Graham Gristwood starts the WOC long distance (credit: Philip Gristwood)
Over the last two weeks, in the middle of an Østfold forest previously unused for orienteering, the Nokian Tyres World Orienteering Championships 2019 organisation has built a spectacular arena. Today it was filled with crowds watching the classic distance in pleasant August sunshine. The 16.6km men's course was won by the Norwegian Olav Lundanes in just over 90 minutes, and the 11.7km women's race by the Swede Tove Alexandersson in 69 minutes.
Britain had two runners in each race. The men's race was first.
Incidentally, the coach journey to the arena from the Event Centre in Sarpsborg included a section of the E6 European Route which divided the area used for the Middle Distance at WOC2016 in Sweden.
Second in the men's was the Norwegian junior Kasper Fosser. Third was Daniel Hubmann of Switzerland, running his 50th World Champs medal race. Daniel was three seconds ahead of his compatriot Matthias Kyburz.
Second in the women's was another Swede Lina Strand, and third was the Swiss runner Simone Aebersold in her first year as a senior.
Hector Haines (credit: Rob Lines)
Graham Gristwood and Hector Haines ran the men's long. Hector was 20th and Graham 21st.
GG, with team manager Ed Nicholas keeping him company, in the current leader's chair (credit: Philip Gristwood)
Graham had a relatively early start because his long period injured last year meant he could not do any ranking races. Despite a late error of missing a control and having to turn back when he realised, he ran quicker than all who started before him. So he took the big green "current leader's" chair for a time.
Charlotte Watson (credit: Philip Gristwood)
Charlotte Watson was 36th.
Jo Shepherd was 21st. Like Graham she occupied the current leader's chair for a while.