Ralph Street wins British Elite Junior Championships


Ralph Street continued his excellent form this year by winning the British Elite Junior Championships in the Forest of Dean on Sunday. Ralph took home 3 trophies from the weekend, also winning the middle distance race on the Saturday, and taking the overall “Future Champions Cup” junior series trophy for 2009 (the two races over the weekend represented the Future Champions Cup final).

Ralph now appears almost certain to again be included in the Great Britain team for this summer’s Junior World Championships, the teams for which are announced in a few weeks time.

Full results from Sunday’s race are available here. The final Future Champions Cup scores can be found here.


Coaching: Family Orienteering Day

Do you know anyone who has never orienteered but would like to have two hours of introductory coaching?

SLOW, together with Southfields Community College, are putting on a “Family Orienteering Day” on Wimbledon Common this coming Saturday. It will be a fun two hour introduction to orienteering for anyone aged 8 to 80.

Just turn up next to the Windmill car park– map link here. Coaching will be from 11 till 1, Saturday 25th April.

Do pass this information on to anyone who might be interested. Any questions contact Don McKerrow at .

SLOW club kit

Simon and Matthias modelling the club kit.

As many of you will know, we have been out of stock of SLOW club kit for some time now. The good news is that we are about to place a new order! You will need to email me () to let me know if you would like a new top. The details are as follows.

DESIGN – we will be ordering the new tops from our previous supplier Trimtex, in an identical design to our current kit. However the new tops are now laser printed, rather than made of different stitched panels, so they will look slightly different to the previous version. The picture on the right shows the design of the current tops. Look at the photo gallery for more examples of the design.

SLEEVES – Trimtex are now offering tops in long-sleeved versions for the first time, as well as the short-sleeved version. However the long-sleeved top will cost £5 more.

FEMALE TOPS – Trimtex now produce a female version of the tops. These can be seen on the Trimtex website here (the standard tops are the “Extreme o-shirt unisex”): http://trimtex.no/uk/products/orienteering/

PRICES – the costs of the kit has increased substantially since our previous order in 2006, due to both increased manufacturing costs and the falling pound:euro exchange rate. However, the club have generously agreed to provide a subsidy to the costs of tops for all club members (which works out as around £6 a top). The cost to club members for tops will be £35 per top for short sleeves, or £40 per top for long sleeves (unisex and female tops are the same price). Payment can be made when the tops are received.

TROUSERS – we are not intending to order any orienteering trousers unless there is sufficient interest. If we do order, these will the same as the current design, full length blue trousers, and will cost £30 each. Let me know if you want some. I will confirm before placing the final order whether or not we will be ordering trousers.

SIZES – available sizes for tops are XS, S, M, L, XL, XXL and XXXL. The tops are quite tight fitting and people have generally found they need to order one size larger than usual. If you are unsure which size to order please ask to try on another club member’s top or ask me for advice (I do have a full list of sizes previously ordered by all club members!).

ORDERS – if you would like to order a top, please let me know by FRIDAY 8TH MAY at the latest – I will be placing the order in shortly after this. When ordering please tell me: (i) size of top, (ii) unisex or female design, (iii) short or long sleeves, (iv) whether you want trousers as well.

DELIVERY – we expect the new tops will be available around July or August. We will let you know when the order has been received and arrange distribution of the new kit.

Let me know if you have any questions, otherwise please confirm your order to me by Friday 8th May.

JK 2009

Anja Stratford, winner of W35L at the JK

The annual JK festival of orienteering was held over the Easter weekend, this year taking place in the north-east of England. As usual SLOW had a large number of runners competing in the event.

Some highlights from the individual days

Newcastle sprint: Ralph Street (2nd M20), Paul Street (8th M55), Don McKerrow (10th M55), Jim Mallinson (7th M60), Chris Robinson (3rd W50), Sarah Brown (2nd W55).

Main individual races: Ralph Street (2nd M20E – 1st day 2), Anja Stratford (1st W35L – pictured below), Anne May (1st W60S).

Thomas Jones (5th M14B), Gustav Lindeborg (7th M16A day 1), Robert Jones (5th M18L day 2), Dan Findlay-Robinson (10th M21S), Jon O’Donnell (6th M35S), Andrea Rebora (10th M40S), Andy Jones (7th M50S), David May (4th M60S), Malin Lindeborg (6th W20L), Kathy Haynes (8th W50L day 1), Sarah Brown (4th W55L – 1st day 2).

Our best runners on the 21 elite classes were Mathias Mahr (47th) & Abi Weeds (13th).

JK Relays

We had 13 teams competing at the relays at Dipton, near Hexham, on Easter Monday. Yet again the weather was fantastic. The courses were relatively short and the forest was a lot faster than for the individual days, resulting in some quite short times.

In Men’s Premier, we came 17th, 25 minutes down on Edinburgh University. Ralph Street was 3rd on the 1st leg, & Matthias Mahr, Ollie O’Brien & James McMillan performed solidly. Our Women’s Premier team came 13th, 31 minutes down on South Yorkshire – the team was Sarah-Jane Gaffney, Chris Robinson & Anja Stratford.

Our M165 team (Andy, Jim, Peter Haynes) were 15th, 10 minutes down on Thames Valley & 5 minutes off the medals. The W165 team (Kathy, Anne, Sarah) came 4th, 6 minutes down on Borderliners – Sarah had the 3rd best time in the class.

Our two junior teams on M48 were neck-and-neck the whole way round with Gustav Lindeborg, Thomas & Robert Jones (10th) beating Greg Street, Matthew Jones & Charles McMillan (11th n/c) by 16 seconds!

Finally we had a Mixed Ad Hoc team with Tamir Alon, Michael May (running the orange in flats in 13 minutes), & Andy Jones. They all ran well & came away with 2nd place (& some glasses), behind a New Zealand team.

See www.jk2009.org.uk for full results.

Next team events

Next up are the South-East Relays in Guildford on 7th June, the North Downs Way Relay on 20th June, & the Harvester Relays in South Wales on 21st June.

SLOW qualify for Compass Sport Cup final

SLOW have once again qualified for the national Compass Sport Cup final. On a cold but pleasant day, we won Sunday’s qualifying round at Pamber Forest with an excellent score of 2271 points, a comfortable 83 points ahead of 2nd-placed Thames Valley, who also qualify for the final (as a result of SLOW finishing in the top three overall last year).

The final is being held on Sunday 18th October, at Fineshade Woods, near Corby in Northamptonshire (map link here). We need the strongest possible SLOW team for the final, so put the date in your diary NOW! We want as many as possible of our best 30-40 runners to come along, but remember that everyone is welcome. It is a great club day out.

With a late surge of entries, we ended up having very good backup on many courses. So well done & thanks to all those able to compete. We were missing a few of our top runners due to injuries and other commitments but still scored well enough to win.

The final team results were: South London 2271, Thames Valley 2188, Southampton 2166, Southern Navigators (N. Hampshire/W. Surrey) 2162, Sarum (Sailsbury) 2130, Berkshire 1625.

So the finalists are: Aire (Leeds), Bristol, Edinburgh Southern, Harlequins (Birmingham), Nottinghamshire, Octavian Droobers (Coventry), Southdowns, South London, South Yorkshire, Thames Valley, & West Cumberland.

That is the same as last year except: South Ribble, Walton Chasers & West Anglia – out. Aire, Edinburgh Southern, Harlequins, Thames Valley – in.

SLOW scorers

Our 25 Top Scorers in the qualifying: Brown (6), Blue Women (4), Blue Men (6), Green Women (3), Green Men (1), Light Green (3), Short Green (2).

98 Ed Catmur (Brown), Abi Weeds (Blue Women), Teresa Turner (Short Green)
96 Matthias Mahr (Brown), Diane Leakey (Green Women), Anne May (Short Green)
95 Ralph Street (Brown)
94 Charlie Whetham (Brown), Carys Morgan (Blue Women), Sarah Brown (Green Women)
93 James McMillan (Blue Men)
92 Alan Leakey (Blue Men), Chris Robinson (Green Women)
91 John Dowty (Blue Men)
90 Jim Mallinson (Green Men)
89 Simon Evans (Brown)
88 Charlotte Turner (Blue Women), Charles McMillan (Light Green)
87 Charlie Turner (Blue Men)
86 Anne Straube (Blue Women), Gustav Lindeborg (Light Green)
85 Audrius Janulynas (Blue Men)
84 Andy Robinson (Blue Men)
83 Mark Vyvyan-Robinson (Brown)
78 Matthew Jones (Light Green)

Other good scores: Chris Wroe (82), Pete Huzan (79), Dorte Torpe Hansen (82), Sarah Covey-Crump (78), Paul Street (80), Andy Jones (78).

Top Backup: Chris Fry (74), David May (68), Gail Parker (66), Judy Fry (62).

Full results of the qualifying event are available here. Thanks to BADO for hosting the event.

Coaching 4 April 2009

WHEN – Saturday 4th April, starting 11:00 sharp and running until about 13:00.

WHERE – We are meeting at the Windmill car park in Wimbledon Common – map link here.

WHAT – There will be 4 courses on offer for advanced orienteers. These add to a total of 8km so will provide a good workout. There is also an easier ‘butterfly loops’ course for beginners.

There will be a team of experienced coaches available on the day to talk technique. Shadowing will be on offer for beginners.

The session has been planned by Australian Team coach Rob Lewis who will share some know-how from down under. He will also be able to talk about technique for Aussie forests for anyone going to the World Masters in October.

Lunch at the Telegraph Pub nearby.

QUERIES – contact Rob Lewis: email or phone 07787 122967

SLOW at the British Orienteering Championships 2009

Left: Mike Murray (M65 winner), Right: Sarah Brown (W55 winner). Photos: Alan Leakey.

The 2009 British Orienteering Championships were held this weekend in the New Forest in Hampshire, with the Individual championships on the Saturday at Hampton Ridge and the Relays on the Sunday at Bealieu. SLOW had over 50 club members competing at the event, and a number of successes – read on…

Individual event

SLOW have three new British individual champions – these are Diane Leakey (W50), Sarah Brown (W55) and Mike Murray (M65). Very well done to all three. Third place finishes were also achieved by Paul Couldridge (M35) and Anja Stratford (W35).

Additionally, Ed Catmur won M21 Long (not the British Championships for M/W21 Elite – that is in May) and Emma Jones won the W20 Short class. In the UK Cup races for Elites, Ralph Street finished 8th (3rd junior, 1st M20), and Abi Weeds was 9th.

The full list of SLOW members’ individual results can be found here.

Left: Anja Stratford & Paul Couldridge (3rd place W35 & M35), Right: Diane Leakey shows off her 3 British W50 titles in 2009 – individual day & night championships plus the British Relays. Photos: Alan Leakey.


We had 15 teams enjoying the spring weather at the relay event at Beaulieu. Most of the courses were in the Estate wooded enclosure, including some intricate rhododendron patches. The longer classes spent some extra time on fast flat moorland. Everyone seemed to enjoy themselves running on shorter courses compared to the previous day!

A massive highlight of the day has to be the fantastic performance by the Men’s Premier team of Paul Couldridge, Ed Catmur & Ralph Street. They came 4th which is our best result for a long time. Paul came back in close contention in 8th, Ed moved up to 6th, & Ralph ran the 2nd fastest time of day. Unfortunately Graham Gristwood ran the fastest time to keep us off the podium, but Ralph made him work for it! Our Women’s Premier team of Rachael Holmes, Carys Morgan & Anja Stratford came 8th.

Our 50+ classes did very well. For the women, Sarah Brown, Chris Robinson & Diane Leakey led all the way to win the trophy. But last year’s winners Lakeland (including ex-SLOW Jackie Chapman) were very close for 2 legs. The W50 team would like to dedicate their win to Caroline McMillan who passed away last weekend after a battle with leukaemia; though not an orienteer herself, Caroline was a wonderful, loyal supporter of our club, helping out at events and cheering on all SLOW competitors on many run-ins and, of course, her own family in particular. Our thoughts were with Andrew, James and Charles throughout the British Championships weekend.

The 50+ men got the bronze – Peter Haynes came back in 3rd place, Andy Jones recovering from injury held it together in the intricate areas & John Dowty did well in the head-to-head on last leg. 26 seconds separated 2nd to 5th!

There were other good performances from Phil Marsland (M40) & Kathy Haynes (W Short). Kathy would have been great backup for the W50 team. In fact she was only a little down on Sarah on 1st leg. We also got some 12th places in very competitive classes: M18 (Gustav Lindeborg, Greg Street, Robert Jones), M50 (Charlie Turner, Andy Robinson, Alan Leakey), & M/W60 (Jim Mallinson, Teresa Turner, Chris Fry) – unfortunately Mike Murray was injured.

There were lots of smiling faces from many more club members who had run to their current potential – some of us just need to get a bit faster!

Left: W50 winners – Sarah Brown, Chris Robinson, Diane Leakey, Right: M50 3rd place – Andy Jones (plus Peter Haynes & John Dowty not pictured). Photos: Alan Leakey.

Detailed results from the weekend can be found here. More photos from the weekend can be found on the Digisport website.

Southern Championships – Sunday 22 February

The previous weekend, the Southern Championships were held at Burnham Beeches & Egypt Woods in Hertfordshire. This event also incorporated the annual “Interland” international match between England, Holland, Germany and two regions of Belgium.

Ralph Street won the M20 Southern Championships and won the Interland race competing for England. Southern Championships were also won by SLOW members Paul Couldridge (M35) and Sarah Brown (W55).

Next team events

The next major team events are the Compass Sport Cup round on 29th March, & the JK Relays in Northumberland on 13th April. We look forward to seeing lots of you at these events – contact if you haven’t already done so if you want to run at these races.

London's largest orienteering club. British Orienteering's Club of the Year 2013. CASC accredited.