Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) – Update 5 March 2020
FISA is following very closely all information possible on the Covid-19 outbreak in relation to the international rowing season.
As the situation has evolved significantly in the past week, FISA has started nearly daily consultations with the organising committees and with many other stakeholders. We have decided to see how this evolves this weekend and are prepared for an important meeting with the OCs and then the FISA Executive Committee on 10 March 2020 to fully review the situation. National Federations are invited to share their issues and deadlines for decision-making with us via firstname.lastname@example.org during these coming days.
Please look for the next communication on 11 March 2020.
Decision of the FISA Executive Committee related to the impact of the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) on World Rowing Events
1. 2020 FISA Asia and Oceania Continental Olympic and Paralympic Qualification Regatta and 2020 Asia and Oceania FISA/Olympic Solidarity Training Camp
Following the outbreak of COVID-19 (Novel Coronavirus) in China and the high number of cases now reported across Asia and other parts of the world, the FISA Executive Committee has been evaluating the impact of this situation on the upcoming World Rowing events. In this context, the Executive Committee has noted significant difficulties which would affect the staging of the 2020 Asia and Oceania FISA / Olympic Solidarity Training Camp and 2020 FISA Asia and Oceania Continental Olympic and Paralympic Qualification Regatta in Chungju, KOR from 27 to 30 April 2020.
- South Korea has nearly 1,600 cases of the virus as of today (28 Feb) and the World Health Organisation has assessed the risk in the country to be high.
- A number of airlines have temporarily suspended air service to South Korea
- A number of countries will not allow residents to travel to South Korea
- A number of countries have imposed mandatory isolation periods for residents returning from travels to South Korea
Considering the situation described above, and after consultation with key stakeholders, it has been agreed that this regatta in Chungju, KOR is cancelled.
The FISA / Olympic Solidarity training camp, planned to take place before the regatta in Chungju, is now also cancelled. Discussions on arranging an alternative training camp or camps are currently taking place with the relevant stakeholders, and will be announced when and if possible.
FISA has looked at alternative options for this event to be staged in the Asian or Oceanian regions. A full evaluation was made of all possible international standard regattas and venues; however, it was deduced that the most pragmatic option is to combine this event with existing qualification events.
- Asian and Oceania Continental Paralympic Qualification (PR1M1x and PR1W1x) will now take place as part of the Final Paralympic Qualification Regatta in Gavirate, ITA (8 to 10 May).
- Asian and Oceania Continental Olympic Qualification (M1x, W1x, LM2x, LW2x) will now take place as part of the Final Olympic Qualification Regatta in Lucerne, SUI (17 to 19 May).
The number of qualification places attributed to the Asia and Oceania Qualification Regattas will not change and will be allocated based on results in the respective Final Qualification Regatta for the relevant boat classes to the eligible NFs/NOCs.
Full details, including updated regatta programmes for both qualification regattas in Gavirate and Lucerne, and updated Olympic and Paralympic Qualification Guides, will be issued by 15 March 2020, following confirmation from the IOC and IPC. Any queries regarding Olympic and Paralympic Qualification should be directed to Cameron.Allen@fisa.org.
2. Final Paralympic Games Classification Opportunities
As a result of the cancellation of the Asia and Oceania Continental Olympic and Paralympic Qualification Regatta, athletes who require classification prior to the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games can be classified at one of the following opportunities:
- World Rowing Cup II (Varese, ITA)
Classification dates are 29 to 30 April 2020
- Final Paralympic Qualification Regatta (Gavirate, ITA)
Classification dates are 6 to 7 May 2020
Requests should be made no later than 16 March 2020 by National Federations to email@example.com.
3. Major Rowing Events in Italy
There are four major events scheduled to take place in Italy during April and May: World Rowing Cup I in Sabaudia (10 to 12 April 2020), European Continental Olympic and Paralympic Qualification Regatta (27 to 29 April 2020) and World Rowing Cup II (1 to 3 May 2020) in Varese, and the Final Paralympic Qualification Regatta (8 to 10 May 2020) in Gavirate.
The situation in Italy is evolving each day with very determined efforts by the government authorities to contain the outbreak in Northern Italy. The situation in the cities of Sabaudia, Varese, and Gavirate is presently considered to be low risk as the outbreak has taken place in other cities in Northern Italy and containment efforts are focused on these cities. We are not aware of any travel restrictions at this time. These FISA events will continue as planned. However, as the situation is evolving quickly, FISA continues to monitor the situation on a daily basis.
4. General Precautions with International Travel and Daily Training
The FISA Sports Medicine Commission has developed an advisory document for rowers and coaches’ health and safety during this period of global health uncertainty. This document can be found below.