Thanks to everyone who came to the final park race of the series.
The two areas used are maybe not the most challenging technically but with the bends of the river, and the depth after a bit of rain, the skill level required increases. Also a unique feature of both parks is how close you are to major transportation (M4 and Piccadilly Line) and yet in a navigational world of your own!
Boston Manor House is well worth a visit once renovation work is complete and we have to thank Linda Massey for her support in using the area.
Additional thanks from me go to our helpers on the night: Don McKerrow, Sue Carter, Steven Clelland and Ralph Dadswell, as well as Vicky Whaley, my neighbour Chris, Gordon Parker and John Owens for ensuring I was able to get the equipment to the right places at the rights times without a car. Of course Fiona Tam also put in a power of effort on the night making sure that the series results were correct and updated and of course managing to coordinate another successful park race series.
The Scottish 6 Days is by some margin the largest orienteering event in Great Britain. It has been organized every other summer since 1977. On each of the six competition days thousands of runners tackled one of 38 forest courses provided for 70 classes, and this year many chose sprint orienteering and/or Trail-O on the Wednesday “rest day” too.
Thanks to Wendy Carlyle for the image featured at the top of the post – one of our members entering the finish field on Day 3.
Races happen from Sunday one weekend to the following Saturday with Wednesday as the rest day – a chance to bag a Munro or go cycling perhaps, or to take part in a sprint race and Trail-O. And some folk even have a rest.
The competition is very well organized (almost entirely by volunteers) with six high quality forest races in different locations, with some areas often new to orienteering. Runners are allocated a variety of start times through the week in club “blocks” – this year SLOW had their earliest starts on the first day – the tough near wilderness forest of Auchengarrich.
The organization has already scheduled and begun planning the next competition: Lochaber 2021. They maintain a body of knowledge and store of equipment, whilst adding and changing in the light of trends and technology. This year featured two middle distance style races alongside the traditional long forest formats, livestreaming pictures and commentary to the internet, and GPS tracking of selected classes each day.
You can find many photographs from the links on the 6-Day Website: we have picked out a few, some of which may be of our members. Many thanks to the photographers: Andy Johnson, Wendy Carlyle and Steve Rush.
After the final race at Nonsuch Park on Sunday, and once the arithmetic of the handicapping had been applied, SLOW were determined to be second behind the series winners HAVOC – Havering and South Essex Orienteering Club. The score in the final race was 528 – 524.
Thanks to Mole Valley for the Nonsuch Park race. With their kind permission and support Sarah Brown ran a flapjack stall for the Orienteering Foundation appeal to support the GB Team in the forthcoming World Championships. Sarah thanks runners for supporting the appeal to the value of £51.20.
A park on a nice summer Sunday morning can be quite busy, and several passers-by took an interest. It’s good to be able to talk about the range of our great sport.
Thanks to The Bull for hosting our race on Streatham Common and Norwood Grove. And thanks to Gordon Parker for planning and organizing it all, and to the several other members of SLOW who helped it go smoothly.
Thanks to The Spencer for hosting our race on Barnes Common today. And thanks to Nikolay Kolev and Vesela Chokoeva for planning and organizing it all, and to the several members of SLOW who helped it happen.
It was a lovely warm evening for the second race of the 2019 park race series, kindly hosted at Imperial College, and organised and planned by Michael Crone. Thanks for coming along: we hope you enjoyed the evening, running in such a pleasant part of London and the challenges the courses offered.
One of the characteristics of orienteering is that the runner takes responsibility for their route. The planner makes it more than a run in the park by setting interesting and challenging legs that require the competitor to interpret the map, and make route choices.
Leg 9 to 10 on the long course is such a leg. There is a large building between the control sites, and there are two levels at number 9 . It’s a good leg, with there being alternate ramp and stair choices – which did you pick? (The Routegadget link below has the full map.)
But it’s a University building and it had open doors at least at some of the time we were racing. Several runners on the course ran directly through it. The map clearly does not have this “route”.
For newcomers to orienteering, oops. Maybe you didn’t realise or you saw others doing it. There are no disqualifications.
For experienced orienteers – and many of the transgressors are members of SLOW or other clubs – this is poor and you should know better. Please stick to the rules and don’t do this sort of thing.
If you can see from the map that there isn’t a legal route don’t go that way. Do not cross impassable wall /fence /vegetation /access forbidden /out-of-bounds – you need a different way. If a road is cross-hatched in red do not cross it even if you can. If you find an open gate or a hole in a fence that is not on the map don’t go through.
The serious aspect is that deliberate action of this type can cause us to lose access to part of a map, or even to be unable to get permission for future races: “last time your people did this…” In any case it damages the sport’s reputation. We need to try hard to maintain a good reputation, especially with site managers and landowners.
Of course it’s tricky at times – and most people make some mistakes some of the time, but really it is hard to imagine that so many experienced runners misread the map to think it was OK to run through the building here.
We have removed this leg from the total time taken.