer training areas for the competitors. The terrain, map, course markings and control descriptions should be as similar as possible to the competition area. Training areas are encouraged at all sanctioned events.

A.14.2 The organizer may charge a reasonable fee for maps and training. 

A.15 Terrain

A.15.1 The area shall be complex and varied enough to suit the requirements of the event. It shall offer adequate possibilities for setting the technically difficult courses as well as the novice courses represented at the event.

A.16 Maps 

A.16.1 Maps shall be prepared in accordance with the International Specification for Orienteering Maps (ISOM) or the International Specification for Sprint Orienteering Maps (ISSOM) as appropriate to the event format. Deviant or additional symbols necessary because of local conditions may be used with the permission of the sanctioning committee. Any such symbols shall be published beforehand in the Event Information.

A.16.2 Applicable map scale varies with the event format and is detailed in the separate format sections.

A.16.3 Terrain conditions which are not visible on the map and map corrections or amendments that may influence the outcome of the event shall be clearly communicated in writing to the competitors. Overprinting on the competition map is preferred, but simple corrections may be drawn on a sample map when displaying of the competition map is permitted.

A.16.4 The map shall be printed on good quality paper. (80-120 g/sq.m; 22-30 lb. Bond)

A.16.5 The organizer shall provide protective cases for the maps with a thickness of 4 mil.

A.16.6 When the competition map has been previously used in a competition or otherwise made available to potential competitors it shall be posted in the competition center and shall be sold at a reasonable and customary price prior to and at the event.

A.16.7 When the competition map has not previously been used or otherwise made available and an earlier map of the terrain exists the earlier map shall be posted in the competition center and if possible sold at a reasonable and customary price prior to and at the event.

A.16.8 On the day of the competition, the use of any map of the competition area by competitors is prohibited unless permitted by the organizers.

A.16.9 Course markings on the map shall follow the ISOM or ISSOM as applicable.

A.16.10 Competitors who cannot properly see the color used to mark their maps may have their courses redrawn in a color they can properly see by making their request to an event official. If necessary, the competitor shall be given a new start time after the redrawn map is available.

A.17 Courses 

A.17.1 The IOF Principles for Course Planning (Appendix 2 of Foot Orienteering Rules) and Orienteering USA Course Design Guidelines should be referenced as guidance for setting the courses.

A.17.2 The characteristics of the courses, in particular the map reading and route choice requirements, shall be appropriate to the classes for which they are intended. The navigating ability and concentration of the competitors shall be tested.

A.17.3 The progression from White to Yellow to Orange to Brown through Blue is one of increased length and technical difficulty; the technical difficulty of Brown, Green, Red, and Blue is to be equivalent, at the expert level, with only a difference in physical requirements.

A.17.4 The order of visiting the control locations shall be prescribed by the organizer and observed by the competitors. If visiting the control locations out of order is likely to be advantageous then the organizer shall check that they are visited in the proper order.

A.17.5 Any marked route or crossings included on a course shall be indicated on the map.

A.17.6 Required routes (i.e. those that runners must follow) shall be clearly marked in the terrain so that all competitors can follow them without any possibility of confusion. (For example, routes may be marked with orange ribbons or streamers.) The method of marking shall be explained in the Event Information.

A.17.7 The course shall be set so as to avoid damage to the terrain, property, or the entering of out-of-bounds and hazardous areas.

A.17.8 The Event Organizer shall use all reasonable efforts to mark hazardous terrain features that are known to the Organizer both on the map and in the terrain. The method of marking in the terrain shall be clearly visible to competitors, and shall be explained in the Event Information.

A.17.9 When courses cross deep water or dangerous gorges, control locations shall be located at safe crossing points.

A.17.10 Courses shall be set so that swimming will be neither necessary nor tempting as a route choice.  

A.17.11 Control Proximity

A.17.11.1 Controls shall be separated by a minimum of 30 meters on features that are distinctly different in the terrain and on the map (15 meters for map scales 1:4000 or 1:5000).

A.17.11.2 Controls shall be separated by a minimum of 60 meters on similar features (30 meters for map scales 1:4000 or 1:5000).

A.17.12 Course Length and Climb

A.17.12.1 The expected winning time for an orienteer with a ranking score of 100 shall be decisive in determining course lengths. See Appendix A.39 (course split guidelines) for more guidance in cases where classes are split between multiple courses at the same level. For all formats it is desirable to design the best course possible within the given time range, rather than striving for the exact middle of the time range.

A.17.12.2 The course length shall be measured without regard for elevation change as the shortest possible route a runner could fairly take - i.e. around lakes and impassable and out of bounds areas as well as following any compulsory marked routes.

A.17.12.3 The course climb shall be measured as the climb in meters along the optimum route.

A.18 Sprint

A.18.1 Definition

A.18.1.1 EMPHASIS: Sprint format emphasizes high-speed orienteering.

A.18.1.2 COMPETITON: Sprint races are individual competitions.

A.18.2 Course/Class Structures

A.18.2.1 Sprints shall have three or more courses with the standard Orienteering USA classes spread reasonably among the courses offered. When offering the standard class structure, the sprint format shall be available to all advanced level classes. Courses for White/Yellow/Orange may be sprint or an alternate format, clearly stated in the event announcement.

A.18.2.2 The Sprint format shall be included in the United States Individual Orienteering Championships event.

A.18.3 Technical Rules

A.18.3.1 MAP: Sprints use map Scale 1: 4,000 or 1: 5,000 with an appropriate contour interval, typically 2m or 2.5m, or other intervals if explicitly approved by Sanctioning Committee. Maps shall meet the specifications of ISSOM (Sprint mapping). Any deviations shall be approved by Sanctioning Committee.

A.18.3.2 TERRAIN SELECTION: Sprint terrain must be very runnable, with geometry that is complex at high speed. This can include urban, campus, parkland, and some forested terrains. Denser and more urbanized settings can create additional concerns with mapping, permissions, and policing.

A.18.3.3 COURSE TYPE: A Sprint course shall be a point-to-point course.

A.18.3.4 COURSE PLANNING: A Sprint course should combine high-speed map reading and quick decision making with technically easy controls. The challenge should be in navigating through complex environments at high speed, to control sites that are technically easy for advanced level orienteers. Controls should be primarily on advanced beginner (Yellow) level, or Intermediate (Orange) level sites with nearby relocation options. Courses should include changes of direction, route choice as the terrain allows, and promote spectator opportunities. Unlike other formats, organizers may allow spectators throughout the course.

A.18.4 Scoring and Timing

A.18.4.1 The start interval for Sprints shall be no less than 30 seconds, with 1 minute recommended.

A.18.4.2 The time limit for Sprints shall be one hour

A.18.4.3 WINNING TIME: Sprint winning time should be 12-15 minutes for all classes, preferably in the lower end of this range. If part of a multiple-course day, winning times should be reduced to 5–15 minutes.

A.18.4.4 Lowest elapsed time determines a Sprint race winner.

A.18.4.5 Sprints may be timed to the tenth of a second.

A.19 Middle 

A.19.1 Definition

A.19.1.1 EMPHASIS: Middle format emphasizes technical orienteering.

A.19.1.2 COMPETITON: Middle format races are individual competitions.

A.19.2 Course/Class Structures

A.19.2.1 Middle format races shall have the standard Orienteering USA course/class structure.

A.19.2.2 The Middle format shall be included in the United States Individual Orienteering Championships event.

A.19.3 Technical Rules

A.19.3.1 MAP: Middle format uses map Scale 1:10,000 with Contours 5m or 2.5m, or other scales or intervals if explicitly approved by Sanctioning Committee. ISOM standards apply.

A.19.3.2 TERRAIN SELECTION: Middle course terrain should be very technical, or at least as technical as possible for a given region. Technical difficulty should be created by the presence and complexity of details, not the absence of features, or their lack of definition. Variety in the terrain character and vegetation conditions is desirable. Suitable terrain for beginner courses must still be provided.

A.19.3.3 COURSE TYPE: A Middle format course shall be a point-to-point course.

A.19.3.4 COURSE PLANNING: The Middle course should be full of technical orienteering. Courses shall promote detail intensive navigation and use technically difficult, but fair, control sites. Variety in the terrain conditions, leg lengths, and changes in direction are desirable. Route choice is desirable, but not at the expense of reducing the technical challenge.

A.19.4 Scoring and Timing

A.19.4.1 The start interval for middle format shall be no less than two minutes for Bid Events and one minute for other sanctioned events.

A.19.4.2 The time limit for middle format shall be two hours

A.19.4.3 WINNING TIME: Winning time for Middle race is 30–40min for M/F-21+, 25–35 min for other classes. If part of a multiple-course day, the winning times for all courses should be reduced to 20–30min.

A.19.4.4 Lowest elapsed time determines winner for Middle format races.

A.20 Long/Classic

A.20.1 Definition

A.20.1.1 EMPHASIS: The Long format emphasizes all orienteering skills.

A.20.1.2 COMPETITON: Long format races are individual competitions.

A.20.1.3 The term Classic refers to Long Format courses designed for multiple days of competition and with corresponding reduced winning times.

A.20.2 Course/Class Structures

A.20.2.1 Long format races shall have the standard Orienteering USA course/class structure.

A.20.2.2 The Long format shall be included in the United States Individual Orienteering Championships event.

A.20.2.3 The Classic format is the basis for the United States Two Day Classic Orienteering Championships. Awards are based on two-day total time results.

A.20.3 Technical Rules

A.20.3.1 MAP: Scale 1: 15,000 is required for M/F-21+ courses, except when another scale (e.g., 1:10,000) is approved by the Sanctioning Committee. For all other courses, 1:10,000 is standard, with Contours 5m or 2.5m, or other intervals if explicitly approved by Sanctioning Committee. ISOM standards apply.

A.20.3.2 TERRAIN SELECTION: Long course terrain can vary by region, but should contain some technical interest. Variety is always desirable. It is also desirable to have either pleasant vegetation, or route choice possibilities around thick vegetation. The terrain should not be excessively hilly, thick, or dangerous. It should be large enough to accommodate a suitable M-21+ course, but also must contain a section suitable for beginner courses.

A.20.3.3 COURSE TYPE: A Long format course shall be a point-to-point course.

A.20.3.4 COURSE PLANNING: Long courses should provide as many challenges, and variety as the terrain allows. Route choice and long legs should be featured, as well as changing conditions and leg lengths. Technical difficulty should be generally high, but easier sections can contribute to change of pace.

A.20.4 Scoring and Timing

A.20.4.1 The start interval for Long shall be no less than two minutes.

A.20.4.2 The time limit for Long shall be three hours.

A.20.4.3 WINNING TIMES: The competition times for an orienteer with a ranking score of 100 for Long and Classic Courses are:

 
COURSELONGCLASSIC
White20-30 min20-30 min
Yellow30-45 min25-40 min
Orange40-55 min35-50 min
Brown45-55 min40-50 min
Green50-65 min45-55 min
Red70-90 min60-75 min
Blue80-100 min70-80 min

A.20.4.4 LONG: Lowest elapsed time determines winner.

A.20.4.5 CLASSIC: Total time over multiple races determines winner.

A.21 Ultra Long

A.21.1 Definition

A.21.1.1 EMPHASIS: Endurance, route choice, and rough map reading.

A.21.1.2 Other formats not described by Orienteering USA rules that maintain fairness in competition, minimize luck as a factor and adhere to the Ultra Long Course requirements may be approved by the Sanctioning Committee. Any change of format shall be clearly explained on the Meet Invitation.

A.21.1.3 COMPETITON: Ultra Long format races are individual competitions.

A.21.2 Course/Class Structures

A.21.2.1 Ultra Long format races shall have the standard Orienteering USA course/class structure.

A.21.2.2 United States Ultra Long Orienteering Championships shall not be accepted for Championship Bid by the board of directors unless they are part of an event with another sanctioned race.

A.21.3 Technical Rules

A.21.3.1 MAP: Scale 1:15,000 is required for M/F-21+ courses, except when another scale (e.g., 1:10,000) is approved by the Sanctioning Committee. For all other courses, 1:10,000 is standard, with Contours 5m or 2.5m, or other intervals if explicitly approved by Sanctioning Committee. ISOM standards apply.

A.21.3.2 TERRAIN SELECTION: Terrain for Ultra Long courses should have high route choice potential and/or good rough map reading. Excessively thick or stony areas should be avoided. The area should be large enough to accommodate a suitable M-21+ course, but also must contain a section suitable for beginner courses.

A.21.3.3 COURSE TYPE: Ultra Long format course is a point-to-point course.

A.21.3.4 COURSE PLANNING: Ultra Long courses shall feature long legs, and route choice legs. The courses may contain a variety of technical difficulties, but no controls should be set solely for technical challenge.

A.21.3.5 An "individual relay" format may be used for Ultra Long Courses. There is a mass start for each class or the whole group. The courses consist of several loops through the start/finish area where a map exchange is set up. The competitors will run the loops in various sequences, but all competitors in the same class will run the same loops.

A.21.3.6 REFRESHMENTS: In addition to the normal refreshment controls, at approximately 2/3 of the way through the Ultra Long courses there shall be a manned aid station with clearly marked food, a suitable electrolyte replacement drink, pure water, first aid supplies and evacuation facilities.

A.21.4 Scoring and Timing

A.21.4.1 The start interval for Ultra Long shall be no less than two minutes.

A.21.4.2 Mass starts are permitted at Ultra Long Course meets.

A.21.4.3 The time limit for Ultra Long Course shall be five hours.

A.21.4.4 Ultra Long Courses are Brown, Green, Red, and Blue. Yellow and Orange may be Ultra Long or Long in duration. A standard White course shall be offered. The competition times for an orienteer with a ranking score of 100 are:

COURSEULTRA LONG Winner's Time
White20-30 min
Yellow50-75 min or LONG standard
Orange70-90 min or LONG standard
Brown80-95 min
Green90-105 min
Red120-150 min
Blue140-180 min

A.21.4.5 Lowest elapsed time determines winner.

A.22 Relay

A.22.1 Definition

A.22.1.1 EMPHASIS: Team competition, in a mass start format. In the relay event the runners in each relay team complete their individual segments sequentially. A relay team has two or more runners. Each runner completes a course as in an individual event.

A.22.1.2 The term segment refers to the individual course that each runner completes.

A.22.1.3 The term leg refers to the section of a course from one control to the next.

A.22.2 Team Classes and Composition

A.22.2.1 Teams shall consist of at least at least two (2) competitors.

A.22.2.2 Teams shall be categorized by total points based on the orienteering age and gender of their members. The exact number of categories/points for a specific event shall be decided by the event organizer.

A.22.2.3 The point system and categories for a specific relay event, as decided upon by the event organizer and approved by the sanctioning committee, shall be announced 6 months before the race, preferably in the sanctioning application, and made available to all interested parties. If no such announcement is made, the point system and categories for that specific event revert to the defaults described below.

A.22.2.4 In the event that no specific category/point system is established by the event organizers prior to the time limits set forth above the following default category/ point system is to be followed:

  1. Ages 17-20 or 35-49 receives 1 point
  2. Ages 15, 16 or 50-59 receives 2 points
  3. Under 15 years of age or 60 and older receives 3 points
  4. A female orienteer receives 2 points, in addition to any age points.
    • Examples: 15-year old female = 4 points; 47 year old male = 1 point; 23 year old male = 0 points
  5. Team point categories are 4-point, 8-point, and 12-point.

A.22.2.5 There shall be a minimum of two team categories in any relay event. Other categories may be added at the discretion of the event organizers.

A.22.3 Championship Structure

A.22.3.1 Teams shall consist of at least four (4) competitors for U.S. Relay Championship categories.

A.22.3.2 U.S. Championship categories/courses shall be as follows:

  1. Lowest point teams shall have no more than two segments of Orange (moderate) level difficulty, the remaining segments being equivalent to Brown through Red difficulty.
  2. Medium (to High) point teams shall have no more than one segment of Yellow (easy) level difficulty, no more than one segment of Orange (moderate) level, any other segment equivalent to Brown through Red difficulty.
  3. Optional - High point teams shall have no more than two segments of Yellow (easy) level difficulty, no more than two segments of Orange (moderate) level, any other segment equivalent to Brown through Red difficulty.

A.22.3.3 ELIGIBILITY: U.S. Relay Orienteering Championship teams represent chartered Clubs. All team members shall compete for their primary club and meet the individual U.S. Champion eligibility requirements (rule A.12.2.1).

A.22.4 Technical Rules

A.22.4.1 Relays may be made up of segments of Sprint, Middle, or Long Format. Map and Course Design considerations for each segment shall follow the applicable rules.

A.22.4.2 TERRAIN SELECTION: Choosing terrain with an arena for the start, finish, exchange, and spectating is extremely important for the relay event. The terrain should provide a fair test of orienteering for all skill levels, and shall not be so extreme physically or technically, as to exaggerate team separation. Varying visibility conditions are desirable.

A.22.4.3 Relays shall be made up of at least two segments.

A.22.4.4 Each relay team competing in the same category shall run the same combination of legs, whether in the same order or in a different order shall be at the discretion of the event organizers.

A.22.4.5 COURSE PLANNING: Relay courses should provide spectating opportunities, most typically at least one loop through the spectator area, in addition to the final approach to the Finish. The courses shall test all skills as the terrain allows, with a special attention to route choice and varied visibility to increase the competitive excitement. The course design may incorporate a forking system, provided that all teams ultimately run the same legs, and the last section of the last segment, roughly 1.0km, shall be common for all teams.

A.22.5 Scoring and Timing

A.22.5.1 Start formats are at the discretion of the organizers. On the second and each of the subsequent segments a changeover between the runners on each team takes place by touching, either by way of direct physical contact or using an object (such as a stick, or a map) within a limited space immediately after the line where the elapsed time is measured. Competitors waiting for the return of their teammates may be started with a mass start at a time determined by the event organizers.

A.22.5.2 A mass start shall be used for the first segment of the U.S. Relay Orienteering Championships.

A.22.5.3 For mass starts the time limit shall at minimum be the winning time, plus any mass start delays the organizers add for the segments after the first start. The organizers shall announce the time limit before the start.

A.22.5.4 For a sequential start, the organizers shall announce the time limit before the first start.

A.22.5.5 WINNING TIMES: Maximum 150 minutes for each championship category. Winning times may be less for relays with fewer segments or shorter formats.

A.22.5.6 The results are determined using the combined time of the competitors in a team. For a mass start relay event, if the last segment runners finish together, the position of the team is determined by the finish order of the last segment runner.

A.22.5.7 Awards shall be given to the three fastest club teams in the categories used at the event.

A.23 Night

A.23.1 Definition

A.23.1.1 A Night competition shall be run entirely in the dark. The first start shall be at least 15 minutes after the end of civil twilight, and the last at least the time limit plus 15 minutes before the beginning of civil twilight.

A.23.1.2 The U.S. Night Orienteering Championships shall be a Long format race.

A.23.1.3 COMPETITON: Night races are individual competitions.

A.23.2 Course/Class Structures

A.23.2.1 Night races shall have the standard Orienteering USA course/class structure.

A.23.2.2 United States Night Orienteering Championships shall not be accepted for Championship Bid by the board of directors unless they are part of an event with another sanctioned race.

A.23.3 Technical Rules

A.23.3.1 Night races may be Sprint, Middle, or Long Format. Map and Course Design considerations shall follow the applicable rules.

A.23.3.2 Ideally, area lighting in any area of the competition other than areas designated by the event organizers as necessary for the successful and safe completion of the event shall not be used. The organizers shall make the competitors aware of such areas.

A.23.3.3 A light or reflecting device may be included with or may substitute for the control flag, as the event organizers shall decide and publicize.

A.23.3.4 No control site shall be placed in, or close enough for the control site to be affected by any area using fixed point, artificial lighting, when the fixed point, artificial lighting in that area varies in an unpredictable manner.

A.23.4 Competitor’s Equipment

A.23.4.1 In addition to the equipment normally allowed on a course (rule A.34) the competitor is also required to carry a light source. A backup light source may be carried in case of failure.

A.23.4.2 No open or contained flame shall be used by a competitor, except in the case of emergency. In the event of such an emergency, the competitor shall be given a SPW finish.

A.23.5 Safety

A.23.5.1 In a Night Orienteering race, the event officials shall take due care to minimize the hazards and risks to the competitors, spectators, and those assisting with the event, and to publicize, in a suitable manner, those risks and hazards specific to the event site.

A.23.5.2 Any routes or crossings which require marking to direct the competitor along a fixed route or direction, or to warn them away from a hazard, shall not be part of a Night Orienteering course. Exceptions to this rule shall be the start and finish chutes.

A.23.5.3 Any hazardous, impassable, or uncrossable feature, other than fences, shall not be used as a control site, or probable route choice.

A.23.6 Scoring and Timing

A.23.6.1 Start intervals, time limits, and winning times shall depend on the format (Sprint, Middle, or Long) of the Night race. See the applicable section of the rules.

A.23.6.2 Lowest elapsed time determines winner.

A.24 Control Set-up

A.24.1 A Control Flag shall mark each control location. The control flag consists of three squares arranged in triangular form. Each square is a 30cm X 30cm and is divided diagonally, one half being white and the other half orange (ideally PMS 165). At least two of the white triangles shall be adjacent to the upper edge of the control flag. (Additional color of blue stripe 2.54 to 5.08 cm wide, centered, vertically or along the diagonal divide is allowed.)

A.24.2 Every control flag shall have a code card and marking device/s associated with it. The relative arrangement of the control flag, control code, and marking devices shall be the same for all the control locations on a course.

A.24.3 The control flag shall be hung at the feature indicated on the map. The actual position shall be in accordance with the control description.

A.24.4 The control flag shall be visible by the competitor upon reaching the described location at the feature.

A.24.5 Ideally control flags shall be situated so that the presence or absence of competitors does not make them easier or more difficult to locate.

A.24.6 A Control Code shall identify each control location. The control code shall be a number, not less than 31 or greater than 255. The same code shall be included on the control description sheet. The figures shall be black on white; between 3 and 10cm high with a line width of 5-10mm. Ideally the competitor will only be able to read the codes when immediately at the control flag.

A.24.7 There shall not be other confusing figures or marks on the control flag.

A.24.8 It is recommended that numbers or letters that can improperly be read upside down not be used (i.e. 86 - 98). If, however, they are used they shall have a line drawn beneath them to indicate the proper stance.

A.24.9 Every control shall have control card marking device/s. If only manual punching is used, then only a manual punching device is required. If electronic punching is used, then both a manual and electronic punching device shall be provided.

A.24.10 To minimize competitors waiting for a marker there shall be an ample number of marking devices at each control location. This is particularly important at the early controls when a mass start is used.

A.24.11 MANNED CONTROLS: Any control location may be manned. When so manned, the number of each of the competitors visiting the control location and the time at which they punched may be recorded. The control official shall neither disturb nor retain any competitor nor supply any information as to time, position nor anything else. The official shall remain quiet, wear inconspicuous clothes and shall not help competitors approaching the control flag. These regulations apply also to all persons at media, communication, refreshment controls and spectator points.

A.24.12 REFRESHMENTS: On each course refreshments consisting of at least potable water shall be provided at least every 2.5 km. Refreshments shall be provided at the start and finish and at appropriate locations along the course and indicated on the description sheets and/or map as such. At least 0.25 liters (8 oz.) of water shall be available for every competitor at each refreshment stop. Because fairness requires that water be available to the last competitors who visit a refreshment stop, substantially more water than this may be necessary, particularly in hot weather and at refreshment stops later in the course.

A.24.13 Water shall be offered in a sanitary manner such that it is not practical for competitors to drink from “community drinking jugs.”

A.25 Punching Systems

A.25.1 Manual Punching

A.25.1.1 The control card may be attached to or printed on the map. Alternately the control card may be handed out separately at least 10 minutes before a competitor's start time.

A.25.1.2 Competitors shall be responsible for marking the control cards provided by the organizers clearly and in the correct box at each control location using the marking equipment provided, and handing in their control card at the finish. When competitors mark an incorrect box they should continue the correct sequence beginning in the next box. Disqualifications shall be decided on by the organizer.

A.25.1.3 The organizer may have the control card checked and/or marked by officials at the control locations.

A.25.1.4 When competitors lose their control cards, or a control mark is missing, or it is established that the control locations were not visited in the prescribed order the competitor shall be disqualified unless an alternate proof is provided and accepted by the organizer.

A.25.1.5 The control card, when not printed on the map, shall not exceed 10cm by 21cm and shall be made of an adequately sturdy material.

A.25.2 Electronic Punching

A.25.2.1 IOF-approved electronic punching systems may be used in lieu of other punching systems, including the traditional pin punch system.

A.25.2.2 The only automatically approved electronic punching systems are:

  1. The Emit Electronic Punching and Timing system. If this system is used, the label attached to the competitor's electronic control card for backup marking must be such that it will survive the conditions likely to be encountered during a competition (including immersion in water).
  2. The SportIdent system. If this system is used, a backup unit shall be present at each control—either a second electronic unit or a manual marking device. It is the competitor's responsibility to ensure that the electronic punch has been written to the e-card by not removing the e-card until the feedback signal has been received.

A.25.2.3 If electronic punching is utilized, the electronic control card must show that all controls have been visited in the proper order.

A.25.2.4 If the electronic punch unit fails to respond, the competitor shall use the backup device as defined in the meet information to prove his or her presence at the control.

A.25.2.5 The organizers are responsible for directing the competitors to the clear and check stations provided in the call-up area.

A.25.2.6 The competitor is responsible for bringing the e-card to the start. The competitor is responsible for clearing and checking the e-card, before being called up, in the stations provided by the organizers.

A.25.2.7 The competitor is responsible for punching the start, if required by the organizer, and all controls on the course as well as the finish.

A.25.2.8 The competitor is responsible for downloading the e-card data in the station provided by the organizers.

A.25.2.9 The organizers are responsible for directing the competitors to the download station.

A.26 Control Descriptions

A.26.1.1 The control description serves to clarify the picture of the control site as it appears on the map. It shall describe the control site accurately, but as briefly as possible.

A.26.1.2 The control descriptions shall correspond to the International Specification for Control Descriptions of the IOF on all but the White and Yellow courses.

A.26.1.3 On the White and Yellow courses English words approximating the meanings and order of the IOF symbols shall be used. When possible they should be adjacent to the IOF symbols.

A.26.1.4 All the refreshment controls on a course shall be indicated on the control description sheet.

A.27 Out-of-bounds

A.27.1 It is forbidden to cause damage in the competition terrain. The competitors are solely responsible for their damage.

A.27.2 The competitor shall not enter the following areas except when specific permission is included in the Event Information:

  1. Yards and gardens
  2. Sown land and land with growing or standing crops
  3. Limited-access highways or fenced railways
  4. Areas marked “out of bounds”
  5. Buildings

A.27.3 The crossing of fences and ditches, as well as passing across forest plantations, shall occur in such a way that no damage is done, in consideration of nature conservation, the land owners, and others. Barriers and gates opened by the competitor shall be closed by same.

A.28 Start

A.28.1 The start order shall be determined by the organizer with the principle of fairness kept in mind.

A.28.2 At U.S. Championship events, the starting order shall be designed such that top ranked competitors and those with the same interests (same college or club) start as far apart as possible.

A.28.3 The starting list of registered competitors shall be officially declared at least 15 hours before the first start time.

A.28.4 For individual starts the runners on each course start one by one at intervals as specified in the appropriate course format section. Ideally all starting intervals on a course are equal.

A.28.5 The competitors take their competition maps at the starting time at the start location or after the starting time at the map issue point.

A.28.6 The use of a mass start shall be announced in the Invitation and is to be used only when permitted elsewhere by these rules (A.3.3.b, A.21.4.2, A.22.5) or with the permission of the sanctioning committee.

A.28.7 If competitors are late for their start through their own fault they shall be started as soon as practically possible. The actual time of their start shall be noted on their map, or a start list at the start location. Their time shall still be computed, however, from their original start time given in the official start list except as below.

A.28.8 At the discretion of the organizer late starters may have their actual start times substituted for their official start times when this can be done for all late starters within a class on the same day while maintaining appropriate start intervals.

A.28.9 If through the fault of the organizer any competitors miss their start they shall be given a new one.

A.28.10 Events using electronic punching may use an electronic start punch to determine the actual start time for timing purposes.

A.29 Finish/Timing

A.29.1 After crossing the finish line the competitors shall hand in their control cards or move to the download station. When required by the organizer, competitors may have to turn in their maps at the finish line.

A.29.2 At the finish there shall be first aid supplies and refreshments.

A.29.3 The finishing time shall be measured when the competitor’s chest crosses the finish line or when the competitor punches at the finish line. Times shall be truncated to full seconds, except in sprint races, when timing to the tenth of a second may be allowed. Times shall be given in minutes and seconds or hours, minutes, and seconds, except in sprint races when tenths of a second may be added.

A.29.4 Except in competitions with mass or chasing starts, if more than one competitor has the same running time, they shall be given the same finishing place, and the results should show the same place number for both. When practical they should be listed in the order in which they started.

A.29.5 In competitions with mass or chasing starts, finish judges shall rule on the final placing. Runners finishing together shall be placed in finish order. If this occurs at a relay event, the position of the team is determined by the finish order of the last leg runner.

A.29.6 Competitors who omit one or more control marks shall be listed as "did not finish" (DNF). If the absence of a control mark is not the fault of the competitor (i.e. missing or broken punch) and the competitor states that he/she visited all the control locations in the proper sequence, in the absence of proof to the contrary the competitor shall not be disqualified.

A.29.7 Competitors who mark at an incorrect control in place of the correct one shall be listed as "mispunch" (MSP).

A.29.8 Competitors who can be proved to have visited the control points in the wrong order shall be disqualified (DSQ).

A.29.9 Under special circumstances a competitor may have their results posted as “sporting withdrawal” (SPW) and will be able to use their attendance to qualify for ranking but shall not be eligible for placing or awards at the meet. They may, however, be recognized when appropriate.

A.29.10 The meet director may assign SPW to any competitor who aborts a run to aid an injured runner.

A.29.11 All competitors shall be given equal amounts of competition time to complete their courses. Unless a longer or shorter time is declared in the Meet Information the competition time limit shall be as specified in these rules for each format. Competitors completing a course in a time greater than the competition time limit shall be recorded as overtime (OVT) and shall not receive a time or place.

A.29.12 All competitors whether finished or not shall report to the finish by the announced closing time of the finish.

A.29.13 Within one hour of the close of the finish, provisional results shall be displayed in the vicinity of the finish or the announced location.

A.30 Awards

A.30.1 Awards in the various classes shall be appropriate to the number of competitors in the class and the importance and nature of the event.

A.30.2 The top three finishers in each Championship class who are eligible for Championship titles at any U.S. Orienteering Championship shall receive a U.S. Championship award, regardless of overall place. Championship awards shall be provided to the event organizer by Orienteering USA. See Appendix A.40 U.S. Orienteering Championship Award Guidelines

A.31 Protests and Jury

A.31.1 Complaints against infringements of the rules by the organizers or a competitor or accompanying parties shall be made in writing to the organizer as soon as possible. The organizer adjudicates a complaint. The complainant and any other affected parties shall be informed about the decision immediately.

A.31.2 Complaints shall be made within one hour of the previously announced time of closure of the finish, or of the actual closure of the finish, whichever is later. Complaints received after this time limit shall only be considered if there are valid exceptional circumstances, which must be explained in the complaint.

A.31.3 If a complaint is against a provisional result it shall be raised within one hour of the results being posted.

A.31.4 Protests against the decision of a complaint shall be made in writing to the organizer within one hour of the announcement of the complaint decision.

A.31.5 The Jury shall deal with all protests filed before the event has disbanded.

A.31.6 No fee shall be charged to file a complaint or protest.

A.31.7 The Meet Director shall appoint a Jury of at least three people from widely separated clubs or foreign delegations as appropriate. Members of the Jury shall not be members of the Orienteering USA Grievance Committee or Orienteering USA Executive Committee. Ideally, Jury members shall not be competitors whose results could be affected by their decision.

A.31.8 The duties of the Jury shall be to deal with infringements of the rules and any other questions arising out of protests.

A.31.9 The basis for the decisions by the Jury shall be these Rules for Orienteering USA Sanctioned Events.

A.31.10 In the event of a protest the Jury shall interpret these rules with regard to the specific situation surrounding the protest to determine whether the fairness of the event has been compromised and disqualifying conditions exist.

A.31.11 The Course Consultant, Vetter, and a representative of the organizers may attend and participate at Jury meetings, but shall have no vote.

A.31.12 The Jury forms a quorum when all members are present. If a member is prevented from attending the Meet Director shall nominate a substitute member.

A.31.13 When in response to a complaint or protest the organizer or Jury determines that any of the following conditions have existed for a substantial group of competitors in a class, then the class or course shall be voided.

  1. A control flag is missing.
  2. A control flag, the start, or the finish is not within the marked circle or triangle.
  3. A control flag is on the wrong feature.
  4. The code at the control is different from that on the control description sheet.
  5. Unfair conditions that probably had an impact on the results

A.31.14 If electronic punching is utilized, the organizer or Jury is specifically prohibited from trying to salvage a problem course by deleting the times of the affected legs from the total elapsed time of that course.

A.31.15 When in response to a complaint or protest the organizer or Jury determines that a competitor has violated these rules it may disqualify the competitor.

A.31.16 When in response to a complaint or protest the organizer or Jury determines that a rule has been broken and the effect on the results is minor and only a few competitors have been affected, then the organizer or Jury may allow, request or require a Sporting Withdrawal (SPW) by the affected competitors. Competitors may not elect a Sporting Withdrawal (as used in this rule) without the consent of the organizer or Jury. (See also F.1.5.b)

A.31.17 If a gross infringement in rule A.32 (Fairness) is discovered after a meet has disbanded the protest shall be filed directly with the Orienteering USA Board of Directors. The Board shall take whatever action it deems necessary.

A.31.18 Decisions of the Jury may be appealed in writing to the Chair of the Orienteering USA Grievance Committee within seven days after the ruling of the jury.

A.32 Fairness

A.32.1 Sporting fairness shall be the primary consideration when organizing an event and when interpreting these rules.

A.32.2 All persons who take part at an orienteering event (competitors, organizers, team managers and so on) shall demonstrate a high degree of fairness, a sporting attitude, a spirit of comradeship and honesty.

A.32.3 It is forbidden to obtain outside help or collaborate in running or navigation except when entered as a group or in a non-competitive class.

A.32.4 A competitor shall not seek to obtain unfair advantage over fellow competitors, nor intentionally run with or behind other competitors during the event in order to profit from their skill.

A.32.5 Prior investigation of the competition area is forbidden.

A.32.6 A competitor wishing to retain eligibility shall not seek to obtain an unfair advantage by communicating with other competitors, team officials, event officials, journalists, spectators or others before or during the competition.

A.32.7 The competitor is obliged to show respect for other competitors, leaders, land owners or administrators, officials, journalists, spectators, and others as well as residents of the competition terrain and areas.

A.32.8 The use of drugs prohibited by WADA is forbidden. The IOF Anti-Doping Rules are considered a part of this rules document. Medically necessary drugs prescribed by a physician and for which the physician certifies that no suitable non-prohibited substitutes are available may be used.

A.32.9 Competitors for whom the preponderance of evidence shows that they have broken these rules may be disqualified from the event by the organizer or, in response to a protest, by the jury.

A.32.10 Competitors at team events (relay, interscholastic, etc.) for whom the preponderance of evidence shows that they have intentionally broken these rules to gain a competitive advantage may have their entire team disqualified from the event by the organizer or, in response to a protest, by the jury.

A.32.11 Competitors for whom the preponderance of the evidence shows that they have intentionally broken these rules causing a course to be voided may be disqualified by the Jury from the current event as well as future Orienteering USA events for a period of up to two years.

A.32.12 The organizer shall stop, and postpone or cancel a race if at any point it becomes clear that circumstances have arisen which make the race dangerous for the competitor, officials or spectators.

A.32.13 The organizer shall void a race if circumstances have arisen which make the race significantly unfair.

A.33 Competitor Conduct

A.33.1 The competitors take part at their own risk while traveling to the event, in the training event, and in the event itself.

A.33.2 Competitors shall not give navigational assistance or do harm to other competitors, and shall not intentionally draw their attention.

A.33.3 It is the duty of each competitor to help anyone who is injured.

A.33.4 Care shall be taken when running along or crossing traffic routes.

A.33.5 Competitors must follow sections of the course marked as required routes.

A.33.6 Once competitors cross the finish line their competition is over, and they shall not return to the competition area without permission from the organizer.

A.33.7 Competitors who do not finish (DNF) must report to the finish and return their control card and map. They shall in no way attempt to influence the competition or other competitors.

A.33.8 Competitors shall not drink from water jugs in such a way that they contaminate the water others must use, and they shall not waste the water, using only what they need to drink.

A.33.9 Competitors shall not have any animals accompanying them on the course, with the exception of verified service animals.

A.34 Equipment

A.34.1 So long as the particular conditions in the area (i.e. danger of infection) do not necessitate otherwise, choice of clothing shall be up to the individual. In forested terrain, it is strongly recommended that the competitor's legs be completely covered. When the organizers require particular clothing it shall be announced in the Meet Invitation.

A.34.2 The organizers may require competitors to wear identifying numbers on a bib on the chest and/or the back. The competitor shall not conceal any information on the bib. The bib shall not be larger than 20cm by 24cm. The numerals shall be at least 12cm high.

A.34.3 During the competition only a compass and the map and control descriptions provided by the organizer may be used for navigation. Personal aids not used directly for navigation are permitted. (e.g. magnifying glass, flashlight, cane, eyeglasses)

A.34.4 Any equipment may be carried provided that it is not used for navigation or communication. (e.g. phones for safety, GPS devices for tracking and post-race analysis)

A.34.5 Competitors shall travel only on foot unless otherwise specified by the organizers or by these rules.

A.35 Intercollegiate Special Rules

A.35.1 Definition

A.35.1.1 Intercollegiate competition is an individual point-to-point format competition for eligible college students. Students compete for individual awards and can compete on teams for team awards.

A.35.2 Course/Class Structure

A.35.2.1 In addition to the standard course/class structure the following Individual intercollegiate classes are added.

  1. ICVM: Intercollegiate Varsity Males on the Red course
  2. ICVF: Intercollegiate Varsity Females on the Green course
  3. ICJVM: Intercollegiate Junior Varsity Males on the Orange course
  4. ICJVF: Intercollegiate Junior Varsity Females on the Orange course
Intercollegiate Individual 4 Classes
WhiteYellowOrangeBrownGreenRedBlue
  ICJVF ICVFICVM 
  ICJVM    

A.35.2.2 Intercollegiate events may also include team classes as follows:

  1. An Intercollegiate Varsity Team shall consist of up to 5 competitors made up of any combination of men and women who are eligible for Intercollegiate Varsity competition
  2. An Intercollegiate Junior Varsity Team shall consist of up to 5 competitors made up of any combination of men and women who are eligible for Intercollegiate Junior Varsity competition.

A.35.3 Intercollegiate Eligibility

A.35.3.1 To be eligible to compete in an Intercollegiate class the competitor must meet the following two requirements:

  1. Be a full-time college or university student.
    (Undergraduate or graduate as defined by the college or university)
  2. Be less than 28 years old as of December 31 of the current year.

A.35.3.2 Junior Varsity competitors must have never competed in the Intercollegiate Varsity class.

A.35.4 Scoring

A.35.4.1 Scores for each race are computed as follows:

  1. For each Individual Intercollegiate class, define AWT (the average winning time) as the average of the times of the top three individual competitors in that class (for Championships use only times from Team Championship-eligible competitors). In the event that there are fewer than three eligible competitors with a valid time in any intercollegiate class, the AWT shall be calculated as the average of the times of all eligible competitors with a valid time.
  2. For each competitor in each Individual Intercollegiate class with a valid result, their score is computed as 60*(competitor’s time)/ (AWT for the class).
  3. For competitors with an OVT, MSP, DNF or DSQ result, their score shall be the larger of 10+[60*(course time limit)/ (AWT for the male class)] and 10+[60*(course time limit)/ (AWT for the female class)] for their team level (Varsity or JV).

A.35.4.2 Team Scoring: The best three scores from each race for each team are combined for a team score. Lowest overall team score wins.

A.35.4.3 Individual Scoring: The scores from each race are combined for each individual. Lowest combined score wins.

A.35.4.4 For calculation purposes the decimal should be carried as far as the used system will allow.

A.35.4.5 For display purposes the decimal should be carried one or two places, or as far as necessary to indicate an order or tie. Two decimal places are recommended.

A.35.5 U.S. Intercollegiate Orienteering Championships

A.35.5.1 The U.S. Intercollegiate Orienteering Championships shall consist of two races—either two Classic format races or one Middle and one Long format.

A.35.5.2 The following are the Championship classes at the U.S. Intercollegiate Orienteering Championships:

  1. Individual ICJVF
  2. Individual ICJVM
  3. Individual ICVM
  4. Individual ICVF
  5. Team School Junior Varsity
  6. Team School Varsity
  7. Team Club Varsity

A.35.5.3 Individual Intercollegiate Championship eligibility is as follows:

  1. Meet standard U.S. Championship eligibility requirements in section A.12.2.1.
  2. Meet standard Intercollegiate class requirements in section A.35.3.1.
  3. Have competed as an eligible competitor in fewer than four U.S. Intercollegiate Orienteering Championships.

A.35.5.4 Team Intercollegiate Championship eligibility is as follows:

  1. Be Orienteering USA regular members in good standing.
  2. Meet standard U.S. Championship eligibility requirements in section A.12.2.1 OR be legally enrolled as a full-time student at a U.S. college or university.
  3. Meet standard Intercollegiate class requirements in section A.35.3.1.
  4. Have competed as an eligible competitor in fewer than four U.S. Intercollegiate Orienteering Championships.

A.35.5.5 All Intercollegiate Championship SCHOOL team members must meet the team eligibility requirements and attend school on the same campus.

A.35.5.6 All Intercollegiate Championship CLUB team members must meet the team eligibility requirements, be primary members of the same Orienteering USA club and the team must not qualify as a school team.

A.35.5.7 Championship Awards shall be given in accordance with rule A.30.2. See also Appendix A.40, U.S. Orienteering Championship Award Guidelines

A.36 Interscholastic Special Rules

A.36.1 Definition

A.36.1.1 Interscholastic competition is an individual point-to-point format competition for eligible K-12 students. Students compete for individual awards and can compete on teams for team awards.

A.36.2 Course/Class Structure

A.36.2.1 The following eight classes shall be added for Interscholastic competitions. These classes shall be used in individual and team competition.

  1. Interscholastic Varsity Males (ISVM) compete on the green course and are in any grade through twelve.
  2. Interscholastic Varsity Females (ISVF) compete on the brown course and are in any grade through twelve.
  3. Interscholastic Junior Varsity Males (ISJVM) compete on the orange course and are in any grade through twelve.
  4. Interscholastic Junior Varsity Females (ISJVF) compete on the orange course and are in any grade through twelve.
  5. Interscholastic Intermediate Males (ISIM) compete on the yellow course and are in any grade through nine.
  6. Interscholastic Intermediate Females (ISIF) compete on the yellow course and are in any grade through nine.
  7. Interscholastic Primary Males (ISPM) compete on the white course and are in any grade through six.
  8. Interscholastic Primary Females (ISPF) compete on the white course and are in any grade through six.
Interscholastic 8 Classes
WhiteYellowOrangeBrownGreenRedBlue
ISPFISIFISJVFISVFISVM  
ISPMISIMISJVM    

A.36.2.2 Interscholastic events may also include team classes as follows:

  1. Interscholastic Varsity Teams consist of 3 to 5 students who are competing in the ISVM and/or ISVF classes.
  2. Interscholastic Junior Varsity teams consist of 3 to 5 students who are competing in the ISJVM and/or ISJVF class.
  3. Interscholastic Intermediate teams consist of 3 to 5 students who are competing in the ISIM and/or ISIF classes.
  4. Interscholastic Primary teams consist of 3 to 5 students who are competing in the ISPM and/or ISPF classes.

A.36.3 Interscholastic Eligibility

A.36.3.1 To be eligible to compete in an Interscholastic class the competitor must meet the grade requirements listed above and either be enrolled in a public or private school or be homeschooled.

A.36.4 Technical Rules

A.36.4.1 Start intervals shall be no less than two minutes in accordance with the rules for specific course formats.

A.36.4.2 Students from the same team or school on the same course shall be started a minimum of six minutes apart. Maximum separation of such students is recommended to reduce the temptation for collusion on the course.

A.36.4.3 It is recommended that organizers plan separate courses for the Interscholastic classes. In the event that registered competitors fill up the maximum start window on a course, a separate course shall be created for the Interscholastic classes.

A.36.4.4 In the event the start window fills up even with a separate course, a one minute start interval or a qualifying system may be used.

A.36.5 Scoring

A.36.5.1 Scores for each race are computed as follows:

  1. For each Individual Interscholastic class, define AWT (the average winning time) as the average of the times of the top three individual competitors in that class (for Championships use only times from Team Championship-eligible competitors). In the event that there are fewer than three eligible competitors with a valid time in any interscholastic class, the AWT shall be calculated as the average of the times of all eligible competitors with a valid time.
  2. For each competitor in each Individual Interscholastic class with a valid result, their score is computed as 60*(competitor’s time)/ (AWT for the class).
  3. For competitors with an OVT, MSP, DNF or DSQ result, their score shall be the larger of 10+[60*(course time limit)/ (AWT for the male class)] and 10+[60*(course time limit)/ (AWT for the female class)] for their team level (Varsity, JV, Intermediate, or Primary).

A.36.5.2 Team Scoring: The best three scores from each race for each team are combined for a team score. Lowest overall team score wins.

A.36.5.3 Individual Scoring: The scores from each race are combined for each individual. Lowest combined score wins.

A.36.5.4 For calculation purposes the decimal should be carried as far as the used system will allow.

A.36.5.5 For display purposes the decimal should be carried one or two places, or as far as necessary to indicate an order or tie. Two decimal places are recommended.

A.36.6 U.S. Interscholastic Orienteering Championships

A.36.6.1 The U.S. Interscholastic Orienteering Championships shall consist of two races – either two Classic format races or one Middle and one Long format.

A.36.6.2 The following are the Championship classes at the U.S. Interscholastic Orienteering Championships:

  1. Individual ISVM
  2. Individual ISVF
  3. Individual ISJVF
  4. Individual ISJVM
  5. Individual ISIM
  6. Individual ISIF
  7. Individual ISPM
  8. Individual ISPF
  9. Individual JROTC ISVM
  10. Individual JROTC ISVF
  11. Individual JROTC ISJVM
  12. Individual JROTC ISJVF
  13. Team School Varsity
  14. Team School Junior Varsity
  15. Team School Intermediate
  16. Team Club Varsity
  17. Team Club Junior Varsity
  18. Team Club Intermediate
  19. Team JROTC Varsity
  20. Team JROTC Junior Varsity

A.36.6.3 To be eligible for U.S. Interscholastic Championship Individual awards an individual must be competing in one of the interscholastic classes and meet the requirements in section A.12.2.1.

A.36.6.4 To be eligible for U.S. Interscholastic Championship TEAM awards every individual on a team must be competing in one of the interscholastic classes AND either meet eligibility requirements in section A.12.2.1 OR be an Orienteering USA regular member in good standing and be legally enrolled full-time in a U.S. school.

A.36.6.5 To be eligible as a SCHOOL Team

  1. Members must be enrolled full-time at the same private or public school.
  2. Members must each be able to show school ID for the same school or, if the school does not issue IDs, a letter from the principal stating that the students are enrolled full-time at the school.

A.36.6.6 Individuals who are homeschooled may be eligible to form a SCHOOL team under the following rules:

  1. All team members must be from the same geographical area. This area is defined as their county or city of residence or the public school district in which they reside, whichever area is geographically larger.
  2. Individuals who are enrolled at a public or private school are not permitted to compete on a school team with homeschooled individuals

A.36.6.7 To be eligible as a CLUB Team

  1. All team members must be primary Orienteering USA regular members of the same Orienteering USA sanctioned Orienteering Club.
  2. The team must not be eligible as a SCHOOL or JROTC team.
  3. The Coach of the Club Team shall provide a letter stating that all members meet the eligibility requirements.

A.36.6.8 To be eligible as a JROTC Team

  1. All team members must be enrolled in the same JROTC unit in accordance with the host military service requirements.
  2. JROTC teams may also compete as School teams if they meet the School team requirements above.

A.36.6.9 Championship Awards shall be given in accordance with rule A.30.2. See also Appendix A.40, U.S. Orienteering Championship Award Guidelines

A.36.6.10 Traveling Cups are awarded to the top eligible teams in School Varsity, School Junior Varsity, School Intermediate, JROTC Varsity, and JROTC Junior Varsity classes.

A.36.6.11 Awards in the JROTC classes may differ from standard U.S. Championship awards.

A.37 North American Orienteering Championships

A.37.1 Except where specifically noted in this section, the Rules for Orienteering USA Sanctioned Events shall apply. These rules are written so as to allow Orienteering USA organizers to convert their experience with Orienteering USA Rules into this international event.

A.37.2 This competition is held to provide a championship competition for members of IOF federations in North America.

A.37.3 Competitions are open to everyone except as published by the host. To be eligible for the North American Championship title, a competitor must be a regular member of an IOF federation in the North American region and a citizen or legal permanent resident of the country in which they hold federation membership.

A.37.4 The North American Championships shall consist of single sprint, middle, and long format races as defined in sections A.18, A.19, and A.20.

A.37.5 The standard Orienteering USA course/class structure shall be used.

A.37.6 Placing for each format is determined by the competitor’s elapsed time.

A.37.7 North American Orienteering Championship awards shall be awarded to the first three eligible competitors in each class for each format.

A.37.8 Additional awards are at the discretion of the organizer.

A.38 Appendix – Course/Class Structure

The following Orienteering USA Standard Course/Class structure is the minimum that a sanctioned event must offer. Individual competitors are divided into classes by gender (M for male, and F for female), and age as of December 31 of the current year. If desired, age divisions may be further divided into additional classes by course difficulty and skill level.


Individual Championship Classes
WhiteYellowOrangeBrownGreenRedBlue
F-10F-14F-16F-18M65+F-20F-21+M-21+
F-12M-14M-16F55+M70+F35+M-20 
M-10  F60+M75+F40+M35+ 
M-12  F65+M80+F45+M40+ 
   F70+M85+F50+M45+ 
   F75+M90+M-18  
   F80+ M50+  
   F85+ M55+  
   F90+ M60+  

Non-Championship Competitive Classes
M/F WhiteF YellowF OrangeF Brown F GreenM Red 
 M YellowM OrangeM Brown M Green  

Special Classes for Intercollegiate Events
WhiteYellowOrangeBrownGreenRedBlue
  ICJVF  ICVFICVM 
  ICJVM     

Special Classes for Interscholastic Events
WhiteYellowOrangeBrownGreenRedBlue
ISPFISIFISJVFISVFISVM  
ISPMISIMISJVM     

Age class ranges are indicated by a "-" and/or a "+".  A "-" before the age means "and younger"; the "+" after the age means "and older". Gender classes contain M for male and F for female.  Classes containing the course color are open to any age. Classes containing M/F are open to any age or gender. See Appendix A.39 (Course Split Guidelines) for information on class assignment when multiple courses of the same color are planned.

A.39 Appendix – Course Split Guidelines

Considerations

When A-meet organizers split color-coded courses into two or more courses, class groupings should be based on the following:

  1. Start window length and balance of competitors on each split course.
  2. Course lengths that are class appropriate. (see appropriate winning times in sections A.18, A.19, A.20, A.21)
  3. Social preferences.

General Advice

  1. Most importantly, both class and course assignment information need to be clearly posted:
    1. with the event information and preferably also in the event invitation;
    2. on site at registration or in registration packets;
    3. on start lists – for organizers and participants; and
    4. at start map pickup – on map containers and/or directly on maps.
  2. Course distances should target the average of the classes on each course. (see appropriate winning times in sections A.18, A.19, A.20, and A.21)
  3. Adjacent age classes of the same sex should be on the same split course, as much as possible. Open categories should be considered the most flexible to move between split courses.
  4. Course designations (XYZ, 123, LMS) may be made by the meet organizers, to best identify the courses for their event situation. The most common designation is “X” for the longer or predominantly male course, and “Y” for the shorter or predominantly female course.

Recommended Class Groupings

Except for very unusual situations, the following class groupings are suggested, based on experience with balancing the stated considerations, which do not completely coincide.

  1. Red course:
    1. M-20, M35+, M40+, M45+ (longer by ~5%)
    2. F-21+, M-Red
  2. Green course: (This split is strongly recommended)
    1. M-18, M50+, M55+, M60+, M-Green (longer by ~20%)
    2. F-20, F35+, F40+, F45+, F50+, F-Green
  3. Brown course:
    1. F-18, F55+, F60+, F65+, M65+, M70+, M75+ (longer by ~25%)
    2. F70+, F75+, F80+, F85+, F90+, M80+, M85+, M90+, F-Brown, M-Brown

A.40 Appendix – Orienteering USA Championship Award Guidelines

Orienteering USA provides Championship Awards for all Championship Events according to the following schedule. The table below lists the maximum number of awards that a championship should need. Event organizers should coordinate with the Chair of the Orienteering USA Competition Awards Committee to obtain the awards in a timely manner. Excess awards are to be returned to Orienteering USA for use at future Championships.

ClassesGoldSilverBronzeTotal

Individual Championships using the standard Orienteering Course/Class Structure:
Sprint, Middle, Long, Two-Day Classic, Ultra Long, Night
38 classes, from -10 to 90+383838114 each competition

Relay Championships
Three categories – four per team12121236

Intercollegiate Championships
Four Individual classes (JVF, JVM, VF, VM)444 
Three Team classes – five per team  (School JV, School Varsity, Club Varsity)15151557

Interscholastic Championships
Eight Individual classes (PF, PM, IF, IM, JVF, JVM, VF, VM)888 
Six Team classes – five per team  (School Inter, School JV, School Varsity, Club Inter, Club JV, Club Varsity)303030114 U.S. Awards
Four JROTC Individual classes (JVF, JVM, VF, VM)444 
Two JROTC Team classes – five per team (JV, Varsity)10101042 JROTC Awards
Five Traveling Trophies (School Intermediate, School JV, School Varsity, JROTC JV, JROTC Varsity)

Rogaine Championships
12 Age/Gender Subcategories – varying team size from two to five (JrM, JrW, JrX, OM, OW, OX, VM, VW, VM, SVM, SVW, SVX)24 to 6024 to 6024 to 6072 to 180

Ski Orienteering Individual Championships
Sprint, Middle, Long
10 classes, from -16 to 55+10101030 each competition

Trail Orienteering Championships
2 classes (Paralympic, Open)2226

A.41 Appendix – Sanctioning Fee Schedule

Sanctioning fees are due to Orienteering USA for each sanctioned race for each competitor entered in a competitive class. Multiple races on the same day as part of a single competition (e.g. a sprint course competition that has a qualifier and a final) are considered as one race for fee purposes if this was agreed during sanctioning. All entries are counted unless the entry fees were refunded.

An additional non-member surcharge is due for each sanctioned race for each competitor entered in a competitive class who is NOT a regular member of Orienteering USA, or any other IOF Federation.

Non-sanctioned races and/or non-competitive classes occurring in conjunction with a sanctioned event do not owe sanctioning fees, but should be considered as standard starts when counting starts for club charter fees.

Fees due for:AdultsJuniors
(under age 21)
Championship races (USOF Bid Events and IOF Events ), per entry$5.00$2.50
Other Sanctioned races, per entry$4.00$2.00
Additional non-member surcharge, per non-Federation entry$4.00$2.00

A Fee Computation Form can be found on the Orienteering USA website.

A.42 Appendix – Foot Orienteering Change History

  • 2013.08.01 — Change in membership requirements from “member” to “regular member” in accordance with bylaws change (AGM 7/27/2013; BOD 7/27/2013)
  • 2014.01.01  — Added rule prohibiting competitors from bringing animals with them on the course. (BOD 10/19/2013)
  • 2014.01.01 — Changed map scale rules for Long and Ultra-Long to require 1:15,000 for M/F-21+ unless Sanctioning Committee approves otherwise. (BOD 10/19/2013)
  • 2014.01.01 — Changed National Orienteering Day to National Orienteering Week

B. Rules for Rogaine Events  

B.1 Application and Enforcement of the Rules

B.1.1 Rogaine events sanctioned by Orienteering USA shall be organized in accordance with the rules in this section.

B.1.2 These rules shall be binding on all organizers, competitors, team officials and other persons connected with the organization or in contact with the competitors. The Orienteering USA Rogaine Committee shall supervise the application of the rules. The Orienteering USA Rules Committee shall interpret the rules and any questions should be so addressed.

B.1.3 Event organizers, competitors and team officials shall know these rules and the event instructions. Ignorance of the rules shall not be accepted as a valid excuse for any infringement.

B.1.4 These rules are based on the International Rogaining Federation (IRF) Rules for Rogaining, which apply to National Championships and World Rogaine Championships.

B.2 Definitions

B.2.1 Rogaine events are conducted as long distance cross-country navigation for teams traveling on foot. The object is to score points by finding checkpoints located in the Rogaine area within a specified time. Checkpoints may be visited in any order.

B.2.2 Rogaine-type events are also sometimes organized with competition on skis, bicycles, etc., or even in urban areas where public transport might be permitted. Such events work well with the same rule structure.

B.2.3 An Event is a set of races and their attendant festivities and organizational aspects.

B.2.4 The term A-meet is restricted to events which include races sanctioned by Orienteering USA.

B.2.5 A Race is a single event component which consists of competitors starting and finishing a course.

B.2.6 A Competition is one or more races which are used together as the basis for making awards.

B.2.7 The term Championship in this section of the rules refers only to the United States Rogaine Championships.

B.2.8 A Bid Event is the Championship competition listed above or any event requiring IRF Sanctioning. The Orienteering USA Rogaine Committee first sanctions these events and then the Orienteering USA Board of Directors awards the bid.

B.3 Sanctioning 

B.3.1 Applications to hold Orienteering USA sanctioned Rogaine events shall be made directly to the Orienteering USA Rogaine Committee Chair using the standard Application for Orienteering USA "A" Meet Sanctioning. Applications shall be submitted no later than eight weeks prior to the event.

B.3.2 The hosting group must be a Regular Orienteering Club as defined in the Bylaws of the United States Orienteering Federation or must enter into the Orienteering USA Sanctioning Agreement (Third-party sanctioning contract).

B.3.3 The host shall pay the necessary sanctioning fees within four weeks of the closing of the event.

B.3.4 Within two weeks of receiving the application the Rogaine Committee shall respond to the Meet Director. When the Rogaine Committee determines that the applying organization can successfully host a sanctioned event it shall sanction the meet.

B.3.5 If the host requests exceptions to these rules, or if after sanctioning is received the host does not follow these rules and the procedures of the Rogaine Committee, then the Rogaine Committee may deny or remove sanctioning, or in extenuating circumstances authorize exceptions to these rules or Rogaine Committee procedures.

B.3.6 When the Rogaine Committee authorizes an exception to these rules these exceptions shall be clearly stated in the Invitation. In addition the Chair of the Rogaine Committee shall notify the Orienteering USA Executive Committee and the Chair of the Rules Committee as to the exceptions that were authorized.

B.3.7 Decisions of the Rogaine Committee may be appealed to the Executive Committee of Orienteering USA by sending a letter stating the reasons for the appeal to the President of Orienteering USA and a copy to the Chair of the Rogaine Committee.

B.4 Key Personnel

B.4.1 The Meet Director is appointed by the host and listed on the sanctioning application and is responsible for overseeing all aspects of the event. The Meet Director shall insure that all the officials and assistants know and abide by these rules. The Meet Director shall obtain all necessary permission from landowners, and forestry, state, and other pertinent officials and should aim for a good relationship with other users of the event site and site officials.

B.4.2 The Course Setter is appointed by the host and listed on the sanctioning application and is responsible for designing and overseeing the setting of all courses.

B.4.3 The Course Vetter is appointed by the host and listed on the sanctioning application and is responsible for checking all aspects of the course setting.

B.4.4 The Meet Registrar is appointed by the host and listed on the sanctioning application and is responsible for handling the entries for the event.

B.4.5 The Map Coordinator is appointed by the host and listed on the sanctioning application and is responsible for insuring the accuracy, appropriateness, and proper formatting of the maps used for competition.

B.4.6 The five positions listed above shall be covered by no fewer than three different people (Course Setter, Course Vetter, and one other key staff member).

B.4.7 Questions about organizing a Rogaine shall be directed to the Orienteering USA Rogaining Committee.

B.4.8 The organizers shall at all times be guided by a sense of fair play.

B.5 Reports and Fees

B.5.1 Within one week the official results shall be sent to the Rogaine Committee and made publicly available.

B.5.2 Within four weeks sanctioning fees shall be remitted to Orienteering USA for each sanctioned race for each competitor entered in a competitive class. A fee computation form shall be provided by Orienteering USA.

B.5.3 Sanctioning fees are set by the Orienteering USA Board of Directors and are shown in Appendix A.41.

B.6 Secrecy and Embargo

 B.6.1 All those who are involved with the organizing of the event shall maintain the strictest secrecy regarding aspects of the venue, terrain and courses not officially publicized.

B.6.2 Team officials and spectators shall not influence the competition, and shall remain in the areas that are assigned to them.

B.6.3 No member of a team shall have been involved with the organization of the Rogaine so as to have a prior familiarity with the Rogaine course, fieldwork or map.

B.7 Event Announcements

B.7.1 Preliminary Information shall be publicly available within two weeks of sanctioning. Details can be found in the Orienteering USA Sanctioning Guidelines.

B.7.2 An Event Invitation including all details necessary for event registration shall be publicly available at least three months before the event. Details can be found in the Orienteering USA Sanctioning Guidelines.

B.7.3 Event Information that a competitor will need prior to traveling to the event shall be published at least one week before the event. Details can be found in the Orienteering USA Sanctioning Guidelines.

B.7.4 Additional event information shall be provided to the competitor upon check-in at the event. At a minimum, any information that was not published by one week prior to the event shall be provided to each competitor in hardcopy format at the event.

B.7.5 All information required by this section shall be published on a publicly accessible website in a standard format readable by commonly used free software.

B.7.6 All information shall be available at least in English.

B.7.7 The host shall honor all published information unless extenuating circumstances necessitate a change.

B.7.8 In extenuating circumstances information may be supplied orally at the event.

B.8 Orienteering USA Calendar

B.8.1 The Sanctioning Committee shall maintain the Orienteering USA Orienteering Event Calendar and Event Planning Calendar.

B.8.2 The Rogaine Committee shall communicate with the maintainer of the calendar to place Rogaine events on the Calendar.

B.9 Class Structure  

B.9.1 There is no class structure for Rogaine competition, only categories of teams. Teams are divided into categories of Men, Women, and Mixed for purposes of awards. Within each category, there is a division by age (on the first day of the event) into 4 subcategories.

  1. Junior. All members of team 18 years of age or less.
  2. Open. No age restrictions
  3. Veteran. All members of team 40 years of age or greater.
  4. Superveteran. All members of team 55 years of age or greater.

B.9.2 Some teams may fall into multiple age categories. In this case the team is eligible for awards in all categories in which they meet the criteria. It is normal to give awards to the first three places in all categories, but a single physical award may be used for a team that has achieved awards in multiple categories.

B.9.3 The number of categories may be condensed (e.g. no Superveteran class).

B.9.3.1 U.S. Champions shall be declared in all Team Categories represented at U.S. Rogaine Championships.

Rogaine Team Categories

MenWomenMixed
JuniorJuniorJunior
OpenOpenOpen
VeteranVeteranVeteran
SuperveteranSuperveteranSuperveteran

B.10 Eligibility 

B.10.1 General Eligibility

B.10.1.1 Any person desiring to compete is eligible except as set forth below or in special cases designated by the Executive Committee.

B.10.1.2 Participation is open to all persons whether or not they are eligible for placings, provided that those not eligible for placings do not interfere with or disqualify eligible competitors. All other rules must be followed.

B.10.2 Championship Eligibility

B.10.2.1 To be eligible for Championship Awards at the U.S. Rogaine Championships every member of the team must be a regular member of Orienteering USA.

B.10.2.2 No member of the team may compete in the same calendar year for the same category of championship in any other national championships.

B.11 Entries

B.11.1 A team shall consist of two, three, four or five members.

B.11.2 A team that has a member less than fourteen years of age shall also have a member eighteen years of age or over.

B.11.3 Competition placing may be awarded in several categories based on the age and gender composition of teams. Each team shall be deemed to be entered for all categories of the competition for which it is eligible.

B.12 Maps 

B.12.1 Maps for a Rogaine may be specifically produced for the event, or may be modifications of an existing (typically USGS) map with the addition of magnetic north lines, possibly additions to reflect changes in trails, roads, out-of-bounds areas, etc.

B.12.2 Usually the scale of map should be between 1:24,000 and 1:63,360. Map scale shall be announced to competitors well in advance of the event, preferably on the publicity announcements.

B.12.3 The mapped area needed for a 24-hour Rogaine is typically 150 square kilometers or greater, with an optimal route choice requiring somewhat over 100 km to reach all control locations. The actual area of terrain in use might be somewhat smaller, but it is undesirable for safety reasons to place controls right at the edge of the mapped area, as going off map may be harder for recovery than in a shorter orienteering event.

B.12.4 The map determines the suitability of control sites—the topographic information is usually much less detailed than on an orienteering map, and the control sites are necessarily placed on coarser features.

B.13 Courses 

B.13.1 A Rogaine is traditionally 24-hour duration. For other events, shorter or potentially longer durations would be acceptable. It is common in the U.S. to concurrently run two or more different duration events on the same course.

B.13.2 The U.S. Rogaine Championships shall be of the traditional 24-hour duration.

B.13.3 It is usual to have approximately 50 to 60 control locations for a 24-hour rogaine. Explanations for substantially larger or smaller numbers of controls should accompany a sanctioning request.

B.13.4 It is worthwhile to review the rather detailed suggestions for organizing a Rogaine on the International Rogaining Federation web site http://www.rogaining.com/ .

B.14 Control Set-up  

B.14.1 Orienteering control markers are normally used to mark checkpoints. These shall be supplemented with a sign-in sheet at which all teams must indicate their arrival time and intended next checkpoint as in accord with rule B.23.2.

B.14.2 In addition, it is usual in the U.S. to provide some form of reflective marking at night (often a small PVC tube wrapped with reflective tape hung on the string for suspending the control flag, or small patches of reflective tape on the faces of the control markers), so that the range of visibility of the control flag is extended to a level similar to the daytime situation. This may not be necessary in low-vegetation parts of the country.

B.14.3 Markers are to be hung near eye level if possible, with visibility both day and night in most directions of possible approach.

B.14.4 A Control Flag shall mark each control location. The control flag consists of three squares arranged in triangular form. Each square is a 30cm X 30cm and is divided diagonally, one half being white and the other half orange (ideally PMS 165). At least two of the white triangles shall be adjacent to the upper edge of the control flag. (Additional color of blue stripe 2.54 to 5.08 cm wide, centered, vertically or along the diagonal divide is allowed.)

B.14.5 Every control flag shall have a code card and marking device/s associated with it. The relative arrangement of the control flag, control code, and marking devices shall be the same for all the control locations on a course.

B.14.6 The control flag shall be hung at the feature indicated on the map.

B.14.7 A Control Code shall identify each control location. The same code shall be included on the map. The figures shall be black on white; approximately 3-10cm high with a line width of approximately 5-10mm. Ideally the competitor shall only be able to read the codes when immediately at the control flag.

B.14.8 There shall not be other confusing figures or marks on the control flag.

B.14.9 It is recommended that numbers or letters that can improperly be read upside down not be used (i.e. 86 - 98). If, however, they are used they shall have a line drawn beneath them to indicate the proper stance.

B.14.10 Every control shall have control card marking device/s. If only manual punching is used, then only a manual punching device is required. If electronic punching is used, then both a manual and electronic punching device shall be provided.

B.14.11 To minimize competitors waiting for a marker there shall be an ample number of marking devices at each control location. This is particularly important at the early controls when a mass start is used.

B.15 Refreshments 

B.15.1 It is usual to provide drinking water at several selected controls in the Rogaine. If there are reliable sources of water (spring, lake or stream) naturally occurring at many places on the course which could be safely made drinkable with iodine or ultra filtration treatment these could be substituted. It shall be noted in the sanctioning request and all advance publicity about the event what approach will be taken towards the provision of water.

B.15.2 It is obligatory for the organizers of the event to provide food at the administrative headquarters for a stated period during the event. The food service should be continuous, and might typically last from 4 hours after the start until 1 hour after the finish. It is also standard for there to be camping facilities for the competitors also available at the event headquarters (for a 24-hour event).

B.16 Administration Areas

B.16.1 Whenever a team visits an administration area, all team members are required to report together to the organizers and surrender their team's scorecard. The team shall only collect its scorecard immediately prior to leaving that administration area.

B.16.2 A team shall finish by all of the members reporting together to the designated finish administration area and surrendering their scorecard.

B.16.3 If a competitor wishes to withdraw from a team for any reason the entire team shall return to an administration area and notify the organizers. The original team shall be deemed to have finished the event. If a new team is formed it may be admitted to the competition at the discretion of the organizers but no points shall be credited for checkpoints already visited.

B.17 Start

B.17.1 It is normal to have a period of planning time after issuance of the maps before competitors are allowed on the course, and this time is not counted in the duration of the event. A typical time allowance is two hours for a 24-hour event. This time should be stated in the meet announcement.

B.18 Scoring

B.18.1 The event shall end at precisely the set number of hours after the actual starting time, both times as defined by the organizers' clock.

B.18.2 Teams finishing late shall be penalized at the rate per minute or part thereof specified in advance by the organizers.

B.18.3 Teams finishing more than thirty minutes late shall be deemed ineligible for a placing and their result shall be recorded as overtime (OVT).

B.18.4 A team score shall be the value of the checkpoints visited and correctly verified in accordance with these rules, less any penalties. The team with the greatest score or in the event of a tie the team that finished earlier shall be awarded the higher placing.

B.18.5 The most common scoring schemes use the number used as the control code of the checkpoint to give the score value for the control. Typically, the checkpoint value is the value of the control code rounded down to the next lower multiple of 10 (e.g. control 67 is worth 60 points), or else is exactly the value of the control code number. Points are deducted for being overtime. The most common deduction scheme is 10 points per minute late. Other schemes might be acceptable, but should be explicitly discussed and explained at the time of a sanctioning request. Other scoring methods could be submitted to the sanctioning committee for consideration, but different schemes tried in the past have generally met with competitor dissatisfaction.

B.18.6 In the event of a checkpoint being damaged or deemed misplaced or missing by the organizers, teams shall be awarded the checkpoint score:

  1. If the punch is missing or damaged but the team has a correct record on the intention sheet.
  2. If the punch is missing and there is no intention sheet, but the team can satisfy the organizers that they visited the correct site.
  3. If a checkpoint is missing or misplaced but the team can satisfy the organizers that they visited the correct site.
  4. For a correctly recorded visit to a misplaced checkpoint.

B.19 Awards

B.19.1 Awards shall be given to the first three places in all categories, but a single physical award may be used for a team which has achieved awards in multiple categories.

B.19.2 The top three teams at the U.S. Rogaine Championships in each category who are eligible for Championship titles receive a U.S. Championship award, regardless of overall place. Championship awards shall be provided to the event organizer by Orienteering USA. See Appendix A.40, U.S. Orienteering Championship Award Guidelines

B.20 Penalties and Protests

B.20.1 The penalty for breaching these rules is disqualification except for rules B.23.2 and B.23.4 for which the penalty is the loss of points for the checkpoint under consideration. Any team disqualified under this rule shall be recorded as disqualified (DSQ).

B.20.2 A team that breached any rule for any reason may voluntarily withdraw by advising the organizers immediately upon finishing. The team shall be recorded as withdrawn (W/D).

B.20.3 Within forty-five minutes of finishing, a team may report in writing to the organizers about any team thought to have breached these rules, or may protest in writing to the organizers about any actions of the organizers that they consider made the competition unfair. Protests shall be ruled on by a protest committee formed by the organizers.

B.20.4 A team that is not satisfied with any decision of the organizer’s protest committee may appeal in writing to the Orienteering USA Grievance Committee within seven days of the publication of the official results. This committee shall have the power to overrule the organizers and to amend the results accordingly. Appeal of the Grievance Committee's decision may be made to the Orienteering USA Board of Directors.

B.21 Respect for Land and Property

Unless stated specifically by the organizers, the following shall apply:

B.21.1 Competitors shall not cross newly sown ground, growing crops or any area deemed out-of-bounds by the organizers, without specific permission by the organizers.

B.21.2 Competitors shall keep a reasonable distance from dwellings and stock with young.

B.21.3 Competitors shall take due care when crossing fences, crossing at corner posts, solid posts or between wires wherever possible. Each team shall leave gates in the same state as they were found.

B.21.4 Competitors shall carry out or discard litter in appropriate containers.

B.21.5 Competitors shall not light fires on the course. Fires may be lit in the administration areas if expressly allowed by the organizers.

B.21.6 Competitors shall not smoke on the course.

B.21.7 Competitors shall not unduly damage or disturb native flora or fauna.

B.21.8 Dogs, firearms, and weapons of any kind are prohibited.

B.22 Competitor Conduct

B.22.1 Competitors shall not enter the course, after obtaining map and checkpoint information, until the official start is signaled.

B.22.2 The only navigational aids that may be carried on the course are magnetic compasses, watches and copies of the competition map. The possession of other navigational aids, including pedometers, altimeters and GPS receivers on the course is prohibited, except that at the organizer’s discretion, tracking GPS devices may be used if they have no display and/or they are sealed to prevent viewing.

B.22.3 Cell phones may be carried for safety purposes only, and may not be used on the course unless there is an emergency. The organizers may decide to seal these phones, if carried.

B.22.4 The use of relevant maps other than those expressly sanctioned by the organizers is prohibited.

B.22.5 Computers may not be used by competitors for planning their strategy.

B.22.6 Competitors shall travel only on foot unless otherwise specified by the organizers.

B.22.7 Members of a team shall remain within unaided verbal contact of one another at all times while on the course. A team shall demonstrate compliance with this requirement to any event official or other team on request.

B.22.8 A team shall surrender its score card to any event official, and shall advise their team number to any event official or other team, on request.

B.22.9 A team shall not accept assistance from, nor collaborate with, other people, nor deliberately follow another team.

B.22.10 No food or equipment shall be left on the course before the event for a team's use, and any food or equipment cached on the course by the team during the event must be brought back by the team with them to the finish.

B.22.11 Each competitor shall carry a whistle at all times on the course.

B.23 Checkpoints

B.23.1 All team members shall simultaneously approach to within 20 meters, and within sight, of each checkpoint for which points are claimed. If epunch is used, the organizers may require that each team member record their punch within a short time period.

B.23.2 In order to gain points for a checkpoint teams must punch the scorecard provided by the organizers correctly with the punch at the checkpoint marker and fill in any intention sheet at the checkpoint with the time of arrival, the team number and the number of the checkpoint that they intend to visit next. If a team punches incorrectly, they must notify the organizers of the details of this immediately upon returning to the administration area to be eligible to be credited with that checkpoint.

B.23.3 In the event of the scorecard being lost, a team may record punch marks on any single sheet. The organizers shall accept this so long as the punch marks are discernible, and the team can identify to the organizers the checkpoint number for each of the punch marks.

B.23.4 Competitors shall not deliberately rest within one hundred meters of a checkpoint unless the checkpoint is also a water drop.

B.23.5 Competitors shall not adversely interfere with a checkpoint, water drop or any other facility.

B.24 Safety

B.24.1 In an emergency the distress signal is three short blasts of the whistle repeated at intervals.

B.24.2 In the event of an emergency, a team shall give any assistance asked for. In such a case the assisting team shall not be penalized for any rules broken in the course of giving assistance.

B.25 Appendix – Rogaine Change History

  • 2013.08.01 — Change in membership requirements from “member” to “regular member” in accordance with bylaws change (AGM 7/27/2013; BOD 7/27/2013)

C. Rules for Ski Orienteering Events

C.1 Application and Enforcement of the Rules  

C.1.1 Ski Orienteering Competitions and events sanctioned by Orienteering USA shall be organized in accordance with these rules.

C.1.2 Rules for Foot Orienteering from section A may be applied to Ski Orienteering if not addressed in this section.

C.1.3 These rules shall be binding on all organizers, competitors, team officials and other persons connected with the organization or in contact with the competitors. The Orienteering USA Ski Orienteering Committee shall supervise the application of the rules. The Orienteering USA Rules Committee shall interpret the rules and any questions should be so addressed.

C.1.4 Event organizers, competitors and team officials shall know these rules and the event instructions. Ignorance of the rules shall not be accepted as a valid excuse for any infringement.

C.1.5 These rules take precedence over the Competition Rules for International Orienteering Federation (IOF) Ski Orienteering Events except for:

  1. a. IOF sanctioned events hosted in the United States
    b. International events when so agreed by the participating nations

C.2 Definitions

C.2.1 Orienteering is a sport in which the competitors navigate independently through the terrain. Competitors must visit a number of control points marked on the ground aided only by map and compass.

C.2.2 In Ski Orienteering the competitors shall travel on skis. The competitors may travel on foot, but must transport their own skiing equipment at all times.

C.2.3 An Event is a set of races and their attendant festivities and organizational aspects.

C.2.4 The term A-meet is restricted to events that include races sanctioned by Orienteering USA.

C.2.5 A Race is a single event component that consists of competitors starting and finishing a course.

C.2.6 A Competition is one or more races that are used together as the basis for making awards.

C.2.7 U.S Ski Orienteering Championships are held every two years in years when there is not a World Ski Orienteering Championships. The term Championship in this section of this document refers only to the following events.

  1. United States Sprint Ski Orienteering Championships
  2. United States Middle Ski Orienteering Championships
  3. United States Long Ski Orienteering Championships

C.2.8 A Bid Event is any of the Championship competitions listed above or any event requiring IOF Sanctioning. The Orienteering USA Ski Orienteering Committee first sanctions these events and then the Orienteering USA Board of Directors awards the bid.

C.3 Classification of Competitions

C.3.1 In an Individual competition each participant competes independently, and the results are based on each individual's performance.

C.3.2 In a Team competition each participant competes independently and the team result is based on some combination of individual results (times or place numbers or points based thereon). There shall be individual results as well.

C.3.3 In a Multi-race competition a competitor's results (times or place numbers or points based thereon) from at least half of the competition races shall be combined. If the sum of the times for every competition day shall not be used the organizer shall describe in the Invitation the precise procedures which will be used for the event.

C.3.4 A Relay competition has two or more runners who run in sequence. Each runner completes his/her course independently.

C.4 Sanctioning

C.4.1 Applications to hold Orienteering USA sanctioned Ski Orienteering events shall be made directly to the Orienteering USA Ski Orienteering Committee Chair using the standard Application for Orienteering USA "A" Meet Sanctioning.

C.4.2 Application for sanctioning shall be made by November 1st prior to the event.

C.4.3 The hosting group must be a Regular Orienteering Club as defined in the Bylaws of the United States Orienteering Federation or must enter into the Orienteering USA Sanctioning Agreement (Third-party sanctioning contract).

C.4.4 The host shall pay the necessary sanctioning fees within four weeks of the closing of the event.

C.4.5 The Ski Orienteering Committee shall respond to the Meet Director by November 15th prior to the event. When the Ski Orienteering Committee determines that the applying organization can successfully host a sanctioned event it shall sanction the event.

C.4.6 If the Ski Orienteering Committee authorizes an exception to these rules these exceptions shall be clearly stated in the Invitation. In addition the Chair of the Ski Orienteering Committee shall notify the Orienteering USA Executive Committee and the Chair of the Rules Committee as to the exceptions that were authorized.

C.5 Key Personnel

C.5.1 The Meet Director is appointed by the host and listed on the sanctioning application and is responsible for overseeing all aspects of the event. The Meet Director shall insure that all the officials and assistants know and abide by these rules. The Meet Director shall obtain all necessary permission from landowners, and forestry, state, and other pertinent officials and should aim for a good relationship with other users of the event site and site officials.

C.5.2 The Course Setter is appointed by the host and listed on the sanctioning application and is responsible for designing and overseeing the setting of all courses.

C.5.3 The Course Vetter is appointed by the host and listed on the sanctioning application and is responsible for checking all aspects of the course setting, including:

  1. Insuring that the map follows ISSkiOM Standards.
  2. Checking the quality of the map in relation to the specific courses and control locations.
  3. Assisting with map printing and any overprinting which may be required.
  4. Checking the correct position of the start, map issue point, control flags and finish location.
  5. Checking the correct codes on the control flags against the codes on the map, and the location and visibility of the marking equipment (i.e. punches).
  6. Making sure that the control locations are appropriate.
  7. Making sure that the courses and other information pre-printed on the maps are properly drawn.

C.5.4 The Meet Registrar is appointed by the host and listed on the sanctioning application and is responsible for handling the entries for the event.

C.5.5 The Map Coordinator is appointed by the host and listed on the sanctioning application and is responsible for insuring the accuracy, appropriateness, and proper formatting of the maps used for competition in accordance with ISSkiOM.

C.5.6 The five positions listed above shall be covered by no fewer than three different people (Course Setter, Course Vetter, and one other key staff member).

C.5.7 The Event Consultant and Course Consultant are appointed by the host and approved by the Ski Orienteering Committee.

C.5.8 The Ski Orienteering Committee is ready to assist prospective Meet Directors in any way possible in organizing Ski Orienteering events. Meet Directors are encouraged to contact the committee at an early stage of their planning process to make sure that the courses will be proper for their level and consistent with these rules.

C.6 Reports and Fees

C.6.1 Within one week the official results shall be sent to the Ski Orienteering Committee and made publicly available. The Ski Orienteering committee shall also be sent a copy of each competitive course.

C.6.2 Within four weeks sanctioning fees shall be remitted to Orienteering USA for each sanctioned race for each competitor entered in a competitive class. A fee computation form shall be provided by Orienteering USA.

C.6.3 Sanctioning fees are set by the Orienteering USA Board of Directors and are shown in Appendix A.41.

C.7 Secrecy and Embargo

C.7.1 All those who are involved with the organizing of the event shall maintain the strictest secrecy regarding aspects of the venue, terrain and courses not officially publicized.

C.7.2 Team officials and spectators shall not influence the competition, and shall remain in the areas that are assigned to them.

C.7.3 The organizers shall ensure that unauthorized people stay out of areas where they would interfere with the competition.

C.7.4 When a sanctioned event is placed on the Orienteering USA Event or Planning Calendar, and secondary trails are packed or controls are set out, the area is closed to orienteering competitions and training for any purpose prior to the event for individuals or groups wishing to retain competition eligibility. An individual who skis at the venue during this period of time as a participant in a sanctioned (by a ski organization or educational institution) cross-country ski race shall not lose eligibility for the upcoming ski-orienteering competition as long as such activity is limited to the official race course.

C.8 Event Announcements

C.8.1 Preliminary Information shall be publicly available within two weeks of sanctioning. Details can be found in the Orienteering USA Sanctioning Guidelines.

C.8.2 An Event Invitation including all details necessary for event registration shall be publicly available at least three months before the event. Details can be found in the Orienteering USA Sanctioning Guidelines.

C.8.3 Courses and course lengths shall be published with the invitation or as soon thereafter as they are known.

C.8.4 Event Information that a competitor will need prior to traveling to the event shall be published at least one week before the event. Details can be found in the Orienteering USA Sanctioning Guidelines.

C.8.4.1 Event Information should describe the trail network by listing approximate percentages of each type of skiable track as described in the ISSkiOM (symbols 801-805 – Very Wide Track, Wide Track, Track, Track-slow, Road covered with snow).

C.8.5 Additional event information shall be provided to the competitor upon check-in at the event. At a minimum, any information that was not published by one week prior to the event shall be provided to each competitor in hardcopy format at the event.

C.8.6 All information required by this section shall be published on a publicly accessible website in a standard format readable by commonly used free software.

C.8.7 All information shall be available at least in English.

C.8.8 The host shall honor all published information unless extenuating circumstances necessitate a change.

C.8.9 In extenuating circumstances information may be supplied orally at the event.

C.9 Orienteering USA Calendar

C.9.1 The Sanctioning Committee shall maintain the Orienteering USA Orienteering Event Calendar and Event Planning Calendar.

C.9.2 The Ski Orienteering Committee shall communicate with the maintainer of the calendar to place Ski Orienteering events on the Calendar.

C.10 Classes

C.10.1 Competitive Classes

C.10.1.1 Individual competitors are divided into classes by gender (M for male, and F for female), and age as of December 31 of the current year.

C.10.1.2 Women shall be allowed to enter age appropriate male classes.

C.10.2 Orienteering USA Standard Ski Orienteering Course/Class Structure

C.10.2.1 The following Orienteering USA Standard Course/Class structure is the minimum that a sanctioned Ski Orienteering event must offer.

C.10.2.2 A class may be combined with another if it has fewer than three competitors.

C.10.2.3 U.S. Champions shall be declared in all age classes represented at U.S. Ski Orienteering Championships. Open color classes are not Championship classes.

C.10.2.4 In a U.S. Ski Orienteering Championship event, at the discretion of the host, the M40+ class may be held on the Blue course and the F40+ class may be held on the Red course. This would be appropriate when the elite courses are not too long, when the difficulty of the terrain is not excessive, and when the longer courses would offer greater navigating challenges.

Ski Orienteering Individual Championship Classes

WhiteOrangeRedBlue
 F-16F-19+M-19+
 F-18M-16 
 F40+M-18 
 F55+M40+ 
  M55+ 
Non-Championship Competitive Classes
F WhiteF OrangeM Red 
M WhiteM Orange  
Age class ranges are indicated by a "-" and/or a "+". A "-" before the age means "and younger", the "+" after the age means "and older". Gender classes contain M for male and F for female. Classes containing the course color are open to any age.

C.11 Eligibility

C.11.1 General Eligibility

C.11.1.1 Any person desiring to compete is eligible except as set forth below or in special cases designated by the Executive Committee.

C.11.1.2 Persons with prior knowledge of the competition area that they or the meet organizers believe will give them unfair advantage are not eligible to compete for awards, titles, or national rankings. In the event of a protest, the matter shall be decided by the Jury.

C.11.1.3 Persons not eligible for awards, titles or national rankings may participate.

C.11.2 Championship Eligibility

C.11.2.1 The title of U.S. Orienteering Champion in any class as determined at an officially designated U.S. Orienteering Championship Event shall be limited to any person who meets both of the following criteria:

  1. Is a regular member in good standing of Orienteering USA
  2. Is either a citizen or lawful permanent resident of the United States of America

C.11.2.2 Requests for clarifications based on eligibility criteria may be submitted to the Orienteering USA Office in writing 30 days prior to a championship/s.

C.11.2.3 Eligibility rulings shall be made by vote of the Orienteering USA Executive Committee. Requests for eligibility rulings received by the Orienteering USA Office at least 30 days in advance of an event registration deadline shall be ruled upon prior to the entry deadline.

C.12 Entries

C.12.1 Competitors shall submit entries as specified in the Invitation.

C.12.2 The entry fee shall be paid as specified in the Invitation.

C.12.3 No competitor shall be entered in more than one class for any race.

C.13 Training

C.13.1 Bid Events shall offer training areas for the competitors. The terrain, map, course and control descriptions should be as similar as possible to the competition area.

C.13.2 If possible, the organizer shall put on a model event to demonstrate the terrain type, map quality, different types of tracks, control set-up, refreshment points and marked routes.

C.13.3 The organizer may charge a reasonable fee for maps and training.

C.14 Terrain

C.14.1 Ski Orienteering competitions shall primarily be held in terrain unknown to the competitors. In the terrain there shall be several route choice options following tracks when possible.

C.15 Maps

C.15.1 Symbols shall conform to the International Specification for Ski Orienteering Maps (ISSkiOM). Deviant or additional symbols necessary because of local conditions are permissible, but they shall be published beforehand in the Event Information.

C.15.2 Maps shall be in color.

C.15.3 Map scale can be in the range of 1:4,000 to 1:15,000. It is recommended that the scale of sprint race be from 1:4,000 to 1:5,000.

C.15.4 Contour intervals can be from 2.5 meters to 10 meters.

C.15.5 Course markings on the map shall follow the ISSkiOM.

C.15.6 For Ski Orienteering the marker control number is printed on the map, next to each circle designating a control or in a table on the map. No description sheet is required.

C.15.7 Mandatory one-way travel on some or all ski tracks should be indicated on the map with directional arrows on or beside the track(s) affected.

C.15.8 When the competition map has been previously used in a competition, or otherwise made available to potential competitors, it shall be posted in the competition center and shall be sold at a reasonable and customary price prior to and at the event.

C.15.9 When the competition map has not previously been used or otherwise made available, and an earlier map of the terrain exists, the earlier map shall be posted in the competition center and, if possible, sold at a reasonable and customary price prior to and at the event.

C.15.10 On the day of the competition, the use of any map of the competition area by competitors is prohibited unless permitted by the organizers.

C.15.11 Competitors who cannot properly see the color used to mark their maps may have their courses redrawn in a color they can properly see by making their request to an event official. If necessary, the competitor shall be given a new start time after the redrawn map is available.

C.15.12 Additional Overprinting for Denoting Passability

C.15.12.1 All skiing tracks shall be indicated on the map. Other features which represent skiable routes (such as roads and paths) are assumed to be passable if not indicated otherwise on the map or in Event Information.

C.15.12.2 To indicate passability, skiable tracks and trails should be printed on the competition map in green in accordance with ISSkiOM.

C.15.12.3 When tracks and trails are not overprinted in green, all skiable tracks and trails shall be printed on the map. Trails on the map that are not skiable should be marked with a series of purple or green perpendicular slashes through the trails. Trails or roads that are sanded should be marked with a series of purple or green V's.

C.15.12.4 All passability symbols, whether consistent with or varying from the symbols above, should be announced in Event Information.

C.16 Courses

C.16.1 The IOF Principles for Course Planning (Appendix 5 of Ski Orienteering Rules) should be referenced as guidance for setting the courses.

C.16.2 Off-trail travel is permitted in Ski Orienteering. For reasons of safety and fairness, the possibility of off-trail travel should be described in the Event Information.

C.16.3 Since a snowfall may obliterate indistinct connecting trails that are indicated on the map, colored ribbons may be placed at these places to aid the competitors. The use of such ribbons (including color used) should be described in Event Information.

C.16.4 Course Length and Climb

C.16.4.1 Course measurements should be given in two ways:

  1. As the length of a straight line from the start via the controls to the finish deviating for, and only for, physically impassable obstructions (high fences, impassable cliffs, etc.), prohibited areas, and marked routes.
  2. Following the shortest sensible route choice from start via the controls to the finish.

C.16.4.2 The total climb shall be given as the climb in meters along the shortest sensible route.

C.16.4.3 The total climb of a course should not exceed 6% of the length of the shortest sensible route choice.

C.16.4.4 The expected winning time for a top U.S. Ski Orienteer shall be decisive in determining course lengths. For all formats it is desirable to design the best course possible within the given time range, rather than striving for the exact middle of the time range.

C.17 Sprint

C.17.1 EMPHASIS: The event and course highlight precise and smooth navigation on dense track systems, high-speed map reading, high-speed skiing on ski orienteering tracks, and route choices. The course should have an even mix of longer route choice legs and short legs in a very dense track system.

C.17.2 COMPETITON: Sprint races are individual competitions.

C.17.3 COURSE: No forking, but a preference to use spectator controls at the start and finish area.

C.17.4 CHAMPIONSHIPS: The U.S. Sprint Ski Orienteering Championships shall be a single race competition.

C.17.5 MAP: Sprints use map Scale 1:4,000 to 1:10,000. ISSkiOM Standards apply.

C.17.6 CONTROLS: An ideal sprint course might have 10-30 controls.

C.17.7 WINNING TIME: Sprint winning time should be 10-15 minutes all courses.

C.18 Middle

C.18.1 EMPHASIS: Map reading, precise and smooth navigation on dense track systems, ability to ski fast on ski orienteering tracks, and physical endurance.

C.18.2 COMPETITON: Middle distance races are individual races. Mass starts with forking are allowed.

C.18.3 COURSE: The course has short (<1km; in average 350-400m) legs between the controls and a very dense track system. Mass start events have 3 loops with 1-3 forking controls on the loop; several map changes and public controls at the start/finish area.

C.18.4 CHAMPIONSHIPS: The U.S. Middle Ski Orienteering Championships shall be a single race competition.

C.18.5 MAP: Middle distance competitions use map Scale 1:10,000. ISSkiOM Standards apply.

C.18.6 CONTROLS: An ideal middle distance course might have 15-40 controls.

C.18.7 WINNING TIME: Middle distance winning times should be 40-45 min for elite men and women. Other classes should be 50% of long distance times.

C.19 Long

C.19.1 EMPHASIS: Long Distance Ski Orienteering races highlight route choices, pacing of orienteering with route choices (fast skiing) and dense track systems with a lot of map reading, physical endurance and ability to ski fast on orienteering tracks.

C.19.2 COMPETITON: Long races are individual competitions. Mass starts with forking are allowed.

C.19.3 COURSE: A blend of long route choice legs (3-4km) between controls and challenging map reading/orienteering on dense track system areas (200-400m between the controls). Forking and different loops are preferred. Several map changes and public controls at the start/finish area.

C.19.4 CHAMPIONSHIPS: The U.S. Long Distance Ski Orienteering Championships shall be a single race competition.

C.19.5 MAP: Long uses map Scale 1:10,000 to 1:15,000. ISSkiOM Standards apply.

C.19.6 CONTROLS: An ideal long course might have 15-45 controls, though more might be required to present the optimum navigational challenge on a particular map.

C.19.7 WINNING TIME: Long winning time should be 95-100 minutes for the Blue course, 75-90 minutes for the Red course. Shorter as applicable for master’s classes and Orange and White.

C.20 Ultra Long

C.20.1 EMPHASIS: The event and the course highlights route choices, physical endurance, and the ability to pace the event in the most economical way to maintain strength until the finish.

C.20.2 COURSE: Recommended mass start with 3-6 loops with 1-3 forking controls on the loop; usage of butterfly loops allowed. Less dense track system, very long legs (5-6km) between controls.

C.20.3 WINNING TIME: 2:30-2:45 for the elite men; 2:00-2:15 for the elite women. Other classes should be 175% of the long distance times.

C.21 Relay

C.21.1 EMPHASIS: The course has short (<1km; in average 350-400m) legs between the controls and a very dense track system. A relay has the characteristics of a slightly shorter middle distance race. The event and course highlights map reading, precise and smooth navigation on dense track systems, the ability to ski fast on ski orienteering tracks, and physical endurance.

C.21.2 COMPETITION: Relays are mass start with 3 segments with 2-3 forking controls on the loop; preferably spectator controls at the start/finish area halfway of the segment.

C.21.3 MAP: The relay map shall use a map scale of 1:10,000. ISSkiOM standards apply.

C.21.4 CONTROLS: An ideal relay course may have 9-25 controls.

C.21.5 WINNING TIME: Three segments – the segment winning time 30-35 minutes for both men and women.

C.22 Sprint Relay

C.22.1 EMPHASIS: The event and the course highlights (1) precise and smooth navigation on dense track systems, (2) high speed map reading), (3) high speed skiing on ski orienteering tracks, (4) route choices. The course has an even mix (50%/50%) of longer route choice legs and short legs in a very dense track system. A sprint relay has the characteristics of a slightly shorter Sprint race.

C.22.2 COMPETITION: Sprint relays are mass start, two competitors on a team, single or mixed gender, with 6 segments (three segments per competitor). Mixed gender teams can decide whether to start with a man or with a woman. Change of order not allowed after the start draw.

C.22.3 Map: The sprint relay map shall have a scale of 1:4,000 to 1:10,000. ISSkiOM standards apply.

C.22.4 Controls: An ideal sprint relay may have 6-20 controls.

C.22.5 WINNING TIME: Segment winning time 6-8 minutes for both men and women. Mass start with 6 segments with 1-2 forking controls on the loop; preferably spectator controls at the start/finish area halfway of the leg.

C.23 Control Set-up

C.23.1 A Control Flag shall mark each control location. The control flag consists of three squares arranged in triangular form. Each square is a 30cm X 30cm and is divided diagonally, one half being white and the other half orange (ideally PMS 165). At least two of the white triangles shall be adjacent to the upper edge of the control flag. (Additional color of blue stripe 2.54 to 5.08 cm wide, centered, vertically or along the diagonal divide is allowed.)

C.23.2 Every control flag shall have a code card and marking device/s associated with it. The relative arrangement of the control flag, control code, and marking devices shall be the same for all the control locations on a course.

C.23.3 The control flag shall be hung at the feature indicated on the map. All controls shall be situated on tracks shown on the competition map.

C.23.4 A Control Code shall identify each control location. The control code shall be a number, not less than 31 or greater than 255. The same code shall be included on the map. The figures shall be black and white; approximately 3-10cm high with a line width of approximately 5-10mm. Ideally the competitor will only be able to read the codes when immediately at the control flag.

C.23.5 There shall not be other confusing figures or marks on the control flag.

C.23.6 It is recommended that numbers or letters that can improperly be read upside down not be used (i.e. 86 - 98). If, however, they are used they shall have a line drawn beneath them to indicate the proper stance.

C.23.7 Every control shall have control card marking device/s. If only manual punching is used, then only a manual punching device is required. If electronic punching is used, then both a manual and electronic punching device shall be provided.

C.23.8 To minimize competitors waiting for a marker there shall be an ample number of marking devices at each control location. This is particularly important at the early controls when a mass start is used.

C.23.9 REFRESHMENTS: Blue and Red courses should have an official aid station with liquids about halfway through the course. Cold liquids should always be included at this station. To ensure competitors' safety, hot liquids should also be provided if the weather is severe and it is anticipated that most competitors will take 90 minutes or longer to complete the course. Arrangements for an aid station should be described in Event Information.

C.24 Control Descriptions

C.24.1 Control Descriptions are not used in Ski Orienteering.

C.25 Out-of-bounds Areas and One-way Travel

C.25.1 Out of bounds or dangerous areas, forbidden routes, line features that shall not be crossed, or other types of restrictions shall be marked on the map. If necessary, they shall also be marked on the ground. Competitors shall not enter, follow or cross such areas, routes or features.

C.25.2 Compulsory routes, crossing points and passages shall be marked clearly on the map and on the ground. Competitors shall follow the entire length of any marked section of their course.

C.25.3 The prohibition against entering sown land, or land with crops, does not apply to Ski Orienteering.

C.25.4 When possible, Ski Orienteering competitions should be held at sites where competitors can travel on tracks or trails in either direction. Sometimes, however, one-way travel is mandated on some or all tracks by local authorities. This restriction should be indicated on the map (Section C.15.7) and in Event Information. Competitors are not permitted to ski the wrong way on a track indicated as one-way by the organizers.

C.26 Start

C.26.1 The start order shall be determined by the organizer with the principle of fairness kept in mind.

C.26.2 At U.S. Championship events, the starting order shall be designed such that top ranked competitors and those with the same interests (same college or club) start as far apart as possible.

C.26.3 The starting list of registered competitors shall be officially declared at least 15 hours before the first start time.

C.26.4 For individual starts the skiers on each course start one by one at equal start intervals.

C.26.5 The competitors shall receive the map 15 seconds before the start in sprint and 30 seconds before the start in middle and long distances. For mass starts competitors shall receive the map 15 seconds before the start. For chasing starts the competitors shall take their map themselves after the time start.

C.27 Finish/Timing

C.27.1 The final 100 meters of the course shall be at least five meters wide, allowing sufficient space for two skating skiers to approach and cross the finish line simultaneously.

C.27.2 At the finish there shall be first aid supplies and refreshments.

C.27.3 The finishing time shall be measured when the competitor’s front foot crosses the finish line or when the competitor punches at the finish line. Times shall be truncated to full seconds and given in minutes and seconds.

C.27.4 Except in competitions with mass or chasing starts, if more than one competitor has the same running time, they shall be given the same finishing place, and the results should show the same place number for both. When practical they should be listed in the order in which they started.

C.27.5 In competitions with mass or chasing starts, finish judges shall rule on the final placing. Competitors finishing together shall be placed in finish order. If this occurs at a relay event, the position of the team is determined by the finish order of the last skier.

C.27.6 Competitors who omit one or more control marks shall be listed as "did not finish" (DNF). If the absence of a control mark is not the fault of the competitor (i.e. missing or broken punch) and the competitor states that he/she visited all the control locations in the proper sequence, in the absence of proof to the contrary the competitor shall not be disqualified.

C.27.7 Competitors who mark at an incorrect control in place of the correct one shall be listed as "mispunch" (MSP).

C.27.8 Competitors who can be proved to have visited the control points in the wrong order shall be disqualified (DSQ).

C.27.9 All competitors shall be given equal amounts of competition time to complete their courses. The competition time limit shall be declared in the Meet Information. Competitors completing a course in a time greater than the competition time limit shall be recorded as overtime (OVT) and shall not receive a time or place.

C.27.10 All competitors whether finished or not shall report to the finish by the announced closing time of the finish.

C.27.11 Within one hour of the close of the finish, provisional results shall be displayed in the vicinity of the finish or the announced location.

C.28 Awards

C.28.1 Awards in the various classes shall be appropriate to the number of competitors in the class and the importance and nature of the event.

C.28.2 The top three finishers in each Championship class who are eligible for Championship titles at any U.S. Orienteering Championship shall receive a U.S. Championship award, regardless of overall place. Championship awards shall be provided to the event organizer by Orienteering USA. See Appendix A.40, U.S. Orienteering Championship Award Guidelines

C.29 Protests and Jury

C.29.1 Complaints against infringements of the rules by the organizers or a competitor or accompanying parties shall be made in writing to the organizer as soon as possible. The organizer adjudicates a complaint. The complainant and any other affected parties shall be informed about the decision immediately.

C.29.2 Complaints shall be made within one hour of the previously announced time of closure of the finish, or of the actual closure of the finish, whichever is later. Complaints received after this time limit shall only be considered if there are valid exceptional circumstances, which must be explained in the complaint.

C.29.3 If a complaint is against a provisional result it shall be raised within one hour of the results being posted.

C.29.4 Protests against the decision of a complaint shall be made in writing to the organizer within one hour of the announcement of the complaint decision.

C.29.5 The Jury shall deal with all protests filed before the event has disbanded.

C.29.6 No fee shall be charged to file a complaint or protest.

C.29.7 The Meet Director shall appoint a Jury of at least three people from widely separated clubs or foreign delegations as appropriate. Members of the Jury shall not be members of the Orienteering USA Grievance Committee or Orienteering USA Executive Committee. Ideally, Jury members shall not be competitors whose results could be affected by their decision.

C.29.8 The duties of the Jury shall be to deal with infringements of the rules and any other questions arising out of protests.

C.29.9 The basis for the decisions by the Jury shall be these Rules for Orienteering USA Sanctioned Events.

C.29.10 In the event of a protest the Jury shall interpret these rules with regard to the specific situation surrounding the protest to determine whether the fairness of the event has been compromised and disqualifying conditions exist.

C.29.11 The Course Consultant, Vetter, and a representative of the organizers may attend and participate at Jury meetings, but shall have no vote.

C.29.12 The Jury forms a quorum when all members are present. If a member is prevented from attending the Meet Director shall nominate a substitute member.

C.29.13 When in response to a complaint or protest the organizer or Jury determines that any of the following conditions have existed for a substantial group of competitors in a class, then the class or course shall be voided.

  1. A control flag is missing.
  2. A control flag, the start, or the finish is not within the marked circle or triangle.
  3. A control flag is on the wrong feature.

C.29.14 When in response to a complaint or protest the organizer or Jury determines that unfair conditions affected a substantial number of competitors and probably had an impact on the results then the class or course shall be voided.

C.29.15 If electronic punching is utilized, the organizer or Jury is specifically prohibited from trying to salvage a problem course by deleting the times of the affected legs from the total elapsed time of that course.

C.29.16 When in response to a complaint or protest the organizer or Jury determines that a competitor has violated these rules it may disqualify the competitor.

C.29.17 If a gross infringement in rule C.31 (Fairness) is discovered after a meet has disbanded the protest shall be filed directly with the Orienteering USA Board of Directors. The Board shall take whatever action it deems necessary.

C.29.18 Decisions of the Jury may be appealed in writing to the Chair of the Orienteering USA Grievance Committee within seven days after the ruling of the jury.

C.30 Postponement and Cancellation

C.30.1 Unfavorable snow and weather conditions may prevent a fair competition. Decisions to postpone or cancel a race shall be made by the Jury.

C.30.2 The race shall be postponed, canceled or temporarily interrupted when the circumstances put the skiers or officials in danger.

C.30.3 The race shall be postponed when the temperature, one hour before the beginning of the race, is colder than -20C.

C.30.4 The preliminary announcement of the possible postponement should be made at the latest 2 hours before the beginning of the race, and the announcement of the new beginning at the latest two hours in advance.

C.30.5 Under exceptional circumstances, when the postponement of a race is out of the question, a mass start may be used. For example, a significant snowfall in the hours immediately prior to the race may make it impossible to regroom the tracks and trails before the race. In order to prevent later competitors from following the route of earlier competitors in the fresh snow (thereby negating navigating skill), and in order to assure that later competitors do not ski on significantly faster tracks than earlier competitors, a mass start may be appropriate.

C.30.6 In the case of poor snow conditions, a preliminary decision on whether to hold the event shall be made by the meet organizer by 6:00 p.m. two evenings prior to the event. A telephone number shall be included in the entry form that competitors can call that evening to check if the event will be held.

C.31 Fairness

C.31.1 All persons who take part at an orienteering event (competitors, organizers, team managers and so on) shall demonstrate a high degree of fairness, a sporting attitude, a spirit of comradeship and honesty.

C.31.2 It is forbidden to obtain outside help or collaborate in skiing or navigation.

C.31.3 A competitor shall not seek to obtain unfair advantage over fellow competitors, nor intentionally ski with or behind other competitors during the event in order to profit from their skill.

C.31.4 Prior investigation of the competition area is forbidden.

C.31.5 Leaders of the event are obliged to bar entrants from competing (but not from participating in the event) when they are so well acquainted with the terrain that they would derive substantial advantage over others. In the event of a protest, the matter is decided by the Jury.

C.31.6 A competitor wishing to retain eligibility shall not seek to obtain an unfair advantage by communicating with other competitors, team officials, event officials, journalists, spectators or others before or during the competition.

C.31.7 The competitor is obliged to show respect for other competitors, leaders, land owners or administrators, officials, journalists, spectators, and others as well as residents of the competition terrain and areas.

C.31.8 The use of drugs to obtain an advantage is forbidden. The IOF Anti-Doping Rules are considered a part of this rules document. This does not prohibit the use of medically necessary drugs prescribed by a physician.

C.31.9 Competitors for whom the preponderance of evidence shows that they have broken these rules may be disqualified from the event by the organizer or, in response to a protest, by the jury.

C.31.10 The organizer or jury may disqualify a competitor for “following” if they cannot draw the route skied, or upon other evidence.

C.31.11 Competitors for whom the preponderance of the evidence shows that they have intentionally broken these rules causing a course to be voided may be disqualified by the Jury from the current event as well as future Orienteering USA events for a period of up to two years.

C.31.12 The organizer shall void a race if circumstances have arisen which make the race significantly unfair.

C.32 Competitor Conduct

C.32.1 Competitors must follow sections of the course marked as required routes.

C.32.2 Once competitors cross the finish line their competition is over, and they shall not return to the competition area without permission from the organizer.

C.32.3 Competitors who do not finish (DNF) must report to the finish and return their control card and map. They shall in no way attempt to influence the competition or other competitors.

C.32.4 Competitors shall not use outside help when waxing their skis or repairing their equipment while competing in a race.

C.32.5 Competitors may use wax and waxing equipment offered by the control officials.

C.32.6 Competitors may carry the means for waxing and repair.

C.32.7 Competitors are obliged to yield, if requested, the track to a passing competitor when only one ski track or narrow skiable route is available.

C.32.8 Competitors may be offered drinks only at official refreshment controls.

C.32.9 Competitors are permitted to bring their own refreshment supply and renew that supply at refreshment controls.

C.33 Equipment

C.33.1 Choice of clothing shall be up to the individual, but shall be appropriate regarding safety for the weather conditions.

C.33.2 The organizers may require competitors to wear identifying numbers that shall be clearly visible on the front side of the left thigh. Folding the start number is not allowed.

C.33.3 Competitors shall use or carry their own skis and ski poles from the start via the controls to the finish. However, competitors may leave broken or damaged equipment along the course.

C.33.4 Every competitor shall have the chance to have skis, bindings, ski boots, ski poles and other equipment deposited at the start and finish area, and for longer distances, at one or more pre-determined controls. Undamaged ski equipment may only be changed in these designated areas, and no assistance is permitted during the change.

C.33.5 During the competition only a compass and the map provided by the organizer may be used for navigation. Personal aids not used directly for navigation are permitted. (e.g. magnifying glass, flashlight, eyeglasses)

C.33.6 Any equipment may be carried provided that it is not used for navigation or communication. (e.g. phones for safety, GPS devices for tracking and post-race analysis)

C.33.7 Competitors shall travel on skis or by foot, but must transport their own skiing equipment at all times.

C.34 Appendix – Ski Orienteering Course/Class Structure  

The following Orienteering USA Standard Course/Class structure is the minimum that a sanctioned Ski Orienteering event must offer. Individual competitors are divided into classes by gender (M for male, and F for female), and age as of December 31 of the current year. If desired, age divisions may be further divided into additional classes by course difficulty and skill level.

Ski Orienteering Individual Championship Classes

WhiteOrangeRedBlue
 F-16F-19+M-19+
 F-18M-16 
 F40+M-18 
 F55+M40+ 
  M55+ 
Non-Championship Competitive Classes
F WhiteF OrangeM Red 
M WhiteM Orange  
Age class ranges are indicated by a "-" and/or a "+". A "-" before the age means "and younger", the "+" after the age means "and older". Gender classes contain M for male and F for female. Classes containing the course color are open to any age.

C.35 Appendix – Ski Orienteering Change History

  • 2013.08.01 — Change in membership requirements from “member” to “regular member” in accordance with bylaws change (AGM 7/27/2013; BOD 7/27/2013)
  • 2013.08.01 — Added United States Sprint Ski Orienteering Championships

D. Rules for Trail Orienteering Events

D.1 Application and Enforcement of the Rules

D.1.1 Trail Orienteering competitions and events sanctioned by Orienteering USA shall be organized in accordance with these rules.

D.1.2 These rules shall be binding on all organizers, competitors, team officials and other persons connected with the organization or in contact with the competitors. The Orienteering USA Trail Orienteering Committee shall supervise the application of the rules. The Orienteering USA Rules Committee shall interpret the rules and any questions should be so addressed.

D.1.3 Event organizers, competitors and team officials shall know these rules and the event instructions. Ignorance of the rules shall not be accepted as a valid excuse for any infringement.

D.1.4 These rules take precedence over the Competition Rules for International Orienteering Federation (IOF) Trail Orienteering Events except for:

  1. IOF sanctioned events hosted in the United States
  2. International events when so agreed by the participating nations

D.2 Definitions

D.2.1 Trail Orienteering is a sport involving map and terrain interpretation. Competitors visit control points marked in the terrain usually in a set sequence. Using the map provided, with aid of a compass, they choose which of a number of markers represents the one in the center of a printed circle as defined by the control description. This decision shall be recorded. The term competitor means an individual or a team.

D.2.2 The mode of movement may be:

  1. on foot
  2. by wheelchair, either manual or electric
  3. on bicycle, tricycle or handcycle
  4. other modes, any recognized mobility aid.

D.2.3 No combustion-engined vehicle, nor any battery driven vehicle designed for more than one occupant is permissible.

D.2.4 An Event is a set of races and their attendant festivities and organizational aspects.

D.2.5 The term A-meet is restricted to events that include races sanctioned by Orienteering USA.

D.2.6 A Race is a single event component that consists of competitors starting and finishing a course.

D.2.7 A Competition is one or more races that are used together as the basis for making awards.

D.2.8 The term Championship in this document refers only to the U.S. National Trail Orienteering Championships, which are held at least every four years, but preferably annually between January and April.

D.2.9 A Bid Event is the U.S. National Trail Orienteering Championships or any event requiring IOF Sanctioning. The Orienteering USA Trail Orienteering Committee first sanctions these events and then the Orienteering USA Board of Directors awards the bid.

D.3 Classification of Competitions

D.3.1 In an Individual competition each participant competes independently, and the results are based on each individual's performance.

D.3.2 In a Team competition each participant competes independently and the team result is based on some combination of individual results. There shall be individual results as well.

D.3.3 In a Multi-race competition a competitor's results from at least half of the competition races shall be combined. If the sum of the points and time penalties for every competition day shall not be used the organizer shall describe in the Invitation the precise procedures which will be used for the event.

D.4 Sanctioning

D.4.1 Applications to hold Orienteering USA sanctioned Trail Orienteering events shall be made directly to the Orienteering USA Trail Orienteering Committee Chair using the standard Application for Orienteering USA "A" Meet Sanctioning. Applications shall be submitted no later than eight weeks prior to the event.

D.4.2 The Orienteering USA Trail Orienteering Committee may approach a club or organization with a request to work with them to host a sanctioned Trail Orienteering event.

D.4.3 The hosting group must be a Regular Orienteering Club as defined in the Bylaws of the United States Orienteering Federation or must enter into the Orienteering USA Sanctioning Agreement (Third-party sanctioning contract).

D.4.4 The host shall pay the necessary sanctioning fees within four weeks of the closing of the event.

D.4.5 Within two weeks of receiving the application the Trail Orienteering Committee shall respond to the Meet Director. When the Trail Orienteering Committee determines that the applying organization can successfully host a sanctioned event it shall sanction the meet.

D.4.6 If the host requests exceptions to these rules, or if after sanctioning is received the host does not follow these rules and the procedures of the Trail Orienteering Committee, then the Trail Orienteering Committee may deny or remove sanctioning, or in extenuating circumstances authorize exceptions to these rules or Trail Orienteering Committee procedures.

D.4.7 When the Trail Orienteering Committee authorizes an exception to these rules these exceptions shall be clearly stated in the Invitation. In addition the Chair of the Trail Orienteering Committee shall notify the Orienteering USA Executive Committee and the Chair of the Rules Committee as to the exceptions that were authorized.

D.4.8 Decisions of the Trail Orienteering Committee may be appealed to the Executive Committee of Orienteering USA by sending a letter stating the reasons for the appeal to the President of Orienteering USA and a copy to the Chair of the Trail Orienteering Committee.

D.4.9 In the event the meet is sanctioned before the map is completed, the Trail Orienteering Committee shall oversee and assist with the production of the map to assure it is suitable.

D.5 Key Personnel

D.5.1 The Meet Director is appointed by the host and listed on the sanctioning application and is responsible for overseeing all aspects of the event. The Meet Director shall insure that all the officials and assistants know and abide by these rules. The Meet Director shall obtain all necessary permission from landowners, and forestry, state, and other pertinent officials and should aim for a good relationship with other users of the event site and site officials.

D.5.2 The Course Setter is appointed by the host and listed on the sanctioning application and is responsible for designing and overseeing the setting of all courses.

D.5.3 The Course Vetter is appointed by the host and listed on the sanctioning application and is responsible for checking all aspects of the course setting.

D.5.4 The Meet Registrar is appointed by the host and listed on the sanctioning application and is responsible for handling the entries for the event.

D.5.5 The Map Coordinator is appointed by the host and listed on the sanctioning application and is responsible for insuring the accuracy, appropriateness, and proper formatting of the maps used for competition.

D.5.6 The five positions listed above shall be covered by no fewer than three different people (Course Setter, Course Vetter, and one other key staff member).

D.5.7 An Event Consultant may be appointed by the Trail Orienteering Committee.

D.6 Reports and Fees

D.6.1 Within one week the official results shall be sent to the Trail Orienteering Committee and made publicly available.

D.6.2 Within four weeks sanctioning fees shall be remitted to Orienteering USA for each sanctioned race for each competitor entered in a competitive class. A fee computation form shall be provided by Orienteering USA.

D.6.3 Sanctioning fees are set by the Orienteering USA Board of Directors and are shown in Appendix A.41.

D.7 Secrecy and Embargo

D.7.1 All those who are involved with the organizing of the event shall maintain the strictest secrecy regarding aspects of the venue, terrain and courses not officially publicized.

D.7.2 Team officials and spectators shall not influence the competition, and shall remain in the areas that are assigned to them.

D.7.3 The organizers shall ensure that unauthorized people stay out of areas where they would interfere with the competition.

D.7.4 When a sanctioned event is placed on the Orienteering USA Event or Planning Calendar, the area is closed to orienteering competitions and training for any purpose prior to the event for individuals or groups wishing to retain competition eligibility.

D.8 Event Announcements

D.8.1 Preliminary Information shall be publicly available within two weeks of sanctioning. Details can be found in the Orienteering USA Sanctioning Guidelines.

D.8.2 An Event Invitation including all details necessary for event registration shall be publicly available at least three months before the event. Details can be found in the Orienteering USA Sanctioning Guidelines.

D.8.3 Course lengths shall be published with the invitation or as soon thereafter as they are known.

D.8.4 Event Information that a competitor will need prior to traveling to the event shall be publicly available at least one week before the event. Details can be found in the Orienteering USA Sanctioning Guidelines.

D.8.5 Event Information should describe the accessibility of the trail network used for the course.

D.8.6 Additional event information shall be provided to the competitor upon check-in at the event. At a minimum, any information that was not published by one week prior to the event shall be provided to each competitor in hardcopy format at the event.

D.8.7 All information required by this section shall be published on a publicly accessible website in a standard format readable by commonly used free software.

D.8.8 All information shall be available at least in English.

D.8.9 The host shall honor all published information unless extenuating circumstances necessitate a change.

D.8.10 In extenuating circumstances information may be supplied orally at the event.

D.9 Orienteering USA Calendar

D.9.1 The Sanctioning Committee shall maintain the Orienteering USA Orienteering Event Calendar and Event Planning Calendar.

D.9.2 The Trail Orienteering Committee will communicate with the maintainer of the calendar to place Trail Orienteering events on the Calendar.

D.10 Classes

D.10.1 Competitive Classes

D.10.1.1 There are two competitive classes in Trail Orienteering: Paralympic and Open.

D.10.1.2 U.S. Champions shall be declared in both Trail Orienteering classes at U.S. National Trail Orienteering Championships.

D.11 Eligibility

D.11.1 General Eligibility

D.11.1.1 All competitors, regardless of sex, age or physical ability are eligible to be entered in Open class competition

D.11.1.2 The Trail Orienteering committee shall maintain a National Paralympic Qualified list. Persons wishing to compete in the Paralympic class must apply to the Trail Orienteering committee for inclusion on the list. Only competitors who appear on the National Paralympic Qualified List are eligible to compete in the Paralympic class.

D.11.1.3 Only competitors who have a permanent disability that significantly reduces their mobility shall be placed on the National Paralympic Qualified List. Typical examples of a qualifying disability are:

  1. permanent need of a wheelchair
  2. permanent need of crutches
  3. loss of function in the upper limb/limbs that makes the athlete unable to handle a map and punch
  4. hip/knee replacement, amputee, or congenital deformities of the limbs
  5. central nervous diseases and injuries
  6. the athlete has reduced mobility, which means that the athlete needs more than 40 minutes to walk 2500 meters

D.11.1.4 The following are insufficient for qualifying for Paralympic status:

  1. Age or pain
  2. Visual impairment or intellectual disability

D.11.1.5 Persons with prior knowledge of the competition area that they or the meet organizers believe will give them unfair advantage are not eligible to compete for awards, titles, or national rankings. In the event of a protest, the matter shall be decided by the Jury.

D.11.1.6 Persons not eligible for awards, titles or national rankings may participate.

D.11.2 Championship Eligibility

D.11.2.1 The title of U.S. Orienteering Champion in any class at the U.S. National Trail Orienteering Championships shall be limited to any person who meets both of the following criteria:

  1. Is a regular member in good standing of Orienteering USA
  2. Is either a citizen or lawful permanent resident of the United States of America

D.11.2.2 Requests for clarifications based on eligibility criteria may be submitted to the Orienteering USA Office in writing 30 days prior to a championship/s.

D.11.2.3 Eligibility rulings shall be made by vote of the Orienteering USA Executive Committee. Requests for eligibility rulings received by the Orienteering USA Office at least 30 days in advance of an event registration deadline shall be ruled upon prior to the entry deadline.

D.12 Entries

D.12.1 Competitors shall submit entries as specified in the Invitation.

D.12.2 The entry fee shall be paid as specified in the Invitation.

D.12.3 Paralympic competitors shall be simultaneously entered in the Open class.

D.13 Training

D.13.1 Bid Events shall offer model controls for the competitors. The terrain, map, and control setup should be as similar as possible to the competition area. Correct solutions for model controls with explanations shall be available at the model control site.

D.13.2 The organizer should, when possible, offer at least one model timed control for the competitors. The timed control procedure should be as similar as possible to that to be used in the competition. Correct solutions shall be available at the model control site.

D.14 Terrain

D.14.1 The terrain shall be suitable for setting competitive trail orienteering courses of the appropriate standard.

D.14.2 The terrain shall be chosen so that the least mobile competitors, the person confined to and propelling a low fixed wheelchair and the person who walks slowly and with difficulty, can negotiate the course within the maximum time limit, using official assistance where provided.

D.15 Maps

D.15.1 Maps, course markings and additional overprinting shall be drawn and printed according to the IOF International Specification for Sprint Orienteering Maps (ISSOM) or the IOF International Specification for Orienteering Maps (ISOM).

D.15.2 The map scale shall normally be 1:5000 or 1:4000. All maps for a competition, including those for the timed controls, shall use the same scale.

D.15.3 The control circles and courses should be integrated into the map prior to printing. Hand drawing of courses is not permitted. Overprinting of courses on already printed maps is not recommended.

D.15.4 Errors on the map and changes which have occurred in the terrain since the map was printed shall be corrected on the map if they have a bearing on the event.

D.15.5 Maps shall be protected against moisture and damage.

D.15.6 When the competition map has been previously used in a competition or otherwise made available to potential competitors it shall be posted in the competition center and shall be sold at a reasonable and customary price prior to and at the event.

D.15.7 When the competition map has not previously been used or otherwise made available and an earlier map of the terrain exists the earlier map shall be posted in the competition center and if possible sold at a reasonable and customary price prior to and at the event.

D.15.8 On the day of the competition, the use of any map of the competition area by competitors is prohibited unless permitted by the organizers.

D.15.9 Competitors who cannot properly see the color used to mark their maps may have their courses redrawn in a color they can properly see by making their request to an event official. If necessary, the competitor shall be given a new start time after the redrawn map is available.

D.16 Courses

D.16.1 The IOF Principles for Course Planning for Trail Orienteering (Appendix 1 of Trail Orienteering Rules) shall be followed, with reference to the current published issue of the IOF Technical Guidelines for Elite Trail Orienteering.

D.16.2 The standard of the courses shall be worthy of a National Trail Orienteering event. The skills of map reading and terrain interpretation and the concentration of the competitors shall be tested, together with, at the timed controls, speed of decision making. The courses shall call upon a range of different orienteering techniques.

D.16.3 Any route not passable by all wheelchair users, because of width, protruding roots, fallen trees or other unsuitable surface shall be banned to all and marked in the terrain by tapes.

D.16.4 Bearing estimation should not be required to greater than 5º (5 degrees).

D.16.5 Distance in range across the terrain estimated by competitors should not be required to an accuracy better than 25 percent.

D.16.6 Distance estimation by pacing should not be required to better than 10 percent.

D.16.7 Given adequate visibility into the terrain, the controls may be set in accordance with accepted orienteering convention on any feature marked on the map, provided the center of the circle can be determined by use of position-fixing techniques and the control feature can be correctly described.

D.16.8 If there is more than one valid way to solve a control problem, all should give the same answer (see IOF Technical Guidelines for Elite Trail Orienteering for more detail on this topic).

D.16.9 Course Length and Climb

D.16.9.1 The course lengths shall be given as the length from the start, along the route to be followed, to the finish and should not normally exceed 3500m.

D.16.9.2 The total climb shall be given as the climb in meters along the route.

D.16.9.3 The climb of a course should normally not exceed 14 percent for more than 20 meters. The cross slope should be no more than 8 percent.

D.17 Timed Controls

D.17.1 At least two timed controls where the decision time is recorded should be included in the course. These may be located at any part of the course; but it is desirable that at least one occurs before the official start and another after a pre-finish. A separate, specially prepared map is used for each timed control.

D.17.2 The terrain detail at a timed control shall not be shown on the competitor’s map(s), such that it may be studied before being called to the timed control.

D.17.3 At timed controls the competitor shall be seated in a position so that all the control markers are visible and the markers shall be pointed out in order using the phonetic alphabet (Alpha, Bravo, Charlie, Delta, Echo).

D.17.4 Immediately after the markers are pointed out, a map unit containing a segment of the map oriented in the direction of view of the control, with clear indication of the direction of magnetic north above the map segment and control description below the segment, shall be handed to, or placed for, the competitor as the timing starts. An example timed control map can be found in Appendix D.30.

D.17.5 The competitor shall not be given time to study the markers between the pointing out of the markers and the handing of the map/start of timing.

D.17.6 Timing shall be with stopwatches.

D.17.7 At timed controls timing is stopped when a clear answer is indicated. This may be either by the use of a pointing board or orally using the International Phonetic Alphabet.

D.17.8 The planner shall not set a None/Zero answer as a timed control.

D.17.9 At timed controls a maximum of one minute is allowed. A ten second warning is given at 50 seconds.

D.17.10 Two timekeepers are preferred with the times from both recorded. The times shall be rounded down to whole seconds.

D.17.11 Both time and answer are recorded.

D.17.12 The timed control officials shall not give any indication to the competitor of the correctness of their response.

D.18 Control Set-up

D.18.1 The control point given on the map shall be clearly marked on the ground by a cluster of control markers in the vicinity of the circle.

D.18.2 Control markers shall consist of three squares 30 x 30 cm arranged in a triangular form. Each square shall be divided diagonally, one half being white and the other orange.

D.18.3 The control markers shall be hung so that they are all visible (at least one third of any marker) to competitors from the close vicinity of the decision point. Normally a marker is positioned at the feature at the center of the circle on the map and correctly described but it is permitted to have no marker so located.

D.18.4 The control markers shall be hung at a standard height in any one cluster.

D.18.5 A decision point shall be marked in the terrain along the route, but not shown on the map. No competitor must be tempted forward of this marker towards the control cluster. If deemed necessary tapes should be placed in the terrain.

D.18.6 Control markers are designated from left to right, regardless of depth of view – A , B, …, E – from a decision point. The decision as to which marker is which is made from this point.

D.18.7 Ambulant competitors must not be able to get closer to the marker than wheelchair users, nor should they be able to get a better view by climbing any feature behind the decision point. Such a feature should be taped off as out of bounds.

D.18.8 Everything relevant to decision making for a control shall be visible to someone sitting in a low wheelchair.

D.19 Control Cards and Punching

D.19.1 Manual pin punch with control card shall be used.

D.19.2 The control card shall satisfy the following specifications:

  1. it must be made of resistant material, or be protected
  2. each punch box must have a minimum side length of 13 mm
  3. a duplicate must be marked automatically with the main card.

D.19.3 Competitors shall be issued a double card. The complete card shall be handed to officials at the finish, the second part being returned, after the last start time, to the competitor for reference.

D.19.4 Competitors record their choices at a punching station a short distance beyond each decision point. A single punch shall be provided. A different pin pattern to those at adjacent controls shall be used.

D.19.5 Competitors shall record their choice at each control before moving on to the next control. With manual punching the control card must be punched in the chosen box.

D.19.6 Competitors are responsible for the correct recording of their choice, whether doing so themselves or through an intermediary.

D.19.7 Any control with more than one, or no, selection recorded is deemed to be incorrect.

D.19.8 No change in recorded selection is permitted.

D.19.9 Checks by the organizer to confirm that competitors are completing the controls in the correct order may be made by scrutiny of control cards within the competition area.

D.19.10 Competitors who lose their control card shall be disqualified.

D.19.11 At least pure water shall be offered as refreshment along the course.

D.20 Control Descriptions

D.20.1 The precise location of the control point in the terrain shall be correctly defined by the center of the circle on the map and the control description.

D.20.2 The control descriptions shall be in the form of symbols and in accordance with the IOF Control Descriptions.

D.20.3 In column B, the number of control markers in any cluster, shall be indicated by letters (e.g. A-C for 3 markers).

D.20.4 The position of the control flag is described by a single symbol (or none) in Column G.

D.20.5 Where necessary, to indicate the approximate direction to view a control cluster, a standard compass direction arrow shall be placed in column H.

D.20.6 The control description may correctly apply to more than one flag.

D.20.7 Where more than one flag fits a direction description (such as NW part), the convention from foot orienteering that the flag furthermost in that direction is the correct one does NOT apply in Trail Orienteering.

D.20.8 The description should take note of the visible extent of the feature in the terrain as well as its representation within the circle on the map.

D.20.9 For features mapped to scale, a control flag that is correctly placed in accordance with the center of the circle on the map, but wrongly described, must NOT result in a zero answer. For point features, the absence of a flag at the described position can give a valid zero answer.

D.20.10 The control descriptions shall include the maximum time allowed for the course.

D.20.11 The control descriptions, given in the right order for each competitor’s course, shall be fixed to or printed on the front side of the competition map.

D.21 Out-of-bounds Areas

D.21.1 Any instructions from the organizer designed to protect the environment shall be strictly observed by all persons connected with the event.

D.21.2 All terrain off the trails in the competition area is out-of-bounds unless otherwise indicated in the information, marked on the map and, where necessary, marked on the ground.

D.21.3 Certain normally permitted routes and areas may be declared out of bounds in the event information (e.g. when using ISSOM maps it is common to declare all trails not shown with brown infill as out-of-bounds).

D.21.4 Specific normally permitted routes and areas that are to be declared out-of-bounds should be mentioned in the event information and clearly marked on the map and on the ground to prevent competitors from inadvertently entering them.

D.21.5 Competitors who deliberately enter a forbidden area shall be disqualified.

D.21.6 Compulsory routes, crossing points and passages shall be marked clearly on the map and on the ground. Competitors shall follow the entire length of any marked section of their course.

D.21.7 All competitors are restricted to those trails that can be negotiated by a wheelchair.

D.22 Start

D.22.1 The start order shall be determined by the organizer with the principle of fairness kept in mind.

D.22.2 The starting list of registered competitors shall be officially declared at least 15 hours before the first start time.

D.22.3 For individual starts the competitors start one by one at equal start intervals, preferably two minutes.

D.22.4 When timed controls occur at the beginning of the course, competitors shall proceed from the start line to the timed controls. After completion of the timed controls they shall receive the competition map and then report to a secondary start line where their official course start time shall be recorded.

D.23 Finish/Timing

D.23.1 The organizer shall set a maximum time for each course, calculated as three minutes for each control plus three minutes for each 100 meters of the course. At the discretion of the organizer an extended time may be set to allow for exceptional climb, difficult surfaces or other factors.

D.23.2 The time taken by the competitor over the timed section(s) of the course, unless over the declared time limit for the course, is not relevant to the competition result.

D.23.3 The finishing time may be measured either when the competitor crosses a pre-finish line, in the case where timed controls occur at the end of the course, or at the finish line.

D.23.4 Times shall be rounded down to whole seconds. Times shall be given in either hours, minutes and seconds or in minutes and seconds only.

D.23.5 The exact position of the finish line shall be obvious to approaching competitors.

D.23.6 The course ends for a competitor after crossing the finish line.

D.23.7 After crossing the finish line competitors shall hand in control cards. If required by the organizer, they shall also hand in their competition maps.

D.23.8 Any delays to the competitor at any point along the route that are not the competitor's fault shall be recorded and deducted from the competitor’s overall time. This includes time spent at timed controls in the middle of the course.

D.23.9 If, after taking into account any recorded delay, the competitor has exceeded the time limit, a penalty shall be incurred. This shall be a deduction of one point for any part of each five-minute unit.

D.23.10 At the finish there shall be first aid supplies and refreshments.

D.23.11 All competitors whether finished or not shall report to the finish by the announced closing time of the finish.

D.23.12 Once the last competitor has started, solution sheets for all the controls, including timed controls, and copies of their control card shall be issued to those that have finished. See Appendix D.32.

D.24 Scoring and Results

D.24.1 Each correctly identified control (including Timed Controls) scores one point.

D.24.2 At the Timed Controls a correct answer in 0-60 seconds scores one point. A wrong answer scores no points and a penalty of 60 seconds, which is added to the time taken to answer. No answer in 60 seconds scores no points and a time of 120 seconds.

D.24.3 If two timers were used, then the average of the two recorded times at each timed control is calculated with half seconds preserved.

D.24.4 The recorded times for all timed controls in any one competition are cumulative. With two timers the total times may show half seconds.

D.24.5 Competitors are placed according to their points scored, with competitors on equal points being placed according to their accumulated times at the timed controls.

D.24.6 Any control that is deemed to be unfair and voided by the organizer or jury is deleted from the competition for all. The reason for voiding shall be announced with the provisional results.

D.24.7 Two or more competitors having the same score and time at the timed controls shall be given the same placing in the results list. The position(s) following the tie shall remain vacant.

D.24.8 Provisional results, consisting of points scored and accumulated times, shall be announced and displayed at the finish or announced location within one hour of the close of the finish.

D.24.9 A shortened version of official results including the point scores and accumulated times of all participating competitors shall be made available within one hour of finalizing jury decisions on protests and before presenting awards.

D.24.10 The official results, including the correct and competitor selections for each control, shall be published within one week of the event. See Appendix D.31 for more information.

D.25 Awards

D.25.1 Awards in both classes shall be appropriate to the number of competitors in the class and the importance and nature of the event.

D.25.2 The top three finishers in each class who are eligible for Championship titles at the U.S. National Trail Orienteering Championship shall receive a U.S. Championship award, regardless of overall place. Championship awards shall be provided to the event organizer by Orienteering USA. See Appendix A.40, U.S. Orienteering Championship Award Guidelines.

D.26 Protests and Jury

D.26.1 Complaints against infringements of the rules by the organizers or a competitor or accompanying parties shall be made in writing to the organizer as soon as possible. The organizer adjudicates a complaint. The complainant and any other affected parties shall be informed about the decision immediately.

D.26.2 Complaints shall be made within one hour of the previously announced time of closure of the finish, or of the actual closure of the finish, whichever is later. Complaints received after this time limit shall only be considered if there are valid exceptional circumstances, which must be explained in the complaint.

D.26.3 If a complaint is against a provisional result, it shall be raised within one hour of the results being posted.

D.26.4 Protests against the decision of a complaint shall be made in writing to the organizer within one hour of the announcement of the complaint decision.

D.26.5 The Jury shall deal with all protests filed before the event has disbanded.

D.26.6 No fee shall be charged to file a complaint or protest.

D.26.7 The Meet Director shall appoint a Jury of at least three people. Members of the Jury shall not be members of the Orienteering USA Grievance Committee or Orienteering USA Executive Committee. Ideally, Jury members shall not be competitors with high placings or high rankings that could be affected by their decision and shall be from separate clubs.

D.26.8 The duties of the Jury shall be to deal with infringements of the rules and any other questions arising out of protests.

D.26.9 The basis for decisions by the Jury shall be these Rules for Orienteering USA Sanctioned Events and the IOF Technical Guidelines for Elite Trail Orienteering.

D.26.10 In the event of a protest the Jury shall interpret these rules with regard to the specific situation surrounding the protest to determine whether the fairness of the event has been compromised and disqualifying conditions exist.

D.26.11 The course setter or vetter and a representative of the organizers may attend and participate at Jury meetings, but shall have no vote.

D.26.12 The Jury forms a quorum when all members are present. If a member is prevented from attending the Meet Director shall nominate a substitute member.

D.26.13 When in response to a complaint or protest the organizer or Jury determines that a control was incorrectly or unfairly placed then the control shall be deleted from the competition for all. A written notice shall be posted explaining the details of the decision.

D.26.14 When in response to a complaint or protest the organizer or Jury determines that a competitor has violated these rules it may disqualify the competitor.

D.26.15 When in response to a protest the Jury determines that a control is valid then the competitor(s) filing the protest shall have 1/2 point deducted from their score. The Jury shall have authority to waive this penalty if they feel that the protest was reasonable. There shall be no penalty for filing a complaint regardless of the outcome.

D.26.16 If a gross infringement in rule D.27 (Fairness) is discovered after a meet has disbanded the protest shall be filed directly with the Orienteering USA Board of Directors. The Board shall take whatever action it deems necessary.

D.26.17 Decisions of the Jury may be appealed in writing to the Chair of the Orienteering USA Grievance Committee within seven days after the ruling of the jury.

D.27 Fairness

D.27.1 All persons taking part in a Trail Orienteering event shall behave with fairness and honesty. They shall have a sporting attitude and a spirit of friendship. Competitors shall show respect for each other.

D.27.2 Wheelchair users shall have priority to the side of the track nearest to the controls and access to decisions points and punches in front of ambulant competitors.

D.27.3 Competitors shall be as quiet as possible on the course.

D.27.4 Seeking to obtain or obtaining technical assistance from other competitors during the competition is forbidden.

D.27.5 It is the duty of all competitors to help any injured competitor or anyone with physical needs in the case of an accident.

D.27.6 Prior investigation of the competition area is forbidden.

D.27.7 Competitors for whom the preponderance of evidence shows that they have broken these rules may be disqualified from the event by the organizer or, in response to a protest, by the Jury.

D.27.8 Competitors for whom the preponderance of the evidence shows that they have intentionally broken these rules causing a course or control to be voided may be disqualified by the Jury from the current event as well as future Orienteering USA events for a period of up to two years.

D.28 Competitor Conduct

D.28.1 Competitors must follow sections of the course marked as required routes.

D.28.2 Once competitors cross the finish line their competition is over, and they shall not return to the competition area without permission from the organizer.

D.28.3 Competitors who do not finish must report to the finish and return their control card and map. They shall in no way attempt to influence the competition or other competitors.

D.29 Equipment

D.29.1 Choice of clothing shall be up to the individual.

D.29.2 The organizers may require competitors to wear identifying numbers that shall be clearly visible and worn as prescribed by the organizer. Folding the start number is not allowed.

D.29.3 During the competition only a compass and the map and control descriptions provided by the organizer may be used as navigational aids. Only an odometer and a watch are allowed as mechanical aids. Personal aids not used directly for navigation are permitted. (e.g. magnifying glass, flashlight, cane, eyeglasses)

D.29.4 Any equipment may be carried provided that it is not used for navigation or communication. (e.g. phones for safety, GPS devices for tracking and post-race analysis)

D.29.5 Use of telecommunication equipment during the competition period, other than for an emergency, may result in disqualification.

D.29.6 Competitors shall travel using one of the modes indicated in section D.2.

D.30 Appendix A – Guidelines for Timed Control Maps

Timed Control maps should be no smaller than a half sheet of letter size (5.5" x 8.5"). Large letters for each possible answer shall be available on the map for pointing out the desired answer.

Sample Timed Control Map

D.31 Appendix B – Official Results Format

Results for Trail Orienteering are commonly presented in spreadsheet format showing not only the scores for each competitor, but also the actual wrong answers selected by each competitor.
Results should include:

  1. A Title identifying the event name, location, and date
  2. Correct Solution for each control
  3. Columns showing each competitors name, club, class, incorrect responses, time for each timed control, penalties, total time, and number of correct controls
  4. Championship eligibility should be shown if applicable
  5. Summary data is often added at the bottom of the results spreadsheet

Sample Results Spreadsheet

D.32 Appendix C – Solution Sheets

Once the last competitor has finished and the course is closed, solution sheets for all the controls, including timed controls, are issued. These consist either of map segments or the map of all of the competition area, at enlarged scale (usually twice competition scale) showing the decision points and positions of the flags at each control, which of the flags is correct or, for zero answers, the unflagged center of the circle. Also included is the description for each control.

It is important that the solution sheet mapping agrees exactly with the competition map. Late changes to the competition map which are not replicated in the solution maps produce difficulties and invite dissension.

The solution sheets should include some indication from the course setter of at least one expected solution method leading to the correct solution.

A recommended procedure for mapping flag positions is to generate special symbols on the competition map, which can be used in the terrain at greatly enlarged scale for fine tuning of the control and flag positions. On completion of the planning process the map segments are cut and pasted for making up the solution sheets. Before printing the competition map the special symbols are hidden.

Sample map portion of a solution sheet

D.33 Appendix D – Trail Orienteering Change History

  • 2013.08.01 — Change in membership requirements from “member” to “regular member” in accordance with bylaws change (AGM 7/27/2013; BOD 7/27/2013)
  • 2014.01.01 — Change in protest rules adding 1/2 point penalty for denied protests. (BOD 10/19/2013)
  • 2014.01.01 — Fixed mistakes in sample results spreadsheet related to timed control penalties.

E. (Rules for Mountain Bike Orienteering Events)

 


F. Rules for Orienteering USA Rankings  

F.1 Foot Orienteering Rankings  

F.1.1 The Chair of the Ranking Committee shall publish the annual rankings of all orienteers who meet all of the following conditions:

  1. Are Orienteering USA regular members at any time between January 1 and November 15 of the ranking year.
  2. Earn Daily Ranking points in at least four races on the same color course in any class except M/F-White.

F.1.2 Daily Ranking points from competition are earned by:

  1. Competing in one race of an individual Orienteering USA sanctioned A-meet (including restricted events), on a course proper for your age that is not invalidated by the Jury or Meet Officials, and completing the course or receiving a disqualifying designation as in section F.1.3 below.
  2. Completing a course above the course that is proper for your age at a meet satisfying the criteria in F.1.2.a above.
  3. Completing a course at the North American Orienteering Championships, even when held outside of the U.S., in a class equal to or higher than the Orienteering USA class in which the person will be ranked.

F.1.3 Persons who are disqualified (DSQ), do not finish the course (DNF), or who are overtime (OVT) – for any reason, including injury – are assigned a Daily Ranking score of 0.

F.1.4 Daily Ranking points earned by competition are calculated as follows: The Course Difficulty is calculated from the average of the Personal Course Difficulty of each competitor, which is the competitor’s ranking points for that race multiplied by their time in minutes.

  1. This calculation is circular, so the Iteration Method is used to determine each competitor’s ranking points. All competitors start with 50 points, and the calculations are repeatedly performed until the results converge.
  2. The average Personal Course Difficulty is a harmonic mean, which is the reciprocal of the arithmetic mean of the reciprocals. This causes the results in (a) to converge and results in non-drifting (i.e., significant) results.
  3. Daily Ranking scores of zero are excluded from this iterative calculation process.

F.1.5 Daily Ranking credits are only used to qualify for annual ranking by those otherwise unable to meet the required number of races. Daily Ranking credits are obtained from:

  1. Administration of a day of an Orienteering USA sanctioned A-meet in such a capacity that, at the discretion of the meet director, the person cannot physically or fairly enter the event.
  2. Being assigned a "Sporting Withdrawal (SPW)” for assisting in an emergency or as determined by the jury as in sections A.23.4.3, A.29.10, and A.31.16.
  3. Starting a course that is voided by meet officials.
  4. Completing a course at an Orienteering USA sanctioned class A-meet that does not meet the requirements of F.1.2.a, such as a Relay.
  5. Completing a course at an Orienteering USA sanctioned class A-meet that has fewer than five finishers (three for white and yellow courses). These courses will not yield statistically significant ranking results so will not count numerically towards a ranking score.

F.1.6 No more than two credit days may be used toward qualification for annual ranking.

F.1.7 Calculation of annual ranking points are as follows:

  1. For each qualifying person, take their best 4 daily ranking point days and average them to the nearest tenth of a point. Competitors who need credits (Section F.1.5) to meet their minimum requirements shall have the points from all their point qualifying competitions (Section F.1.2) on courses of one color averaged for their ranking in their class on that color course.
  2. Next, determine the top three ranked individuals on the course for the year, average their annual ranking points, and divide the result into 100, calling the result the Normalization Factor (NF). Multiply the ranking points of everyone ranked on the course by NF to determine their final ranking points, to the nearest tenth of a point.
  3. Finally, separate the persons on the course into their classes and list them in order.

F.1.8 Persons who qualify for ranking on a course shall be ranked in the class on the course that is nearest their own age, regardless of the class(es) they actually ran.

F.1.9 A person may receive annual rankings on two different courses, provided that on one of the courses, they obtain daily ranking points (no credits) for the full number of days needed for ranking, else they shall only receive ranking on the course and class nearest their own Orienteering USA age class. If they meet these more stringent requirements on one course, the second course need only meet the normal requirements.

F.1.10 Persons failing to meet the minimum annual ranking requirements for any class may be listed at the bottom of the class (in the unofficial rankings), with their points and number of qualifying days, at the discretion of the Ranking Committee.

F.1.11 Persons failing to meet the ranking membership requirement but meeting the minimum number of races requirement may be listed in their appropriate place in the rankings at the discretion of the Ranking Committee, but Orienteering USA regular members and their separate rankings shall be made clear.

F.1.12 Ranking Awards: At the end of the orienteering year those competitors meeting the requirements of section F.1.1 and appearing in the official ranking list shall be eligible for awards as follows:

  1. The top three finishers in the rankings in each Championship age class shall be presented the gold award by Orienteering USA.
  2. Orienteers in each Championship age class not receiving gold awards and acquiring points no less than 80% of the average of the gold award winners in their class shall receive silver awards.
  3. Orienteers in each Championship age class not receiving gold or silver awards and acquiring points no less than 70% of the average of the gold award winners in their class shall receive bronze awards.

F.2 Trail Orienteering Rankings  

F.2.1 The Trail Orienteering committee shall maintain rankings for all competitors at Orienteering USA sanctioned Trail Orienteering events.

F.2.2 Ranking points for each event shall be computed using the following formula:
Ranking points = [(competitor’s score/Winner’s score) x100] – [(competitor’s time/maximum time score) x (100/Winner’s score)]

F.2.3 The Winner’s Score shall be the highest score earned at each event by a competitor who is eligible to represent the U.S. in international competition.

F.2.4 The maximum time score is equal to 120 times the number of valid timed controls.

F.2.5 The top three scores for each competitor from the last seven ranking events are averaged to determine overall ranking. Apparent ties are resolved to the 4th decimal place.

F.2.6 For competitors with fewer than three scores, zeroes shall be used in place of the missing scores.

F.2.7 Trail Orienteering Event Directors and Course Setters receive a credit equal to their top result. No more than one credit shall be used in determining the overall ranking score.

F.3 Appendix A – Rankings Change History

  • 2013.08.01 —  Change in membership requirements from "member” to “regular member” in accordance with bylaws change (AGM 7/27/2013; BOD 7/27/2013)

G. Rules for Orienteering USA Teams

G.1 Senior Team

G.1.1 The U.S. Senior Team is a designated group of advanced competitors that exists to promote and encourage the highest possible competitive standards among U.S. orienteers and to represent the United States at international events.

G.1.2 The Senior Team shall hold an annual meeting to hold appropriate elections and vote on necessary Team business.

G.1.3 The Senior Team staff personnel are:

  1. The Executive Steering Committee (ESC) consists of up to seven members, who set policy for the Team. The ESC shall be elected by the Team at its annual meeting. The ESC members shall serve staggered two-year terms. The selections shall be sent to the Orienteering USA Board Member in charge of teams.
  2. The Team Administrator, who is the administrative leader of the Team, shall be appointed by the ESC for a two-year term.
  3. The Team Coach is in charge of Team training and development. The team coach shall be appointed by the ESC for a one-year term with the option to renew after an annual review.
  4. Additional personnel may be appointed by the ESC.

G.1.4 Senior Team reports: Reports on policy-setting activities from the Chair of the ESC and reports on policy execution from the Team Administrator, Coach, and heads of any committees designated by the ESC should be sent to the Orienteering USA Board Member in charge of teams.

G.1.5 Senior Team Staff policy negation: If the Team Administrator, Coach or any committee head is in disagreement with policies set forth for him/her to execute, the Orienteering USA Board Member assigned for teams shall, at last resort, act as an arbitrator while the two parties work out a compromise.

G.1.6 Selection Rules for the Senior Team

G.1.6.1 Senior Team Selection Committee: Each year a three person committee composed of an ESC member chosen by the ESC, and two others approved by the ESC shall initially select the members of the Team. This Team Selection Committee cannot include active Team members. The Senior Team Selection Committee may add team members at any time during the year.

G.1.6.2 Senior Team selection is based on:

  1. The results of national and international competition.
  2. Dedication to the sport of Orienteering.
  3. Demonstration of sporting attitude.

G.1.6.3 All Team members shall comply with the athlete agreement set forth by the ESC and approved by the Board Member in charge of teams.

G.1.6.4 Senior Team members must be regular members of Orienteering USA and United States citizens.

G.1.7 Selection Rules for the World Orienteering Championships (WOC)

G.1.7.1 The makeup of the U.S. Team to the World Orienteering Championships (the WOC Team) is based primarily on the results of a team selection competition (the Team Trials) held during the period 2 to 4 months before the WOC. This competition can be held as part of an A-meet, or it can be a separate event, subject to the regulations of a normal A-meet, except that only the M-21+ and F-21+ categories are required.

G.1.7.2 Designation of a meet as the Team Trials shall be made jointly by the Team ESC and the Orienteering USA Sanctioning Committee. The meet must be, at a minimum, open to all persons eligible to represent the USA at the WOC. The Team Trials shall have at least two races.

G.1.7.3 Team Trials Scoring Method: The Team ESC shall decide on the scoring method, which shall be announced in the meet invitation.

G.1.7.4 The scoring method shall be based on the results (times, points, and/or place numbers) of the Team Trials, and, optionally, may also be based in part on Orienteering USA rankings (not including the results of any night-O in the rankings), other Orienteering USA A-event results, or IOF World Rankings.

G.1.7.5 The scoring method shall generate an ordered list of competitors, hereafter called the scoring list.

G.1.7.6 If no scoring method is announced, then the scoring shall be the same as at the previous Team Trials

G.1.7.7 Team Trials Review Panel: A Review Panel consisting of a minimum of three persons and a maximum of five persons shall be named by the ESC and approved by the Orienteering USA Board Member assigned for teams. The members of the Review Panel shall be listed in the meet registration information. The majority of the members of the Review Panel shall have no direct affiliation with the US Standing Team (ESC members, Team members or coaching staff). The Review Panel members need not be in attendance at the Team Trials if suitable arrangements (e.g. telephone, internet) can be arranged for discussion.

G.1.7.8 Team Candidacy Declarations and Eligibility: On the entry form for the Team Trials, each competitor shall declare his/her candidacy. A competitor is a candidate for the WOC team if he/she is:

  1. A current Orienteering USA regular member and holds a United States Passport at least 48 hours before the first start on the first day of the Team Trials.
  2. Intending to participate in the WOC if he/she earns a slot on the WOC Team. Competitors may revise their candidate status up until 48 hours before the first start on the first day of the Team Trials.
  3. In compliance with the athlete agreement set forth by the ESC and approved by the Board Member in charge of teams. A 30 day grace period shall be allowed to come into compliance with said policies.

G.1.7.9 Competitors who are not candidates may, at the discretion of the meet organizers, be started in a separate start window from the WOC team candidates.

G.1.7.10 Number of Selections and Team Trial scoring: The WOC Team (for women, and similarly for men) shall consist, at a minimum, of the number of competitors required to make up a WOC relay team, plus one. At the current time, this number is four (four men and four women). The maximum is 5 men and 5 women. Under normal circumstances, these shall be taken from the top (four) candidates from the scoring list at the Team Trials. If one of the members of the WOC Team is not able to attend, the next highest placed person on the scoring list shall be substituted.

G.1.7.11 The threshold for taking a 5th member shall be determined by the ESC and announced in the Team Trials invitation.

G.1.7.12 Exceptions to the Scoring List: The Review Panel shall be allowed, under certain circumstances, to make a maximum of two exceptions to the scoring list (two men and two women). In such cases, these people shall be inserted into the scoring list in positions designated by the Review Panel, and the rest of the names shall be shifted down.

G.1.7.13 A person already on the scoring list may be inserted (moved) into a higher place on the list, but may NOT be moved to a lower place on the list.

G.1.7.14 One of the insertions may be (but need not be) in the top four. The second insertion (if made) must be below the top four.

G.1.7.15 A candidate for a scoring exception shall submit a petition to the ESC requesting consideration for an exception. Specific information regarding to whom petitions should be submitted shall appear in the meet invitation. Petitions shall come from the petitioner, and may not be submitted on behalf of other people.

  1. For a candidate who competes at the Team Trials, this petition must be submitted within one hour of the competitor's reporting to the finish on the final day of the Team Trials, and explain the circumstances why he/she was not able to produce a representative result (e.g. illness, organizers error resulting in an unfair situation, etc.).
  2. For candidates who do not compete at the Team Trials, the petition must be submitted before the first start on the final day of the Team Trials, and explain why he/she was unable to attend.

G.1.7.16 A candidate for a scoring exception must meet one of the following criteria:

  1. Be ranked in the top 3 WOC-eligible people in M/F-21+ for the most recent 12-month Orienteering USA Rankings. (Rankings for the period from 0 to 12 months before the Team Trials)
  2. Have won one (or more) of:
    1. the last 2 day Classic Champs preceding the Team Trials (combined result),
    2. the last Sprint, Middle, or Long Champs preceding the Team Trials,
    3. any race of the Team Trials itself
  3. Be unranked or have no US Champs result due to living outside of North America for at least 6 of the previous 12 months preceding the team trials, and submit along with the petition a summary of his/her (foreign) competition results and world ranking (if available) for the preceding year.

G.1.7.17 WOC and Exception Eligibility Determination: The Team ESC has the responsibility of determining who is eligible for the U.S. WOC Team, based on citizenship requirements, and who is eligible to submit petitions, based on U.S. Team eligibility, rankings, and championship results. Any questions about who is or is not eligible to submit a petition shall be answered by the ESC. The ESC shall forward all eligible petitions to the Review Panel.

G.1.7.18 Grievance Process: The evaluation of petitions and the circumstances described therein shall be the sole decision of the Review Panel. In cases where malfeasance or corruption on the part of the Review Panel is alleged, a grievance may be filed with the Orienteering USA Grievance Committee, which may call for a new Review Panel to be convened.

G.1.8 Selection Rules for the World University Orienteering Championships

G.1.8.1 The World University Orienteering Championships (WUOC) are conducted every two years in even years and are sanctioned through the International University Sports Federation (FISU).

G.1.8.2 The U.S. WUOC Team shall be determined in part at the U.S. Intercollegiate Championships prior to the WUOC by automatically selecting the top three men and top three women from among the eligible competitors on the Intercollegiate Varsity course. Any additional men and women and alternates shall be selected by a WUOC Team Selection Committee appointed by the Senior Team Executive Steering Committee and based upon the selection policy set forth by the ESC.

G.1.9 Authorization for Elite Competition

G.1.9.1 The Senior Team Executive Steering Committee shall have the authority to determine teams and entries for any other Elite International Foot Orienteering Competitions requiring Federation authorized entries.

G.2 Junior Team

G.2.1 The U.S. Junior Team consists of two designated groups: the Junior Development Team, and the Junior Standing Team (including those selected for the Junior World Orienteering Championships – JWOC). These Teams exist to recognize and support orienteers of age 20 and under and to promote and encourage the highest possible competitive standards among them.

G.2.2 The Junior Team Leadership is:

  1. The Junior Team Executive Steering Committee (JTESC), which is responsible for the development of junior-age orienteers in the USA. Members of the JTESC shall be appointed by the Orienteering USA Vice President in charge of competition. As a committee they
    1. Set team policy, including JWOC team Selection Criteria.
    2. Recommend appointees for the positions of Junior Team Administrator and Junior Team Coach to the Orienteering USA Vice President of Competition.
    3. . Shall be responsible for proposing to Orienteering USA an annual Junior Team budget and for administering allocated funds and donations.
    4. Evaluate and recommend possible changes to rules for Interscholastic and Intercollegiate competition.
    5. Coordinate with Orienteering USA clubs to identify promising juniors
    6. Provide training opportunities, coaching, and other support for Team members.
  2. The Junior Team Administrator, who is responsible for financial and administrative support of the Team, including entries and other arrangements for JWOC. The Team Administrator shall be an automatic member of the JTESC.
  3. The Junior Team Coach, who is in charge of Team training and development of individual athletes. The Team Coach shall be an automatic member of the JTESC.
  4. Any additional subordinate personnel, who may be appointed by the JTESC, Team Administrator, or Team Coach.

G.2.3 The Junior Team Administrator and Junior Team Coach shall be appointed each year approximately one month after the conclusion of JWOC by the Orienteering USA Vice President in charge of competition or designee, who shall take into consideration the recommendations of the JTESC for appointing those positions.

G.2.4 Each year the JTESC shall select the members of the Development and Standing Teams. Potential selectees may be brought to the attention of the JTESC by any individual or organization associated with orienteering. The selections shall be based on:

  1. Competitive results and/or Orienteering USA Rankings
  2. Dedication to the sport of Orienteering
  3. Demonstrating a sporting attitude

G.2.5 Junior Team members must be regular members of Orienteering USA.

G.2.6 The JTESC may add or remove team members at any time, taking into consideration the recommendations of the Junior Team Coach and/or Junior Team Administrator.

G.2.7 Selection Rules for the Junior World Orienteering Championships

G.2.7.1  The makeup of the U.S. Team to the Junior World Orienteering Championships (JWOC Team) shall be primarily based on an objective assessment of navigation and speed, as evidenced by rankings, performance at national level competitions, selection competitions and other designated competitions during the most recently completed Selection Period.

G.2.7.2  Each year, the JTESC shall determine the Selection Period and Selection Criteria for the following year’s JWOC Team selection. The criteria shall be objective in nature and shall define a system under which candidates can clearly determine before the start of the Selection Period how they will be assessed for selection purposes.

G.2.7.3  JTESC shall announce the Selection Period and Selection Criteria annually, prior to the beginning of the Selection Period. The announcement shall be disseminated through Junior Team e-mail lists, and other communication methods, so as to reach as many juniors as possible. The announcement shall also set forth the date by which the selections shall be made and the last day for filing petitions.

G.2.7.4  The Selection Period shall be a twelve-month period ending on a cut-off date in the month of April. Determination of the Selection Period shall take into consideration the schedule and location of major events to maximize the opportunity for juniors to participate.

G.2.7.5  The JWOC team size shall be up to the maximum allowed by the IOF (currently 6 males and 6 females).

G.2.7.6  JWOC Team selections based on the Selection Criteria shall be made by a three-person Selections Committee composed of the Junior Team Coach, Junior Team Administrator or designee, and Orienteering USA VP in charge of competition or designee. All members of the Selections Committee shall be regular members of Orienteering USA. Selection Committee Members shall abide by the Orienteering USA Conflict of Interest Policy.

G.2.7.7  The Selections Committee shall determine who is eligible for the JWOC Team, based on citizenship and age requirements set forth by the IOF.

G.2.7.8  Any Junior meeting the eligibility requirements who feels the Selection Criteria results are not representative of his or her ability and who wishes to be considered for inclusion on the team may submit a petition to the Selections Committee requesting consideration for an exception. Juniors must submit their own petitions. Petitions may not be submitted on behalf of others.

G.2.7.9  The Selections Committee shall evaluate each petition and, where appropriate, may adjust the Team to include successful petitioner(s). Petitions shall be evaluated and decided promptly, and the Selections Committee shall inform each petitioner of its decision, and the reasons for its decision, in writing, through email or other means.

G.2.7.10  Decisions regarding the JWOC team selections and petitions shall be at the discretion of the Selections Committee. In cases where malfeasance or corruption on the part of the Selections Committee is alleged, a grievance may be filed with the Orienteering USA Grievance Committee, which may call for a new Selections Committee to be convened. In such a case, replacement Selections Committee members shall be appointed by the Orienteering USA Executive Committee.

G.2.8 Authorization for IOF Competition

G.2.8.1 The Junior Team Executive Steering Committee shall have the authority to determine teams and entries for any other Junior International Foot Orienteering Competitions requiring Federation authorized entries.

G.3 Ski Orienteering Team

G.3.1 A Coach shall be selected by the Ski Orienteering Committee on an annual basis. This selection shall be approved by the Orienteering USA VP in charge of competition and the Orienteering USA Executive Committee. The Coach may be removed at any time by the Executive Committee. If that happens, the Ski Orienteering Committee shall then select a new Coach (again, subject to the approval of the Orienteering USA VP in charge of competition and the Executive Committee) as soon as possible thereafter.

G.3.2 Authorization for IOF Competition

G.3.2.1 The Ski Orienteering Team Executive Steering Committee shall have the authority to determine teams and entries for any Elite International Ski Orienteering Competitions requiring Federation authorized entries.

G.4 Trail Orienteering Team

G.4.1 The U.S. Trail Orienteering Team is a designated group of advanced competitors that exists to promote and encourage the highest competitive standards for Trail Orienteering and to represent the United States at international events.

G.4.2 The Trail Orienteering Team shall hold annual elections to select a five member Trail Orienteering Team Executive Steering Committee.

G.4.3 The Team Administrator, who is the administrative leader of the Team, shall be appointed by the ESC.

G.4.4 The U.S. Trail Orienteering Standing Team shall be composed of the 10 highest-ranked individuals from each class in the U.S. Trail Orienteering Rankings who meet the following conditions:

  1. Have full passport qualifying citizenship for the United States.
  2. Regular member of Orienteering USA in good standing.
  3. Agree to be an active part of the team.
  4. Participate in Team discussions, elections, and fundraisers.
  5. Agree to represent the USA in International Orienteering Events.
  6. Subscribe to the Official Team communication channel.

G.4.5 If anyone declines to be on the Team the next qualified person down the Ranking list shall be selected until the Team is full.

G.4.6 Selection Rules for the World Trail Orienteering Championships

G.4.6.1 The U.S. World Trail Orienteering Championships (WTOC) Team shall be composed of the three highest-ranked individuals from each class in the U.S. Trail Orienteering Rankings who are eligible for the competition.

G.4.7 If anyone declines to be on the Team the next qualified person down the Ranking list shall be selected until the Team is full.

G.5 MTB (Mountain Bike) Orienteering Team

G.6 Appendix A – Teams Change History

  • 2013.04.01 — Full revision of JWOC Selection Rules section G.2.7 (BOD March 18, 2013)
  • 2013.08.01— Change in membership requirements from "member" to "regular member" in accordance with bylaws change (AGM 7/27/2013; BOD 7/27/2013)
  • 2014.01.01 — Team trials rule change to remove upper limit on number of races. This now reads “…at least two…” (BOD Oct 19, 2013)