CDControl Description Sheet, Knockout Sprint Final

Euromeeting in Denmark was a runup event for the 2020 World Championships.

Not all countries sent full teams but plenty did, with a lot taking the opportunity to build their experience of competition formats at this level. It was good to see GB represented in strength.

On Friday 21st there was a Sprint Relay in Kolding. GBR-1 were ninth, fifth nation. GBR-2 were thirteenth. GBR-3 including a Swedish guest runner were 26th.

On Saturday there was a knockout sprint. Alice, Charlotte and Jonny got as far as the semi-finals. Cecilie got to the quarter-finals.

On Sunday there was a regular sprint race in the UNESCO World Heritage site of Christiansfeld. Alice Leake was 4th - a really good result. Charlotte Ward was 23rd. The leading British men were Jonny Crickmore 26th and Matt Fellbaum 27th.

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kris Photo: Kris Jones starts leg 2 for the GB men's team, WOC Relay 9th August 2018, by On The Red Line.

The races took place in very hot weather in the forest next to the Turaida fortress in Latvia. Both were decided right at the end.

In the women's the favourite teams pulled away. On the last leg it was Sweden and Switzerland together at the last difficult control after a climb to the wall of the fortress. The race was decided in the short parkland section right at the end.

In the men's there were nine teams almost together at the run-through on the last leg, and at the end here were eight teams within a minute. But after all the drama it was the favourite teams who took the medals. It was the long leg up to the fortress that had decided it.

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ralph Photo: Ralph Street, on the runthrough, WOC Middle 7th August 2018, by On The Red Line.

World Of O's Preview

Neither of the GB teams are amongst the favourites, but both have the status of outsiders who can do well on a good day.

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mcd Photo by Wendy Carlyle

The weekend of 16th/17th June is the Venla and Jukola Relays in Finland. These are enormous. It's a big festival weekend and one of the big competitive weekends of the international orienteering calendar.

Venla is a 4-leg day relay for women. Jukola is a 7-leg overnight relay.

In Britain, a country of 65 million people, orienteering is not so well-known and remains a minority sport. Night orienteering is a minority sport within the minority sport, and a lot of active orienteers say they don't like relay orienteering because of "the additional responsibility" of teammates. Guess what - the UK's night relay, the "Harvester Trophy", is a connoisseur's event for two hundred people.

In Finland, a country with less than one tenth the population, orienteering has a higher profile and there is more navigation skill, the long days of midsummer are a big contrast to the winter, and the overnight relay weekend is several hundred times bigger, attracting over fifteen thousand runners.

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Squad member Ralph Street won a bronze medal with Bækkelagets Sportsklub in the Norwegian Sprint Relay Championship Race in Stavanger yesterday.

The winners were Nydalens SK, with whom Ralph won a bronze last year. After the four legs and an hour's running they finished 20secs ahead of NTNUI, with Bækkelagets SK a further 19 seconds back.

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ho Photo: Hollie Orr comes through the arena before the final loop in today's EOC Women's Forest Relay.

World Of O's Report

Women's Relay

Switzerland 1 and Switzerland 2 contested the gold medal, and with only the first team from a country counting for prizes, Switzerland 2 didn't get a medal for coming second.

A sprint finish for silver was won by Sweden from Denmark. GB1 were 11th (7th country - the others ahead were Norway, Russia and Finland) and GB2 were 17th.

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ForestRelay photo: 2016 EOC relay start

The European Forest Relays are on Saturday 12th May, with the women's race starting at 1pm UK-Time, and the men's at 3pm.

Each country may enter two teams in each forest relay.

GB has two teams in each, and of the 12 athletes nearly all are Scots or have strong Scottish links. In the women Hollie and Jo are Scots (and both are now members of Halden SK), Jess lives in the Highlands, and the other three all went to Edinburgh University.

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AL Photo: Alice Leake passes the coaches area near the finish of today's EOC Sprint Relay.

Home team Switzerland won the European Sprint Relay Championship Race today Thursday 10th May. They were a comfortable minute ahead of second-placed Sweden, who in turn were a comfortably two minutes ahead of a tight finish for the bronze medal which included Alice Leake anchoring TeamGB.

Charlotte Ward, Peter Hodkinson and Kris Jones had given Alice a 25 second start for the last leg ahead of a group of four other teams. But three of the teams caught her.

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CW Photo: Charlotte Ward near the finish of Sunday's EOC Sprint Final.

The European Sprint Relay Championship Race is at 4pm UK time on Thursday 10th May. There are 21 teams entered. It is live on the internet with English commentary, or for those with less time or money there are online results.

The racing is in the scenic villages area of Capriasca in the Italian speaking Ticino canton of Switzerland. And it will be Ticenese Elena Roos running the last leg for Switzerland - that could mean enough crowd noise to be heard in a neighbouring country.

The GB team will wear 7 as that was their position last time round, and they have a good chance of making the podium. The team is Charlotte Ward, Peter Hodkinson, Kris Jones and Alice Leake. Profiles of the team follow....

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Fourteeen GB squad members ran for Scandinavian clubs in TioMila this weekend. There were many very good individual performances,. Pride of place in terms of team results was Halden SK's third place for Jo Shepherd and Hollie Orr running with Kine Hallan Steiwer, Eva Jurenikova and Elena Roos.

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Ali

It is all broadcast online. GPS tracking and many cameras (both setup in close co-operation with the planners) allow the broadcasters to show the story well, often with great drama as the races unfold. This year there's again an English language commentary option, with Boris Granovskiy and Graham Gristwood. It costs 150SEK. Order the broadcast at www.10mila.se.

As with watching all sport knowing a bit more about the teams and the athletes helps the appreciation.

This article is a summary of the timings and colours of some of the clubs who may well feature. There being more than 300 teams in each race suggests someone important is left out. I wonder who.

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Tove Photo: Tove Alexandersson wins for Stora Tuna in 2017, overtaking 11 other teams on the last leg - SVT sport.

One of the highlights of the orienteering calendar, TioMila, takes place near Stockholm next weekend. A lot of the GB Squad will take part, and they have written several articles. This item is a quick summary and an index to the articles.

For a taste of the TV pictures and a bit more on last year please see the SVT 2 minute video (It's in Swedish.)

A video view over the arena is recently available.

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Sasha Photo: Sasha Chepelin at the World Cup Final Meeting 2017

Like Hector, my excitement for the upcoming TioMila relay is building. Having recently moved club and location to Halden, this feeling is ever more noticeable. I'm now part of a club which has quite the record of orienteering relay success. Simply glancing into the Halden SK's central clubhut reveals a trove of mementos earned from consistent success at the big orienteering relays across their entire histories. But with these big overnight relays comes a very different style of orienteering.

Halden's news item welcoming Sasha.

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Ralph Photo: Ralph Street in the colours of Södertälje-Nykvarn Orientering, JK Long race 2017, by Robert Lines.

TioMila2018, one of the best weekends of the year. is in commuting distance of Stockholm next weekend.

As you know participation in orienteering is much more club based in Scandinavia than it is here. There are many relays, and this one is arguably the most important. It is the one that Swedish orienteers all talk about through the winter. It's the one they all remember years afterwards.

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Jess Photo: Jess Tullie in Domnarvets GOIF colours

This year's TiomIla Women's race is in the afternoon of Saturday 28th April. It starts at 12:15 UK-time and the winning team will finish about a quarter to five. You can watch it on the internet, with English commentary from Boris Granovskiy and Graham Gristwood. There will be several hundred teams. Apart from the sprint specialists, most of the GB Squad women will be running, and they are looking forward to it.

Video showing the start of the 2016 race There wasn't English commentary in 2016 but you can see Jess lead off for the lowest numbered team.

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Hector Photo: Hector Haines in IFK Lidingö colours

To many, the name TioMila is very well-known. And those that have experienced it understand the excitement and the grandeur of the competition. But it takes living it to really get to the essence of the race.

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SportIdent Results Site

At the final day of this year's JK, Monday April 2nd, Edinburgh University won the JK Trophy and Lakeland won the Women's Trophy.

For old-timers it was a traditional JK Relays - bad weather coming in on Sunday night /Monday morning causing really tough conditions for both the organisation team and the runners.

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JK2018 logo The "JK", the biggest annual festival in the UK orienteering calendar, held every year at Easter, is upon us. What a lovely prospect! This year the West Midlands Association are hosting. How's the training gone, have you got it all planned out and read through 28 pages of programme, how did you fare on your big weekends in February and March? Do you miss chatting to your friends at a model event before the real action - once upon a time that was the Friday entertainment. And will we have snow? (No is the latest I've heard).

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