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Discussion: WMOC start list

in: Orienteering; General

Jul 7, 2018 3:38 AM # 
The WMOC website for the sprint qualification start times is currently linked to the forest qualification start list.

If you're in any doubt about your start time, you can check on the IOF Eventor website.
Jul 7, 2018 6:09 AM # 
Our only concern is that open course competitors cannot start until after the last WMOC participant (15:30) but the last bus back to the Arena is at 16:00! That seems like poor planning to me.
Jul 7, 2018 10:29 AM # 
Normal at WMOC that the Non-Champs classes get last spot in the start grid.
Jul 7, 2018 11:38 AM # 
We went to one several years back where not only were the start times at the end of the regular starts, but then when one arrived for the start, they had thrown out the start list and were starting people who were lined up. The line lasted over an hour!
Jul 7, 2018 6:43 PM # 
Terje Mathisen:
Have anyone seen the start lists for the final tomorrow? They were supposed to be here at 19:00, which is 1 hour and 42 minutes ago. :-(
Jul 7, 2018 6:53 PM # 
I saw them and now they are gone. I suspect they had to fix something. :-(
Jul 7, 2018 7:06 PM # 
Now back up.
Jul 7, 2018 7:07 PM # 
Fortunately they put on an extra bus for the open classes to get back to the event centre!
Jul 7, 2018 7:21 PM # 
Now published here although without the 10-1 next to runners' names. I assume you just work that bit out for yourself.
Jul 7, 2018 8:00 PM # 
It seems the Open classes are so underappreciated they don't even have results anywhere!
Jul 8, 2018 3:28 AM # 
You will just have to wait until your partner grows up tRicky. ;-)
Jul 9, 2018 2:01 AM # 
Couple of good sprint wins to down unders:-) Remember no-one travels further. Or as often, eh tRicky?
Jul 9, 2018 3:43 AM # 
I would say a win by more than 90 seconds is better than good.
Jul 9, 2018 4:55 AM # 
Or 100. You getting mixed up with Hermann's age? Oh right, we understate things down here.
Jul 11, 2018 12:18 PM # 
Tell me o internet, the middle final plays some part in qualification for the long. How does it work? Can you get into the A long without being in the A middle? Is everyone trying hard in the middle or do some hold back as they used to do?
Jul 11, 2018 1:01 PM # 
From the Bulletin, everything you wanted to know, maybe...

Some do move up to the Long A, even if they weren't in the Middle A, so I guess holding back is not the way to go.

How to qualify for the Long Final
The qualification system is explained in IOF Foot O Rule 12.24: The Long distance finals have the same composition as the Middle distance finals except that some competitors are promoted to a higher final and some are relegated to a lower final
according to their result in the Middle distance final.

Purely for the determination of promotion and relegation in this rule, any competitors who successfully completed the lowest ranked Middle distance final are regarded as having been placed, even if they were not placed in the qualification race and hence appeared in the Middle distance result list as not placed.

First, any competitors who have not entered the Long Distance are removed and all subsequent references are to the numbers after this has been done.

If there is a single Middle distance A-final in a class, there shall just be a single Long distance A-final with the same composition.

If there are only two Middle distance finals (A and B) in a class
⚪The top 25% (rounded down) of the B final are promoted to the A-final
⚪The bottom 25% (rounded down) of the A-final are relegated to the B-final.

If there are more than two Middle distance finals in a class the promotion and relegation is carried out as follows:
⚪The first- and second-placed competitors from each of the lower ranked
finals are promoted to the A-Final
⚪The bottom competitors from each final (except the lowest ranked final) are relegated to the next lowest ranked final. The number to be relegated is 25% (rounded down) of the number who were placed in the next lowest ranked final
⚪The number in each Long distance final are brought back up to the numbers in the Middle distance finals by promoting the next best-placed competitors from the final below.

If there is a tie of two or more competitors in the Middle distance final and they are in the last qualifying place for promotion, they are all promoted.

Finally, any competitors who entered only the Long distance competition are added to the lowest final.

It is not necessary to have been placed in the Middle distance final in order to be placed in the Long distance final.

In each Long distance final, the start order is in reverse order of the Middle distance final in which the competitors ran. For example where there
are two Middle distance finals, those in the Long A Final who ran the Middle A final start in a group later than those promoted from the Middle B final.

Within those groups the order is the reverse of their positions in those finals, i.e. the fastest starts last. Any who were not placed in a Middle distance final start in random order before those who were placed.
Jul 11, 2018 4:46 PM # 
Yep, that's exactly how this is supposed to work: You beat a bunch of people twice and then they end up in the A Final and you don't. Comment
Jul 12, 2018 12:43 AM # 
Thanks. I wonder what 11433 has to say;-0
Jul 12, 2018 1:55 AM # 
happy I did not enlist and end up being demoted. how can this be changed?
Jul 12, 2018 2:07 AM # 
What is the rationale behind this plan?
Jul 12, 2018 5:11 AM # 
Hmmm ... I can see some possible rationale. Mainly, a second chance for a deserving athlete who has a bad day on the Middle Qualifier, but redeems himself/herself with a good run in the Middle Final.

It seems, based on Vlad's comments, that promotion/relegation of 25% of each Middle Final might be too much. But, one way to look at it is that, roughly speaking ...
1) The top 37.5% of the field get to run two A finals.
2) The middle 25% of the field get to run one A and one B final.
3) The bottom 37.5% of the field get to run two B finals.
Is that so bad?

Fair or not, the goal is fairly clear, if you want to run two A finals, then you need to be in the top 37.5% of the field.
Jul 12, 2018 5:32 AM # 
My point is that these "good runs" in the Middle B are still worse runs than the "bad runs" in Middle A. There's someone's average performance and there are daily deviations. Even if you add max deviation in their favor, the bottom of those middle 25% don't get to the 80th average. (I personally know that from my Sprint experience.) Someone is welcome to crunch minute/km data but my feeling is instead of 25% the more proper number is 5 to 10 runners.

Mainly, a second chance for a deserving athlete who has a bad day on the Middle Qualifier, but redeems himself/herself with a good run in the Middle Final.

Then why demote at all? Where's that rationale? Surely an A Final can handle 100 instead of 80. The only rationale I can think of is "Arrogant Bastard: You Are Not Worthy" (do they still make that?)

how can this be changed?

I'll send a letter through the proper channels.

P.S. Brian, it is not the 37.5%/25%/37.5% of the field; it is only so in a handful of younger (35 through 45, roughly) and a very small number of very old age groups. For most groups it is these percentages of the top 160.
Jul 12, 2018 6:20 AM # 
That almost happened to me in the M40 final yesterday. I finished 44th in the M40A (top 45 to go through) in a time of 43:58 and yet the cut off for promotion in the B final (on a 700m shorter course) is a time of 49:18! The people who ran the A final in a time of 47:20 (46th position) or slower will get relegated.

Given this is the first year this system has been used, it will be looked at after comparing the numbers. 25% may be found to be too high a number (one of the other systems that was being looked at was based on km rates but the IOF rejected that). The winner of the B final in M40 yesterday clearly deserved promotion as he ran 9:59 clear of 2nd place in a time of 28:51.
Jul 12, 2018 7:15 AM # 
Yes M40 was one of my data points... I'd be quite interested in what Blair and Tom have to say... having firsthand experience... and being key decision-makers/inputters...
Jul 12, 2018 7:46 AM # 
Terje Mathisen:
@Tundra/Desert: This varies a _lot_ between classes!

In my own M60 you had to run in 35 minutes in order to advance from B to A, while you had to use more than 40 minutes to be relegated from A (same course length).

The second-best C, D & E runners had 33, 39 & 36 min. I.e. except for the second-place D heat wild card all of these had clearly much better runs than any of the relegated A heat competitors.
Jul 12, 2018 7:57 AM # 
Terje Mathisen:
I think the key here is that the 25% rule works more or less OK in the largest age classes (M60-75, all with 5 heats and more than 320 competitors) but not so great when there are only two or three heats.
Jul 12, 2018 8:05 AM # 
Here's a thought: Have the same courses at the A and B Middle Finals, then promote on time. I do realize there is the pre-existing "Starts for A and everyone else must be physically separate" issue, grounded in some dusty history of which Sharon gleefully educated us a couple of days ago, but it can be resolved by having the starts barely separate and the chutes from the start converge at the beginning-of-orienteering point.
Jul 12, 2018 9:16 AM # 
So if you have bad day at the middle final you end up in B final for long, even if you won the qualification race? I'd say both runs should be taken in calculation to determine who will run long A final. With some appropriate weighting. Something like

score = 0.5 x qual pl + 0.5 x A final pl

and for other finals
score = 0.5 x qual pl + 0.5 (B/C/D/E final pl + 0.75 x A_final_participants)

Lower score, higher the final.
Jul 12, 2018 11:27 AM # 
It's already pretty complicated as it is...

This has been used for the first time so I'm sure the IOF uber-geeks will analyse the results and tweak the rules to make them a little bit better for next year

And anyway, if you're in the bottom 25% of the Middle A final does it matter which Long final you are running? You're unlikely to win a medal in any case...
Jul 12, 2018 11:28 AM # 
I was thinking the same thing on the bus trip out to the model event today...

Terje, M60A was 4.3km versus M60B of 3.6km.

[edit] Oops my mistake, that was M60A and M65B (the two maps are right next to each other on the website). M60B was 4.1km so very similar.
Jul 12, 2018 11:35 AM # 
Thierry G was last in WOC middle final 2014. And then won long.
Jul 12, 2018 11:48 AM # 
if you're in the bottom 25% of the Middle A final does it matter which Long final you are running? You're unlikely to win a medal in any case...

if you couldn't qualify into the top 80 in the first instance, should you be running in any A Final? Perhaps the better answer from that you-are-unworthy angle is to not promote anyone, then, and just have a 60-person A Final. I'd be perfectly fine with that (no sarcasm).
Jul 12, 2018 11:52 AM # 
A finals are so much more interesting than B finals though.
Jul 12, 2018 2:20 PM # 
Here a runner would have got middle bronze, but got disqualified, most likely for the bug in SI (and organizer refuses to examine control units despite the known SI overwrite bug). And as a bonus he got relegated to B final and lost that medal chance too.
Jul 12, 2018 2:31 PM # 
In hindsight I personally would have been much better off not starting the Forest Qualifier at all. Then the next day go fresh against a weak field. That's going to be my plan for next year, unless they change things. Then I'd get the A Final I actually want and train for.
Jul 12, 2018 3:10 PM # 
Er...won't you need to have run the forest qualifier in order to be allowed in the long A final?
Jul 12, 2018 4:07 PM # 
Terje Mathisen:
@jennycas: No, afaik the rules specifically allows a runner with no valid result from Forest Q to start in the Middle E (or last) final, but outside competition.

If he then takes one of the two "wild card" spots in the E final, he will be allowed to run competitively in the Long final. This rule is obviously designed to allow a runner who gets DSQ'ed in the forest Q to still have the possibility to run in one A final.
Jul 12, 2018 4:51 PM # 
That's right.

Obviously there will be a review of the system after the experience of one year's races - whether there were any obvious anomalies, and how performances compared between the different finals.

Specific proposals for changes are welcome (and I've already seen a couple of good ones in this thread), as are identifying loopholes for us to try to close down :-). "The system sucks" comments without offering any alternative, not so much...
Jul 12, 2018 5:06 PM # 
If he then takes one of the two "wild card" spots in the E

There's no E, or D or C, for my age for the next 4 years. Only B. Assuming, of course, that there is no growth in participant numbers, and here O-Ringen's counts suggest a slow and gradual decay. So, not running in the qualifier provides the freshest and lowest-resistance path to the Long A Final.

there will be a review

Please also consider that the decades-old system was generally regarded to work well. Also, "the future" does not necessarily exist for everyone; even in the less dramatic interpretation there are running-ending injuries and, say, lifestyle changes.
Jul 12, 2018 5:40 PM # 
There were surveys (which should have gone to all 2016 participants) done after WMOC 2016 when the decisions were being considered. These showed:

- strong support for a middle distance
- fairly even preferences for either the current program, or a qualification for each of the three races (i.e. one extra race, one less rest day)
- if there were to be a single qualification race, strong support for the possibility of moving up through middle final performance (as opposed to the qualification race determining your final position for both middle and long).
Jul 12, 2018 5:50 PM # 
Maybe the total to be promoted to the A final / relegated to the B final should be a % of the entry for that class. (Basing it on number of entries rather than number of starters means that the number of promotion slots available can be published before the event)

If the promotion % is 5% then:
in a class with 100 competitors there will be 2 finals of 50 and 5 promotion/relegation slots
in a class with 400 competitors there will be 5 finals of 80. 20 will get relegated from the A final, replaced by 2 from each of C, D & E, and 14 from the B final - the same as now
Jul 12, 2018 6:17 PM # 
There were surveys

Don't recall getting one. It is entirely possible I did, and even that I replied.

the promotion % is 5%

That seems like the best proposal so far to me, better than mine, given the results of this week. If there were to be an additional Long Qualifier I personally would not have run either of the Middle races without much regret.
Jul 12, 2018 6:17 PM # 
Not the same as now; the B final still promotes 25% and also two wildcards from each of C, D & E. The A final then relegates the same number of promoted runners, which could be more than 20 (i.e. 25%). This is my understanding.
Jul 12, 2018 6:18 PM # 
Why have relegation at all? If there's a single qualification race for both M and L and you qualify, can't that just mean what it says?
Jul 12, 2018 6:31 PM # 
@tRicky That's not what happened - e.g. Jarmo Vaino, 60th in M65A, is in the long A final, while Rob Garden, 15th in M65B, isn't - or what the rules say - see vmeyer's post above.
Jul 12, 2018 6:43 PM # 
Ahh interesting, yes that is how the rule reads. My apologies. So in reality you are more likely to be promoted from C to B than from B to A if you have a good run due to the 'wildcards'. Here I was telling Rob yesterday that he'd be running the A final with his result. Shame on me. If only he'd been one second faster.
Jul 12, 2018 6:51 PM # 
Personally I can see the benefit of 'wildcards' from the lowest ranked final due to MP, injury or whatever but someone running in a D final (where there is A-E) is most likely there because he or she is not that good and yet with a slightly better than average run against a substandard field, can get immediately promoted to the A final.
Jul 12, 2018 11:06 PM # 
It's not good if a good competitor turns in a pair of presentable runs, and is excluded from the Long A-final (e.g. has a great run in the qualifier and is 76th percentile in the Middle).

It's not so bad if somebody does poorly in the qualifier, wins the Middle D final against a weak field despite being not very good, and gets a Long A final wild card slot.

Perhaps relegation from the A final could happen to only those who either DNF or fail to meet some time standard in the Middle.
Jul 13, 2018 4:21 AM # 
Why not have all Middle Distance races equivalent, and then go on added times for Middle and Qualification, essentially how it operated before. If you DNF or DSQ then tough doodoos, just like the old system. Simple to work out and NO wingeing
Jul 13, 2018 5:22 AM # 
Agree with Dick on the DNF/DSQ. There's no 2nd chance or escape clause even for the best orienteers at WOC, why should there be one at WMOC?

Regarding equivalent courses for Middle, can they ever be totally equivalent? The medals could be suspect if all the Middle finals are randomly distributed, so the best qualifiers would still have to be seeded into an A Middle final. For the others, which Middle final you are in could be random.

Also in line with WOC, why not reserve places in the relevant finals at WMOC for Regional age class Champions? They'd still have to run the qualifiers to decide their starting order.
Jul 13, 2018 6:25 AM # 
I now wonder if Efimov and/or Löwegren were aware of the consequences when they decided to not finish at the Middle Final.
Jul 13, 2018 6:28 AM # 
Thought this over night. As I see problems are:

- middle A final should be is about winning medal. Taking risks if needed like not checking codes. It should not be about making safe runs to get to an other final. This is why no-one should be relegated for bad performance in middle A final.

- having bad race in qualification and not getting to any A finals for it is just fair. Sure, some may make bad run just there and miss _two_ A finals, even rivals will not like if they can't get to race again biggest favorite at all, so there should be wild cards spots for those who are able show their potential elsewhere.

- 'A' finals may get crowded by local runners. They know the terrain type so they have advantage over those traveled from far who's first forest race in this terrain type often is the qualification race. So they may not yet be able the show the quality they will be able to show one or two races later in the final. For those locals behind the very top locals it is not that big deal to miss one A final, for someone who traveled half the globe missing all A finals will hurt a lot more. Medal final is also more interesting for everyone when it more international and not just like one the usual local races.

- you should know in advance how well placed you must be to get to any A finals without worrying what happens in other heats. For example being kicked out of final by surprise despite being 3rd in qualification is not OK.

- it would be great to be able to mix crowd at the low end of A finals a little in a fair, predictable way, instead of having essentially same list of names in both finals. More folks would get something to remember and tell stories at home.

So based on those I would now make it about like this:

Middle final:
- 30 best gets place to A final. If there is 3 heats, top 10 gets to final. No nationality based limits.
- after top 30 Q placings a runner will get to A final if there is less than 6(?) runners from his/hers nation already there. Until we have 60 runners.
- rest will get to B,C,D... finals based on their Q placings, nationality does not make difference.

Long final:

- 60 best paced in qualification will get to A final. No nationality based limits.
- two wildcard paths. One path for for those who ended up running in lesser middle final and one for those who got to run middle A final but didn't get to run long A final. These wild cards are for getting genuine medal candidates in, not for swapping runners at low end just for a change.

* all top 10(?) placed in middle A final gets place to long A final if they don't already have a place.
* sum up runners middle ABCD final placing and _sprint_A_ final placing. Two best (lowest sum) with that sum lower than 20(?) and still without place gets to long A final. So for example 17 place in sprint A final and second place in middle D final is about what is needed.

- rest will get to B,C,D... finals based on their Q placings, nationality does not make difference.

Figures maybe should be tweaked a little, like 80/40 instead of 60/30 to middle A final or what ever, the actual concept is the thing here.

Edit. qualification to middle would look like this with 60 runner A finals and 6 per nation limit after 30 best.
Often there is still ~10 Finns/Swedes but for the second half the nation limit trades 11th and 12th Finn out to get the first CRO/BLR/AUT/SVK/NZL in.
Jul 13, 2018 7:23 AM # 
Or a much easier way:

You keep the promotion rules in place (maybe with fewer people and a fixed number).
But you ditch relegation. A great qualification run guarantees you both A finals.

So the Long A final would have a slightly longer start list than the Middle A final - does it matter.

In my view there is a big benefit in having clear and simple rules like this, rather than percentages and formulae.
Jul 13, 2018 1:19 PM # 
"Nation"/"country" is fluid at the WMOC. Are we going to have passport checking? Ugh.
Jul 13, 2018 1:34 PM # 
Plus it guarantees people from small nations will guarantee to make the final, no matter their skill level. It's also something else the organisers have to sift through in order to put together a start list. Didn't the start lists take long enough to determine already with just the top X number in each Q race? It needs to be somewhat simple, not overly complex.
Jul 13, 2018 2:23 PM # 
So... to my Long A Final, 23 runners were promoted from the Middle B. And they placed...

40, 42, 50, 56–58, 61–63, 65, 67, 69–75, 77, 79, 80, MP, DNS.

How's that for adding quality?

Objectively, wouldn't you rather have drawn the line at 10 to 12 promotions? (Obviously they didn't all place in the above ordered fashion but it's the same clear conclusion if I look at the unordered list.)

A symmetrical analysis of the B Final placings unsurprisingly shows the first 10 places taken by the demotees. We are then running out of the 20 demotees because several chose to simply not start.

Jul 13, 2018 2:28 PM # 
Mr Wonderful:
Yes, one question, why did orienteering create what I imagined were supposed to be three ostensibly different disciplines, then frequently use results from each of the three discplines to gage performance as a total or in the other disciplines? Is USATF not putting enough emphasis on the 10k times of its marathon trials podium finishers?
Jul 13, 2018 2:36 PM # 
Not nearly that simple... you use a Long to qualify for the Middle, which then disqualifies you from the Long! Truly at one with nature. Now if only you'd used a Middle to qualify for the Long, you'd have a much better chance! Stupid, you.
Jul 14, 2018 10:00 AM # 
Terje Mathisen:
Even though I had to run the Middle B final this year (which I've never done before, I've always made A finals with room to spare, but when I started 25 years ago we always had two fairly long Q races, a rest day and then the single Long final), I still think the current system is more or less OK.

There are obvious problems in the classes with few competitors, i.e. typically just two heats, but for the largest classes the difference between #80 and #100 in the Q can be very small indeed. You could therefore consider @jayh's suggestion of making the up/down counts a percentage of the total entry size instead of a fixed value.
Jul 14, 2018 11:24 AM # 
Yes, I will write and submit a proposal through our national channels. I plan on suggesting two alternatives, one exactly jayh's with the exact 5% but rounded up—so, say, in M45 the promotion number this year would be exactly 10—and the other alternative being a full-on additional qualifier. Key is that the proposal be acted upon quickly so that the less-popular categories don't have to suffer through the current arrangement for another year.

I also think it is paramount that the exact numbers be specified as much as possible in advance, i.e. on some Bulletin 3-like schedule, after entries are closed. That is: "In your category the top 27 in each of the two qualifying heats advance to the Middle A Final. After the Middle Final the bottom 6 get demoted A to B" (assuming 110 total runners). The timing of this announcement should be specified in IOF Rules, so that people who go to bed early don't wake up to unexpected news, given how late the results were produced this year and how few runners understood the qualifying scheme in its entirety.

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