World Cup middle
The international orienteering season has started! The World Cup kicked off today at Sleza, Poland, writes Cat Taylor.
The forest offered a "heaven and hell" contrast between open, fast woodland, rockier underfoot conditions and many areas of thicker, tougher vegetation. The courses challenged runners with plenty of direction and terrain changes and many runners were caught out, not adapting quickly enough to each change.
In the tightly packed men's race, Ralph Street ran to 25th place. Ralph says, "I ran a stable race, not brilliant but controlled and a solid start to the year," adding that the day as a whole had been enjoyable.
For Kirsten Strain, this was a World Cup debut and a great chance to learn what racing at this level involves. Kirsten comments that, "my main aim was to gain experience and I certainly did that. It's clear there's a lot to learn but it was a great introduction to the World Cup."
Meanwhile in nearby Wroclaw, athletes opening their World Cup with tomorrow's Sprint race had a more relaxed day of training, rest and preparation. The team are reloading for the early start tomorrow to qualify for the evening's final race. Good luck to all the Brits fighting it out for those places in the final!
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