After weeks of study and consideration, the National Senior Games has issued new standards regarding how athletes can qualify for the 2021 Nationals in Florida. The NSGA emphasizes that this is a COVID-19 Coronavirus response, not a permanent policy change. Here’s a link to the NSGA statement on the situation: https://nsga.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/2021NSGAdjustedQualificationProcess05152020.pdf
To summarize, the NSGA did not want to try to set a blanket policy when states have all reacted to COVID-19 so differently. As a result, they have established two-routes for athletes to qualify:
#1) If a state is UNABLE to conduct a sporting event, athletes from that state who qualified for the 2017 Nationals in Birmingham OR the 2019 Nationals in Albuquerque automatically qualify. This doesn’t mean they had to attend Nationals, just qualify.
#2) If a state is ABLE to conduct an event, regular 2021 NSGA rules apply AND those who qualified for the 2019 Nationals qualify as well.
The NSGA will also offer a new Open Registration Period – this is for athletes who can’t qualify in 2020 and did not qualify in 2019 or 2017. It is also for athletes who turned 50 in 2019 or 2020. Athletes can just apply and perhaps be allowed to participate on a “first come, first served” basis, depending on the numbers in the specific sport.
There is one additional change – Power Walk will remain an open sport, no qualification needed. That is in addition to Corn Hole.
We at the Vermont Senior Games are still hoping to stage as many events as possible, contingent on the guidance of the state and other logistical issues. Unfortunately, at this time we are announcing that the VSG Track & Field meet, scheduled for Burlington High School on June 27, has been cancelled. However, it is the only event that is cancelled at this time. We will continue to monitor the situation and more announcements will be forthcoming, including whether and when events that have been postponed will be rescheduled.