• Sunday, 21 April 2024

Swan Valley Adventure Centre

Yet another lovely sunny day for the sprint event at Swan Valley Adventure Centre, with a relatively tight strip of buildings and some extensive grounds and bush for navigational variety. The main courses took the best bits of the map to challenge runners, from the extremely passable Jane Brook Ditch to the courtyards and nooks of the built up section. Some tight competition at the top of the field, while the rest of us mortals had a good time.

There was a lot of anticipation for the bonus ‘supersprint’ course, with everyone camped out at the second start waiting for the regular courses to finish. This was a concept I borrowed from John Toomey of ADHOC, to give people more of a ‘big race’ feel with lots of runners around. I’d planned a mostly unique course embedded entirely within the detailed buildings (and stretching the minimum control separation to its limits…), with 18 controls across 1.2km, got everyone to self-seed themselves in reverse speed order and sent them off at 15s intervals.

From what I saw there were lots of small packs forming, runners crossing over each other and making tiny mistakes that mattered more in the close racing. Liam Dufty was 20s clear in front, with the next four runners within 14 seconds of each other. Plenty of grins afterwards confirmed that was an experiment worth trying! I do think, however, that this is something that should be left entirely to the setters’ discretion - it wasn’t a huge extra effort, but it was definitely more complicated. I used enough controls that I had to borrow SI bricks from another set, and run two starts one after the other.

A massive thank you, as always, to Sue and Jack Dowling for organising registration and turning on a lot of the SI bricks, Melinda Richards for translating my ridiculous ideas into the computer, Mark Lommers for organising some extra SI bricks, and the eager crowd of control collectors: Jack Dowling, Rob West, Mike and Nicole Sibbald, Sharon and Riley McFarlane, Rob Beattie and Simon Windsor.

And of course super thanks to Paul who included the 'super sprint' as well as the usual courses.

Results are available in Eventor.
Upload your track to Livelox and compare your route choices with those of your fellow orienteers.

Photo: punching a control at SWAC, by Carol Brownlie.

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Acknowledgement of country

Noongar country logo 2023 150pxNgalak kaaditj nidja Noongar Boodjar. Koora-Yeyi-Kalyakool.

Orienteering WA acknowledges the Noongar people, the Traditional and continuing Custodians of the land on which we gather to enjoy our sport, and pay our respects to Elders past and present.