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01 July 2019 | in Winter FISU World University Games, Ski Orienteering

Ski orienteering added to Winter Universiade 2021 programme

Even more sport is coming to the Lucerne 2021 Winter Universiade! Ski orienteering was added today as the event’s 10th - and final - discipline to the competition programme

Lucerne looks to "Welcome Home" the Winter Universiade to Central Switzerland as the Lucerne 2021 tagline asserts. The event will be the first time the Universiade takes place in the area since Villars hosted in 1962.


NAPOLI – Ski orienteering will complete the competition programme of the 30th Winter Universiade in Switzerland as the Swiss organisers successfully requested the sport be added to the event, which takes place from 21 to 31 January 2021.


Urs Hunkeler, Managing Director of the Winter Universiade 2021, expressed his delight with the decision: “Under the leadership of Swiss Orienteering, the international orienteering community has worked very hard to achieve a successful outcome and to secure funding. This is a strong commitment to the Winter Universiade.”


An important milestone in the long-term strategy


After several student world championships, ski orienteering was included for the first time in the programme of the world's largest winter multi-sport sports event for students in Krasnoyarsk, Russia earlier this year. For the international orienteering community, the sport’s inclusion onto the 30th Winter Universiade sports programme is an important milestone in the long-term strategy.


“Our goal is to be part of the Winter Universiade mandatory programme, Swiss Orienteering President Jürg Hellmüller said. “It is therefore of central importance to participate again in two years' time after our first appearance in Krasnoyarsk.”


High proportion of students in ski orienteering


Ski orienteering, abbreviated to Ski-O, combines the sports of orienteering and cross-country skiing. It joins the nine compulsory sports of 30th Winter Universiade programme: biathlon, cross-country skiing, alpine skiing, freestyle skiing, snowboarding, curling, ice hockey, short track and figure skating.


For Swiss University Sports President, Mike Kurt, today’s decision is an ideal addition. “Hardly any other sport so clearly exemplifies the motto of the international association 'Excellence in Mind and Body', Kurt, a three-time Olympian and world champion in canoe slalom.


According to Swiss Orienteering, about three-quarters of orienteers are students, including orienteers on foot, bikes and skis.