SE Relay Championships – Hainault Forest Country Park

A successful weekend for the GO Bananas squad at the SE Relay Champs last weekend who braved the grey skys, cool temperatures and rain. The club fielded 4 teams, one non-competitive. The courses were quite testing, so there were a few controls not found. However the team of Saskia McAllister, Matthew Couldery and Sarah Darley were 3rd and received bronze medals. The team of Phoebe King, Adam Conway and Ellie Mills-Hicks came 4th, only 1 second behind. Well done everyone who ran. You all did really well.

GO Bananas Relay squad at the SE Relay Champs

GO Bananas Relay squad at the SE Relay Champs

Start  line for Leg 1 runners in the Junior class.

Start line for Leg 1 runners in the Junior class.

Saskia McAllister, Matthew Couldery and Sarah Darley 3rd team in the Junior Class.

Saskia McAllister, Matthew Couldery and Sarah Darley 3rd team in the Junior Class.

Leg 1 runners off to find the first control

Leg 1 runners off to find the first control

British Orienteering Long Distance and Relay Championships – Forest of Dean

Major successes this weekend for the club at the British Long Distance and Relay Championships. Both events were in the Forest of Dean and no long walks to the assembly areas or starts – a change from the JK 2015. New Beechenhurst forest was runnable for the most part but some major ups and downs to negotiate. James Crawford is the M60 British Champion and won by 3.5 minutes from second place. Fantastic run. Adam Conway was runner up in the M12A class and received a medal and buff. Mark Smith won M60S class – his first run after recovery from surgery, and George Simmons won the M20L class. Fantastic acheivements. Congratulations.

Other results – Sarah Darley was 4th in W10A, and Aimee Darley 15th in W12A. Nick Green and Phil Conway were 30th and 31st in M50L (Nick won by 3 seconds!) and Keith Tonkin was 22nd in M55L. Alastair Doyle was 29th in M60L and Geoff Wright 27th in M70L. I was 16th on W60L mainly due to a lost contact lense between control 2 & 3 which meant I couldn’t read the map. Tricky!!

A new venture for Linda Pakuls was to have a go at the British Trail O (now called Pre-O). She was unable to run in the other championships following some serious knee problems. She did very well and came a creditable 15th only 3 points behind the winner and beating the JK Pre-O champion.

The Relays took place on Cannop Pond, a less runnable forest on the side of a hill. We only had 4 teams running but again major successes. The M60 team of Peter Nicholls, Alastair Doyle and James Crawford looked to be on paper capable of winning. Peter was on 1st leg, and came back in 2nd place, but close to TVOC who came in 1st. Alastair had a cracking run and came back 4.5 minutes in the lead. I think Jamers was worried about being caught by a good runner on the TVOC 3rd leg (TVOC cam iin 4th anyway) as he did the fastest leg of the day for the whole class. No one got under 40 minutes but James ran his leg in just under 37 minutes. Needless to say the GOlden Boys team were winner by a staggering 13 minutes. Awesome!!

The junior GO Bananas team of Adam Conway, Sarah Darley and Aimee Darley ran in the Mini relay. They came 5th – a great result considering the first team was 3 boys, and all the teams above them had at least 2 boys. Adam was on lead leg and came back in 3rd. Sarah came back in 6th and Aimee pulled up one place to 5th. Great effort.

The M50 team of Nick Green, Keith Tonkin and Phil Conway had a difficult task in a very competitive class, but did really well. Nick came back in 5th place, and Keith maintained that position. Phil was rather tired from his run the previous day, but only lost 1 place so the GOing faster team came 6th.

So a fantastic weekend for the club. Many congratulations to all that ran, and in particular to James, British Champion, and the M60 relay team – also British Champions.

British Sprint and Middle Distance Championships 2014

The British Sprint Orienteering Championship 2014 took place on Saturday 6th September at Keele University. There was a prologue in the morning which was challenging in parts, and this decided in which final you competed in the afternoon. The aim was to get into the A final. The final courses were more simple than the morning, mainly as the prologue and final courses had to be swapped round due to a wedding.

All our juniors succeeded in qualifying for the A final – Aimee and Sarah Darley, and Adam Conway. James Crawford and Keith Tonkin should have qualified for the A final in M55, but both managed to miss out a control and so had to run in the C final. James won that and Keith came 3rd. I qualified for the A final in W60, but could only manage 6th. Bad couple of controls at the beginning. Much more successful was Sarah Darley who came 3rd in W10, and Adam Conway who came 3rd in M12. The only podium places in the Sprints.

The British Middle Distance Orienteering Championship 2014 took place on part of Cannock Chase, near Rugeley, Staffordshire on Sunday 7th September. It was a mainly forested area with many contour features which could get confusing if you lost contact with the map. A few successes, the best being Adam Conway who is the M12 British Middle Distance Champion. He won by over 2 minutes. Fantastic result. Well done Adam. Photo on the GO Facebook page. I managed a bronze medal on W60, a little better than yesterday!! Aimee and Sarah Darley came 5th in their class. A lovely sunny day when it was warm enough to sit around and enjoy the event and the company of other club members. A good event.

GO @ 50

The first celebration of 50 years of Guildford Orienteers took place today at Chapel Common. There were two courses on offer – a challenging Yellow Course of 2.2K for those used to path junctions – none used – and a Green Course of 4.1K. These were planned by Keith. Chapel Common is a small area but with many features and provided a good middle distance course with route choice depending on whether you wanted to plough through vegetation, which is rampant at the moment, or use the paths. The weather was mainly warm and sunny. Afterwards we all had lunch at the Black Fox Inn. Jon Darley kindly baked an enormous cake. Nigel Collard cut the cake. He has been a GO member alot longer than most of us. Jeremy provided a quiz for the Juniors, and he also presented the Club Championship cups to Adam Conway (Junior Boys), Sarah Darley (Junior Girls), Nick Green (Senior Men) and Christine Kiddier (Senior Women).                                                                          Many thanks for making the effort to come and run, and celebrate GO @ 50. There were at least 30 runners. It was good to see you all and make the occasion a success.               Particular thanks to Jenny Nicholls who did most of the download, Jeremy for running the start, Jon for baking the cake, Keith for planning the courses and Marion and Frances for helping to collect controls.