The Orienteering Australia Badge Scheme recognises the achievements of a consistent orienteering standard relative to one’s age-group peers.
The standard attained is recognised through a Gold, Silver or Bronze Badge. The year in which the badge qualification is achieved and the orienteer’s age-group are included on the badge.
Orienteers qualify for an OA Merit Badge by earning three credits at specific events within a two year period. The two year period commences on the date of the event at which the first credit is earned.
Gold Credits are awarded to finishers in E and A Classes whose times are within the Winners time x 1.25.
Silver Credits are awarded to finishers in E, A and AS Classes whose times are within the Winners time x 1.50.
Bronze Credits are awarded to finishers in E, A, AS and B classes whose times are within the Winners time x 2.00.
The events at which badge credits may be earned are:
- Australian Long Distance, Middle Distance and Sprint Orienteering Championships;
- Australian 3-Days;
- Long Distance Orienteering Championships of ACT, NSW, Queensland, SA, Tasmania, Victoria and WA;
- nominated Orienteering Australia controlled badge events; and
- any other special event or Orienteering Australia controlled event as approved by Orienteering Australia .
Each State can nominate two events per year as Orienteering Australia controlled badge events. Often States nominate their State Middle Distance and Sprint Championship races as their badge events.
For multi-day events it is the time used to determine each individual’s final placing that is used to determine badge credits not each day’s time.
Badge credits are transferable between age-groups provided the competitor is eligible to compete within each age-group i.e a M/W16 who progresses to M/W18 or competes in an M/W21 age-group can transfer badge credits; however a M/W21 who competes in an M/W18 age-group cannot transfer credits.
The claiming of a badge using a credit of a higher standard shall not exclude the future use of that credit to claim a badge of higher standard i.e. a competitor can claim a Bronze Badge if they have two Gold and one Bronze credit. If they then attain a third Gold credit within two years of the first Gold credit then they can then also claim a Gold Badge.
Individuals can claim their badges by applying in writing to John Oliver, OA Badge Secretary at firstname.lastname@example.org and paying the prescribed fee – currently $5.00 – although many clubs purchase badges for their members to be awarded at an appropriate function.
The fee is used to administer the scheme and any surplus over costs helps finance Australian Teams to World Orienteering Championships.
The Badge Scheme Rules are available as Appendix 6 of section 2.1 in OA Operational Manual at http://orienteering.asn.au/index.php/operation-manual/