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SA to licence events from Saturday

After four months of lockdown, the first real step to a return to racing life

scottishathletics have announced that they will begin to license athletics events from Saturday 1 August.

All licensed events have been otherwise suspended since March.

scottishathletics’ decision is in line with both their own guidelines on Covid-19 as well as that of the Scottish government, and comes on the back of their very detailed guidance for athletes, organisers and coaches. 

But despite this very positive step, runners should not expect a return to a ‘normal’ racing environment any time soon.

Phase 3 guidance still only permits athletes over the age of 18 to meet in groups of up to 15, from a maximum of five households.

Any off-track events held during this phase of lockdown will likely need to start in ‘waves’ limited to maximum of five runners, assuming they are all from different households, providing an experience very different to the mass starts, cheering, tightly-packed crowds and jostling elites we’re all used to. 

Runners under the age of 18 will experience a more ‘normal’ form of competition, as physical distancing is only required of them before and after an event, but not on any route or course itself. 

Organisers can apply for licences in the normal way, but should consider all the implications of SA’s guidance for hill and road racing before making major decisions about their event. 

Phase 3 guidance has implications for just about every aspect of a race, from food/water stations (bring or pick up your own), minimising congestion at start/finish areas (leave the family at home), race packs (to include essential items only), bag drops (not if you can avoid them) and how medals are handed out at the finish (or not, as the case may be).

The licence application process can be found online for events in both Summer 2020 (event date 1 August to 30 September 2020) and Winter 2020/21 (event date 1 October 2020 to 31 March 2021).

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