The next race in the series is on Wimbledon Common on Tuesday 27 February 2018.
Thanks to everyone for coming tonight. We had a good turnout with what was much warmer weather than we have had for a while, certainly warmer than Sunday.
First, a big thank you to James Lyne who did all the organising and planning for the event prior to the day itself. I just helped organise on the day. I hope you enjoyed running on James’ courses and weren’t too spooked running through the cemetery! I think he made good use of an interesting area, with lots of variety.
Thanks to Eleanor, Paul, Anders and Don for their help at the event. These events couldn’t go ahead with this kind of help. Sue Carter
OK Nuts Trophy: Ben Windsor
Heather Monro Trophy: Sue Carter
Margaret Loveless Trophy: Angus Harrington
(Although these races took place in January 2018, this was the 2017 OK Nuts rescheduled. The same happened in 1997/8, and in line with that precedent the list of previous winners will show this running as 2018 (1).)
There should have been just one Routegadget for all the courses, but I erred in the setup with the result that the blood races did not work correctly. Some runners had uploaded before I realised the problem.
So I have re-named this first setup “for colour-coded courses” and runners on those individual start courses please use that setup.
And I have created a second one “for blood races”, and runners on those mass-start courses please use that setup.
I apologise to those on the blood races who tried to use the incorrect setup.
Now it is setup right, I think watching a rerun of the blood races is a lovely way to occupy a few minutes. Do try it, and remember what the weather was like!
Organiser’s Comments (Steve Clelland)
Richmond Park features regularly in SLOW’s winter night series, however the chance to run full length courses in the daylight is a much rarer opportunity. I hope you enjoyed your runs despite the extremely testing conditions.
Andy Robinson originally had the vision of holding the blood races in Richmond Park and he provided a wealth of knowledge and experience in the weeks and months leading up to the event. In particular, his plan for the extremely compact layout of registration, start, map exchange and finish, helped to simplify organisation.
As well as Paul and Duncan, controller and planner respectively, I can’t thank my fellow members of SLOW enough for their help on the day, especially the registration team who coped admirably in the early rush. It was my fault that this was not arranged better, particularly on the bib collection for blood races, which lead to the delay on the start. Congratulations to our champions, due to the weather most people headed off before we had a chance to collate the results. We will endeavour to get trophies and coasters to winners as soon as possible.
2 control description holders
1 “GreenPark” water bottle
Long sleeved black and white top – “New Forest Triathlon”
Planner’s Comments (Duncan Grassie)
Thanks to everyone who came to Richmond Park despite the wintry conditions. As a relatively novice planner it was encouraging to see so many people speaking positively of the looped format of the blood races since it was fun but challenging to plan. Controller Paul was able to come up with an algorithm for allocating correct maps to each competitor and creating the variation and with Andy and Steve managed to come up with the assembly field layout so I am indebted to them for making the courses work.
As well as thanking all the volunteers who helped put out and take in controls, I would like to single out Andy Robinson who has been a stalwart of SLOW and who we relied on heavily for the planning and delivery of this event.
Also a considerable amount of publicity for the event was created through a promotional video. It was made by Katherine Bett of Southern Navigators and features SLOW member Ralph Street and GB team colleague Alasdair McLeod. This hopefully provides a benchmark for future events! From my point of view it was great to see the wide range of competitors on the blood courses – from university students giving it a try for the first time to English and British Internationalists Ben Windsor and Tessa Strain respectively topping the male and female results.
General Commentary (Paul Street)
Today’s races in Richmond Park saw testing distances, and testing conditions for competitors and officials alike. The forecast was for it to start raining at 9am, and carry on throughout the event. And it did just that, with the rain turning to sleet at times. We’ve got quite a lot of kit drying at the moment – you too? We hope you all had a good time, especially our many newcomers – thanks for coming, and you do know every event is different don’t you – it’s not always like this.
Illness kept some away, and the weather no doubt induced some to think “you know what, I think I’ll give it a miss today.” Still, you that came experienced pretty good running conditions, if pretty unpleasant conditions for doing most everything else. And of course you ran in Richmond Park, always lovely, and many of you enjoyed a bit of special “buzz” from the mass-start format.
Congratulations to all finishers, and commiserations to others.
On behalf of South London Orienteers’ I extend particular thanks to the three main event officials.
We were very lucky to have Paul Todd of London OK as an extremely hard-working and skilled controller. He was a full member of the team that designed and prepared the event. Then on the day he arrived with the first helpers, he checked things, he put out controls, he checked all the controls, he collected controls, he did plenty of things in between, and then he was there until the end helping to check the SI boxes and hire dibbers were ready for a future event.
The planner was Duncan Grassie, of South London Orienteers and Auld Reekie Orienteering Society. Most of his work was beforehand: the course design, selecting, checking and tagging control sites, and preparing the maps. The park is not the most complex terrain but I understand all courses included a good range of challenges, and the clever “gaffling” system that Duncan and Paul chose seemed to work very well from the comments of finshers. And as our Chairman said, some might have baulked at spending the day before they fly to Dubai for work, out all day in the Park, managing the controls and courses, but someone not only did all that, mostly in pouring rain, but then was offering to do plenty of other things that evening to sort things out for the next races – the first of which is Tuesday evening incidentally.
The guy that bore the heaviest load, holding it all together, was the organiser Steve Clelland. He made it happen, with help from our longtime fixtures secretary Andy Robinson. So he looked after (using words from the BOF manual):
Everything prior to, during, and after the actual races; not just between the start and finish.
The safety & welfare of participants and members of the public in the event area including the completion of a risk assessment, risk management and contingency plans.
Land permission, event registration, access, car parking, assembly area, volunteer helpers, publicity timescales.
The equipment used including electronic punching, clocks etc.
It was Steve who, towards the end of the day, as he contemplated loading his car with a whole load of wet equipment (and his flat is on the 3rd floor) suggested the conditions might well justify the above phrase “you know what, I think I’ll give it a miss today.” Thanks for only thinking that Steve.
[update: Sunday 5:30pm] Revised results are now available.
[update:Monday 10am] And further minor revisions have been made.
Three runners accidentally ran a slightly shorter route; they are shown by an asterisk (*). They are in the full results but are excluded from team results, which changed from the provisional results as a consequence.
The next race in the series is on Barnes Common on Tuesday 23 January 2018.
Thanks for coming along and making it worthwhile to put on the event. I aimed for the short course to have medium difficulty checkpoints, with the extra checkpoints on the long course quite tricky in places. It is more important at night to have very good attack points before the final approach to each checkpoint as mistakes are so much more costly than in the day time. Thank you to the helpers: Don McKerrow, Sue Carter, Paul Couldridge, Steven Clelland, Rob Patterson & Geraint Lee. Look out for other events on the SLOW or British Orienteering websites.
Lost property: hat, waist belt, blue Silva compass. Pete Huzan
Thanks to Chigwell Orienteering Club for today’s final race in the SLOW Autumn Series.
18 SLOW runners made the trip to the north-east of London, with Paul Couldridge winning the longest course. So he will take the SLOW Autumn series and with the maximum possible score. Final scores for everyone will be posted once Ranking Points have been allocated.
Brown (10.3km, 235m)
1.Paul Couldridge 60:30; 15.Ollie O’Brien 76:15; 17.Yordan Kolev 77:58; Kwun Him Himmy Lau 106:44.
Short Brown (8.6km, 155m)
14.Andy Robinson 85:20; 17.Fiona Tam 88:45; 20.Camille Roux 97:58; 25.Mélanie Roux 118:00; 26 Nicolas Roux 126:01.
Photo of Don gliding through the forest, by David Jukes (who long ago when a member of London OK made a great map of Hampstead Heath.)
It was nice and challenging Chilterns forest on a fairly crisp day, the heavy rain having stopped earlier in the morning. Thanks to Berkshire Orienteers for putting it on.
This was nominated as the fourth race in the SLOW Autumn series of five races.
After a delay because of problems with some controls, results are now published. Paul Couldridge and Olin Davies are down as having missed a control. Given the evident problems with some controls I think they can be counted as even more unlucky than usual. Also, Paul did the second fastest time on the longest course and would have wrapped up the Autumn Series had his run counted. Olin‘s run on the blue is noteworthy as a long run for an M14. And his dad Keith did blue too, so they will have been able to talk through the course and compare splits anyway (Olin was quicker, but I guess that doesn’t count unless you get all the checkpoints.)
That left 16 SLOW runners completing courses that will get ranking points.
Brown: Paul Nixon, Dmitry Adamskiy, Simon Moss, Kwun Him Himmy Lau.
Blue: Yordan Kolev, Paul Street, Don McKerrow, Andy Robinson, Chris Evans, Di Leakey, Sarah Brown, Fiona Tam, Keith Davies, Heather Walton.
Green: Dorte Torpe Hansen, Chris Robinson.
We cannot score the Autumn Series yet, because that depends on Ranking Points and they are not yet available.
There are currently 15 SLOW entries for the final race in the Autumn Series, at Wormley Woods in Chigwell territory, on Sunday.