A summary of the current situation and expected next steps for Ranking Competition Organisers.
This update is primarily for competition organisers – if you are a coach, parent or athlete we recommend reading the restart announcement here, along with the related/linked news posts.
Coming out of COVID, BF will be restarting U17, U20 and Senior ranking competitions. In addition there will be a new U23 ranking system based on competitive performances. BF is also looking at a new U14 ranking scheme, one that is not purely based on competitive results, to encourage U14s that wish to progress to GBR representation to develop a number of performance enhancing skills and behaviours early. All schemes will be made available for consultation.
Over the next few days and weeks we will be publishing more information which will provide the backdrop for competition organisers that wish to hold ranking events from September onwards. It is important to note that a) no international calendar has yet been provided and b) restrictions are likely to be in place for both domestic and international events.
With all the factors and uncertainty we cannot at this stage guarantee that any competition retains its former U17 & U20 BRC status.
Our primary goals for the upcoming season are to create a structure of ranking competitions that support GBR athlete development experience and GBR selection.
The decision was taken to provide young athletes with one appropriate ranking competition opportunity in July in light of the easing of restrictions and anticipated (but not confirmed) international opportunities in the Autumn.
In the first instance for July, BF approached those BRC organisers whose Apr-Jul 2020 BRC events were booked/confirmed and then postponed due to the Covid lockdown. We made the decision to only create 1 competition ranking opportunity per age group/weapon, this was done to allow athletes the flexibility to make individual choices around attending a competition or continuing training as part of their return to fencing.
We are aware that many competition organisers are changing the traditional dates of their events to take into account easing of restrictions and want to apply to be a ranking event.
We are also aware that there are likely to be entry restrictions on senior competitions. At present, we don’t know what these restrictions are likely to be as they are likely to relate to social distancing measures. This will mean, however, we may have to review whether it is possible to use senior competitions as ranking events for juniors.
Following the publication of the final ranking schemes there will be the opportunity to complete expression of interests for running associated ranking events (noting the lack of certainty around international dates). Please note that U17 & U20 ranking age group events will be expected to run two rounds of poules (of sizes 5-7) and use the BF Membership Platform for entries.
Ongoing conversations will continue to take place with Home Countries (particularly in the context of Commonwealth preparation and U14 development). There will also be opportunities for Competition Organisers to participate in Community Discussion events once we have a draft schedule of a potential 21-22 competition programme.
To register your interest in running an age group BRC event from September 2021 onwards, please complete an application form here.
Note: The planned introduction of a levy on ranking event entries, which was previously due to start in August 2020 has been suspended until August 2022.
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