Category Archives: Event Reports

Ralph success at British Elite champs

Ralph. Photo: Mark Cheesman

Congratulations to Ralph Street at the British Elite Middle Distance Championships & British Sprint Championships in the Midlands last weekend.

On Saturday, in the middle distance race at Hopwas he was leading M18 (& third best M20). On Sunday, in the sprint race at the University of Warwick he was one of only 20 men to qualify for the A final, where he came 14th and top M18.

Full results are available here.

Ralph. Photo: Mark Cheesman

JK 2008

Matthias at the JK. Photo: Mark Cheesman

SLOW members made a major contribution to the organisation of JK 2008 as well as competing over the Easter weekend. The JK is the Jan Kjellström International Festival of Orienteering, the largest competition in the UK, held in south-east England for the first time since 1999.

On Saturday at Leith Hill over 75 club members worked extremely hard in snow, hail, rain and wind as well as the occasional sunny spell, and were warmly congratulated by fellow orienteers on an excellent competition and their cheerful devotion beyond the call of duty. Congratulations and thanks to Richard Catmur and Matthias Mahr (Planners) (Matthias pictured right) and Andy Robinson (Organiser). Special credit is due also to Don “White Van Man” McKerrow (Equipment Officer for all 4 days, who never got a run), David May (Sprint Planner), Di and Alan Leakey (Sprint Organisers) and Anne Straube (Trail O planner).


Congratulations to JK Champions Mike Murray (M60L) and Sarah Brown (W55L) on winning their classes over the combined individual days and to Alan Leakey in the Sprint. Well done too to the following on their ‘top 6’ performances:

Sprint Day 1 University of Surrey

M18E 3rd Ralph Street
M45 6th Charles Bromley-Gardner
M55 1st Alan Leakey
W50 2nd Di Leakey
W50 6th Chris Robinson
W55 1st Sarah Brown
W55 2nd Monica Bonafini
W65 5th Anne-Lise Ronaess

Days 2/3 combined Leith Hill/Ashdown Forest

M21L 4th Paul Couldridge
M21S 6th Ian Elder
M21V 4th Michael Rudolf
M35S 3rd Jon O’Donnell
M60L 1st Mike Murray
W50L 3rd Di Leakey (pictured right)
W55L 1st Sarah Brown
W55L 2nd Monica Bonafini (pictured below right)

Day 2 Leith Hill

M18E 2nd Ralph Street
M21S 4th Simon Turner
M50L 5th Peter Haynes
W21L 6th Nicola Woolford
W21S 5th Charlotte Turner
W55S 1st Anne May

Day 3 Ashdown Forest

M12B 1st Thomas Jones
M21L 4th Edward Catmur
W21L 6th Rachael Holmes
W21S 6th Liz Day


The relays were held at Eridge Park, near Tunbridge Wells on the bank holiday Monday. Fitting in with the rest of the weekend, the weather was quite variable including the now customary snow showers. The previous days of competition and helping had made a dent in our teams, but we still had lots of teams to cheer on.

In the Men’s Premier, our top team came a very creditable 16th (10th UK club) – Ed Catmur, Paul Nixon, James McMillan & Matthias Mahr, with particularly good runs by the first two.

Women’s Premier was even better in 7th place (4th UK club) – a great all-round performance from Rachael Holmes, Anja Stratford & Abi Weeds. We also had another 3 teams running the premier classes.

Our top Men’s Vets team came 14th, including a very good last leg by Paul Whiston.

We had a lot of representation on the Men’s Supervets. Our top team came home with the trophy, with excellent runs by Mike Murray, Alan Leakey & Peter Haynes, a couple of minutes ahead of 2nd place. Our next team came 10th, after every lap! – with a good run from Paul Street on 1st leg.

It was almost as good in the Women’s Supervets, where we came 2nd, 3 minutes down on 1st place – well done Sarah Brown, Anne May & Monika Bonafini. Our next team were 7th – Chris Robinson, Anne-Lise Ronaess & Diane Leakey.

Our juniors (combined ages 48 or less) came 21st. And quite a few people had fun runs on the open short and Ad Hoc courses. It was good to see so many members taking part, including some making their relay debuts for the club. We hope you all enjoyed it. Next up is the British Champs in Inverness on 20th April where again we have quite a few teams across the classes.

SLOW runners at the JK. Photos: Mark Cheesman

SLOW success at Interland

Congratulations to SLOW members Mike Murray and Nick Barrable, who won the M60 and M21 classes respectively at the annual Interland competition last weekend. Interland is an annual competition between England, Holland, Germany and two regions of Belgium.

Mike won his 5.3km M60 course in a time of 36:16, and Nick won the 10.3km M21 course in 52:38. England also won the overall team competition, finishing just ahead of the two Belgian teams.

Further details and links to the results are on the Orienteering England website.

SLOW qualify for Compass Sport Cup final

SLOW have once again qualified for the national Compass Sport Cup final. We won Sunday’s qualifying round at Yateley Heath & Minley Woods with an excellent score of 2358 points, a comfortable 65 points ahead of 2nd-placed Thames Valley. Full results of the event are available here.

Well done to everyone who took part for SLOW and contributed to our score, including those who didn’t score but helped to reduce the scores from other teams. Particular congratulations go to the following who achieved top 5 finishes on their Compass Sport Cup course:

1st – Caroline Court (Blue Women), Seb Woof (Blue Men), Mike Murray (Green Men)
2nd – Ed Catmur (Brown), Ausra Miksyte (Green Women), Teresa Turner (Short Green Veterans), Alex Robinson (Light Green Juniors)
3rd – Chris Robinson (Green Women), Gustav Lindeborg (Light Green Juniors), Matthew Jones (Orange)
4th – Carys Morgan (Blue Women)
5th – Paul Couldridge (Brown), Anja Stratford (Blue Women), Audrius Janulynas (Blue Men), Diane Leakey (Green Women).

Results from Sunday’s other regional heats indicate that the full list of 11 clubs qualifying for the final is as follows:

The final is being held on Sunday 19th October, at Sutton Park, in Sutton Coldfield near Birmingham (map link here). We need the strongest possible SLOW team for the final, so put the date in your diary now! As with last year, we hope to put a club coach on to transport people up to the final – and it’s a bit closer this year so we shouldn’t have to leave quite so early in the morning!

SLOW finish =7th at Yvette Baker Trophy Final

YBT Team

The SLOW juniors would like to thank the club for both moral and financial support to take part in the final of the National Inter-club junior competition, the Yvette Baker Trophy. It took place at Normanby Hall in North Lincolnshire, a flat area of parkland and intricate mixed woodland, hosted by HALO, earlier today.

SLOW had qualified by winning the southern heat at Britty Wood in October (see previous report). We last qualified in 2004, when we were 13th in the final, and this year we were =7th. Given our relative lack of depth we can be very pleased with this achievement.

The competition is a bit different in that ability as well as age is taken into account in determining who runs which course. There are 8 courses in all: girls and boys variants of each of yellow, orange, light green and green. Winner gets 100, 2nd 99, 3rd 98 and so on. The team score is the sum of the best 9 individual scores (with some limits on how many per course.)

The SLOW team comprised 12 athletes and 3 supporters. Most of the team went up the day before, by train and bus, and on Sunday walked across open and rainswept arable land to the event, with the reward (thanks organisers) of sharing a classroom adjacent to download as a base, rather than needing the tent. It was a good way to get the club noticed, and all in all worked pretty well.

The competition was dominated by Octavian Droobers this year, with three class winners and four seconds. The 2005 winners and ever strong Nottinghamshire were 2nd, with West Cumberland 3rd. Last years winners Deeside were 5th.

We had several excellent runs to carry us to =7th, and a few disappointments too. Well done all of the following:

3rd Tom Jones (Yellow)
3rd Ausra Miksyte (Green)
5th Malin Lindeborg (Light Green)
7th James McMillan (Green)
9th Greg Street (Light Green)
15th Ralph Street (Green)
16th Rob Jones (Light Green)
17th Audrius Janulynas (Green)
21st Matt Jones (Yellow)
27th Alex Robinson (Light Green)
33rd Charles McMillan (Green)
ret Ben Weiss (orange)

The supporters were Andrew McMillan, Sarah Brown and Paul Street.

The full results from the event can be found here: team results and full results.

Yvette Baker Trophy heat

Charles McMillan

South London qualify for final!

The Yvette Baker Trophy is the annual national inter-club junior team competition (a bit like the junior version of the Compass Sport Cup), and last Sunday saw the south-east qualifying round held by Guildford Orienteers at their district event at Britty Wood, near Puttenham in Surrey.

After a close re-counting of the results, it has now been confirmed that South London finished in first place, and so have qualified for the National Final, which is on Sunday 2nd December at Normanby Hall, Scunthorpe, Lincolnshire!

The competition was very close indeed, with SLOW’s total score of 887 points meaning we finished just 2 points ahead of Southdowns (885) and 7 ahead of Southern Navigators (880).

Well done to everyone who competed on Sunday. The full list of scores is set out below. Full results for the event can be found here.

We hope to have as strong a team as possible out in the final. Every junior (under-21) in the club is very welcome to compete, and the club will subsidise the entries and team transport. Please contact the club captain Pete Huzan () if you would like to come along to what promises to be a good fun day out at the final.

More of Audrius’s pictures from the event can be found here.


100 Audrius Janulynas – Green Boys
100 Ausra Miksyte – Green Girls
100 Gustav Lindeborg – L Green Boys
100 Thomas Jones – Yellow Boys
99 Charles McMillan – Green Boys
98 Malin Lindeborg – Green Girls
97 Robert Jones – L Green Boys
97 Zak Ajjane – Yellow Boys
96 Greg Street – L Green Boys (top 9)
95 Emma & Hannah Farmery – Yellow Girls
95 Lawrance Price – Yellow Boys
93 Lewis Traynor – Yellow Boys
92 Matthew Jones – Orange Boys
92 Ellis Farmery – Yellow Boys

SLOW finish 6th in Compass Sport Cup final

SLOW team head towards the assembly field.

On Sunday 14th October, 49 runners from South London Orienteers made the trip up to Nottinghamshire to compete in the final of the Compass Sport Cup, the main inter-club competition in the UK. It was great to see so many turn out. We sent a large contingent on a club coach which travelled up from Wimbledon in the morning, making for a good club atmosphere.

Matthias on the run-in.

The event was held at Blidworth & Sansom Woods, near Mansfield. The area was a bramble-covered forest with a large path network, and the best tactic was generally to stick to the paths as much as possible. The later runners certainly benefited from the tracks which had been made through the brambles by earlier runners.

The competition was won by Octavian Droobers (the Warwickshire club) for the 3rd year running, with Nottinghamshire second and South Yorkshire third. South London finished in a creditable 6th position, which is one place higher than we finished last year. We were the leading southern club, beating all 4 other clubs from the three southern regions (Southdowns, Bristol, Happy Herts and Devon).

Next year’s qualifying round is now only three months away – the south-east regional round will be held by DFOK at Shorne & Darley (west Kent) on Sunday 13th January 2008. Put the date in your diary now!

We have some unclaimed maps from the event – if you did not manage to pick up yours, please contact Pete Huzan () to arrange collection.

The full list of SLOW scorers is set out below. Well done to all of these, and to everyone else who took part and helped to reduce the scores from other teams. Also many thanks are due to the club women’s captain Rachael Holmes who organised the team and coach transport for the day – not an easy task to co-ordinate!

More photos of the event can be found on the following web pages courtesy of Audrius and Ollie. The full results from the event can be found here.








Ralph Street


Light Green




Mike Murray


Green Men



James McMillan


Light Green




Peter Haynes


Blue Men




Charles Bromley Gardner


Blue Men




Rachael Holmes


Blue Women




Caroline Court


Blue Women




Audrius Janulynas


Light Green




Paul Nixon






Malin Lindeborg


Green Women




Anja Stratford


Blue Women




Ollie O’Brien






Paul Street


Blue Men




Sarah Brown


Green Women




Gustav Lindeborg






Matthias Mahr






Andy Hodgson






Andrew Brown






Alan Leakey


Blue Men




Chris Robinson


Green Women




Jon O’Donnell






Judy Fry


Short Green




Anne Straube


Blue Women




Don McKerrow


Blue Men




Charles McMillan


Light Green







Phil on the run-in.

London Rat Race

Rat Race


Sunday 30th September saw the inaugural London Rat Race storming round the streets and open spaces of London. Rat Races are urban adventure races. They have taken place in Edinburgh, Bristol and Manchester, but in 2007 the Rat Race hit the streets of the capital for the first time.

Rat Race

After a Saturday evening prologue in Central London, dawn on Sunday saw 200 teams of three take to their mountain bikes for a full day with many “challenges” along the way. They only found out at the start that they would be heading south-west into SLOW territory and that two of those challenges were orienteering at Richmond Park and Wimbledon Common, two of London’s best open spaces where many of us in the club have orienteered for years.

The Rat Race directors contacted SLOW over the summer with the proposal, and asking us to prepare the maps and arrange the placing of the controls and provide marshals on the day. Seeing this would get hundreds of new people orienteering in our “back garden” we were only too pleased to join in.

The instructions were to make Richmond Park easy and Wimbledon Common hard. In the Park the Rat Racers entered at Sheen gate and dumped their bikes. They then had to find 8 control points in any order covering at least the straight line distance of 7.2km. Controls included stopping at King Henry’s Mound to see the view of St Paul’s, and a “medieval bike rack” next to the Royal Ballet School (the Park Director said it was a bike rack but it looked more medieval to us).

This section came quite early in the day and all the teams did some of it with most of them getting all controls. They then moved west for two further challenges before returning via Wimbledon Common in the afternoon. By then the day was moving on and although the majority of teams set out to do some of the controls on Wimbledon, many had to miss it to the time pressure, and of those that did start only the best found all the controls as the navigation was considerably tougher than it had been in the Park.

The “transition” (a.k.a. bike dump) was at the Windmill. The 5.8km straight line course had 9 controls, which included an embankment in the 19th century shooting butts, a stream source next to the well on Caesar’s Camp and one requiring wading into Beverley Brook (not the challenge we thought it would be once we discovered they’d been swimming at the previous task!). The fastest teams completed this in 40 minutes, but many of the later teams seemed happy to sit in the afternoon sunshine.

SLOW’s team of marshals in the Park and on the Common had a very busy but ultimately enjoyable day. We were very gratified by all the kind comments from the Rat racers, many of whom wanted to keep their maps. The maps were taken to the post race party, where nearly all of them were snapped up.

So a whole new bunch of Rat Racers have had a taste of orienteering and, who knows, many of them might follow it up by joining in SLOW’s next activities:

Sunday 7th October : coaching day – Coaching day held at the Windmill on Wimbledon Common (again!) – basic technique training – all technique; nothing too physical

Tuesday 9th October : Street-O – Street orienteering in the City. Another chance to belt round London’s streets looking for pub names and the like.

They would all be very welcome if they did.

Rat Race