3ROC Orienteering News 24 January 2018

edinburgh snowLast weekend

Contrasting conditions for orienteering last weekend, with heavy rain here and snow and ice in Edinburgh. Times at Setanta’s Saturday night event at Ballyward ranged from normal to pretty long, the kind of times where you wonder if your headlight battery will last. Then you start to run faster to get to the finish with some battery left, only to start making mistakes which mean that you spend even longer in the forest … like driving more quickly to try to get to the garage before you run out of petrol.

At Donadea the next day, a few 3ROC runners featured on various courses, with Leinster Champion Valdas Tilunas best placed on the Brown.
Meanwhile in Edinburgh, the Irish – including 3ROC’s Colm Moran, John and Aidan McCullough and Doruk Balkan – joined more than 700 other orienteers at the Edinburgh Big Weekend, four races in three days. Friday evening saw “Fight with the Night”, a night sprint around Kings Buildings, part of the university, and an intriguing indoor orienteering event in the 8-storey James Clerk Maxwell building on the campus. This was brilliant – each floor mapped separately , with the courses starting and finishing on the ground floor and going as high as the open roof on floor 8. Conditions were icy, so the FWTN race and the roof section of the indoor event were tricky, but both were great fun.

Edinburgh indoor map

Indoor map: start on Level2, finish on Level 1.

Saturday’s Edinburgh City Race suffered from the icy conditions so the organisers decided to put out the controls and let the runners go out if they wanted to, non-competitively, as a safety precaution. Conditions were mostly OK except for some areas which were still very icy. Aidan ran the Men’s Open (at about 16 km) in 94 minutes, which was very respectable considering the underfoot conditions.

On Sunday the classic orienteering event at Arthur’s Seat was again hit with very icy conditions so if you had dobbs (metal-tipped studs) on your O-shoes you were OK – otherwise you just slid around everywhere. John and Doruk retired and Aidan was again a respectable 17th, running 90 minutes for the 8.2 km course with nearly 600m climb.

It’s an action-packed weekend, much favoured by students as the events are all run by the Edinburgh University O-club and includes a ceilidh on Saturday night. However, the time of year and the northerly location introduce an additional weather element that running a city race in, say, Barcelona or Rome wouldn’t have.

This weekend

This weekend for Leinster orienteers it’s the GEN Dublin by Night on Saturday at Killiney Hill. Details should be on the IOA Forum during the week. If you’d like to travel, the closest event is LVO’s Spring Cup at Meelmore in the Mournes, Co. Down, on Sunday 28th. See details here.

Leinster Championships entries close on 9th February or when the entries get to 200, so don’t forget to enter in time. The event is at Cronybyrne and Ballinastraw, between Laragh and Rathdrum in Co. Wicklow on 25th February. Details here. Currently entries stand at 124.

Subscription reminder: For existing or new 3ROC members, your annual subscription for 2018 is now due. You can join online at Fabian4.co.uk here.

See you in the forest!