Olav Lundanes, Norway is proving to be one of the greatest Long distance competitors of all time, taking his sixth gold in this format and the fourth in succession, a convincing win by 1.39. His compatriot Kasper Fosser, still a junior, took the silver medal and Daniel Hubmann, Switzerland the bronze.
In the race today, over 16.6 km with 530 m climb, it was Kasper Fosser, 11 years younger and recent gold medallist in Middle, Long and Relay at the Junior World Orienteering Championships, who was the clear fastest overall through much of the early and middle part of the race. In particular, his decision to take a route well north of the line at the start of the second long leg proved to be a very good one. But Lundanes was pacing his run well, and from leg 15-16 where he made a particularly good route choice, he got ahead and it stayed that way as Fosser lost a little speed and energy. Both Norwegians had near-perfect runs.
Leading results, men
Tove Alexandersson, Sweden emulated the feat of Olav Lundanes today in winning a fourth WOC Long Distance gold in a row, with a huge win by 6 minutes and 16 seconds.
This was a run that no challenger could begin to match; a small error at the first control was the catalyst for full concentration and effort from then on. The long leg 7-8 was decisive, with many competitors taking more than 3 minutes longer than Alexandersson, but she also chose a very fast route on the long leg 4-5. She outpaced all the competition through sheer running speed coupled with fine technical accuracy, with the exception of silver medallist Lina Strand who kept up the same pace in the later part of the course.
“I heard that I had a good lead when running through the spectator passage,” said Alexandersson, “so I could relax a little on the last part of the course.”
Marika Teini, Finland was in a medal position for a good deal of the course, but lost time towards the end and finished 12 seconds down on the young Swiss athlete Simona Aebersold, who took the bronze medal 6.50 down on the winning time.
Leading results, women
Official results are published here
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Today is a rest day, and competition resumes on tomorrow (Friday 16 August) with the Middle Distance Finals.
The women’s race starts first at around 13.30 local time (UK time: 12:30), and the men’s starts around 15.45 (UK time: 14:45).