The European Working Group (EWG) has decided, for safety reasons, to withdraw Israel of the organization of the European Youth Orienteering Championships EYOC 2013. The new application's process started immediately and now the International Orienteering Federation has announced the new batch of five candidates for the organization of the competition: Hungary, Italy, Poland, Serbia and ... Portugal!
In its page - http://orienteering.org/five-applications-to-organise-eyoc-2013/ - the International Orienteering Federation has announced the list of applications to organize EYOC 2013, between which is Portugal. After the World School Sports Orienteering Championships ISF, to be held in the Algarve next April, and the World Masters MTB Orienteering Championships / World Cup MTB Orienteering, which will take place in the Alentejo Coast in October, portuguese orienteering opens a new international front.
Augusto Almeida, President of the Portuguese Orienteering Federation, said to the Portuguese Orienteering Blog that the idea for this application "came immediately after we learn that Israel would not organize the EYOC 2013, either for security in the region, whether by poor adherence manifested by the European countries."
"This is a winning application, so the IOF decide to give us the event," says Augusto Almeida, basing its belief in a substantive number of strengths: "Interesting terrais, proximity to the Lisbon International Airport, adequate infrastructure - the central issue is the limitation that forces costs to have a low cost accommodation – and good quality maps, which in the past five years have not received competitions."
Event Center designed to Foz do Arelho
The responsible for the Portuguese Orienteering Federation recalls that "the fact that we are near the beach is certainly an advantage," since the event is designed for the western region, based in Foz do Arelho. "In this area, we have the INATEL's Holiday Centre for the accommodation and Event Center, which can be complemented by the Alfeizerão's Youth Hostel and several other solutions. This aspect will be better positioned than proposals that presents the accommodation in military barracks, for example. Regarding the maps, they can go from Peniche, Óbidos and Caldas da Rainha to the terrains of WMOC'08", concludes.
The issue of timings (31st October to 3rd November), immediately after the World Masters / World Cup MTBO doesn't seem to be a concern for Augusto Almeida: "Not at all. We have the human resources in quantity and quality to hold the event which is estimated to involve about 350 to 400 young people." Based on his optimism is, among other important and motivating aspects, "the enthusiastic response of the local authorities contacted to ensure the availability of the project."
Decision will be published in February
Asked to comment on the fact that Hungary, Italy, Poland and Serbia being our 'rivals' in the EYOC 2013's organization race, Augusto Almeida replied: "I think that the initial idea of IOF was to invite only the countries who had compete when assigning the EYOC'14 and were unsuccessful. After that, it was decided to open the applications to the European universe. It is a good sign to know that there are five countries available to organize such an important event in about ten months, so we can only wait for the decision and, in the case of being chosen, to start immediately the conduction of the project as planned."
The decision is now in the hands of the European Working Group and the final verdict will be announced on the first week of February. Until then, we can only wait.
[Photo of the Obidos Lagoon and Foz Arelho, extracted from the Blog ''The Third Dimension - Aerial Photography'', in http://portugalfotografiaaerea.blogspot.pt/]