Could you tell us how the ISF Championship is preparing? Where the competition will take place ? How many teams ? Countries ?
ISF Events are World school championship of many sports. One of them is Orienteering which is held every 2 years. WSCO (World School Orienteering Championship) 2009 was in Spain, WSCO2013 was in Portugal.
After Portugal championship, Turkey wanted to be candidate to host ISF WSCO2015 and , we (Turkish School Sport Federation) were happily accepted… In May 2014, Orienteering TC President Mr. Karl Keuppens and ISF EC (Treasurer and delegate) Mr. Guy Fusenig came to Tekirova/Kemer for a preliminary visit and examined the maps and courses.
Within the 11 months preparation, the maps have been updated and new racecourses have been established and sent to TCs. TCs have given feedbacks regarding the racecourses and maps. Meanwhile, OC has visited the region many times and opening, closing and award ceremonies and activities such as cultural day etc have been set up. The activity has been promoted within cooperation with local administrations and press and this promotion is keeping up. WSCO2015 Antalya will be in the region of Tekirova of Kemer in Antalya on 18th-24th of April 2015. 21 countries will participate with 600 athletes and 100 adults. The participating countries are;
1-Turkey, Austria, Belgium, China, England, Estonia, Finland, France, Hungary, Israel, Italy, Latonia, New Zealand, Poland, Portugal, Scotland, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Ukraine… We will be about 700 people from abroad and about 100 people from Turkish School Sport Federation, totally 800 international students aged of 14-18 will be together. Very fantastic cultural interaction awaits us.
Now there are only 3 days left before the championship, so excited… we are looking forward to our guests.
Do you have an ambassador? If so, who is it ambassador
Actually it could be nice to have a front-runner in our Delegation but unfortunately, I cannot tell anything about that, it depends on the situation, stress level of athletes because Orienteering is almost new sport in Turkey. New generation likes and tries to be successful in that sport but I think we need some more time
Is it an advantage to organize a championship to win?
It is really very difficult to organize Orienteering championship even if the country is new in that sport. Because Orienteering is very complex sport when compare with other indoor or ball sports. You need lots of material for orienteering competition eg. New maps, Mappers, course planners, electronic punch system (SI or Emit etc.), control flags, EKS apparatus, etc. etc… though, they are not cheap equipments… So it is not advantage to organize championship for OC (Organisation Commitee). For our athletes, it may be an advantage but only psychologicalyl, because as host country, they feel rather relax, and familiar with their cultural environment. On the other hand, regarding the competition all situations are the same for all athletes eg; new map, new courses, same strange areas… conversely, there is some pressure due to the increasing demands targeting the host country.
And last question, who are the favorites for you?
As origin of orienteering rises from Norway, Sweden and Finland, I guess it won’t be a surprise if a Scandinavian country is the winner.