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woensdag, maart 19, 2008

Belgian Universitary Championship cancelled

Seriously, this is the worst example of dictatorship in action the last years. Let's recap the previous editions (at least, those where I participated, others might add stories of earlier editions in the comments).

2004-2005

Race in Chiny (French speaking part of Belgium), with spare blank maps from the 2002 World Cup, organised by JN Debehogne. You have to draw your controls on a blank map yourself.

Snow, lots of snow. There were starting times. KUL runners start at their early starting times. The other runners just start whenever it pleases them. Winner is Etienne Van Gasse, his comments after the race "c'était un cross", our traces in the snow, you know...

2005-2006

Race in Chiny (French speaking part of Belgium), with spare blank maps from the 2002 World Cup, organised by JN Debehogne. You have to draw your controls on a blank map yourself.

Snow, lots of snow. No starting times.

Map: the same as in 2005.

Start: same start as in 2005.

First control: same first control as in 2005.

Second control: in a bad position, at least 200m off. Ridiculous. (Prébalise was in the correct position)

After the finish: guy at the computer says "Non classé". Of course, a control wasn't there!

The race should have been cancelled because of that, running for 10 minutes where the control should have been is a serious disadvantage.

At the prizegiving ceremony, one of our runners won the "starters" race. JND forgot about it and gave the medals to some random runners of the FRSO regional event.

Those who'd like to exercise their Dutch, enjoy what I wrote back then.

2006-2007

Disgusted by the previous editions, and given the equality of Belgian Communities, since the previous 20 editions were held in the French speaking part, Slok (=KUL) proposes to organise the race at the same time as the Flemish championship, in Helchterenbos. This is accepted by the BUSF/FSUB (universitary sports organisation).

Two weeks before the race (october), telephone call from the rector of ULB (Université Libre de Bruxelles), a good friend of JND, to the KUL sports office to say that "a fax was sent in March 2006 to announce that the French Speaking Universitary championship would take place on the exact date of the Flemish and Belgian champs, it would of course be unfair to change the date of their competition, since it was planned much earlier."

The guys at the sports office, of course, could not offend the ULB rector and agreed. No fax was ever received to announce the championship. In fact, I haven't seen a French Speaking Universitary championship on the calendar this year either.

The championship date changed to March 2007, during the interland match. At least we didn't have to draw the courses ourselves and the race was pretty well organised and was not in Chiny.

2007-2008

Race announced early enough.

Race announced for march 29. During Spring Cup. In the middle of the Easter Holidays.

Slok went to Spring Cup in 2006, we wanted to do that again this year. Since 90% of the runners at a Belgian Championship are Slok runners, we asked if it would be somehow possible to change the date of the championship. Response the first time: "non" (don't put election jokes aside).

Senior team meeting, Oudergem, second try, better prepared this time. Right after the discussion of the bad calender planning and after a petition, to check the international calender for important events when planning the Belgian calender, was signed by all athletes of the senior team.

There's a regional event a few weeks earlier in Schlommefurt, maybe that would be ideal. Response: the event in Chiny is already planned as a regional event too, if you guys don't come there, there won't be enough people there.

Sheesh, if the map 's good enough for a Belgian Championship, it sure has to be interesting enough to attract some runners to the regional event.

So be it, Slok is more important than Spring Cup, so race in Chiny, at least on another map. I guess they did not have any spare blank maps of the other map anymore.

The date of entry, was march 10, ridiculously early. (Entries for normal people who would like to run the regional event had to be sent just half a week in advance).

Only 6 Slok runners enter (the same amount as in 2004-2005 by the way, we had a 52 people bus driving with the six of us to the snow-covered Ardennes). The others have other things to do during the easter holidays.

Tuesday, march 18, e-mail from ULG (read once again, JND):

Madame,
Monsieur,
Suite au nombre peu élevé d’inscriptions, nous sommes contraints d’annuler le Championnat Universitaire de Course d’orientation qui devait se déroulé le samedi 29 mars prochain.
La décision a été prise en accord avec la Fédération de Course d’orientation (Monsieur J.N. Debehogne) et M. Jean-Jacques Deheneffe, commissaire aux compétitions à la F.S.U.B.
Nous vous remercions d’en informer vos étudiants.
Salutations sportives.

Come on, this must be a joke?

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