By Sal Chaffey and Ranald Macdonald, Derwent Valley Orienteers
British Middle Distance Championships
Sunday 15 September 2019
Organiser Sal Chaffey from Derwent Valley Orienteers, comments:
Our day for “the Middles” was a foggy one, amidst days of blue autumnal skies. This was certainly true on the Friday, when a small team met at Piece Farm to place the eight temporary stiles on the moor, and on Saturday when the marquee arrived and we set up the arena, cheered by news of Derwent Valley Orienteers' medals at the British Sprint Championships in Loughborough. Again, the Monday and Tuesday after the event provided excellent drying days for the soggy assortment of kites and kit!
However, on Sunday morning you couldn’t see the portaloos from the marquee – it was like being on another planet and I was relieved when the first non-DVO competitors emerged from the mists as I knew that others would surely follow.
Above photo on left: The Arena on Saturday. Piece Farm (on the left), Lantern Pike (on the right).
Above photo on right: The first brave spectators set up tents in the mists of Sunday morning!
And they did. Some 877 competed on the day, 859 of those on Championship courses.
We had about 80 helpers from DVO, most of whom undertook an array of different jobs as the day progressed – thank you all! Thank you to Viv Macdonald who liaised with the DVO Teams and dealt with road signs, making my job so much easier. Mike Godfree handled entries.
Thanks also to the Prize-giving Team of Val Johnson and the Duckworth and O’Donnell families who enabled the Hallam family from Piece Farm to be involved.
Unclaimed medals and maps will be available at DVO’s Regional event at Longshaw on Saturday 26 October. Longshaw is a beautiful National Trust area just 10 miles SW of Sheffield, and the event is part of the East Midlands League.
It’s been great to be part of an event of this scale, and it certainly makes you appreciate the efforts put on behind the scenes by other clubs and by staff at British Orienteering. We are privileged to be part of a sport in which there’s always room to learn, and where age is no barrier in participation, as borne out by our competitors, who ranged from 8 to 88!
Planner Ranald Macdonald, Derwent Valley Orienteers, comments:
Scheduling the British Middles in the first half of September is always going to limit the areas a club like DVO can use because the undergrowth is at its worst. However, we do have a couple of upland areas that are more suitable. The first we looked at was deemed unsuitable for the level of event and we have subsequently had significant access issues with that area. We had only used Chinley Churn a few times since its initial mapping in 2015 and, whilst it also has limitations, it seemed worthy of consideration.
The area comprises tiered quarry workings and steep scree/boulder fields on the eastern side, marshy moorland on the top and then fields sloping down to the west and the assembly area on Piece Farm. The area is divided up by uncrossable walls and fences meaning that we had to construct eight stiles to provide reasonable straight line routes or to avoid stiles on public rights of way that could be busy on an early autumn Sunday as it’s a very popular walking area.
I had never planned a championship/level A event before and was really only third or fourth choice as other potential planners were too busy in their work or were injured. The whole exercise was therefore a very steep learning curve for me, though greatly assisted by the ever-patient Chris Burden (AIRE), my Controller.
The Finish was largely determined by the area chosen for Assembly and car parking. It provided a good arena with visible final controls across the skyline and downhill to the Finish.
Finally, some thank yous:
Photo credits: Steve Rush (BOK)
Final results can be found here.
Results, as well as WinSplits and Routegadget, are here.
Organiser: Sal Chaffey assisted by Viv Macdonald, both DVO
Planner: Ranald Macdonald assisted by Dave Chaffey, both DVO
Controller: Chris Burden, Aire
Mapper: Richard Parkin, DVO
British Orienteering would like to take this opportunity to say thank you to the Organiser Sal Chaffey and all event officials, to Derwent Valley Orienteers and surrounding clubs for all their hard work and behind the scenes activities in making this a great British Middle Championships.
By Bob Haskins, Leicestershire Orienteering Club (LEI)
Saturday 14 September 2019 turned out to be a warm and sunny early Autumn day. It couldn’t have been better for holding the British Sprint Championships at Loughborough University.
There were 800 entrants who were able to enjoy a day of fast, and at times complex, sprint orienteering. The Event Centre was at one of the University’s main facilities buildings, thanks to holding the event out of term time, and had plenty of capacity for enquiries, starts and results displays, and download. Loughborough University is the premier sporting campus in the UK, and the University authorities were very accommodating, as they had been when the event was held here previously in 2013. It is also the largest single campus site in the country and we still have about one third of the campus which has not been used for a Championship event. It is also a quickly changing environment, and our mapper, Peter Hornsby was making changes up until just a few days prior to the event.
As the available area is so large, it enables the heats and finals to be on adjoining areas, but with no overlap. This makes life more difficult for the
Planner, Iain Phillips, of course, who effectively plans two separate large events for use on one day with 40+ separate courses and 150+ control sites. However, this makes for a much more interesting event for the competitors, with the most complex areas being used for the Finals.
From an organisational point of view, having good facilities makes putting on the event a bit less challenging. There is a 630-space multi-storey car park available, so no muddy fields for us. The arena area seemed to work well and it was possible to look down over the finish run-in from the grass banks or the hard standing next to the event centre.
The biggest challenge of the Sprints is the timetable for the day. We started all the morning heats over one hour, setting off 20 competitors at a time in full minutes. This was thanks to our 18-member start team and some pre-event practices and much thinking. The big pressure then comes to process the heats into the start lists for the Finals, and we were very thankful that this was contracted out by us to SIEntries. The printout I have of the finals start lists shows a time of 12:38 pm, ready for the first finals starts at 1:30 pm. The Finals were over a larger window, and therefore a bit more relaxed.
The Open class Final was also a World Ranking Event which necessitated a variation from normal practice, in that all the three finals were the same course. Only an A Finalist could be British Champion, but any of the finalists could win the WE race. As it turned out it was the British Champions who won this race as well. For the first time at the British Sprints, there were also separate class medals for M/W 18 and 20. We also altered the usual ordering of the Finals, so that we had a stream of A Final winners coming in at regular intervals, culminating in the Open Class finalists at the end of the afternoon with most competitors back and watching this exciting finale and listening to the excellent commentary.
Kris Jones started strongly in the morning sprint qualifying race, winning his heat by over a minute. He followed this up with a superb run in the afternoon final, winning in 12.27 over 3km, 47 seconds clear of Peter Hodkinson in 2nd place and Jonny Crickmore in 3rd.
Megan Carter-Davies also won both her heat and final, finishing the final in 11.44 for 2.3km, ahead of Alice Leake (2nd) and Cecile Andersen (3rd).
Photo credits: Bob Haskins (LEI)
Full results are available here.
Congratulations go to all the British champions!
British Orienteering would like to thank Bob Haskins (LEI) and all members from the organising clubs for an excellent day of Sprint racing.
Saturday 28 September 2019
South-West Championship event - Classic Distance (National level).
Sunday 29 September 2019
Chasing start times will be computed on the basis of Day 1 running times, with a base-time of 10.00.
The terrain is typical Dartmoor, mixed woodland and moorland. The moorland is generally runnable with rocky tor outcrops. The profusion of pits and gullies, which add considerably to the technical challenge, is the unintended legacy of the former tin-miners.
Event Organiser, Alan Simpson from Devon Orienteering Club, says: "The Caddihoe Chase is an annual event in the South West. It was invented by Devon Orienteering Club, and we host the event alternate years, with other South West clubs taking their turn in between. We look forward to you joining us for a weekend of quality orienteering at the Caddihoe Chase, on the 28th and 29th September in what is a stunning location of south west Dartmoor."
Age-class Caddihoe trophies will be awarded on the Sunday, based on the two-day result.
The unique feature of the Chase is that, in every age class, the first runner across the finishing line is the Caddihoe Winner.
There is still time to enter! On-line entry is via www.fabian4.co.uk, on or before 22 September 2019.
Late entries/Entries On Day may be available, but strictly subject to map availability.
Event Planner: Nicholas Maxwell, Devon Orienteering Club (DEVON)
Controller: Graham Pring, Cornwall Orienteering Club (KERNO)
Organiser: Alan Simpson, Devon Orienteering Club (DEVON)
Many thanks to the landowners SW Lakes Trust and Dartmoor National Park Authority for the use of their land for this event.
Further event details are available on the Devon Orienteering Club website – here.
By Craig Anthony
For 2018 British Orienteering will be implementing significant changes to the Performance Programme. These changes are intended to build a sustainable programme in which aims to maximise athlete potential to win medals. We value greatly the commitment that volunteers contribute to the programme however we recognise it is unrealistic to expect volunteers to replicate the roles of staff who used to be employed full time and part time in the programme. There is a need to develop a programme which can operate effectively with potentially changing personnel. In recognition of the financial burden placed on our international athletes, we wish to use most of the available funds to directly support athletes. The approach outlined below was developed with support from the Talent and Performance Steering Group and is intended to balance providing financial support to those selected for competition and those individuals with medal-winning potential.
British Orienteering will identify a senior squad for the coming season in the Autumn of the previous year. The squad will be selected by the Selection Panel using the following criteria.
Athletes selected to the squad will be a senior in the following season and fulfill at least one of the criterion identified below:
Selected to represent GB at World Orienteering Championships or World Cups the past season
Two individual top 20s or one individual top 10 or one relay top 3 at the Junior World Championships in the last 3 years
Projected selection based on the results of the named races in the selection policy
In addition to the senior squad, British Orienteering will invest funds directly into potential medal-winning athletes using a system of athlete awards. The Selection Panel will be responsible for selecting the recipients of these awards. These awards will recognise both individual and relay medal chances. Athletes considered to have individual medal chances will receive a higher award than those athletes considered to be critical to relay medal chances on a ratio of 2:1 based on available funds. No athlete will receive both awards. The criteria below will be used for selecting recipients. The criteria indicate a minimum level of achievement and the selection panel will make the final decision.
Athletes who have achieved a top 6 individual position at World Orienteering Championship or World Cup in the past 2 years. The panel believes these athletes represent the best opportunity for an individual British medal success in the next 2 years.
Athletes who have achieved a top 4 relay position at World Orienteering Championship or World Cup in the past 2 years. The selection panel believes these athletes are likely to be serious contenders for relay medal success in the next 2 years.
The following process will be implemented:
In 2018 this will be a one-year fund commencing on 1st January. The intention is that from 2019 athletes will be identified on a WOC cycle, i.e. every two years with funding paid in January each year. However, this will be reviewed during the first year of implementation and regularly following this to ensure the process and timescales are appropriate.
British Orienteering will continue to make selections for all competitions where Great Britain are represented. For all World Cups and World Orienteering Championships, British Orienteering will cover the following costs:
Athletes will be required to fund all remaining costs including travel and accommodation.
For all World Cups and World Orienteering Championships, British Orienteering will identify a volunteer Team Manager. This role will coordinate the GB team attendance at competitions aiming to provide, as far as possible, a stress-free competition experience for the team. This includes providing the following functions for all team members:
Athletes wishing not to utilise any or all this service will need to liaise directly with the Team Manager to clarify what support they would like and if this will be available within the team logistics. Where necessary British Orienteering will process payments for team logistics on behalf of athletes and claim funds back via invoice.
In addition, at World Cup 1 and World Orienteering Championships British Orienteering will recruit two additional support volunteers.
Technical – This role will provide coaching/mentoring for athletes that want it whilst at the competition as well as support training and logistics. They will have a knowledge and experience of international orienteering as either an athlete or coach.
Medical - this role will provide medical advice and support to the team whilst at the competition as well as support training and logistics. They will have a qualification in physiotherapy or medicine as well as a knowledge and experience of international orienteering as either an athlete, coach or support team.
British Orienteering will pay expenses for the volunteer support team identified for each competition. This will include travel, accommodation, and sustenance specifically related to the competition.
In addition to the support for competition listed above British Orienteering will identify a volunteer Squad Manager to support the athletes to prepare effectively for competitions, access appropriate training opportunities and identify support services that they may require. It is expected that this position is fulfilled using the phone and electronic communications with any face to face communication coordinated to fit with personal travel.
Role descriptions for all 4 voluntary positions are available below.