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Tweet Thursday 16th August 2018

WMTBOC 2018 Sprint - Sunday 12th August

The shortest race of the week was awaiting the riders for the final race, with the fast and furious setting of a military base interspersed with some scrubland areas. The terrain allowed for some very fast riding, with a decent part of the course being ridden on asphalt.

The first part of the course was technically easy with very few mistakes being made and time gaps simply being down to riding speed. As the riders approached the 2nd map there were a few longer route choice legs for the men whilst the women had a lot of short legs where concentration needed to be kept high, especially around an area with a number of staircases on possible route choice. Moving onto the 2nd map a few riders were caught out by an enforced uncrossable fence before the men picked their way through the short control pick section and the women made their quickly back to the last section of the course. This final part was around the buildings of the military base which was relatively simple, but one leg caught a number of riders out where the overprint obscured some map detail although any mistakes made were minimal. The nature of the area meant any mistakes were going to be costly as the riding speed was so high, with each mistake costing riders a number of places.

The women’s race was led by Marika Hara of Finland through the early part, hitting the control pick section with a 10 second advantage over Martina Tichovska and Veronika Kubinova of Czech Republic and compatriot Haga of Finland who held a slender advantage over a number of other riders closely packed together, including Great Britain’s Clare Dallimore in 10th place. By the map exchange Hara had maintained her gap over Tichovska who had pulled away from the chasing pack by a further 10 seconds whilst Clare had moved up a few places to 7th, although a mistake straight after the map exchange lost valuable time for her. Coming through the spectator ride through Hara had been overtaken by Tichovska and Finnish rider Saarinen, with Soegaard of Denmark having moved through into 4th place with just 8 seconds separating the top 4 riders, Clare having slipped a couple of places to 9th. With riders racing flat out there was always a risk of a lapse in concentration, and Tichovska succumbed with a mistake to the last control allowing Saarinen through to take her first win at a World Champs, 9 seconds ahead of Tichovska and Soegaard who finished quickly to take joint 2nd. This gave Tichovska her 5th medal of the championships, gaining 2 golds and 3 silvers!

Ian Nixon in the Sprint (Photo by Nick Dallimore)
Clare Dallimore in the Sprint (Photo by Nick Dallimore)

In the men’s race, it was Danish rider Rasmus Soegaard who took the early lead hitting the start of the route choice section with a 4 second lead over Andreas Waldmann (Austria). Although there was little difference in the route choices, any hesitation meant valuable time loss which allowed Anton Foliforov (Russia) to take the lead after the map turnover as he flew through the map exchange, with Great Britain’s Ian Nixon in 41st after a good first part on his early start. The next part of the course needed quick decision making as the route took the riders through the maze of buildings with connecting steps, and the Czech Republic’s Vojtech Ludvik excelled in this setting taking the lead at number 19, though Foliforov was just 2 seconds back, and Nixon had maintained his position. Moving back to the final part of the course around the military base the riders came flying through the spectator area making good use of the SI Air being used for the week allowing riders to maintain speed through controls. With 4 controls in the last 500 metres riders had to keep their concentration up, and unfortunately, same issues with the map printing affected the podium results as Ludvik lost time going on the impassable straight route and having to divert his course to number 28, whilst Foliforov had taken the wider route and regained the lead. He kept a cool head through the last few controls and gained his 2nd gold medal of the week, taking the win by 12 seconds from his Russian compatriot Grigory Medvedev, with a further 2 Russian’s getting on the podium. Nixon was able to maintain his position through to the finish, although he lost time on number 28 also taking the straight route and having to change course, but still got a top 40, gaining GB’s best men’s sprint result for 5 years.

Men – 9.8km, 85m

  • Anton Foliforov, Russia 20:39
  • Grigory Medvedev, Russia 20:51
  • Krystof Bogar, Czech Republic 20:53
  • Vojtech Ludvik, Czech Republic 20:59
  • Valeriy Gluhov, Russia 21:01
  • Ruslan Gritsan, Russia 21:09
  • 40.  Ian Nixon, Great Britain 23:48

    Women – 8.4km, 50m

    1.            Henna Saarinen, Finland 20:05

    =2.          Martina Tichovska, Czech Republic 20:14

    =2.          Camilla Soegaard, Denmark 20:14

    4.            Antonia Haga, Finland 20:25

    5.            Marika Hara, Finland 20:29

    6.            Veronika Kubinova, Czech Republic 20:39

     

    10.          Clare Dallimore, Great Britain 20:56

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    Tweet Thursday 16th August 2018

    WMTBOC 2018 Long - Saturday 11th August 2018

    The course planner had opted for a mixture of short legs through the dense path network mixed with plenty of long route choice legs, with course distances reflecting the flatter nature of the terrain with the men covering 47km whilst the women tackled a 33km course.

    In the men’s race, the first control proved to be one of the most challenging with a number of riders losing several minutes to the fastest time, including Great Britain’s Ian Nixon who lost time straight out of the start but was able to pull it back to hit the first control in 47th. A long 2nd leg split the riders up with a whole host of different routes being taken although a number of riders complained that one route choice was not made obvious on the map due to the use of a smaller path symbol being used. Former World Champions Anton Folioforov (Russia) and Krystof Bogar (Czech Republic) had got a bit of a lead here and maintained this until the next long leg to number 5 where a better route choice from Bogar propelled him into the lead, whilst GB’s Nixon had moved into the top 40. By the first drinks station, Krystof Bogar from the Czech Republic had a minute advantage over Middle Distance champion Simon Braendli (Switzerland) which he was able to build on over the next few controls to the map exchange and 2nd drinks control whilst Nixon had slipped a few places to 44th. The course then went back into the dense network of paths where riders needed to be very careful they were on the right track. This proved tricky in the dark forest where some paths were hard to make out on the ground, which combined with the tiredness which was starting to set in after 75 minutes of fast riding gave some riders a few problems. Unfortunately, Nixon lost concentration in this section and missed out #18 having been riding well enough for a place in the top 40. Bogar had maintained his minute’s advantage, whilst Grigory Medvedev had got up to 3rd place as the first of 4 Russian’s in the top 8. Soon after the course planner had used another of the very small mapped tracks which a number of leading riders didn’t see, although this didn’t affect the podium results. Bogar was able to extend his lead on the fast route to the finish to regain the title he last won in 2013 winning by more than 2 minutes from Simon Braendli who gained his 2nd medal of the week.

    The women’s race started with a similarly tricky 1st control which caught out a few leading riders and by the end of the long 2nd leg Martina Tichovska (Czech Republic) had a minute lead over Camilla Soegaard (Denmark). However, a mistake by the Czech rider at the next control allowed the Dane to take over the lead and by the end of the next long leg at number 6 she had a 1:40 lead over Svetlana Poverina (Russia), whilst Great Britain’s Clare Dallimore had moved up to 11th after a mistake at the 1st control. By the 1st drinks control Soegaard was still leading but Tichovska had made up some of her lost time and was only 30 seconds back, whilst Gabriele Andrasiuniene (Lithuania) was up into 3rd. After a couple more long legs the 2 leaders advantage was dramatically cut as both made mistakes on number 13. The women then had a leg using the small mapped track which had caused problems on the men’s course but this impacted the top places as Soegaard saw the route whilst Tichovska didn’t which regained the lead which had been changing places between these 2 throughout the race. Unfortunately for the Danish rider, a huge error exiting number 18 on an unmapped track lost her the lead as she dropped out of the top 10. Tichovska regained the lead but lost it with another mistake at the 20th control which Antonia Haga (Finland) was able to capitalise on by taking the lead having been making her way closer to the lead throughout the race. However, there was more drama towards the end as having just made her way into the lead a poor route choice from Haga allowed Tichovska to retake the lead to 22 which she held onto to get back the title she had won in 2015, winning by the narrowest of margins of just 5 seconds from Haga who secured her first individual medal at a World Champs. Long-time leader Soegaard pulled back up to 9th place but will rue the 8 minutes she lost at 18 finishing only 7 minutes behind the leaders. GB’s Dallimore had pulled up to a top 10, but took the same route choice as Haga to number 22 and dropped to 13th, still a great result in tough conditions.

    Men – 46.5km, 765m

    • Krystof Bogar, Czech Republic 1:56:13
    • Simon Braendli, Switzerland 1:58:20
    • Anton Foliforov, Russia 1:59:31
    • Jussi Laurila, Finland 2:01:16
    • Valeriy Gluhov, Russia 2:01:27
    • Vojtech Ludvik, Czech Republic 2:02:04

    DSQ Ian Nixon, Great Britain

    Women – 37.1km, 670m

    • Martina Tichovska, Czech Republic 2:01:14
    • Antonia Haga, Finland 2:01:19
    • Svetlana Poverina, Russia 2:05:11
    • Algirda Mickuviene, Lithuania 2:06:33
    • Gabriele Andrasiuniene, Lithuania 2:06:54
    • Veronika Kubinova, Czech Republic 2:07:00

    13. Clare Dallimore, Great Britain 2:10:27

    The women’s race started with a similarly tricky 1st control which caught out a few leading riders and by the end of the long 2nd leg Martina Tichovska (Czech Republic) had a minute lead over Camilla Soegaard (Denmark). However, a mistake by the Czech rider at the next control allowed the Dane to take over the lead and by the end of the next long leg at number 6 she had a 1:40 lead over Svetlana Poverina (Russia), whilst Great Britain’s Clare Dallimore had moved up to 11th after a mistake at the 1st control. By the 1st drinks control Soegaard was still leading but Tichovska had made up some of her lost time and was only 30 seconds back, whilst Gabriele Andrasiuniene (Lithuania) was up into 3rd. After a couple more long legs the 2 leaders advantage was dramatically cut as both made mistakes on number 13. The women then had a leg using the small mapped track which had caused problems on the men’s course but this impacted the top places as Soegaard saw the route whilst Tichovska didn’t which regained the lead which had been changing places between these 2 throughout the race. Unfortunately for the Danish rider, a huge error exiting number 18 on an unmapped track lost her the lead as she dropped out of the top 10. Tichovska regained the lead but lost it with another mistake at the 20th control which Antonia Haga (Finland) was able to capitalise on by taking the lead having been making her way closer to the lead throughout the race. However, there was more drama towards the end as having just made her way into the lead a poor route choice from Haga allowed Tichovska to retake the lead to 22 which she held onto to get back the title she had won in 2015, winning by the narrowest of margins of just 5 seconds from Haga who secured her first individual medal at a World Champs. Long-time leader Soegaard pulled back up to 9th place but will rue the 8 minutes she lost at 18 finishing only 7 minutes behind the leaders. GB’s Dallimore had pulled up to a top 10, but took the same route choice as Haga to number 22 and dropped to 13th, still a great result in tough conditions.

    Men – 46.5km, 765m

    • Krystof Bogar, Czech Republic 1:56:13
    • Simon Braendli, Switzerland 1:58:20
    • Anton Foliforov, Russia 1:59:31
    • Jussi Laurila, Finland 2:01:16
    • Valeriy Gluhov, Russia 2:01:27
    • Vojtech Ludvik, Czech Republic 2:02:04

    DSQ Ian Nixon, Great Britain

    Women – 37.1km, 670m

    • Martina Tichovska, Czech Republic 2:01:14
    • Antonia Haga, Finland 2:01:19
    • Svetlana Poverina, Russia 2:05:11
    • Algirda Mickuviene, Lithuania 2:06:33
    • Gabriele Andrasiuniene, Lithuania 2:06:54
    • Veronika Kubinova, Czech Republic 2:07:00

    13. Clare Dallimore, Great Britain 2:10:27

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    Tweet Wednesday 15th August 2018

    British Orienteering Championships at Balmoral to feature on BBC Adventure Show

    Transmission: BBC 2 Scotland 19th August 7 pm and on FreeSat and Sky Digital

    And afterwards on BBC iPlayer

    The next broadcast of the Adventure Show series covers the British Orienteering Championships which were held in Scotland this year, at Ballater on Royal Deeside, with the Long Distance event at the Balmoral Estate on Royal Deeside.  The castle makes an impressive setting for the race arena.

    “It’s a test of physical ability and mental agility,” says co-presenter Dougie Vipond, who covered the event alongside outdoor enthusiasts Cameron McNeish and Deziree Wilson. “This event tests the best of the best in Britain,” says Cameron.” These guys go flat out cross country, they run and navigate at the same time.”  But just 10 seconds of not concentrating can blow the whole race.

    The terrain was quite rough, with lots of rocky ground and some big crags, as well as deep heather in places. There was plenty of route choice and a network of paths and tracks. For those with time to look, there were good views from the higher parts. It was mostly very dry underfoot. The weather was sunny, and breezy in the arena, but sheltered in the forest – many found it very hot.

    It’s not just the elite athletes who competed – thousands of people of all abilities took part, some finding the deep heather really hard to run through.

    The Adventure Show series is produced for the BBC by independent production company Adventure Show Productions based in the Cairngorms of Scotland with producer Richard Else.  Richard says “Since we began making this series in 2005, the programme has gone from late night watching to prime-time television – the interest in extreme sports for all ages and abilities has grown its appeal in volumes.”

    This month’s programme also features a catch up with former award-winning food designer, Paul Bromhead from Edinburgh, as he gets tips from top fell runner Donny Campbell towards his big race, and with Andy Mckenna from the Scottish borders –a mountain bike enthusiast who continues the sport he loves despite a diagnosis of MS.  Andy says: “Instead of focussing on what I can’t do, I sometimes do things a bit differently from how I used to. But many times I catch a glimmer of my old self.”

    https://www.facebook.com/adventureshow/

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    Tweet Friday 10th August 2018

    World Championships Relay - GBR Men take 6th

    The World Championships is beginning to reach its climax as it nears the end of the week, and Thursday Relay provided some of the best racing yet. Tight, fraught affairs in both the Women’s and the Men’s races provided some of the most exciting racing of the past few years.

    The terrain was different to that of the middle distance, with a simple start to the courses in the parkland in the shadow of Turaida Castle, with a series of short legs in thick green before an early area passage, just a third of the way through. After this, the athletes entered the large hills of the Gauja valley, with wide forkings and wide routechoice options splitting the packs, before a long kilometre leg back across the hills to the arena and a loop around the parkland to finish.

    Photo by IOF/Matias Salonen
    Photo by IOF/Matias Salonen

    Proceedings began with the Women’s race, and it was Jo Shepherd who took the first leg for Britain. After an early mistake in the green, Jo settled well, but a short forking for Switzerland meant that they had already broken clear of the pack by the arena passage, with the pack trailed out behind them. To the 8th control, a difficult forking for both the men and the women, Norway through away second place, missing big and allowing Jo to gain more places as Estonia broke clear to join Switzerland. By the turn for the arena, Jo had clawed her way up to 10th, as in front of her the favourites were strung out, each choosing different routes on the long leg. By the end of this leg, and as they neared the arena, it was still Switzerland in the lead, but Sweden had cut the deficit significantly, with Estonia just falling off the pace and Norway gaining time back from their earlier mistake. Jo lost time late on in the parkland, handing over to Megan Carter Davies in 13th place.

    Megan was quick out of the blocks and was already pushing through the field by the spectator control. Estonia was quick to fall off the pace in front, as Denmark and GBR worked well together, moving into 7th by the arena. Across into the next series of controls, and the lead would change numerous times, with Sweden, Switzerland and Russia all alternating. Norway was the fastest moving team in the forest though, with Marianne Anderson recovering the lost time from the first leg well. Megan was holding her own behind the leaders and was still working well with the Danes, but the gap to the leaders was growing. As the athletes hit the long leg, again there was no single route taken amongst the leaders. With Russia and Norway both getting stuck in the tougher, greener sections, it was Sweden who capitalised and moved clear, with Karolin Ohlsson using her superior speed to drop Jakob of Switzerland. Megan took a far wider route, flat but long, around through the arena, and though lost some time not as much as others. Sadly, so hard was she pushing that she ended up missing a control close to the end of her course, chasing hard to get in touch with the second pack for her teammate Cat Taylor. This meant a disqualification for the British women.

    On the final leg, Tove Alexanderson of Sweden and Judith Wyder of Switzerland were neck and neck throughout the whole course, exchanging the lead when either picked a better line through the green. As they hit the long leg back to the arena, each choosing a slightly different route, refusing to run together. It was Alexanderson who had the advantage on the climb to the 14th control, breaking the Swiss runner and leading all to believe that she had got the gold in her grasp. An error on the 15h though, a hesitation through thinking the control wasn’t hers (perhaps due to the oxygen debt accrued from pushing so hard on the climb) and Wyder capitalised, kicking for home and opening up a gap on the Swede which it would be impossible for her to overcome. Behind, Russian had sealed the bronze with a textbook run from Middle Distance champion Gemperle, with Norway not having enough to continue moving through the field, having to settle for fourth place.

    Photos by IOF/Matias Salonen
    Photo by IOF/Matias Salonen

    Across to the Men’s race and it proved just as thrilling as the Women’s race. With the same team for GBR as the team that claimed 5th at the European Championships, we knew that a great performance was both expected and achievable. Peter Hodkinson took charge of the first leg, and duly delivered the perfect start for the team. The pack was close and the pace unrelenting for the first half, with no splits appearing until the tricky 8th control, that had caused so many problems in the Women’s race. It was here that a pack of 5 formed, with GBR tucked in. Into a section which extended the Men’s course across the hills, which the Women didn’t enter, and Peter was sitting well until the 11th control where he made a small mistake on the wide forkings. 10th at this spot Peter gained back a huge chunk of time on the long leg back towards the arena on the 14th control and had moved into 3rd place. He would not relinquish this position and would change over just 41 seconds down on Latvia and Norway (1st and 2nd respectively).

    Norway moved clear early on the second leg, but as with Peter, Kris Jones stayed steady in the pack, hitting his controls well and minimising any errors. At the front Norway and Latvia were pushing the pace, with the chasers splintering on the 11th control, with Kris slipping into 5th place 50 seconds down on the lead. On the long leg, the runners all split, with several different routes being chosen, and as they hit the slopes to the 14th control, and Kris had jumped up the pack. Into the changeover and GBR were in second place, with a 4-second gap to Norway in front, but with 15 seconds back to Latvia and Finland and another 30 seconds back to a larger chasing pack.

    Latvia got the shorter gaffles early on 3rd leg, opening up a lead before the arena passage, with a 47-second gap to the chasers behind, with Ralph Street leading the chasers, but with the big teams right on his tail. Norway would move back into the lead alongside Latvia, with France now into 3rd place just 15 seconds behind at the 10th control, and GBR just another 15 seconds back. The packs all split at the 11th control, with the home team Latvia missing badly, as well as France and Sweden. They all corrected well though, and all the runners were strung out in one long line as the athletes hit the long leg back to the arena. Here, Norway and Sweden went straight, with the other 7 teams all going south and around, taking on the climb at the end of the leg. Sweden came unstuck early on the leg, making big errors and falling from contention. As the GPS lines converged on the 14th control, Norway looked to be in the lead and would hit the control 14 seconds ahead of the chasers. Up the hill, the chasing pack had blown to pieces, with Switzerland and France breaking clear of the chasers. With just the simple parkland to go, it would be hard for the chasers to gain back the time on Norway, who did enough to take a 4 second lead over Switzerland, who had dropped France for the silver medal. Behind, it was the closest podium in World Championship history, with GBR coming in an eventual 6th place, just 37 seconds down on the gold medal, behind Austria and the Czech Republic in 4th and 5th respectively.

    Photo by IOF/Matias Salonen
    Photo by IOF/Matias Salonen
    Photo by IOF/Matias Salonen

    Next up on Saturday is the Long Distance, the race every athlete wants to win. It will be the final race of the Championships, and the final chance for some to salvage their championships with a gold medal. Make sure you are following @GBR on twitter for live reporting on the final race of the championships.

     

    Full results:

    Women:

    1 Switzerland 1:45:03
    2 Sweden 1:45:18 (+15 seconds)
    3 Russian Federation 1:47:20 (+2 minutes 17 seconds)

    GBR – Mispunched.

    Men:

    1 Norway 1:47:26
    2 Switzerland 1:47:30 (+4 seconds)
    3 France 1:47:36 (+6 seconds)

    6 Great Britain 1:48:03 (+37 seconds)

     

    Report by William Gardner

    The Men's WOC Relay team. (Credit: Simon Errington)
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