It has been a challenging year for the athletes and organisers, along with many others and due to the postponed Sprint World Orienteering Championship 2020, 689 days has passed since the last World Orienteering Championship (WOC) competition which was the Relay in Norway 2019.
However, as we approach the World Orieneering Championships 2021 the best orienteers in the world are now gathered in the Czech Republic carrying out their last of their preparations.
LIVE Orienteering will cover the whole championships with the first competition taking place being the Sprint in Terezin on Saturday 3 July 2021. This will see the Sprint race taking place around a former military fortress composed of citadel and adjacent walled Harrison town. A flat town with almost no climb composed of a rectangular street network with former military buildings and barracks rebuilt to residential houses.
In the Men’s competition, Great Britain will be represented by Chris Smithard, Nathan Lawson and Peter Hodkinson and in the Women’s by Grace Molloy, Alice Leake and Cecilie Andersen. All will be aiming to be amongst the top 45 athletes from the morning’s qualification races, who line up to contest the first medals of the championships in the finals later the same day.
Day 2 on Sunday 4 July sees the Mixed Sprint Relay taking place in Doksy with its irregular street network and urban areas with paved streets and parkland. The mass start is at 17:20 UK time, and after being unable to compete at the European Championships earlier this year, the GB team will be targeting a strong showing.
Tuesday 6 July will see the Middle distance competition, a long day for the athletes with the qualification in the morning and the final in the afternoon. In this discipline Alastair Thomas, Ralph Street and Peter Bray will represent Great Britain in the Men’s race with Cat Taylor, Grace Molloy and Megan Carter-Davies lining up for the women.
These races take place in the challenging mountain terrain of the Jablonec nad Nisou district, where the competitors will meet hilly physically demanding forest with granite boulders and cliffs, as well as areas of thicker forest with marshes and broken ground. The qualification races are a shortened Middle Distance with the top 15 from each race going through to the final.
After a rest day Heřmánky will host the Relay. This is the first race of the week held in the famous Czech sandstone terrain, with much runnable beech forest cut by many deep valleys and re-entrants, crowned by massive sandstone rock formations. The Women’s Relay starts at 15:20 UK time and is estimated to finish at around 17:05, with the mass start for the Men’s race following there after at 17:20 UK time.
The final day is the Long Distance which will again be based in Heřmánky in the same forests as the Relay. The terrain lends itself to long legs with significant route choices as well as significant climb. The number of athletes for each nation for the Long distance is determined by performance at recent championships (there are no qualification races for the Long Distance) and the start order is determined by world ranking. Ralph Street and Hector Haines will be representing the Men’s Team with Jo Shepherd, Grace Molloy and Megan Carter- Davies in the Women’s.
Team Managers: Mark Saunders and Alice Bedwell
Team Coach: Emil Wingstedt
GB Men’s Team
GB Women’s Team
National TV broadcasting companies might vary the broadcast times. The Intenational Orienteering Fereration (IOF) will try to keep the TV broadcast table updated here.
All 5 competitions will be covered with full TV broadcast on Web-TV.
Important links are as follows:
British Orienteering wishes the Great Britain Team all the very best with their final preparations, safe travel and good luck to all for the forthcoming World Orienteering Championships 2021.