2015 JWOC Team Selection Criteria

The Junior Team Executive Steering Committee (JTESC) is pleased to announce the Criteria that will be used to select the United States' 2015 JWOC Team. We would like to apologize for the late date of this announcement. The Orienteering USA rules state that these criteria should be released at the start of a new selection period, which for 2015 was in April 2014. Due to the busy schedules of all JTESC members, seven weeks of European travel for me and the Team, and the desire to improve upon the selection process from last year, it took the Committee this long to finalize Selection Criteria that are fair, clear, and continue to move the junior program forward.

I would like to highlight a few key changes in the 2015 Criteria...

The first, most important change is the transition from a time-based scoring system to a place-based scoring system. After running some tests on the results from 2014, the team selected using the new scoring system was the same. We have chosen to go with this scoring method because we would like to emphasize head-to-head competition and reward placing over time differences. With this new scoring method the possibility of ties is more likely. As part of the Selection Criteria there is a specific process the Selections Committee will follow to break ties. Please see the Criteria (below) for more detail.

The second significant change to the Selection Criteria is the possibility for earning bonus points based on a 3k time standard. Please see the Physical Fitness section in the Criteria for more details.

Finally we have decided to designate the 2014 North American Orienteering Championships (NAOC) races as the back-up for the JWOC Selection Races. NAOC was chosen for its competitive depth, its similarity to international competition, and the desire of the JTESC to make it a priority race to all juniors interested in making the 2015 JWOC team. Should any Selection Race be voided, the Selections Committee will use the results of the corresponding NAOC race with the same scoring method as for the Selection Races. Unfortunately, if this highly unlikely situation should present itself, any athlete who did not race in the M-20 or F 20 categories at NAOC would be at a significant disadvantage to athletes who did compete. Again, due to the lateness of this announcement, we understand that this could be problematic for anyone who is not planning to attend NAOC2014. The committee felt that the likelihood of needing to use any NAOC races as back-ups is quite low. If a situation arises where the Selections Committee uses NAOC in place of a voided race, an athlete who was not in attendance may use the petition process as a means to receive a score for the voided race.

There are a few other changes. The above three are the most significant. Should you have questions about the Criteria, please email me at erinschirm [at] gmail [dot] com.

Thank you, everybody, for your time and patience.

Erin Schirm
U.S. Junior Team Coach and JTESC

August 30, 2014

2015 JWOC Team Selection Criteria  

The JWOC Selections Committee will choose up to six young male and six young female athletes to represent the USA at the Junior World Championships in 2015. The Selection Committee may also choose alternates to be prepared to step in should the need arise, using the same selection criteria. If a selected athlete declines to attend JWOC, then the Junior Team Coach may replace them with the next qualified junior. The Coach may also choose to leave that place on the team empty.

The Selection Criteria for the 2015 USA JWOC team are defined as follows:

Declaration of Candidacy and Eligibility

In order to be considered a candidate for 2015 JWOC Selection, a junior (born in 1995 or later) must declare his/her intent. The timeframe and procedure for declaration will be included in the Selection Races announcement.

Any Junior who declares his/her intention to be a candidate for the 2015 JWOC Team must be a U.S. citizen, and either hold a current U.S. passport that will remain valid through the 2015 JWOC competition period, or be able to obtain a valid U.S. Passport at least one month prior to the JWOC competition. He/she must also be a member of Orienteering USA in good standing, both currently and though the 2015 JWOC competition period (this might require membership renewal well in advance of expiration).

Scoring List

An ordered list of candidates, known as the Scoring List, will be generated from the candidates’ Overall Selection Scores. The Overall Selection Score will have 5 components:

  1. Ranking Score - using a 20 point scale
  2. Selection Event Sprint Race Score - using a 15 point scale
  3. Selection Event Middle Race Score - using a 15 point scale
  4. Selection Event Long Race Score - using a 15 point scale
  5. Fitness Score based on 3k running time - worth 2 points if the standard is met

Selection Period

The Selection Period started with the April 2014 West Point A-meet, and will end on April 6, 2015.

Selection Races

The three Selection Races (Sprint, Middle, and Long) will take place on one weekend during the above selection period (including the Friday before or the Monday after), as part of one overall event.

If a suitable event cannot be designated for Selection Races, JTESC will organize Selection Races exclusively for JWOC Candidates.

The dates and location(s) and other details of the Selection Races will be announced no fewer than 4 months in advance, in the Junior Team section of the Orienteering USA website, as well as through e-mail lists, social media and other communication methods, so as to reach as many juniors as possible.

In the event that a Selection Race course is voided, scoring will be based on the corresponding NAOC race. If a NAOC race is invalidated, the Selection Committee will decide whether and how to evaluate JWOC candidates for that discipline.

Selection Event Scores

Each JWOC candidate will be assigned a score based on their finish position, amongst all JWOC candidates, within each Selection Race. The scores will be assigned as follows, for each place in each race:

1st - 15 points
2nd - 12 points
3rd - 9 points
4th - 7 points
5th - 5 points
6th - 4 points
7th - 3 points
8th - 2 points
9th - 1 point

Competitors who finish in 10th place or below, or do not finish the race, will receive 0 points as their score.

JWOC Rankings

The 2015 JWOC Rankings will be calculated as they were in 2014; that is, the same way as the Orienteering USA 12-month Rolling Rankings for the F-20 and/or M-20 categories, but including some additional races. The Rankings will include all Orienteering USA sanctioned races within the Selection Period. They will also include the following events if they occur prior to the end of the Selection Period: Interscholastic Championships Varsity races (ISVF, ISVM), and the Intercollegiate Varsity races (ICVF, ICVM), and the North American Orienteering Championships (NAOC). In addition, the JWOC Rankings will include Canada Cup (national events) F/W17-20 and M17-20 races in which at least one U.S. junior competes.

The JWOC Ranking points for each JWOC-eligible orienteer will be calculated as the average of his/her four (4) best individual JWOC Rankings race scores — similar to the way that Orienteering USA Rolling Rankings points are calculated. However, unlike the Orienteering USA rankings, a JWOC-eligible orienteer with fewer than four ranked races will have a valid JWOC Ranking Score, but it will be equal to the total of his/her individual race scores divided by four (4).

Selection Races will not be included in the calculation of the JWOC Ranking Score. However, NAOC races will be included in the calculation of the JWOC Ranking Score, even in the event that they are used as substitute Selection Races due to invalidation of the original Selection Races.

JWOC Ranking Score

The JWOC Ranking Score will be calculated using a 20 point scale in the following way based on the individual placement described in the 2015 JWOC Rankings:

1st - 20 points
2nd - 16 points
3rd - 12 points
4th - 10 points
5th - 8 points
6th - 6 points
7th - 4 points
8th - 3 points
9th - 2 points
10th - 1 point
11th+ - 0 points

Physical Fitness Score

Men and Women who meet or exceed the following 3k speed time standards will gain an extra 2 points. The time trial must be witnessed by the U.S. Junior Team Coach, or by a person designated by the Coach who agrees to be an observer prior to the time trial. Official race results may also be accepted, but must be approved by the Coach. The time trial must happen within the last two-months of the Selection Period, those dates in 2015 being February 1, 2015 through April 6, 2015.

3km speed standard

Women 12:45
Men 10:15


Each candidate’s Overall Selection Score will be calculated as the sum of:

JWOC Ranking converted to points using a 20/16/12/10/8/6/4/3/2/1 scale

Sprint Selection Race converted to points using a 15/12/9/7/5/4/3/2/1 scale

Middle Selection Race converted to points using a 15/12/9/7/5/4/3/2/1 scale

Long Selection Race converted to points using a 15/12/9/7/5/4/3/2/1 scale

Physical Fitness in the last 2 months of the Selection Period: 0 or 2 points depending on the athlete’s ability to run faster than the threshold time in the 3k.

Example: At the Selection Races, Sarah came in 2nd, 3rd and 5th in Sprint, Middle and Long, respectively. Her JWOC ranking is 3rd. Her scores, therefore, are 12, 9, 5 and 12. In addition, because she ran a 3km trial in 12 minutes, she has a fitness score of 2. Her total score is therefore 38. If this puts her 4th overall, and the Selection Committee decides to send at least 4 female athletes to JWOC, she will be on the team.

Breaking Ties

In the case of a tie between two or more athletes, the Selections Committee will use the methods listed below, in the order listed, to settle the tie. If the first method does not resolve the tie, due to lack of data or a continued tie, the Selections Committee will continue down the list until one of the methods is able to resolve the tie and an athlete is (athletes are) selected to the JWOC 2015 Team.

Examples of this could be: 1) One or more athletes are absent from the 2014 NAOC, 2) NAOC results are tied, or 3) one or more athlete’s have no ranked races from the 2015 JWOC ranking period.

1. Head-to-head competition in Sprint, Middle, and Long 2014 NAOC Races

A list in descending order will be generated from each race (S,M,L) at 2014 NAOC using only declared JWOC Candidates. Scores will be assigned using the same scale used for the Selection Race scoring, as specified above. The three scores will be added together for the tied athletes. The athlete(s) with the higher total score(s) will be selected to the 2015 JWOC team.

2. JWOC rankings

The Selections Committee will use the 2015 JWOC Rankings, calculated as described above, and the athlete(s) with the higher ranking point(s) will be selected to the 2015 JWOC Team.

3. 3k personal best times from the last two months of the Selection Period

The Selections Committee will use the descending order list from fastest to slowest 3k times submitted by Athletes for the 2015 JWOC selection process. The athlete(s) with the faster time(s) will be selected to the 2015 JWOC Team. In a case where an athlete has not submitted a 3k time, the Selections Committee will choose the Athlete(s) ​who have submitted 3k times.

4. Selections Committee Decision

This Method will be used only in cases where the first three methods have failed to settle the tie. The Selections Committee will settle the tie using their best judgment to determine who of the tied athletes is best prepared physically, mentally and has the experience to compete at JWOC 2015.


Any Junior who wishes to be considered for the 2015 JWOC Team, but has to miss any or all of the Selection Races, performs poorly in any of the Selection Races, has fewer than four ranked races, and/or otherwise feels that their Overall Selection Score does not reflect their qualifications, may submit a petition to the Selections Committee. The petition must be submitted by the junior herself or himself, and should address the following points.

The circumstances of the situation, with as much detail as possible.

Evidence of training and race results that demonstrate the junior is capable and comparable to juniors on the Scoring List, and/or other juniors above them on the Scoring List.

Petitions must be submitted no later than 2 hours after the conclusion of the third Selection Race. The Selections Committee will review all petitions and insert petitioners into the Scoring List of candidates as they see fit. Because the Selection Criteria are built around head-to-head racing at the Selection Races, the Selection Committee should not move petitioners ahead of others on the team unless the Committee has evidence that they are clearly head and shoulders above those other candidates. While the Committee will not be held to the following examples, for illustration, clear differences might include a 12-point difference in national rankings, or an 80% win rate in at least 6 national head-to-head competitions. While petitions may be accepted in truly exceptional cases, candidates should generally assume that they will not make the team unless they attend the Selection Races.

Selections Committee

As per Orienteering USA rules, the Selections Committee shall be composed of the U.S. Junior Team Coach, the U.S. Junior Team Administrator (JTA) or designee, and the Orienteering USA Vice President in Charge of Competition (VPComp) or designee. All members of the Selections Committee shall be members of Orienteering USA. If the JTA or VPComp is unable to fulfill her/his duties as a Selections Committee member, he/she may designate a replacement aka “designee”.

Selections Committee members shall be familiar with and abide by the Orienteering USA Conflict of Interest Policy (PDF; opens in new window). If a Committee member has an unavoidable conflict of interest -- eg, family relationship with one or more candidates -- he/she must recuse herself/himself from discussion of and voting on any candidates involved in the conflict. If he/she has four or more such conflicts, he/she should consider resigning from the Committee, and designating a replacement, as per above.