Competition Rules

The competitions will be conducted according to the IOF Competition Rules as of 1st January 2021 and the 2021 version of the WMOC Manual. Copies of these can be downloaded from and

Model Events

The model events will show examples of the terrain types, the map quality, the control features and the positioning and descriptions of the controls. Further information about the model events is in the day-by-day information.

Electronic Punching System

The SPORTident punching and timing system will be used. Touch free mode (Air+) will be activated in additional to classic SPORTident punching. Both regular SI-cards and SIAC cards can be used. Without pre-registration the hire charge is EUR 5 for one day or EUR 20 for the whole week for a SIAC card; EUR 2 for one day or EUR 10 for the whole week for a regular SI-card. EUR 70 will be charged for any lost or missing card.
The SI card number that you provided in your entry has been entered into the IT-system and appears on your start bib. If for any reason you will be using a different SI-card, you must notify the organisers of the new SI-card number by emailing it to not later than 25th July 2021. Change of SI-card after 25th July can only be done in the Event Office for a fee of EUR 10.
SI-card numbers will be checked against competitor names as part of the start procedure.
In the unlikely situation of SIAC failing to register in touch free mode, the competitor must make a manual punch by placing the SIAC chip into the SPORTident station. In the unlikely situation of an SI station failing to respond with direct punch (neither a feedback beep nor a light feedback signal), the competitor must punch manually on the map using the pin-punch on the control stand.
If you have pin-punched any controls on your map, you must hand your map in at the Problems Desk before leaving the Finish area and record which control is pin-punched.
As most competitors will be using touch free SIAC cards, most controls will only be equipped with one SPORTident stations. Please pay attention that the feedback signal you hear and see is the feedback of your own SI card punch.
Note that at the recent European Orienteering Championships in Switzerland, where each participant ran with their own SIAC cards, quite a few SIACs failed to work. The lifetime of the SIAC battery is influenced by how it is used. In normal use it will work for up to four years and about 100 clearing cycles. A SIAC battery test station will be available at the WMOC 2021 technical model event as well as during the Start procedure at each race.
More information on how / where to change SIAC batteries is available at:

Forgotten or wrong SI-card?

If you happen to arrive at the start without your SI-card or with a wrong SI-card, you can borrow an SI-card (not SI Air+) from the start staff. Rental payment will be paid later. Expect to have a slightly longer checkout procedure in the Finish if this happens.


Competitors can make their own choice of clothing and footwear, except that shoes with spikes or metal dobbs are not allowed (nor are they practical) for the Sprint races. In rainy weather, slopes may become slippery and tracks may become muddy; trail running shoes or orienteering shoes are recommended for the forest competitions. Shorts and running shirts are recommended for Sprint races. Regular orienteering clothing including full leg protection is recommended for the forest races as there are thorny bushes in the terrain.

Responsibility / insurance

Liability waiver

You compete at your own risk. The organisers can accept no liability for injuries or sickness occurring either during the competition or during transport to and from the competition.

Safety and responsibility

The organisers ask that competitors use common sense in ensuring their own safety at all times. All competitors who take part in the WMOC 2021 and WMOC Tour (including model events) must consider any risks and take their own safety precautions. They will be totally responsible for any injuries which might occur to them during the races as well as for any accidents on the way to and from any event during the WMOC week.

Fair Play

The organisers encourage all competitors to act with fairness., competitors must not speak to each other during the races (IOF Competition Rules 26.1 and 26.2).


IOF Competition Rule 21.4 applies: Competitors must not use or carry telecommunication (voice or text) equipment between entering the pre-start area and reaching the finish in a race, unless the equipment is approved by the organiser.
GPS-enabled devices (watches etc.) can be carried provided that:
they have no map display
they have no telecommunication ability
they are not used for navigation purposes.

Anti doping

IOF Anti-doping rules apply,


Protecting the environment and sustainability have been extremely important to the organisers of WMOC 2021. Due to the unstable COVID-19 situation we needed to limit some of our plans, but it’s still a priority to minimise the event’s waste production.
We kindly ask the participants to:
– use the correct recycling bins for selective waste collection
– do not distribute flyers. We provide a board in the Event Centre, where everyone can put their flyers. Please use that instead of putting more pressure on the environment!
– share your car with other competitors
– save water
– don’t release non-natural chemicals into the nature

Start number bibs

All competitors will receive two number bibs in their accreditation package. In the Sprint competitions, one has to be worn so that the number is visible on the chest and the other has to be worn similarly on the back. In the forest competitions one has to be visible on the chest as for Sprint and the second bib can be kept as a backup in case the first one is lost. Safety pins will be handed out with the bibs.

Please complete the information on the back side of one of your start bibs with health data and emergency contact. This information could be helpful to the medical team in an emergency situation.
Lost bibs can be replaced at the Event Office for a charge of EUR 5. Start details for the Sprint Qualification and Forest Qualification races are printed on your start bib. You are requested to enter the details for the three final races (start number and your start time), when they become available.
The ten last starters in each A-class Final will get an additional start bib (numbered 1-10) for the Final in question. The original bib must still be worn and be visible below the new one. These start numbers can be collected by self-service at the start, near the entry to the start proper.

Start lists

Start lists will be published in IOF Eventor and on the WMOC 2021 webpage as soon as they are available. Start lists will be displayed in the arenas and at the Starts in all races. Start lists will also be displayed in the Event Centre. The start lists will also be shown on the TV screens in the arenas until the first results are displayed.

Start lists for the Sprint Qualification and the Forest Qualification races

The start draws, and heat allocation are based on IOF Competition Rule 12.22. For the qualification races, the competitors of each class are allocated to parallel heats by random draw. The heats of one class shall be as equal in size as is mathematically possible and no heat shall have more than 80 competitors. There shall be as few heats as possible; if there are 80 competitors or fewer, there is only one heat for that class. Competitors from the same Federation and placegetters from recent WMOCs shall be equally distributed among the heats. (IOF Competition Rule 12.22.) The heats are indicated by numbers after the age class, e.g. M65-2 is the second heat for M65 runners. The number of runners in each heat is as equal as possible, up to a maximum of 80. Start lists for the Sprint Qualification and the Forest Qualification races are available from IOF Eventor:

How to qualify for the Sprint Final and the Middle Final

The qualification system is explained in the IOF FootO Competition Rule 12.23. Qualification is based on your position in the relevant qualification race. The highest placed competitors from each qualification heat qualify for the A-final of the class. The next best competitors from each qualification heat qualify for the B-final and so on.
If there are between 20 and 160 entrants in a class, then they will be split as equally as possible between an A-final and a B-final, with the A-final having at least half the total number of entrants.
If there are fewer than 20 entrants, all compete in the A-final.
If two or more competitors tie for a place in a final, all of them qualify for that final.
Competitors who start but are not placed, or who do not start in the qualification race, may start before the qualified runners in the lowest ranked final of their class, but will appear in the result list as not placed.
Sprint Final: you must complete the Sprint Qualification race successfully to run competitively in the Sprint Final.
Middle Final: you must complete the Forest Qualification race successfully to run competitively in the Middle Final. If you are disqualified or fail to complete your course in the Forest Qualification race, you will participate in the lowest Middle Final of your class. You will be listed as having non-competitive status in the Middle Final results. However, your Middle Final result will be treated as competitive in determining the Long Final start lists. So it is still possible to gain a Long A-Final start place even if you are not placed in the Forest Qualification race.

Start lists for the Sprint Final and the Middle Final

Start lists will be available via IOF Eventor and the WMOC 2021 website. We strive to have these available by 19:00 the day before the respective races.

How to qualify for the Long Final

The qualification system is explained at length in the IOF FootO Competition 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.
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 bottom 10% (rounded down) of the A-final are relegated to the B-final. The number in the A-final is brought back up to the number in the Middle distance A-final by promoting the next best-placed competitors from the B-final.
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. Where there is a tie in the last qualifying place for relegation, all are relegated.
The top 4 from each qualification heat are guaranteed personal places in the Long distance A-final, if they start in the Middle distance final, but regardless of their performance in that race. Any who fail to qualify for the A-final according to the criteria above are added to the A-final as extra starters. If any failed to start in the Middle distance final, the guaranteed place is simply lost.
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 groups in reverse order of the Middle distance final in which the competitors ran. For example, where there are two Middle distance finals, in the Long A Final those promoted from the Middle B Final start earlier and those who ran the Middle A final start later. 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 within their group in random order before those who were placed.

Start lists for the Long Final

Start lists will be available via IOF Eventor and the WMOC 2021 website by 12:00 on Thursday 12th August.


All maps are printed on Pretex waterproof paper and will not be in plastic bags. Maps are drawn according to ISOM 2017-2 and ISSprOM 2019.
For competitors in classes M/W 35 up to M/W 55 inclusive, the scale of all the Sprint maps is 1:4,000, contour interval 2,5 metres; the scale of all the forest maps is 1:10,000, contour interval 5 metres.
For competitors in classes M/W 60 and older, the scale of all the sprint maps is 1:3,000, contour interval 2,5 metres; the scale of all the forest maps is 1:7,500, contour interval 5 metres.


Marked routes and areas out of bounds in the terrains are marked with red-and-white tapes. Hazards (like wires on the ground) that can be passed are sometimes marked with an orange tape in order to draw the competitor’s attention to the obstacle.


Warm-up maps will be available at the exit of the arena for all races, except for start 2 for the Sprint Final (where there is no warm-up map available). Warm-up maps have the same scales as the competition maps, but generally show different terrain types, than the actual race map. There are no controls on the warm-up maps. Warm-up maps also show the way to the start.

Control Descriptions

IOF Control descriptions (version 2018) are printed on the front side of all competition maps. Loose copies of the control descriptions (not water resistant) will be available in the start lanes as part of the start procedure. Competitors have 1 minute to choose and prepare their control descriptions but no tape or other equipment is provided. The maximum size of loose control descriptions is 26 controls – 180 x 60 mm. Each grid square has a 6 mm side. Courses with fewer controls will have proportionally shorter sheets.

Special symbol

Tank pit (only one control site in the Forest Qualification race). See a detailed description about the object there. Note that this is NOT demonstrated in the model event (as there is no such object on the model event map)!

Control setup

Each control site is equipped with

  • one control flag
  • one or two electronic punching units (SPORTident stations) in Air+ mode. There will be more than one punching units in high traffic controls, e.g. the last controls
  • one pin punching device for use if SPORTident fails

The control code is shown on the side of the control stand and the top of the SPORTident units. The code numbers range between 31 and 160. There are many controls out in the terrain, please check your control codes carefully!
Examples of the control stands will be available in the technical model event in Velence.

Sprint controls:

Forest controls:

Start procedure

You are responsible for following the correct marked route to your start area. The competition area is out of bounds until your start time. All the starts will be silent; it is your responsibility to be there on time. If you don’t have a bib number or an SI-card, you will not be allowed to start. If you lose or forget your bib number and/or SI-card, you can get a replacement in the Arena Event Office.

Clear and Check

Every SI-card must be cleared and checked before each race. Stations to clear SI-cards will be in the pre-start areas, near the entrance to the -4 min start box and in the -4 start box. Insert your SI-card into the “clear” unit and wait a few seconds until the unit beeps and flashes, verifying that previous data has been erased.
After clearing your SI-card, place the SI-card into a “check” unit, where the “check” unit will beep and flash immediately, confirming that the SI-card is ready to be used.
If you have a SIAC, an additional SIAC test will be available in box 2. To test your SIAC, place it near the SIAC test station until it flashes red and your SIAC emits a beeping noise. Start staff will be present to assist you throughout the process.

Start boxes

In the start area, competitors will pass through four consecutive start boxes and remain one minute in each one.

Box 1

When the clock in front of the first start box (-4) displays your start time, you enter the first box. This will be 4 minutes before you start. At this point your bib number, SI-card number and start time will be checked. If you have not already cleared your SI-card, you can also do it in this box, before checking it using the check box.

Box 2

In the second box, you can collect a loose control description for your course, but no tape or other equipment will be provided for environmental reasons. Please note that it is your responsibility to take the right loose control description! The SIAC test is also located in Box 2.

Box 3

The third box is for additional checks and control.

Box 4

In box 4 you walk to the map folder which displays class and check that the class on the map is correct on the front of the map. 5 seconds before the start, a clock will start beeping. The last beep is the start beep and is longer than the others. Your race starts at the start beep. It is your responsibility to take the correct map, please take only one.
From box 4 there is a marked route to the start point. The start point is marked with a control flag in the terrain and a start triangle on the map. The marked route from box 4 to the start point must be followed. The route from box 4 to the start point is also marked on the map and control description, ISOM 2017-2 – 702 Map issue point – is used on the map.

Late start

If you get to the Start after your proper start time you must report to the late start lane, where an official will tell you where to go. It is still your responsibility to clear and check your SI-card. At the control description and competition map pick up, you will be assisted by an official. You will be told when you can start which will either be immediately or at the next available half-interval (IOF Competition Rule 22.9.). Your start time will be recorded by punching a dedicated start SI-unit.
The results of competitors who start late will be based on their original start time with no time compensation. Only if their lateness is due to the fault of the organiser will your actual (punched) start time be used (IOF Competition Rule 22.10.).
If you are late, whether it is your fault or the organiser’s, do not discuss this with the start officials, as they can make no decisions about this. Instead, if you think the organiser is responsible, make a complaint after finishing the race at the Problems Desk before leaving the Finish area.


A large number of competitors will be in the terrain at the same time, especially during the Sprint races. Please be careful when running around corners and through doors in order not to hurt yourself, other competitors, pedestrians or cyclists.
Please take special care when running around restaurant terraces in the Sprint Final race – they are marked with symbol 714 – temporary closed area (area overprinted with 50% purple).
There are plenty of rabbit burrows (holes) in the Middle distance terrain, which are not marked in any way. Watch out to prevent a sprained ankle!


The last control is the same for all competitions, except for the Sprint Final, and is a red cow – see below (marked on the map as a black x). In the Sprint Final race, the last control is the side of an outdoor artwork (see below). From the last control, you must follow the marked route to the finish line.

Finish procedure

At the Finish

All Finish units also work in Air+ mode, so touch-free punching of the Finish units is also possible. Those having a traditional SI-card, have to manually punch one of the four Finish units. You must report to the Finish area, even if you do not complete your course. Your bib number must be clearly visible when you pass the Finish line.

After the Finish line

The schematic flow diagram below shows how the Finish system works. After the Finish line you will be directed to a readout station to read out your SI-card. The system will verify if you have visited all controls on your course in the correct order. Individual split times will be given to each competitor after readout. You must download your SI-card, even if you have not completed your course. If you do not download, you will be considered “missing in the forest” which may cause a search in the forest for you.
If you are using a rented SI-card and this is your last race, you must return your SI-card to the staff.
You should report to the Problems desk if the readout displays an unexpected problem with your punches. You should also contact the Problem desk if you started late and believe that it is the organiser’s fault.
You must hand in your competition map before leaving the Finish area (until the last WMOC start).

Map reclaim

New competition maps will be handed out after the last WMOC start of each race at the Arena Event Office. Used competition maps can also be retrieved, but this is not recommended because of possible COVID-19 infection. Used competition maps will be collected in two big boxes (one for men and one for women) without sorting.

Maximum running time

Maximum running time for both Sprint races: 60 minutes
Maximum running time for the Forest Qualification race: 180 minutes
Maximum running time for the Middle Final race: 120 minutes
Maximum running time for the Long Final race: 240 minutes


In the event of hot weather, remember to increase your fluid intake before, during and after the race to optimise your performance and prevent heatstroke.
Drinking water will be available at most of the starts (see day-by-day information) and in the Finish area in all races. The number of water stations on the courses is also shown in the day-by-day information. The water stations in the forest will be supervised by officials. Locations will be shown using the standard drink cup on the map or at specific control sites as indicated by the cup symbol in column H of the control description.
The water provided is pure and drinkable. We’ll try to keep it cold.

Arena catering

Arena catering will be available at all arenas except for the Sprint Final race, where different vendors operate in and around Alba Plaza. Arena catering opens on all competition days at 8.30 and closes at the end of the competition and will offer soft and alcoholic drinks and a selection of warm and cold dishes which will vary between days. All finish areas offer free drinking water. Fruit and snacks will also be sold.


Arena catering will accept payment by the following methods: Hungarian cash money (HUF), euros (biggest note accepted is 50 EUR), Visa and Mastercard.

Dietary restrictions

There will be a vegan option available for every day and a smaller selection of products for participants with lactose or gluten intolerance. Participants with other dietary restrictions are welcome to contact arena catering personnel and they will do their best to assist you.

Orienteering shops

Sports and Orienteering shops will be present at the Event Centre on 5th and 6th August and at all arenas.


There is no transport of clothes from the Start area to the arena. This may be reconsidered if the weather is extreme, and additional information will be given through the arena speaker.


Items found in the arenas should be handed in at the Lost and Found counter by the Event Office.


There are no showers in the arenas. There will be possibilities for basic washing in the forest arenas. Environment friendly soaps will be available.


Race commentary will be provided by Zoltán Szlávik (HUN) and Gábor ÁCS (HUN). Commentary will be in English with some information given in Hungarian.
Live results will be updated throughout the races in the arenas on and News, photos and video will be published via the WMOC Facebook page and the event website. Please note that you may encounter photographers anywhere in the competition areas – maybe even a video drone.


Individual split times will be given to each competitor at the readout. Live provisional results will be on display (TV screen) at each finish arena. You can also view results on your own devices – such as smart phones, tablets or laptops – via
The official results will be displayed as soon as possible after the races on IOF Eventor and through the event website. Split times (Winsplits) and RouteGadget will also be made available.


You will be disqualified if you miss one or more controls or do not visit the controls in the correct order. Competitors who fail to respect signs and other instructions from the organiser may also be disqualified.
In the Sprint races, entering forbidden areas or crossing forbidden obstacles will lead to disqualification.

Please note IOF Competition Rule 20.5.:

A competitor with a control punch missing or unidentifiable shall be disqualified unless it can be established with certainty that the punch missing or unidentifiable is not the competitor’s fault. In this exceptional circumstance, other evidence may be used to prove that the competitor visited the control, such as evidence from control officials or cameras or read-out from the control unit. In all other circumstances, such evidence is not acceptable and the competitor must be disqualified.
In the case of traditional (non-contactless) SPORTident, this rule means that:

  • If a competitor punches too fast and fails to receive the feedback signals, the card will not contain the punch and the competitor must be disqualified, even though the control unit may have recorded the competitor’s card number as an error punch
  • It is permitted for the organiser to read the backup from any control. A competitor can require the organiser to read the backup from a control, subject to a payment of 20 EUR (or 7,000 HUF). If the control is found to contain a complete (non-error) punch; the competitor shall be recorded as having punched that control correctly and the fee will be returned; otherwise the fee shall be retained by the organiser.

Please note that a contactless punch performed by an SI Air+ (SIAC) card is NOT recorded in the memory of the control station, thus there is no point in reading it out in case of a missing punch.


In accordance with IOF Competition Rules 27 and 28, complaints and protests must be made in writing (in English), using the appropriate complaint / protest forms, which are available at the Problems Desk.
Complaints should be handed in at the Problems Desk in the arena within 30 minutes of finishing. If the complaint is of personal nature, e.g. if you feel that you have been disqualified unfairly, the complaint should be made at the Problem Desk immediately. The organiser will consider your complaint as quickly as possible and let you know the outcome. There is no fee for a complaint.
If you are not satisfied with the organiser’s decision, then, within the next 15 minutes, you can make a protest. Protests should be made at the Event Office in the arena, using the same form as the original complaint. A Protest fee of 50 EUR (or 17,000 HUF) shall be paid to the IOF Senior Event Adviser in cash when making a Protest. The fee will be returned if the Protest is accepted by the jury, otherwise the fee shall be sent to the IOF. If a protest is signed by more than one competitor, each one has to pay the protest fee.
Protests will be handled by the IOF Senior Event Adviser, who will convene the jury. After due consideration, the jury will communicate its decision to the protestor. The protest fee will be returned if the protest is accepted.


There will be First Aid facilities in all arenas on competition days. The first aid teams will consist of trained first aid providers from the Hungarian Ambulance as well as volunteer doctors and nurses.
A first aid station is available in the terrain at all three forest competitions and is marked by a red cross on the map. The station is manned by qualified first aid providers who can summon additional assistance as needed.
In the event of an accident, illness or injury in the terrain or in the arena, fellow competitors are requested to aid the injured individual and to help summon assistance if necessary.
First aid is not provided during the model events.


Ticks. Tick-borne infections that occur in Hungary are as follows:
Borreliosis / Lyme Disease:
Tick-borne encephalitis (TBE):
If you encounter any ticks on your body, remove them as soon as possible. If you are concerned about a tick bite or about possible infection, please consult a doctor.
Immunisation against TBE is not considered necessary for WMOC 2021.
Lightning may occur during thunderstorms. Try to stay off the hilltops and don’t seek shelter under an isolated tree. Note also, that lightning mostly occurs in the afternoons.
In the event of hot weather, remember to increase your fluid intake before, during and after the race to optimise your performance and prevent heatstroke. It is recommended to bring a tent or an umbrella to provide some protection.


Individuals entering the WMOC will do so by submitting personal data to IOF Eventor, an IOF-hosted platform. From here, the local organisers will collect the data that are necessary for that individual’s participation in the championships including, but not restricted to, name, age, address, country, and e-mail address. During the event, newsfeeds, start times and results will be published on the internet and may contain individual runners’ name, age class, and home country.
The local organisers will not share the participants’ personal data with a third party, will store the data safely on the appropriate media, and will delete files containing personal data as soon as feasible after WMOC is finished.
By submitting an entry for and participating in or attending WMOC and its related activities, the participant / attendant acknowledges the right of the organisers to store said data until the WMOC is finished. For information on data storage by the IOF, please refer to


Professional photography and video production will be taking place at WMOC and these images may be used on future promotional materials for WMOC or other events organised by the IOF. By attending or participating in WMOC and related activities, the participants acknowledge that the event or part of it may be filmed by audio, visual, audio-visual or electronic means or photographed, including photographs of individuals or groups of participants. The participant agrees to permit the WMOC organisers, or any third party licensed by the IOF or WMOC, to use and distribute such footage and photographs, which may feature images of you, in all or any media (including social media) whether now known or hereafter to be invented throughout the world in perpetuity for the purposes of advertising, publicity, reporting and otherwise in relation to the exploitation of such recordings and photographs. Please inform the photographer if you do not wish to be included in any individual or group photographs.