Irish Sprint Champs 2 December 2017

Coaster01Information updated 30 November.

Details may still change in the coming days so check back before the event for the latest information.

Irish Sprint Orienteering Championships – Saturday 2nd December 2017

Dublin City University, Collins Avenue, Dublin 9

Organised by 3ROC

Start times are now available on We had a couple of late entries whose start times are not on the list but who have been told what they are.

This is important: It is easy to be disqualified in sprint orienteering. The usual precautions apply – check your control codes carefully as there will be a lot of controls close together in certain areas.

There are some areas that you are not allowed to go into on a sprint map: e.g. private land and flowerbeds. These are marked in olive green on the map. If you go into or across one of these you are cheating and you will be disqualified.

Some boundaries (walls, fences, hedges) are also shown as not to be crossed: it doesn’t matter whether you think you can get over them or not, you are cheating and you will be disqualified if you cross them.

If you reach over or through a”not to be crossed” feature, you are cheating and you will be disqualified – you must go around it.

A couple of areas ( e.g. a patch of vegetation; a hedge shown as uncrossable) will be marked with red and white tape as a reminder to you that you are not allowed to cross them or go through or into or over them.

For some information on ISSOM (the international Sprint map standard) see this article from CompassSport magazine here. He doesn’t mention olive green in particular, but at last year’s Irish Sprint Champs a number of runners were disqualified for going through an olive green flowerbed. The lesson is, look at your greens carefully and, if in doubt, go around.

We don’t want to have to disqualify anyone so please remember the rules about out of bounds areas and uncrossable boundaries.

Screen Shot 2017-11-29 at 13.25.44Map clarification: The controller requested that we explain one area of the map to you. There is one place with a series of ramps separated by head-high railings. These clearly fall into the “not to be crossed” category but because of limited space on the map, only the westmost railing is shown as uncrossable. This area may be on a possible route on some courses: if so, do not try to climb the railings. See the illustration on the left.

Below is an example of some kinds of uncrossable boundaries and some forbidden areas:

Screen Shot 2017-11-29 at 13.41.45

Uncrossable fence, uncrossable hedge, olive-green out of bounds; permanently out of bounds building site.

 SI card assignment: Some competitors are wondering why they may have been assigned a different SI card to their own one. SI Air contactless punching will be in use on courses 1 and 2 only. If you have an SI Air card (SIAC) and you are running on course 1 or 2, you will use your own card. If you are on courses 1 or 2 and you don’t have an SIAC card we will loan you one.

If you are running on Course 3, 4, 5 or 6 and you have a SIAC card, we will loan you a conventional SI card instead, at no cost to you. If you are not using an SIAC card on courses 3, 4, 5 or 6, then you use your own card.

You will pick up your SI card in the Business school opposite the car park.

You can see the details of this, and the reasoning behind it, further down this page under “Timing“.

Safety: Please read the paragraph below on safety. There will be orienteers running in opposite directions in certain areas so be careful going into and out of controls and when going around corners. There will also be non-orienteers (Muggles?) including children and elderly people in the area, particularly in the park, so exercise care and respect their right to be there as well. We don’t have exclusive access to the competition area. 

Start times are from 11.00 am to 12.30 pm. Courses will close at 1.30 pm. Elite runners are seeded and did not have a choice of start time.

There is no entry on the day.

Courses and classes are as specified in the Irish Rules of Orienteering. Course lengths are measured in straight lines.


1 M20, 21       2.7 km/27 controls

2 M18, 35, 40; W20, 21      2.4 km/19 controls

3 M16, 45, 50; W18      2.2 km/16 controls

4 M14, 55, 60; W14, 16, 35, 40, 45.      2.1 km/16 controls

5 M65, 70, 75, 80, 85; W50, 55, 60, 65, 70, 75, 80, 85.      1.4 km/13 controls

6 M10, 12; W10, 12.     1.3 km/15 controls



Planner Aidan McCullough (3ROC)

Organiser John McCullough (3ROC)

Controllers Neil Dobbs (WatO) and Val Jones (FIN).


The competition area comprises the Dublin City University campus, which is used by all courses, and the adjoining Albert College Park, which is only used by courses 1-4.

Thanks to DCU and Dublin City Council for permission to use the areas.

Thanks also to Waterford Orienteers, Great Eastern Navigators and Lagan Valley Orienteers for the loan of equipment, and to Amalia Naughton for designing the prizes.


DCU is located on Collins Avenue, Dublin 9, about 5 km north of the city centre. It is easily reached from the M1 and M50 motorways and from the city centre.

From the city centre, follow signs for the M1 through Drumcondra on the R132 as far as Collins Avenue. Turn left onto Collins Avenue (R103) following brown signs for DCU.

From the M50, exit at Junction 4 (Ballymun) and travel towards the city centre on the R108, following brown signs for DCU. Turn left onto Collins Avenue (R103) and continue to DCU.

From the north continue from the M1 towards the city centre (Don’t take the tunnel). Just past a big redbrick church on your left, turn right onto Collins Avenue (R103) to DCU.

Currently there are also yellow roadsigns signposting “Beauty and the Beast”, the pantomime at The Helix at DCU, so you can follow them too.

Please enter the DCU campus only from the main Collins Avenue entrance and park in the multi-storey car park on your right after you enter. If you are not travelling by car, please use this entrance also.

Grid Ref O 15960 38852;

Lat 53.387321, Long -6.2576365.

Dublin Bus also serves the campus, with routes 44 and 104. Routes 4, 9, 11, 13, 16, 33, 41 and 747 also pass close by. The 44 and 104 are infrequent at weekends.

See location map here.


Parking is in the multi-storey car park: follow the road around to the right after you enter the campus and the car park is on your right. Parking costs about €1 per hour, pay at the car park just before you leave.

There is free parking on Saturdays on Collins Avenue, across the road from the college, and on nearby roads.


There is effectively no climb on the courses and the running surface is perhaps 80% concrete or tarmac, with a some grass. Some of the grassy areas in the park can be muddy.

The University campus consists of a number of buildings spread over the area, with some grassy patches, car parks, sports pitches and clumps of trees. There are a number of construction sites in the area: these are marked in purple on the map and are out of bounds; however it is possible to pass around several of them. There are flowerbeds, areas of cultivation and private areas on the map shown in olive green. These are out of bounds.

There are some hedges, walls, and fences marked as “not to be crossed” on the map. You are not allowed to cross these even if you find a gap or a low part. If you go into a prohibited area, or cross an “uncrossable” feature you will be disqualified. If you find a red and white tape emphasising a feature, this is to remind you that you must not cross it.

There are some roofed passageways (pass-throughs) and canopies in the area, shown in light grey on the map. You may go into these. You may not pass through or enter any buildings through doors while on the course.

Albert College Park is mostly short grass with tarmac paths, patches of trees, sports pitches, a playground and a tennis centre. Some of the grassy areas are muddy in places.

Running shoes or orienteering shoes with rubber studs are the best footwear for the terrain. Metal-tipped studs (dobb spikes) should not be worn. There is no requirement to wear long legs or full body cover.


The map is A4 ISSOM standard 1:4000 scale, drawn by Kieran Rocks and updated in Autumn 2017 for this event.

Courses  1 and 2 will be printed on both sides of the map,  courses 3-6 will be printed on one side only.

Control descriptions will be printed on the map, in IOF symbols for courses 1-5 and in English for course 6. Loose control descriptions will be available at the start.

The map will be printed on waterproof paper.

Controls on courses 1 and 2 will be SI Air-enabled. A sample control will be set up in the pre-start area for you to practice with before the start. Controls will be either mounted on stakes, on trestles or will be attached to fixed objects, depending on the nature of the control site.

Courses 1 and 2: runners with SIAC e-cards need only pass within about 30 cm of the control to register; courses 3-6 will need to actually punch at the control to register. The finish will be SI air enabled for courses 1 and 2. Other courses will punch at the finish in the usual way. Everyone must punch the start box no matter what kind of SI card you have.

On the Day

There is no need to register at the event. Pre-start will be on the lowest level (level zero) of the multi-storey car park: follow the internal signs in the car park for the Helix to find it.

There will be a room available for competitors inside the front door of the Business School, opposite the car park entrance, to provide shelter. There are toilets and vending machines here. Please do not bring muddy footwear in. This is a quiet zone as there will be classes in progress on Saturday.  SI card collection and results download will be here. 

When you arrive you can go directly to the pre-start, unless you need to collect an SI card.

Results download will also be in the Business School and will be signposted from the finish area – follow the pink tapes. Prize giving will be in the Students’ Union Bar, about 100m from the finish as soon after courses close as possible.


The classes on courses 1 and 2 will use contactless SI Air e-cards and the other courses (3, 4, 5 and 6) will use conventional SI cards.

If you don’t have an SI card at all, there will be a €2 rental charge for either a SIAC card (Courses 1 and 2) or a conventional SI card (other courses).

If you are running on course 1 or 2 and you have a SIAC card, please use your own card.

If you are running on course 1 or 2 and you have a conventional SI card, we will loan you a SIAC card for free. Collect it at the Business School.

If you are running on course 3, 4, 5 or 6 and you have a conventional SI card, please use it.

If you are running on course 3, 4 or 5 or 6 and you have a SIAC card, you will not be allowed to use it. We will loan you a conventional SI card for free to use in the competition. Collect it at the Business School.

You will appreciate that, for fairness, we cannot have people running on the same course, some with SIAC and some with conventional SI cards.

Hired or borrowed SI cards will incur a charge to replace them if they are lost: SIAC €60, conventional SI cards €40.

Out of bounds

The competition area is out of bounds to orienteers until they have run, with the exception of marked routes from Parking to pre-start, Start and Finish arena, and from Finish to Download. Sorry, but this rule does not apply to DCU students!


There may be some slow-moving traffic in the competition area, either from residents or to access the DCU Sports Centre. The campus will be open to the public during the competition so please be careful running in the area, particularly when rounding corners, that you don’t collide with another runner or with anyone else.

The park is a popular area for walking, for dog-owners and for children. Please exercise care when running in the park.

If the weather is wet or icy, some surfaces may be slippery, so competitors are advised to wear suitable footwear and to take care. Wet leaves may also make the ground slippery.

There is a road crossing on courses 1, 2, 3, and 4 . There will be a marshal there to monitor traffic but it is your responsibility to cross the road safely. Traffic will be light and slow-moving but watch out for cyclists, here, on the campus and in the park.


The pre-start is located in the lowest level of the multi-storey car park. There will be a punching start, no matter what kind of SI card you are using. Start times will be assigned in the days before the competition and will run from 11.00 to 12.30. Courses will close at 1.30 pm. Start times will be published on the Fabian 4 website.

Call-up will be at -3 minutes. Clear and check boxes for SI cards will be located in the call-up area. Loose control descriptions will be available in the -3 minute start box. Blank maps of the area will be in the -2 minute start box.

Competitors will punch the start and then take their maps. It is the responsibility of each competitor to ensure that they have cleared their SI card, that they punch the start and that they check they have taken the correct map.

If you miss your start time we will do our best to put you into a vacant slot but you may have to wait some time.

SIAC cards There will be a battery check box for SIAC cards and a unit to activate them and switch them off at the pre-start.

There will be a warm-up area between the start and the Collins Avenue entrance that you used, and you may also warm up outside the campus, along Collins Avenue itself.


You must punch the finish to record your finish time. If you have a SIAC card you need only bring your card close enough to the finish box to register your finish time, as with the course controls. You must download and return any rented or borrowed SI cards back at the Business School.

The finish is located in the middle of the area and will be signposted from the Business School entrance (follow pink tapes). Competitors may go to the finish before their race and remain there after they have finished. Building work has meant that the finish has been moved slightly from its original location so there will be less scope for spectators in this area.

Clothing transfer

Parking, Start, Finish and Registration are close to one another so no clothing transfer will be provided.


Download will be located in the Business School opposite the car park. ALL COMPETITORS MUST DOWNLOAD WHEN THEY FINISH WHETHER THEY HAVE COMPLETED THE RACE OR NOT.

Prize giving

Prize giving will be in the Students’ Union Bar near the finish as soon as possible after the courses close, hopefully before 2 pm.

Food & Drink

There are coffee shops, a Spar shop and the Students’ Union Bar  (serving food) on campus. There will be water for competitors at the finish.


This is an urban event and there will be non-orienteers in the area so be sensible and don’t leave valuables unattended.

Competition classes available: All classes from M/W10 to M/W90. Here is an explanation of how age classes work:

Most events in Ireland have colour-coded courses (Yellow, Green etc) and you can enter whatever course you like. At Championship events, most people enter in a particular age class (M14, or W65, say). Your age class is determined by your gender and how old you will be on the 31st December of the year of the competition. So even if you are not aged 40 until December you will compete in M or W 40 from January. The M/W refers to male (M) and female (W) and there will also sometimes be Elite (E) classes available in M/W18, 20 and 21. Elite is the top level of competition. Please note that this event is pre-entry only, there is no entry on the day.

Your Age Your Age Class
10 and Under M/W 10
12 and Under M/W 12
14 and Under  M/W 14
16 and Under M/W 16
18 and Under  M/W 18
20 and Under   M/W 20
*Any Age M/W 21
35 and Over M/W 35
40 and Over M/W 40
45 and Over M/W 45
50 and Over   M/W 50
55 and Over M/W 55
60 and Over   M/W 60
65 and Over  M/W 65
70 and Over      M/W 70
75 and Over M/W 75
80 and Over M/W 80


Other information: 

Pant-O: There will be a pantomime, “Beauty and the Beast”, at 2 pm  in The Helix theatre which is on the campus. For this reason, start times have been brought forward to avoid a clash with theatregoers. For more information visit The Helix.

Showers and changing rooms are available at the Sports Centre for an additional charge of €2 per person. The Sports Centre also has a coffee shop. You will have run past it on your course.

You’re only about 5 minutes drive from Ikea when you’re at DCU….