Birsemore Map extract, from MAR Orienteering Club Routegadget
The first races of the UK Elite League for 2020 were hosted in North-east Scotland by MAR Orienteering Club last weekend, the 7th and 8th March. Noticeable was the strong showing by so many Under-23 runners with the Edinburgh University club there in large numbers.
Johnshaven, a coastal village that grew up round a harbour and the fishing industry, a new ISSprOM map by Chris Smithard, was the venue for Saturday's sprint races.
On Sunday the league moved to the forest of Birsemore, a 300m hill next to Aboyne, for longer forest races. Most runners have uploaded their GPS tracks to MAROC's Routegadget, so you can study the routes chosen. And if you like you can replay the races as if from a mass start. This is a particularly good way to appreciate the complex terrain. We think planner Drew Tivendale should be pleased with the first long leg on the black 4-5, with the field, close together up to that point, going for a variety of routes with "varying degrees of success" as they say.Continue reading...
Image: Lonely Mountain Sprints location (image from the event website)
In this the first year of a sprints only World Orienteering Championship it seems that in January it has been the team's sprinters that have been making the news.
Peter Hodkinson, Jonny Crickmore and Chris Smithard were amongst other internationals taking part in the Lonely Mountain Sprint Series in New Zealand. There is a great report, with photos and maps, at orienteering NZ.Continue reading...
The home international, with individual races on Saturday and relays on Sunday, was hosted by Swansea Bay Orienteering Club (SBOC) on behalf of Wales. The competition is for teams of 18, six from each of W21 and M21, three from each of W20 and M20.
The weekend was a great success, with the athletes enjoying the terrain, great courses, the competition and the company.
England won, beating Scotland 27 to 23 in the individual and 28 to 23 in the relays. Wales beat Ireland by 13 to 9 and 11 to 10.
Weekend Points Scores (on the SBOC website).Continue reading...
The perhaps self-contradictory term "Home International" is used in the British Isles to describe sports competitions amongst national teams Wales, Ireland, Scotland and England.
In orienteering there are three "home internationals" and this coming weekend is the Senior Home International. Teams are 18 strong, six men and six women in the open class, and three men and three women 20 or under. This year's competition is organised by Swansea Bay O.C. on sand dune terrain in South Wales. The event dinner is being done by the Welsh Junior Squad.Continue reading...
Oli Johnson (who was sixth) coming into the finish field of Day 3's World Ranking Race (credit: Wendy Carlyle)
Graham Gristwood and Peter Hodkinson at the last control (On the Red Line)
The World Ranking Middle Distance World Ranking Races at Dundur on Day 3 of this year's Scottish 6-Days Orienteering were won by Graham Gristwood and Cat Taylor. Graham was the final starter of 68 and caught two minutes on the penultimate starter Peter Hodkinson at control 17; they ran the last part of the course together for positions 1 and 2. Alastair Thomas, still an M20, ran very well to take third. Second behind Cat was the Norway-based New Zealander Lizzie Ingham, and Fay Walsh was third.
British teams have been announced for senior internationals for the rest of the year. The announcements note the selections are made based on athlete availability (and the published selection policy.) 31 athletes feature.
To better understand the several announcements it may be helpful to review the calendar - from Scotland later this July, through to Scotland in July 2022. And to note that as athletes prioritise when to compete and how to make best use of their time and money many are tending to choose between forest and sprint. Which is not to say they completely exclude one for the other, nor to say that a competition's inherent qualities - a chance to visit somewhere new for example - are not a factor in which competitions they are available for.
World Ranking Events in Scotland are on 30th July and 2nd August, part of the big multiday festival, "Strathearn" Scottish 6-Days. The timing and terrain means they could be a good runout for World Champs runners - and Cat, Graham and Peter are entered.
Grace Molloy - winner JOK Chasing Sprint 2019
Two hours of orienteering was shown on BBC Scotland TV yesterday. It was a live broadcast of the chasing start races at the JOK Chasing Start Sprint in Callendar Park, Falkirk. It was this week's "Adventure Show" and the programme did a great job of showing sprint orienteering. It is available on replay via BBC i-Player for a month.Continue reading...
Hollie Orr, winner of the JOK Chasing Sprint at Birsemore in 2014
On The Red Line The World Orienteering Championships (WOC) come to Scotland in 2022 and, with forest and sprint championships alternating, they are for the sprint disciplines. Sprint Scotland (20th-23rd June) - see the impressive international startlist - and the JOK Chasing Sprint on June 28th in Callendar Park Falkirk, are both significant competitions on the way. The great appeal of the chasing sprint as a spectator event is the winner is the first to cross the line. And the name? "JOK" stands for Jesus Orienteering Klubb, the orienteering club for alumni of Oxford University. Their emblem is a pig with wings. Thanks to "Porky" for this preview.
Many of our top racers will be in action at this 25th year of the JOK Chasing Sprint, held in conjunction with the BBC Scotland TV programme The Adventure Show who plan to broadcast live.Continue reading...
It was the Scottish Spring with middle, sprint and long races. Middle and Sprint on Saturday, long on Sunday. Who knows who was trying how hard the weekend before the JK (and two weeks before TioMila), but it was top races with strong fields. All three races were counting as the third weekend of the UK Elite League 2019 - just the JK and British (Long) to go now in that competition.
The league tables have been updated.
Thanks to Graham Gristwood, weekend co-ordinator.Continue reading...
Update Sunday Results Added.
Update + 1 week England Team Manager's Report
The perhaps self-contradictory term "Home International" is used in the British Isles to describe sports competitions amongst national teams England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland. In many sports Ireland teams are "all-Ireland" combining talent from the Republic and Northern Ireland (which is part of the United Kingdom.)
The first were football matches in the last decades of the Nineteenth Century - see Wikipedia - the British Home Championship.
In orienteering there are three "home internationals" and this weekend is the Senior Home International. It is organised by Pendle Forest Orienteers near Burnley in the north of England. Teams are 18 strong, six men and six women in the open class, and three men and three women 20 or under.Continue reading...
Image: Sprint Scotland Map Extract - Grangemouth Course 2
Sprint Scotland, mimicking the World Champs Sprint Weekend, had three races in two days. All but one of the British WOC team sprinters were there, and they were joined by some of the best in the world. It was generally assessed as terrific preparation immediately before the World Champs. All the races had World Ranking (WRE) status.
Meanwhile other WOC athletes were doing their final preparations too - some days of O-ringen, last training camps for example - and writing about them. And the World Universities wrapped up with the relays.Continue reading...
Photo: Sprint Scotland Organiser Graham Gristwood
Sprint Scotland has three sprint races this weekend with all but one of the British WOC team sprinters running. They are joined by some of the best in the world, two weeks before the World Champs. All the races have World Ranking (WRE) status.Continue reading...
Image: Extract of previous map of the Balmoral Estate
This weekend sees the British Long Distance Championships at Balmoral Estate. The area was previously used for RacetheCastles in 2014 and the Scottish Championships in 2016 and offers a beautiful venue with good technical challenge in a variety of high quality terrain.
Event parking and the race arena are close to Balmoral Castle itself. Thanks go to Her Majesty the Queen and Balmoral Estates for allowing orienteering to use the area and in particular to Garry Marsden, Estate Visitor Enterprise Manager for his great co-operation.Continue reading...
(Photo: Ali McLeod winning the JK, credit Steve Rush)
The British Long Championships are on Saturday 19th at the Balmoral Estate in North Scotland. If the name is familiar it is probably because the castle is the Scottish holiday home to the Royal Family. Since a Royal Prince is marrying in Windsor near London that day however the estate will likely be quiet. And the weather forecast is good.
This post has some pictures of leading runners taken at recent European Champs ( linked to profiles.)
(update) Jon Cross has written a preview of the championship races, now published as an Article.Continue reading...
photo: 2016 EOC relay start
The European Forest Relays are on Saturday 12th May, with the women's race starting at 1pm UK-Time, and the men's at 3pm.
Each country may enter two teams in each forest relay.
GB has two teams in each, and of the 12 athletes nearly all are Scots or have strong Scottish links. In the women Hollie and Jo are Scots (and both are now members of Halden SK), Jess lives in the Highlands, and the other three all went to Edinburgh University.Continue reading...
On 27th November 2017 British Orienteering announced a squad of 24 athletes for 2018. New members are all from the Scottish Orienteering Association: Kirstin Maxwell of Roxburgh Reivers, and first-year seniors Jennifer Ricketts and Sasha Chepelin both of Edinburgh University.
The Squad's primary target is the World Championships. Membership of the squad does not offer any financial or service benefits.Continue reading...