World Orienteering Championships moves into new era

The days of the ‘all-in’ World Championships (WOC) are over, and the first in the new ‘forest WOC’ format starts on Tuesday in Norway. Athletes from 48 nations will take part in Middle, Long and Relay races.

The world’s top athletes have been making their final preparations for WOC in many different ways. For Swedish star Tove Alexandersson for example, an outstanding overall victory in the O-Ringen 5-Days proved her form and confidence. The men’s elite race at O-Ringen was won by Ruslan Glebov, Ukraine by a small margin. Relay test runs in the Norway training areas were a success for Tove Alexandersson and Karolin Ohlsson (Sweden), along with home athlete Magne Dæhli and Finland’s Miika Kirmula.

One Qualification, two Finals and a Relay
There are four days of competition, the first being the Middle Qualification. Here, a new rule has been introduced that gives all competing nations the chance to have a runner in the Final. For both women and men, the top 15 in each of three heats go through to the Final, plus the best-placed competitor in nations with no athletes in the top 15 – as long as their time is within 100% of the heat winner’s time.

In the Long distance, a quota system is applied. The number of a nation’s competitors in the class – women or men – is determined by that nation’s women’s and men’s results in the last two WOCs. The minimum number is one and the maximum three.

All nations can enter one women’s and one men’s Relay team.

Challenging terrain
Typical rugged Norwegian terrain is promised in the Østfold region, with pine forest on the hills and spruce with thicker vegetation and some marshes on lower ground. A single arena, at Mørk, is being used for the two individual finals and the Relay. Alongside WOC there are spectator races, and the organisers are anticipating huge support – some 10,000 day-entries in all.

Nokian Tyres World Orienteering Championships will break new records for live TV coverage, programmed for prime-time transmission in the home country. IOF’s LIVE Orienteering web-TV will feature top-quality pictures, GPS and commentary throughout all the races.

Race Programme
Tuesday 13 August:  Middle Qualification
Wednesday 14 August:  Long distance
Friday 16 August:  Middle distance Final
Saturday 17 August:  Relay

All live services; live results, GPS tracking, official results, maps etc will be published here:

WOC 2019 webpage: