Return To Competition – October 2020

Good Afternoon, Everyone,

Since our postponement in March, we have been continuously reviewing and monitoring the latest advice provided by the state government concerning a return to play for athletics.

On the 16th of September the state government released its roadmap for a return to competition. The process outlines a framework to reintroduce Victorians to sport in safe and measured ways.

Currently, Metro Melbourne is in the second step of this roadmap, while regional Victoria has moved to the third step. In regional Victoria, this third step has allowed a return to community sport, whilst in Metro Melbourne, the restrictions do not permit community sport.

The framework provided by the state government has set us distinct boundaries within which we must operate to ensure we can safely return to play. Based on the roadmap and restrictions in place, Athletics Victoria has created a number of opportunities for our members. While the roadmap is in place from October to December 31, the opportunities we can deliver are different from those in previous years, due to these restrictions.

Subject to any changes that are made to the roadmap and/or restrictions, we are excited to share our plans for the upcoming season.

Based on the current roadmap and restrictions, we are offering the following events, aiming to commence from Saturday, 31st October. These events are subject to any amendments to the restrictions and roadmap, by the Victorian government.

  1. Community Pass – A welcome back offering up to seven (7) rounds, including individual and club/team-based opportunities from November – December 2020. This offering includes Cross Country/Out of Stadia events and Track and Field opportunities for all ages and genders commencing in November 2020.
  2. AVSL – Ten (10) rounds of revised AVSL commencing in November 2020 through to March 2021.
  3. Specialist Meets – Structured and increased quantities of Specialist and Club Meets to complement the 2020-21 calendar.
  4. AV State Championships all to take place in 2021 to create a pathway and align with Olympic Qualifying time frames.
  5. National Events from February 2021.

Our return to competition is open to all different audiences, including schools throughout Victoria. Information regarding our offerings is available via the links supplied at the bottom of this email.

In line with government restrictions, all events have a degree of limitations on athletes, coaches, spectators and the disciplines that can be offered during events. These limitations will be explained as event information is released.

It is important to note that we are not back to normal and some disciplines within events will not be offered, during the period of the road map (October – December), as they do not fulfil the criteria listed below.

  1. Safety for participants, coaches, and event staff – e.g. providing high equipment contact events is not currently feasible.
  2. Participation numbers over the past two seasons – how popular are the events we can provide?
  3. Ensure event value is the best it can be, encouraging people back into the sport. How can we best ensure as many people as possible get an opportunity to compete, safely?

Given the fluidity of the environment we Victorians find ourselves in, all events are consistently assessed regularly in line with the changing of restrictions and information from the state government. We hope that when safe to do so, we return to a new sense of normal, including the ability to add more disciplines to our events.

To support the roadmap back to competition, the Athletics Committee has revised and reduced membership fees. Clubs have an opportunity before the AV portal opens on November 4th to update or amend their club fees. Please note that the AV Portal will remain open, but members are asked not to renew memberships until after November 4th.

COMMUNITY PASS events will register without using the AV portal. Participants in these events do not require an Athletics Victoria membership.

Event information will be released over the coming weeks, subject to any amendments to the restrictions and roadmap by the Victorian government.

Athletics Victoria CEO, Glenn Turnor;

“The AV team has had the sole aim to get people back, participating in events within the roadmap and restrictions. While we know that this upcoming period will look different from every previous season, we’ve worked to create pathways for all members and their motivations. The plans we’ve produced are flexible and can change with the easing of restrictions. I want to thank our members, presidents, clubs and committee for their ongoing support, and the AV team for their diligence in ensuring the opportunities presented are available.”

Thank you for your support in 2020. We all hope that the opportunities available allow you to connect with your community and achieve your personal goals, as we return to what is likely to be a new normal.

The team at Athletics Victoria.