The International Ski Federation (FIS) held a FIS Calendar Conference in Dubrovnik, Croatia last week. The FIS Cross-Country Committee provided the following changes and proposals which were voted upon by the FIS Council on June 2. Of note, it appears the final race of next season’s World Cup will be a 4 x 5-kilometer mixed relay in Canmore, Canada.
Additional info from FasterSkier in italics. Otherwise, the information comes from a FIS press release.
Athletes and teams
- The Athletes representatives proposed the increase of the prize money. The proposal of an immediate rise of CHF 5’000 per competition was being outvoted by the proposal to evaluate the amount of a rise. The results of the evaluation and a new proposal will be presented at the autumn conference 2019 in Zürich.
- With an updated regulation of the race course access, the costs for the teams put into ski testing shall be spread more equally between big and small nations. The access will be limited by the number of skiers as well as by the opening times of the course.
(Last season Norway was allowed 12 athletes (six women and six men), 22 staff, and 22 “training” bibs for regular World Cups and stage events. The U.S. last season was allowed a team size of six women and five men, 18 staff, and 18 training bibs. More information can be found in the 2018-2019 Rules for the FIS Cross-Country World Cup. Section 3.6 discusses staff size whereas section 3.7 discusses training bibs. It appears that last season, any person with an appropriate “training” bib had access to what FIS calls the “warm-up loop and ski testing area”.)
- Additionally, the Sub-Committee will establish a detailed plan on the course access per format, evaluate and decide if further restrictions must be regulated in regard on grinding machines, track testing on OWG and WSC venues prior to events as well as on wax trucks and their power supply.
Tour de Ski 2019/20
- The final race of the Tour de Ski – the famous Alpe Cermis climb – will be held in a mass start format. ((This historically has been a pursuit start race.))
- A new, sprint orientated point ranking shall replace the current Sprint ranking of the Tour de Ski.
- The bonus seconds will be only awarded at sprint and mass start competitions.
World Cup calendar 2019/2020
- Minor changes of the World Cup calendar include: sprint F in Planica, Individual C competitions in Nove Mesto (replacing relay) with pursuit C on the second day.
- Program Ski Tour 2020 finalized
- Québec city/Minneapolis Sprint Tour finalized (Sprint C, sprint F, Sprint F – 50 World Cup points per race
- In the final version of the 2019/20 World Cup calendar the Committee agreed on including the first ever Cross-Country mixed relay race as the final World Cup race in Canmore (CAN) in 2020. The race format is defined with 4x5km C/F.
World Cup calendar incl. Tour de Ski from 2020/2021 and further
- The National Ski Associations are asked to come up with proposals for World Cup hosts for the streamlined calendar frame until the autumn meeting 2019 in Zürich.
Rules and Control
- During stage events and first part of pursuit competitions, an offence that is normally sanctioned with DSQ can be sanctioned with a time penalty.
- Precision of classical technique infraction: in interval start and sprint qualification any violation of classic technique will be considered to affect the results (due to better time and better FIS points achieved due to skating). The Jury will thus apply appropriate sanction
- Clarification of “Winner of the Day” and overall standing in a stage competition
- Winner of the Day – the fastest competitor of the day can be calculated and published as real race time on the distance of the pursuit competition only
- The overall standing in a stage competition will be calculated by accumulating results (actual times where tenths of seconds are truncated), bonus seconds and time penalties from each stage. The results of the qualification round will be used for sprint competitions
- Precision of the pit box area for mass start and skiathlon competitions with specification that only skis can be put in the pit box (no drinks, etc.).
- Editorial changes – ladies to women, he/she to gender neutral expressions
- Change of the terminology “ladies” to “woman” and implementation in ICR and all relevant communications.
- The nominations for technical delegates for the upcoming seasons are gender equal. This is not only due to the wish to implement more female experts in official positions but also because of the level of competence of the female applicants.
Future aspects development (extract)
- Clarification of the rules to participate in the World Ski Championships
- Overall concept for new OWG qualification system was well accepted despite that the frame still has to be defined.
- Model for coach education in all levels is under construction. This involves regional camps for athletes’ development and international overall camps for performance.
- FIS Development programme: summer camp 3rd to 7th September 2019 (Trento region) / winter camp 8th to 18th December 2019 (Val di Fiemme)
- Joint common efforts of initiatives from FIS Development programme and Youth & Children committee