Great Britain had eight representatives in the sprint with three men and five women competing. In the Men's race, Chris Smithard qualified very well from his heat finishing up in 2nd place. Will Gardner (20th) and Hector Haines (27th) unfortunately did not progress. In the women's qualification races Hollie Orr (12th); Cat Taylor (10th) and Charlotte Ward (6th) all qualified to the afternoon's final. Unfortunately, Jo Shepherd (19th) and Kirstin Maxwell (16th) did not qualify with Kirstin missing out by only 7 seconds.
Orienteering World Cup 2017 Round 3 Sprint Qualification Results
Sunday 27 August 2017
Sprint Qualification Results – for GB Men
MEN HEAT A
20 William Gardner Great Britain 12:36 +0:45
MEN HEAT B
2 Chris Smithard Great Britain 12:23 +0:10
MEN HEAT C
27 Hector Haines Great Britain 13:38 +1:05
Sprint Qualification Results – GB Women
WOMEN HEAT A
12 Hollie Orr Great Britain 14:28 +0:53
19 Jo Shepherd Great Britain 14:51 +1:16
WOMEN HEAT B
10 Catherine Taylor Great Britain 13:33 +0:33
WOMEN HEAT C
6 Charlotte Ward Great Britain 13:13 +0:30
16 Kirstin Maxwell Great Britain 13:44 +1:01
In the Sprint Finals, the standout performance was in the women's race where Cat Taylor with a great run finished in 4th= and secured a place on the podium. Charlotte Ward finished in 32nd and Hollie Orr finished in 34th. In the Men's race, Chris Smithard finished in 17th place. In the B Finals, Will Gardner finished 6th; Kirstin Maxwell 20th and Jo Shepherd 26th.
Tove Alexandersson, Sweden was fastest in the Women’s Final for all but the first half-kilometre and won by 39 seconds. The Czech athlete Vojtech Kral took his first-ever World Cup win.
This was a clear triumph for Alexandersson, who lost little time on a very varied and quite complex course with streets, alleyways, parkland and forest, some parts flat and others with quite steep slopes with contouring legs and some route choice: an interesting and challenging course overall. Mistakes in route execution were made by most of the competitors at some point or other. Second and third places went to Natalia Gemperle, Russia and Sabine Hauswirth, Switzerland, both finishing strongly after being 7th and 9th respectively at the half-way point. Shortly before the end Cat Taylor, Great Britain was holding second place, but she lost a crucial 12 seconds on the final stretch and finished fourth equal with the Finn Merja Rantanen.
The sixth place has been Vojtech Kral’s best until now, achieved on several occasions including this year’s World Championship Sprint Final. Today he was never more than 11 seconds down on the lead, picking up that time between 1.3 and 1.9 km, and was strongest of all in the second half of the course. Fastest in the first half was Tim Robertson, New Zealand, but he then lost 29 seconds before the finish and ended eighth; Daniel Hubmann, Switzerland had a similar experience – second at halfway and finished ninth. Jerker Lysell, Sweden ran consistently throughout and finished second, whilst Swiss athlete Matthias Kyburz came up to third from sixth at halfway.
Orienteering World Cup 2017 Round 3 Sprint Final Results
MEN A – SPRINT FINAL
1 Vojtech Kral Czech Republic 15:08 0:00
2 Jerker Lysell Sweden 15:13 +0:05
3 Matthias Kyburz Switzerland 15:15 +0:07
4 Martin Regborn Sweden 15:26 +0:18
5 Frederic Tranchand France 15:28 +0:20
6 Gustav Bergman Sweden 15:35 +0:27
17 Chris Smithard Great Britain 15:59 +0:51
WOMEN A – SPRINT FINAL
1 Tove Alexandersson Sweden 15:22 0:00
2 Natalia Gemperle Russian Federation 16:01 +0:39
3 Sabine Hauswirth Switzerland 16:04 +0:42
4 Merja Rantanen Finland 16:10 +0:48
4 Catherine Taylor Great Britain 16:10 +0:48
6 Galina Vinogradova Russian Federation 16:13 +0:51
32 Charlotte Ward Great Britain 17:38 +2:16
34 Hollie Orr Great Britain 17:39 +2:17
MEN B – SPRINT FINAL
1 Jonas Leandersson Sweden 13:00 0:00
2 Artem Popov Russian Federation 13:35 +0:35
3 Robert Merl Austria 13:55 +0:55
4 Aleksi Niemi Finland 14:01 +1:01
5 Tomas Kubelka Czech Republic 14:02 +1:02
6 William Gardner Great Britain 14:07 +1:07
WOMEN B –SPRINT FINAL
2 Alva Olsson Sweden 14:37 0:00
2 Annika Rihma Estonia 14:42 +0:05
3 Emma Johansson Norway 14:47 +0:10
4 Isia Basset France 14:51 +0:14
5 Adela Indrakova Czech Republic 14:55 +0:18
6 Vendula Horcickova Czech Republic 15:09 +0:32
20 Kirstin Maxwell Great Britain 16:01 +1:24
26 Jo Shepherd Great Britain 16:28 +1:51
Cat Taylor (GBR), said: “In the qualification, it felt like I was learning on the run about the terrain here. I made one bigger mistake, which meant I was on my toes for the Final and put together a nearly clean race. It's the best Sprint I've managed in a long time so I'm glad it came at the World Cup!”
Chris Smithard (GBR), said: “It was a solid race, one slight route choice error which cost a few seconds. Possibly I was too cautious at times and could have run harder. However, I’m happy to have delivered top 20 results on my three International Sprints this year which was significantly better than recent years. Thanks to my coach Graham Gristwood who’s helped find the consistency I was looking for. Now I’m hoping to push on to a higher level in 2018.”
Well done and congratulations Cat and Chris on your performances competing at this world level. British Orienteering wishes all the GB athletes all the very best with their on-going training and performance planning.
Full details and results can be found on the event website www.wcup2017.lv.
Round 3 of this year’s World Cup has given competitors valuable experience of Latvian conditions and the organising teams plenty of practice, before next year’s World Championships in Latvia in early August.
The final round of the 2017 World Cup is at Grindelwald, Switzerland from 29 September to 1 October.