As reported earlier, the Congress Week in Vilamoura entailed meetings of most FIS Committees. The FIS Newsflash has collected the highlights of several of those meetings in a number of the disciplines:
The Cross-Country Committee approved the World Cup Organizer Handbook that has been prepared to help standardize many aspects of event organization, and most importantly, to take advantage of the collective know-how developed over the years by all organizers. The Handbook will be a living document that will be further improved on the basis of feedback received during the first season in use. The Cross-Country Committee also strongly supported the idea of a mandatory, annual meeting for all the World Cup host TV broadcasters to discuss their production plans with their peers. TD training, especially the criteria and guidelines for TD education, was also discussed at length. Finally, the Committee acknowledged the need for it to better support the development of the Continental Cups, including considering the establishment of a separate Sub-Committee for Continental Cups.
One of the most important decisions during the Congress Week in Vilamoura (POR) was the approval by the Council of the final versions of the FIS World Cup calendars for the 2006/2007 season.
For the fifth time since 2002/03, the Viessmann FIS World Cup Cross-Country season will kick off on the Rheine promenade in the old town of DÃ¼sseldorf (GER) on Oct 28th-29th. Also for the fifth time, all the three Nordic disciplines will come together for the Nordic Opening at Ruka, Kuusamo (FIN) on 24th-26th November, which also represents the official start of the season for the e.on Ruhrgas FIS World Cup Ski Jumping and the Warsteiner FIS World Cup Nordic Combined series.
The early season highlights for the Nordics include the first ever FIS Tour de Ski for Cross-Country, from 29th December — 7th January, the 55th Four-Hills-Tournament for Ski Jumping from 30th December until, for the first time, 7th January, and the Warsteiner Grand Prix Germany for Nordic Combined from 30th December — 6th January. Besides the FIS Nordic World Ski Championships in Sapporo (JPN) from 22nd February — 4th March, 2007, the three Nordic disciplines will also be held together at the Lahti Ski Games (FIN) from 9th-11th March and at the Holmenkollen Ski Festival (NOR) from 17th-18th March. Oslo will host the season finals for Nordic Combined while the Ski Jumping season will culminate on the Ski Flying hill of Planica (SLO) on 24th-25th March and the Cross-Country skiers end their season in Falun (SWE) on 24th-25th March.
The Ski Jumping Committee discussed the proposals of the respective Sub-Committees which, based on the funnel system, had earlier been sent to the affiliated National Ski Associations for comments. After thorough discussion, the proposals were unanimously supported for presentation to the FIS Council for final approval. The approved proposals included a study on the athletes’ flight trajectory in order to provide standardized data and formulas for the geometric elements of jumping hill side profiles, the extension of the start permission time to 10 seconds as well as enhanced specifications for competition equipment, e.g. for the running surface, the shape of the jumping skis, and that of the jumping suits.
Topics on the agenda of the 55th meeting of the Nordic Combined Committee included the proposed ICR adjustments, such as the inclusion in the ICR of the duties of a Race Director Assistant and certain World Cup rule changes. These included new quotas for A and B World Cups, a limitation on the number of competitors in the last jumping round of individual Gundersen competitions to the best 35, and an agreement to trial a condensed sprint competition at an appropriate venue next season. This will include minimizing the break between the end of the jumping and the start of the skiing to 25 min. The Nordic Combined Committee also confirmed that the World Cup calendar for the 2007/08 season will be based on the existing three-period system.