The first day of WTOC 2018 competition, the TempO event, which took place in the picturesque setting of Daugavpils fortress, was a good one for the GB team. Competitors had to achieve a top 18 place in the heats to qualify for the final, and John Kewley stormed in with a 4th place in Heat A, with Ian Ditchfield coming 15th in Heat B -so two British qualifiers! Unfortunately, neither made the podium in the final. It was a nail-biting finish, with no clear winner right until the end, when the brilliant young Petteri Hakala of Finland overtook the joint silver medal winners, Lennart Wahlgren of Sweden and Jan Furucz of Slovakia, to take first place.
All in all, it was a creditable result for the British team, and we walked proudly behind the British flag (once John Kewley had rehung it the right way up!) during the opening ceremony.
The second WTOC event followed on Tuesday 7th August, this time the first of two PreO competitions, which took place in the complex woodlands around Jauna Forstade on the edge of Daugavpils. Best-placed of the British entrants was Tom Dobra, who came 14th with fast (and correct!) timed controls and just one mistake out on the course. In this extremely strong international field, Nick Barrable was one of many with 26 out of 28 correct answers. DIck Keighley came in the middle of the field in the Paralympic class (and did brilliantly on the timed controls! ) In the public event which took place later using the same course, Colin Duckworth and Ian Ditchfield had a great day, scoring 26 and 25 points respectively.
The second part of the PreO competition takes place on Thursday after we have done some more training at a Model event.