DOC CONTROLLER’S GUIDE
          in revision October 2004, contact & cancellation info updated June 2006
Normal club contacts
Event Scheduling                      Genevieve Webb                                      471-0127
Landowner Liaison                     Eunice McLeod                                       481-1804
Equipment & Caravan                   Dave Browning                                       455-6364
OCAD maps                             Barrie Foote email bfoote at clear dot net dot nz   454-4931

Treasurer                             Ben Ludgate/Jackie Wilson                           454-6436
ODT sports draw & results             Jennifer Hudson                                     454-4981
Southern Film (map printing)          John Skinner, Video Venue, 220 Main Rd, Green       488-4368
                                      Island email John at colourcopy dot com             021-231-2276
President (help in a crisis)          Myles Thayer                                        454-2385

Event-specific information
Multi-day coordinator (if applicable)
First start time (usually 11.30am)
Last start time (usually 1.00pm)
Course closure time (usually 3.00pm)
Details of next event (for noticeboard)

The different responsibilities of the Controller, Planner and Organiser
                                                        CONTROLLER           PLANNER        ORGANISER
Event coordination, map and control checking,               Y
decision to postpone or cancel event
H&S, S&R, deal with complaints & protests,                      Y
adjudicate on doubtful clipcard punches & DSQs
Approve collection of controls at end of Event                  Y
Plan courses                                                                       Y
Prepare, copy, collect, bring to Event all maps &                                  Y
control descriptions
Get advance Event info to Jennifer Hudson in time                                  Y
for ODT & email (before the Monday)
Put out/bring in controls & tapes                                                  Y
Set up/bring in Start Triangle, Master Maps                                        Y
Arrange and put out/bring in water on courses                                      Y
Arrange and put out/bring in water at finish                                                         Y
Get key, and tow caravan to & from event.                                                            Y
Put up/take down Orienteering road signs                                                             Y
Set up & take down noticeboards, tents, toilets,                                                     Y
start & finish areas
Arrange for people to staff the caravan and the start                                                Y
& finish areas; supervise them
Calculate result times, check punches on cards,                                                      Y
display results at event. Compile and email results
(to Jennifer Hudson before 5.30pm)
Get money to Treasurer after event                                                                   Y

Thank you for agreeing to control an event. Orienteering is very labour intensive. This booklet
will help you work towards a successful day with the Planner and Organiser. The club pays each
controller a km rate for two round trips to the map area.

This is not so much a comprehensive guide as a checklist and a reminder of responsibilities. It is
based on a 1996 DOC guide written by Ben Morrison. It is a good idea to read, or at least be
familiar with, the Organiser and Planner guides (also available on the club website The entire NZOF rules are available on the NZOF website

The Controller carries responsibility for everything that happens during an event. The Controller
is the representative of the competitor. He/she makes sure the event is correctly run and is fair in
every way, so that no person or group has any advantage. Controllers should have previously
planned and organised events and be reasonably experienced orienteers.

The Controller’s duties cover the checking of all aspects of the event: before, during and after.
Note that the Controller doesn’t have to check everything personally, merely satisfy themselves
that other people know what they’re doing. Remember that the Planner and Organiser may be
relatively new at their tasks and may need active, rather than passive, support.

Early Planning Stage
At least 2-4 weeks before an event, the Planner should bring you his/her courses drawn out on
coloured maps and with control descriptions. These need to be “desk checked” for length, degree
of difficulty and suitability for competitors, bearing in mind the type of event. See the Planner’s
Guide for the criteria he/she should be using. If necessary, ask the Planner to rethink some
aspects, but try to be diplomatic and justify your reasons for the change with sound arguments
from a competitor’s point of view.

Field checking
Arrange with the Planner to go around the courses they have planned, either with them or by
yourself. Probably the latter is best as you then see the courses through your own eyes and may
see things the Planner has been unaware of. In any case the Planner should provide you with
master maps and control descriptions for you to check the course. Things to check:

1) MAP ACCURACY Make sure that all relevant features appear on the map and that any
corrcetions have been made. For instance a new fence may have appeared since the map was last

2) EACH LEG of each course. Are they fair? Is there route choice? Check each course
separately. Don’t skip from controls on one course to another. You must get an impression of
each course in its entirety to evaluate it.

3) CONTROL PLACEMENT. Is the control description accurate? Is the control in the correct
place (the Planner should have marked each control site with a bit of coloured tape or plastic
shopping bag in the exact position of each control stake). Is it in the correct place for a competitor
coming from any direction?

4) START. Is it in a good place? Are the master maps out of sight of people waiting to start (they
should be!).

5) FINISH. Will the competitors be required to navigate to the finish or will there be tape to
guide them in?

6) SAFETY. You may decide that a course should be changed if you think it too dangerous,
bearing in mind competitor fitness and experience. Beginners’ courses should certainly avoid any
potentially dangerous areas. Dangerous and out-of-bounds areas should always be marked on the
map (at least on the noticeboard at registration) and ideally be taped off whether courses go near
them or not. The Planner should provide a safety bearing and simple instructions for competitors
to follow if they get lost.

Final Planning Stage
1-2 weeks before an event, the Planner should bring you his/her final agreed courses drawn out
on coloured maps and with written and pictorial control descriptions. These need to undergo final
scrutiny for accuracy. In particular check all the master maps have been drawn up correctly and
the control feature is in the centre of each circle.

For major events, organise a jury to deal with any official complaint about the correctness of the

Check that the organisation of the event is going smoothly and advise where necessary. Ask the
Organiser to report regularly on the progress of the event. Do not do any of the Organising jobs
during an event (e.g. registration, start or finish). You may be called upon for your own duties at
any time.

1) you may be required to help put out the controls, though strictly speaking this is the Planner’s

2) Whatever else happens, you must be able to check all the controls are in place and ready
(location, code numbers, flags, punches work) before the first start time.

3) be back at the start in order to check that everything is as it should be before the first start time.
Have the Planner or Organiser forgotten anything? Where are the maps? Are the start and finish
in the exact places as shown on the maps?

4) Is the correct procedure being followed at the Start and Finish? Are competitors being timed
accurately, especially at the finish (heads up, no chatting)?

5) supervise the competitors. Some people may try and cheat. Make sure they don’t get a look at
the master maps before starting. Make sure they don’t see any master control cards or planning
material near the caravan. You should also patrol the courses during the event. People may be
disqualified for:
a) following
b) splitting up if in a group to get multiple controls
c) creating a nuisance by calling out and by distracting other orienteers

6) if a control marker goes missing it is your job to replace it as soon as possible.

7) after course closing time, you must check that all competitors have reported in. If not, why?
Have they gone home or are they lost or injured? Is their car still there? If you think someone is
still out on a course it is your decision as to what to do (e.g. wait, organise a search party, call

8) help the Planner bring in the controls.

9) after the event you may like to help the Organiser check and draw up the results.

10) write some comments about the event for inclusion in the club magazine DOCument.

(added June 2006)

On the day
Events should not proceed in situations of bad or dangerous travel, weather and/or course
conditions. Cancelling or postponing an event is the sole responsibility of the Controller, though
he or she may consult others to come to a decision.

Most people will listen for the 9am Sunday cancellations on the radio. Cancellation information
should be sent ASAP to:

(1) The Planner and Organiser, if not already informed.

(2) radio station Newstalk ZB 1044AM (The Radio Network)
ph 474 8413 (newsroom), 474 8400 (office)
Email tm.dunedin at radionetwork dot co dot nz

(3) radio station More FM 97.4FM (Radioworks Otago)
ph 474 6673 (studio), 477 6934 (office)

(4) DOC Internet person (currently Nick Mortimer) for posting a notice on the website and
sending an email to members and nonmembers groups.
ph 027 688 2720

(5) Myles Thayer (ph 454-2385) and Jennifer Hudson (454-4981) who are general club contacts.

In discussing when to reschedule an event, the Planner and Controller should consult the
Events Coordinator (currently Genevieve Webb) to avoid clashes with other events, and the
Organiser to check his/her availability. If the event is rescheduled for just 1-2 weeks later, the
Planner should contact the Landowner about further access. If an event is postponed for some
weeks-months, the Landowner Access Coordinator (currently Eunice McLeod) should be
informed so that access can be renegotiated.


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