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Share  Tweet Friday 24th June 2022

Interview with GB Elite Athlete: GRACE MOLLOY

Place of Residence: Linlithgow/Oxford

GB Grace Molloy

ExperienceWhen did you start/How did you get into Orienteering?
"I have been orienteering all my life."

ClubsWhat orienteering clubs have you been part of?
"Forth Valley Orienteers, Oxford University Orienteering Club, Kalevan Rasti."

Training Routine:
"I usually run or orienteer 6 days a week and do two strength sessions. I sometimes have football training too."

Race Routine/habits:
"I don't have too many pre-race routines or habits. I just like to make sure I've warmed up properly and like to stay relaxed in quarantine by chatting to the team, reading, or playing cards. I am slightly superstitious about bib numbers and will happily explain in detail what makes a good or bad bib number."

Favourite terrain/venue/event in UK/World:
"Hard to say, there is a lot of quality terrain in Scotland but training and racing in new terrain is always fun. As an event, O-Ringen is hard to beat but the international races are special."

Favourite Food:
"Peas, pork pies, and chocolate (not together)."

Other Hobbies:
"I like playing football. I have recently been playing a lot of frisbee in the sun."

Inspirations:
"Megan Carter-Davies."

What advice would you give to a younger version of yourself?
"Learn how to use your compass. (Hopefully, I won't need it much at WOC this year though)."

 

British Orienteering wishes you all the very best Grace with your final preparations.

 

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Ahead of the World Orienteering Championships 2022 in Denmark, British Orienteering is posting interviews of the GB athletes selected to compete so that all members can get to know the GB team. 

Please keep an eye out for these interviews which will be posted on the British Orienteering website this week, and follow all the action live here throughout the World Orienteering Championships which start with the Sprint Relay on Sunday 26 June!

Good Luck to the British Team

 

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Share  Tweet Friday 24th June 2022

Interview with GB Elite Athlete: ALICE LEAKE

Place of Residence:  Leeds.

GB Alice Leake

Experience: When did you start/ How did you get into Orienteering?
“I started orienteering at school. We had a great teacher, Mr Andrews, who ran the after-school club and drove us to all the events.”
 

Clubs:  What orienteering clubs have you been part of?
“I was a member of Eborienteers growing up. Then I went to Edinburgh University Orienteering Club, before moving down South and joining Southern Navigators for several years. Since moving back to Yorkshire I am now a member of Airienteers.”
 

Coach: 
“None formally, although I do get input from several people on race analysis and physical training.”
 

Training Routine:
“As a sprint orienteer, my training is probably quite typical of a 5/10k runner (intervals, tempo run, long run, gym – volume in the winter, speed work in the summer) but with added orienteering wherever possible. Nothing particularly special, just consistency over a lot of years.”
 

Race Routine/ habits:
“Several cups of tea to get me going is a must, a hydration drink 90mins before the race, and a decent warm-up – I like to do about 3km of jogging plus drills. It’s also important for me to have a few minutes to myself to get focussed, calm, and in the right frame of mind to race.”
 

Favourite terrain/venue/event in UK/World:
“You can’t beat the buzz of a big event like the JK or Oringen, but in terms of terrain I enjoy anything novel, multi-level, runnable or in a beautiful location.”
 

Favourite Food:
“Oh gosh probably chips, but thankfully I don’t eat too many of those!”
 

Other Hobbies:
“I like running, going out with friends, anything that involves eating (particularly posh brunches if they can be classed as a hobby), watching terrible trashy tv, and spending time outdoors.”
 

Inspirations:
“We have so many amazing volunteers who coach, map, plan, organise and give up their time so that everyone else can enjoy orienteering, and I really admire and respect them all. I also find our older competitors incredibly inspiring - I would love to still be travelling the country and competing like they are when I am a W85.” 😊
 

What advice would you give to a younger version of yourself? 
"Have fun, enjoy yourself, and maybe occasionally remember to look at your compass."

 

British Orienteering wishes you all the very best Alice with your final preparations.

 

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Ahead of the World Orienteering Championships 2022 in Denmark, British Orienteering is posting interviews of the GB athletes selected to compete so that all members can get to know the GB team. Please keep an eye out for these interviews which will be posted on the British Orienteering website this week, and follow all the action live here throughout the World Orienteering Championships which start with the Sprint Relay on Sunday 26 June!

Good Luck to the British Team

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Share  Tweet Thursday 23rd June 2022

Interview with GB Elite Athlete: NATHAN LAWSON

Place of Residence: Shipley, Yorkshire

GB Nathan Lawson

Experience: When did you start/ How did you get into Orienteering?
“I started when I was a kid going with my mum and dad on the weekends. When I was around 15 or so I decided that I wanted to take it more seriously and began training with a bit more intent.”

Clubs:  What orienteering clubs have you been part of?
“I run for Octavian Droobers and Lidingö”

Coach:
Oli Johnson (South Yorkshire Orienteers)

Training Routine:
“I try to make my training emphasise key sessions each week. This season it has focused on quality speed sessions and orienteering sessions - especially sprint. As a result, my overall mileage has been lower than in recent years when I've tried to race everything, so it's been important to remind myself what I am aiming for and that specifically has been important. Physically I'm self-coached though so I'm always learning and enjoy trying out new things in training and following the World Orienteering Championships I'm looking forward to pursuing some new goals and approaches.”

Race Routine/habits:
“It's taken me a long time to find a routine that works for me. Anyone who's known me for a while knows that I used to really stress myself out about doing everything perfectly to a routine around races, meaning I was tense and probably not a lot of fun to be around. For a variety of reasons, I've really changed my approach to trying to feel as relaxed as possible before a race, regardless of the level or perceived pressure, and try to focus on and remember the reason I'm there. Obviously, I want to do as well as possible, but ultimately, I really enjoy racing competitively and orienteering in cool terrain, and thinking about this lets me focus a lot more on my own technique and race. I also think it's important to contextualise your own race, especially internationally, and not be too hard on yourself when you're racing professional athletes or people who might be 5 or 10 years older and more experienced. A good habit I've found is that if I can finish a race and think I'm happy with it as soon as I cross the line, even before I've downloaded, then that's a good outcome.”

Favourite terrain/venue/event in UK/World:
“I really enjoy sand dune orienteering and technical campus sprints.”

Favourite Food:
“Thai food, though I'm really not fussy as long as it's vegetarian and doesn't have mushrooms in it!”

Other Hobbies:
“I'm currently converting a van into a campervan which is really fun!”

Inspirations:
“I think it's a really good time to take inspiration from the current GB sprint squad. There are so many great runners competing together and everyone has a really good team attitude which means we can all really celebrate each other's successes. I think seeing how fast Kris and Ralph are running and the results Meg is putting out there is really inspiring at the moment. Having Oli coaching me is also a big source of inspiration given how successful he was for so many years.”

What advice would you give to a younger version of yourself?
“Enjoy it! Everyone gets told this as a junior but it's really hard to actually listen to and act on it when there is a lot of focus on EYOC/JWOC only. As soon as you're out of that bubble, you realise how many incredible opportunities orienteering can give you so the earlier you can realise the things this sport can let you do and focus on those the better.”

 

British Orienteering wishes you all the very best Nathan with your final preparations.

 

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Ahead of the World Orienteering Championships 2022 in Denmark, British Orienteering is posting interviews of the GB athletes selected to compete so that all members can get to know the GB team. Please keep an eye out for these interviews which will be posted on the British Orienteering website this week, and follow all the action live here throughout the World Orienteering Championships which start with the Sprint Relay on Sunday 26 June!

Good Luck to the British Team

Nathan Lawson
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Share  Tweet Wednesday 15th June 2022

Competitors enjoyed a great British Sprints Championships Weekend

Report by Mike Cope member of Claro Orienteers and Organiser of British Mixed Sprint Relays

British Sprint Weekend 11/12 June 2022

Yorkshire and Humberside Orienteering Association hosted the British Sprint Relays Championships and then the British Sprint Championships in Leeds.  The weather was kind with plenty of sunshine even though it was a little windy.  Map collection bags had to be retrieved a few times and one competitor even had his bib blown out of his hands into an inaccessible spot before he could even pin it on, but it was warm and no rain.

Leeds Beckett University for the Sprint Relays has never been used before for a big event.  It was a superb venue with the facilities of the new Carnegie School of Sport building and then the centre of an athletics track giving lots of space for the start, finish and handover with a great view for all watching and waiting for their turn.  150 teams, a record for this relatively new event, turned up and were impressed with what the venue could offer.

The competition area was small but plenty big enough for the Sprint Relays.  It is flatter than most campus areas in Yorkshire, but with a few steps and grass banks, there was still some climb and descent to do.  Buildings on the campus are a mixture of old and new and they are generally well spread out giving fast running between the more complex parts.  Excellent planning forced competitors to make quick decisions to find the best ways between the buildings, and out of the athletics track.  Not all did the latter though, tending to follow everyone else at the start to play safe?  Playing fields, bushes, bits of parkland, a big grass area and outlying buildings all added to the variety in the area giving it more of a rural feeling in a city area.

Forth Valley Orienteers (FVO) Flyers Scarlett Kelly, Chris Smithard, Kristian Jones, and Grace Molloy certainly flew to win the Elite class taking the trophy from South Yorkshire Orienteers who won last year.  Just over a minute behind them were another Scotland team from Edinburgh University Orienteering Club EUOC, before third-placed South Yorkshire Orienteers 15 seconds further down.  Congratulations to one of our visitor teams from New Zealand who actually came first beating Forth Vally Orienteers Flyers by 51 seconds, but of course not eligible to be British Champions.  We were pleased to have some Ukrainians competing too.

South Yorkshire Orienteers did make up for losing their title by winning three other classes.  Copying their older club members in name and action, Forth Valley Orienteers Junior Flyers Sam Hunt, Rebecca Hammond, and James Hammond won the Junior class.  It was pleasing to see 27 Junior/Young Junior teams competing.

For Sunday and the Individual Sprint, all moved nearer to Leeds City Centre and the more familiar Leeds University campus.  This was used for JK 2016.  Buildings are closer with narrow passages between them, steps, undercover sections, and just the occasional greenery to brighten things up.  Again plenty of old and new.  Leeds University is also a bigger area capable of holding the qualifying and final heats without too much overlap.  Some competitors did find the finals easier though having familiarised themselves with the map and type of terrain in the qualifying heats.  Again, the planner had done a very good job to keep competitors thinking all of the time.  The Women’s Elite Final was tight with only 62 seconds separating the first four places. 

Megan Carter-Davies (Swansea Bay Orienteering Club) took the title with Alice Leake (Airenteers), Grace Molloy (Forth Valley Orienteers), and Charlotte Ward (Humberside and Lincoln Orienteers) close behind.  Megan and Alice were neck and neck at controls 13 and 14.  Gaining three seconds at each of the following two controls, Megan gradually pulled away and kept her lead.

Kris Jones (Forth Valley Orienteers) took the title in the Mens’ Elite race with clubmate Chris Smithard over a minute behind.  Nathan Lawson (Octavian Droobers) took third place.  Our visitors from New Zealand did well again.  There would have been different winners had they been eligible for a British Championships.

Mention must be made of the helpers who made it possible to put the events on.  Complimentary comments afterward from many participants made it all worthwhile, but it did need a lot of work from many people to make it all happen.

And one last point.  There is unlikely to be a British Sprint Relay Championships next year as no club/region has offered to host it.  The Individual Sprints will be with the British Middles in Northern Ireland.  Wearing his Event Scheduling Group hat instead of his Organiser one, Mike Cope would love to hear from any club that might consider hosting the British Sprint Relays.

 

Photo credits:  Wendy Carlyle (Official Photographer and member of Airienteers)

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