The final race of the 2019 World Orienteering Championships was the Forest Relay.
Sweden took the Women’s Relay title at the end of an exciting battle with Switzerland on a very wet last day of Nokian Tyres World Orienteering Championships in Mørk, Norway; Karolin Ohlsson out-sprinted Julia Jakob on the run-in, so reversing last year’s result. Russia took bronze, finishing just ahead of Norway.
The third leg developed into a straight race for gold between Julia Jakob, Switzerland and Karolin Ohlsson, Sweden. Jakob was just ahead for much of the last part of the leg, but didn’t have the strength and speed at the end and was 4 seconds behind Ohlsson at the line. Then Natalia Gemperle (Russia) and Anne Margrethe Hausken Nordberg (Norway) emerged from the forest together, and it was Gemperle with the stronger legs to bring Russia into bronze medal position.
In the men's Relay last leg runner Gustav Bergman went out in third place on the last leg for Sweden, but with a confident run he overhauled both Finland and Norway to bring Sweden to gold by 1.34. Finland held on for the silver medals, and France pulled up a place to take the bronze.
Leg three was memorable in particular for the dominating run by Gustav Bergman. Setting off 1.22 down, he had Norwegian Magne Dæhli in sight by the arena passage, and after a mistake by Dæhli, almost caught up with him. “I could see Dæhli, looking over his shoulder from time to time to see where I was, so I knew he was stressed,” said Bergman afterwards. “ I knew then that if I ran my own race I would win.” And so it proved, with Dæhli making another mistake at the end of a long leg and not being seen by Bergman again.
Great Britain’s women's team finished in 9th place with Charlotte Watson on Leg 1; Megan Carter Davies on Leg 2 and Cat Taylor on Leg 3. Great Britain’s men’s team finished in 17th place with Peter Hodkinson on Leg 1; Graham Gristwood on Leg 2 and Ralph Street on Leg 3.
The women’s result means topping Division 2 of the Nations League and promotion to Division 1.
This means that Great Britain’s women will have three long spaces at WOC 2021.
Megan Carter Davies
"It was great to be part of the team and I’m happy with how I ran my Leg. I think I did the best job I could do. Still a few mistakes but in general it was fast and I tried to be secure where I needed to be."
"I'm pleased to have kept it together on my first WOC Relay. I managed to stay in the pack I was with but had hoped to have been able to run a bit faster."
Official results: Women Relay
1 Sweden 01:35:49 +00:00:00
2 Switzerland 01:35:53 +00:00:04
3 Russian Federaon 01:36:56 +00:01:07
4 Norway 01:37:02 +00:01:13
5 Czech Republic 01:40:31 +00:04:42
6 Finland 01:42:01 +00:06:12
7 Estonia 01:43:19 +00:07:30
8 Denmark 01:45:08 +00:09:19
9 Great Britain 01:45:13 +00:09:24
10 Austria 01:47:39 +00:11:50
Official Results - Mens Relay
1 Sweden 01:40:42 +00:00:00
2 Finland 01:42:16 +00:01:34
3 France 01:42:25 +00:01:43
4 Czech Republic 01:42:32 +00:01:50
5 Norway 01:42:37 +00:01:55
6 Switzerland 01:43:25 +00:02:43
7 Austria 01:46:12 +00:05:30
8 Ukraine 01:47:18 +00:06:36
9 Latvia 01:48:17 +00:07:35
10 Germany 01:49:18 +00:08:36
17 Great Britain 01:54:30 +00:13:48
Find more results here: Official results
For more information about the World Orienteering Championships and the Relay: https://www.woc2019.no/en/
Congratulations to the GB Team.
Photo credits: Rob Lines
Today (Saturday, 17 August) is the last competition at this year's World Orienteering Championships with the Relay for men and women.
The arena is being held at Mørk, about 30 minutes from Moss and 40 minutes from Sarpsborg.
The terrain is undulating and detailed, with relatively small height differences in the eastern part and some higher hills in the western part. Total height differences about 60 m. Mostly good runnability and medium visibility. In some parts the ground is covered with relatively high heather. Pine forest on the hill tops and spruce or mixed vegetation on the lower parts.
WOC 2019 Relay
Great Britain - Relay Men
Leg 1 Peter Hodkinson GBR
Leg 2 Graham Gristwood GBR
Leg 3 Ralph Street GBR
Great Britain - Relay Women
Leg 1 Charlotte Watson GBR
Leg 2 Megan Carter Davies GBR
Leg 3 Catherine Taylor GBR
All Women’s Teams Leg 1 runners mass start at 16:20 (UK time: 15:20)
Leg 1 runner hand over to leg 2 runner and the leg 3 runner leads the team to the final finish.
Approximate combined (all three legs) winning time is 1 hour 43 minutes and we expect the World Champion team at the finish by 18:03.
At 18:20 the championships will move over to the Men’s competition. Mass start is at 18:30 (UK time: 17:30).
Watch all the excitement of the Relay race LIVE today here at IOF live.
Best wishes to the GB Team.
The Middle Distance is a tough technical race and this years World Championships final was no exception. The forest was in high quality; rough; rocky and tough terrain making it hard going for all runners. Great Britain qualified 5 out of 6 runners for the final. The placings in the final were Ralph Street (19th); Megan Carter Davies (21st); Jo Shepherd (24th); Cat Taylor (27th) and Peter Hodkinson (31st).
Megan Carter Davies
"This wasn't quite the beautiful Norwegian forest that I was expecting! It was relentless through the tough undergrowth, brashings and young trees, and the sudden speed changes on the golf course sections. I’m a bit disappointed - I made a lot of mistakes but at the same time I’m glad I corrected them reasonably quickly and kept fighting hard the whole way."
"I didn't have a disaster but it was a below average race performance for me. I am disappointed."
"I enjoyed the race in top quality terrain. I set a high target for myself but unfortunately fell short. Mistakes are punished harshly at this level. I’m now fully focused on doing my job at the main event of the week."
Photo credits: Rob Lines
More than five hundred people travelled to New Beechenhurst in the Forest of Dean on Sunday 6 May for the annual Bristol Orienteering Klub (BOK) Trot which this year was part of the massive OMM (Original Mountain Marathon) Running Festival.
In addition to the 446 entrants, there were at least 60 children who ran the string course, many from OMM families, which was a great way of introducing new children and their like-minded families to orienteering.
Despite the fact that the memory of the incredible weather will probably outlast the orienteering, some very fine runs were achieved.
Ben Mitchell of Swansea Bay Orienteering Club (SBOC) won the Black course by a whole 7 minutes, James Hargreaves won the brown by 13 minutes and Oliver Tonge (M16) was only 2.08 minutes behind Martin Ward (M50) the winner of the Short Brown.
Bristol Orienteering Klub's Clive Hallett (M55) won the Blue in just 55.36 minutes but was closely followed by Phil Scarf (M55) of East Pennine Orienteering Club (EPOC) a few minutes later. Nick Norse (M55) of North Wiltshire Orienteering Club (NWO) and BOK's Jim Bailey (M16) followed three minutes later giving Clive some serious competition.
The Green course was run by Clive Wilson (M60) of South Yorkshire Orienteers (SYO) in just 57.34 minutes, but close on his heels was Ian Cooper (M75) of Berkshire Orienteers (BKO) just 3 seconds behind, and Jackie Hallett (W60) of BOK just 19 seconds behind. A good performance was also seen by BOK's Bryony Stagg who won the orange course.
The day was a huge success with wonderful scenes of fit, healthy runners of all ages gathering together in the blazing sunshine to run, cycle, and relax in the Forest.
Photo credits: Scott Bailey, Bristol Orienteering Klub