Biathlon Canada has published a memo regarding a clarification from the IBU on the application of IBU Event and Competition Rules section 8.5, which is a new rule this season.

The clarification, which is to section 8.5 of the IBU Event and Competition Rules and is reflected in a revised version of the Biathlon Canada Hosting Policy, will apply at BC Cups as well as events under the Biathlon Canada hosting policies (Westerns and Nationals):

“As you may be aware, the IBU has recently clarified the rules pertaining to rifle handling while skiing. These rules comprise section 8.5 (Safety Regulations) of the IBU Event and Competition Rules. The clarification is as follows:

Competitors may ski with the bolt of the rifle in either an open or closed position. The position of the bolt, however, may not be manipulated until a competitor has come to a stopped position on the shooting mat; the bolt of the rifle may not be touched or opened as a skier approaches the shooting mat.

This clarification has implications for the Canadian Hosting Policy, as it concerns rifle-handling procedures for non-carrying classes: Due to the IBU clarification, it is no longer necessary for Senior Boys or Senior Girls to close the bolt of the rifle after they pick it up from the rack at the entrance to the Range. The requirement remains that the bolt must be open when the rifle is placed on the range exit rack at the end of a bout of shooting.

The revised text of the rifle handing procedure for Senior Boys and Girls may be found in Section 2.1 of Annex A-3 (Range Procedures for Competitors Not Carrying Rifles) of the Canadian Hosting Policy, recently updated at”

The Biathlon Canada clarification can be read in full here: Memo to Officials December 2015

Please make sure to familiarize yourself with this rule for the 2015/2016 competition season.