Rule Changes for 2020/2021: A New Bib and Qualification Criteria Adjusted
The IBU introduced multiple rule changes including a temporary change in the World Cup Qualification Criteria due to Covid-19. The Federation also made permanent rule changes that include a new dark Blue Bib and Award for the top male and female “Under 25” competitor.
Temporary Changes Due to Covid-19 Impact
Two significant rules changes are temporary and will only be in effect for the current season.
The World Cup Qualification Criteria was adjusted, accounting for the late start of the IBU Cup season, which would be the normal route to the BMW IBU World Cup. Accordingly, for the first trimester only, each National Federation can register two athletes who have not fulfilled the qualification criteria. The start quotas for the BMW IBU World Cup remain the same.
At the same time, the number of scratch results has been raised up to four for the World Cup Total Score. Scratch results are also introduced to the Nations Cup and Discipline scores as well as the IBU Cup Total Score. In case the total number of competitions are reduced, the number of scratched results will be deducted accordingly.
Permanent Rule Changes
With the new season rapidly approaching, the IBU also made changes to the permanent rules which were sent to the National Federations this week.
The highlight of these mostly technical changes was the creation of the dark Blue Bib, which will be worn by the top competitor who has not turned 25 by December 31. The IBU “Under 25” Award will be handed out at the end of the season, replacing the IBU Rookie of the Year award.
Super sprint and shooting rules
Format changes were made to the Super Sprint discipline to improve the balance between shooting and running. The loop has now been standardized at 1.5 km and the use of spare rounds was eliminated. Due to the shortened IBU Cup season, no tests of this modified discipline are scheduled this winter.
Moreover, penalties have been adjusted for certain shooting range violations including cross-firing to the target in another lane and choosing the wrong shooting lane in competitions with designated shooting lanes. This will not automatically lead to a disqualification any more.
Parts of these rules need to be officially approved by the IBU Congress but have been published already due to the Congress date having been moved to November 2021 due to Covid-19.