Archive for the ‘Orienteering’ Category

British Birthday

Wednesday, May 4th, 2016

Christine @ Brown Clee British ChampsFor the Bank Holiday weekend we headed to the British Orienteering Champs at Brown Clee in Shropshire. We arrived in glorious sunshine on Saturday morning but this soon turned to hail as we climbed up the hill to the assembly area. We were very grateful that a club mate had already erected the club tent as the hail came and went for most of the afternoon.

I had an early start and it has to be said that I had a pretty poor run in my first year at M40. Although 7th place in the results doesn’t sound too bad, I was over half an hour behind Georgie Best with ten minutes of that loss being attributable to just two controls. (With 27 controls in 9.2k there was plenty of opportunity for losing time!) Christine failed to repeat her W16 win at Brown Clee, faring marginally better than me but still ending up ten minutes down on her course winner. Emma had the best result of the day, coming third on the white course in a time that would have netted her a win on W10B if she had the confidence to go out on her own.

With rain forecast for most of Sunday, Christine and I returned for the relays without the children. I’m glad to say that we both had better runs. Christine returned first on the Women’s Short just as I set out on first leg on the Men’s Short. I ran alone for much of the course being caught just at the end and finishing just a few seconds down in second place. The commentary team had been primed to wish me a Happy Birthday as I came down the run-in! My team finished in fifth place whilst Christine, sadly, did not have a complete team.

On the Monday Emma ran again, completing the hilly 2km at Devauden XC races in 11:16. Christine and I were happy to sit the 10k out this year and watch her Mum run instead!

Active Weekend

Sunday, April 24th, 2016

Emma RunningDuncan RunningIt’s been an active weekend in the Currie household. On Saturday morning we made the trek over to Staunton Country Park for the second in SOC’s Solent Summer Series. Buoyed by just receiving the SOC Junior Women’s trophy for 2015 (although she was quick to point out that she didn’t have much competition, Emma was happy to go out on the yellow with Christine and a grumpy Duncan in tow. I went out on the light green which was more than a little muddy in places. Rob Finch managed to turn the tables from Fleming Park pipping me to first place by 14 seconds.

Christine after half marathonFrom there we headed in to Southampton for the ABP Southampton Fun Run. Christine set off on the 1 mile course with both children but Duncan got a stitch and Emma ran off and left them towards the end. The field was smaller than I had expected given the potential catchment area for the race. Christine then ran again in the half marathon on Sunday finishing in a chip time of 1:40:54. Not bad given the lack of training she’s done due to injury.

Start of Summer Series

Saturday, April 9th, 2016

Emma finishing at Fleming ParkToday was the start of SOC’s Summer Series of events at Fleming Park. Christine cycled down early to spectate the parkrun (her calf is currently knackered) and then the rest of us joined her.

Duncan declined to start so Emma went round the yellow with Christine in tow. She was really pleased with her second place so will hopefully be a bit more enthusiastic before the next event. I enjoyed my subsequent run round the light green although could have done without the cold showers (it was lovely sunny day when we arrived). I was in first place when I finished although, to be fair, both Rob and Roger had done the parkrun beforehand. Most importantly, there was a great turnout. Let’s hope it continues for the rest of the series.

Classic Burley

Monday, November 2nd, 2015

Yesterday was the first Sunday of November which can only mean one thing: the November Classic. We were down to help on the start. Christine was down to run first and I was on duty calling out names (always an embarrassing job when you can’t remember the names of people you’ve known for decades!). As is usually the case with SOC, the start was well staffed and the children weren’t needed so they sat in their folding chairs and read (something that Duncan wouldn’t have been able to do a year ago). The mist took a while to burn off but it was otherwise dry and the autumn colours were lovely.

I didn’t get off to a great start on my run wasting about 3 minutes on the second control which shows up well on RouteGadget. (Christine tells me the path I should have set off down was not obvious but no excuse really as the angle was totally wrong.) Next wobble was at 18 where I must have been stood on top of the control before running away and then coming back again. In my haste to get away I then veered off to the left on the next leg but didn’t lose much time correcting myself.

When we eventually made it to the assembly field to download I was going to complain that I seemed to have an extra four minutes on my time but then remembered I had auto-pause enabled on my Garmin. Shows just how much standing around I must have been doing! The time was good enough to win the Brown course though even if all the action was on the Black. Mostly I was just pleased that, other than when climbing through the odd fence, my back hadn’t given me any problems on the way round (and doesn’t appear to be any the worse for it today).

Hincheslea O

Sunday, September 13th, 2015

Wilverley PlainOur Autumn orienteering season kicked off yesterday with a SOC event at Hincheslea on the western side of the forest. It was raining as we left home but the showers soon passed over leaving some lovely sunshine. This meant we had a very pleasant task in manning the start. When I left for my run the children had settled in to their usual task of getting maps out the boxes for competitors.

I enjoyed my course as the area offers high speed running when you’re not fighting your way through the head high bracken and gorse! I messed up two controls. I ran round in circles at #5 as I wasn’t confident that I was at the right gully so didn’t go looking in the undergrowth. I also wasted time at #11 where I was way off to the right which threw me completely.

Duncan orienteeringWhen I got back, Christine went round the yellow with Emma. Once we’d packed up the start, Duncan and I set off as well. Despite saying he didn’t want to do it, Duncan set off at a fair lick and kept it up most of the way round what was quite a long course. His motivation was quite clear when he came back from download with a big grin having beaten his sister by a couple of minutes.

BBQ Washout

Friday, July 24th, 2015

SOC Bake-offSOC was meant to have a BBQ tonight and, to be fair, we did have a BBQ. Truth be told though only one person attempted to cook their food on the BBQ with everyone else seeking the warmth, shelter and food of the IBM clubhouse. Sadly the rain also meant there weren’t many takers for H’s Hidden in Plain Sight photo-O. Luckily my local knowledge meant that, with a bit of a cerebral workout, we could work out most of the controls with a beer in hand! Christine had also organised a bake-off, with Rob’s chocolate coated 3D-map taking first prize.

End of a Series

Saturday, July 18th, 2015

wpid-duncan-rvcp.jpgWe went to the last of the SOC summer series events today at Royal Victoria Country Park. I went round the yellow with the children with the expression instruction of just making it fun as orienteering is still out of favour with Emma. Duncan therefore spent most of the course waving a large stick around and we took a detour on the way from 3 to 4 to take in the boardwalk!

I went round the Light Green after Christine got back which meant that I had the distincct advantage of knowing which controls were misplaced before I started! We haven’t made it to as many events in the series this year due to other commitments but it’s still been fun and I hope the club continues with regular local events next summer.

Stoke Park Orange

Sunday, July 5th, 2015

Duncan punchingDuncan and I had a Saturday morning to kill together so went along to the SOC event at Stoke Park Woods. Seeing as we weren’t trying to fit in multiple runs I suggested that we do the orange. Really we should have stuck to the yellow as Duncan would have been able to do more of the navigation himself. He didn’t seem to grasp, for example, that we didn’t have to follow the purple line which meant we made some interesting route choices ploughing cross-country through the undergrowth. As you’ll see from the photo, some of the control placement made punching interesting for Duncan too! He seemed to enjoy himself though but I think we’ll go back to yellow next time.