Posted: 29 November 2012, 4:00 AM
A topic to soak up those frustrations in between trials, NZOF, EOYr silliness, pressy shopping etc.
Basically the word "sprint" for a 12-15min race is silly. 12-15min is not what the rest of the world understands by the word. Yet it turns off a large part of the (older) orienteering population. And we've got even shorter formats coming along. So for example Martin has had to use the term "ultra sprint" for something shorter. But even his courses (around 1km) are not the shortest orienteering format, in Europe they have a popular formula with distances of 100-400m
See http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3nv6SWVBRDU What do we call this, an ultra-extra-micro-sprint?
Now one solution is to choose completely unconnected words, as we did for nav difficulty. The big benefit of the colours is that there are no pre-conceptions about what "red" might mean, so you have to look up the definition. It's also easy to put in new levels if we want.
The other one is to massage the labels that we have already. So here's a scheme like that (avoiding words like extra, ultra, etc because they close off future options). I've allowed for distances that go up by a factor of two. Some of these distances are not common at present but you will recognise others. For winning times I'm thinking of mens elite.
A. Winning time 1-3min European label "Orient'Show" Suggest "Sprint"
B. Winning time 5-10min Martin label "Ultra Sprint" Suggest "Micr-O"
C. Winning time around 15min IOF label "Sprint" Suggest "Short"
D. Winning time around 30min IOF label "Middle" Suggest "Middle"
E. Winning time around 60min NZOF label "Multi-day" Suggest "Classic"
F. Winning time around 100min IOF label "Long" Suggest "Long"
G. Winning time around 180min European label possibly "Ultra Long" Suggest "Marath-O"
You see I've brought back in the word "classic". This was struck out by the IOF who didn't want any particular distance to have more kudos than any other. However the 1hr distance remains extremely common because it fits so many of the areas we have (whether in a multi-day situation or not). I don't think the term "classic" will ever go away.