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Tweet Wednesday 2nd May 2018

Further Improvement in European Trail Orienteering TempO Final

As reported yesterday, John Kewley (Manchester and District Orienteering Club) was the only British competitor to attain the TempO Final at the European Trail Orienteering Championships in Slovakia. Having qualified in 17th place in his heat (only 18 go through), he then surpassed himself by finishing in 18th place overall, which was a fantastic performance against the very top European athletes.

At the end of the heats, it was very much ‘yes you have, no you haven’t, yes you have’ as the Organisers at first voided one station (of 6) in response to a complaint concerning the mapper’s depiction of the ground, only for the Race Jury to re-instate it after another team protested. Looking closely at the terrain, an advantage that the complainant did not have, they considered that it was accurate enough. John did so well on that station, compared to others, that voiding it would have dropped him to 30th place! On such fine (contour) lines are results achieved.

The Final was extremely hard technically: admittedly the winner (Pinja Mäkinen (FIN)) did only make one mistake in the 35 Tasks, taking it much more steadily than one usually expects (224 secs overall), the next best were 3 and 4 errors by two competitors (14th and 2nd) and 2 of the Finalists made 20 errors each! John made 9 errors for 628.5 secs, just 2 seconds behind 17th, who rushed 13 mistakes. Certainly, in recent years this is by far the best British result in TempO, so a thoroughly satisfactory conclusion to the European Championships for Great Britain.

Technical training pays dividends: Finns took all the medals, 5th place and their other two finalists were 15th and 16th Antti Rusanen (FIN) only got the Silver medal after winning the first two events – the first time that he has been beaten in TrailO this year.

British Heat Results (30 Tasks):

A Heat: (Winner 275 secs, 18th Qualifier 464.5 secs, 55th last place 1150 secs)

Ian Ditchfield (MV) 33rd  595.5 secs (8 errors)
Tom Dobra (UBOC) 34th 597.5 secs (9 errors)
Pete Huzan (SLOW) 41st 647 secs (11 errors)
Dick Keighley (WIM) 52nd  925.5 secs (16 errors)

 B Heat: (Winner 274 secs, 18th Qualifier 464.5 secs (yes, really), 55th last place 1053 secs)

John Kewley (MDOC) 17th 462.5 secs (6 errors)
Charles Bromley Gardner (BAOC) 37th 590 secs (10 errors)
Peter Roberts (EBOR) 45th 772.5 secs (16 errors)
Iain Phillips (LEI) 46th 776.5 secs (14 errors)

Charles Bromley Gardner, GBR Team Manager ETOC 2018, says: 

“This was an excellent result for ‘John Kewley’ in an extremely arduous competition. He decided to adapt his speed to the difficulty and this paid huge dividends. The next major competition for the British team will be the World Championships in Latvia in July. Those selected will be looking to travel to foreign competitions (at their own expense) as often as possible in the next couple of months in order to practise in suitably technical terrain, aiming to build on the successes in Slovakia. And, of course, there are the British Trail-O Championships in Scotland on Sunday afternoon 20th May (after BRC): we would love to see more taking on the challenge, and SI entries close this Friday – cheaper than a Relay run!”

Photo: Taken from the event video, John Kewley competes in the TempO Final.

To see John Kewley go through the complete process at a TempO Station, watch here


British Orienteering wishes all the GBR team a safe and hassle-free journey back home from these Championships.