Saturday, 16 November 2013

Sprint into Spring 5

Needing our regular orienteering fix, Pat and I headed for the Melbourne Showground, in the heart of the city. The satnav exploded the night before, so we navigated (successfully, I may add) to our venue in the time-honoured fashion. This was the fifth event in the new, and very successful, Sprint into Spring series. Three courses to choose from - I did Course 2, 2.4km with 18 controls, Pat did the notionally easier Course 3, with 20 controls in 2,2km. At the start I was confused initially, with a blank wall straight ahead of us. Margi was starting one minute ahead and I preferred to hang back but the start official was insistent, even though there was no-one waiting behind me.Margi disappeared through the wall, and only then did I realise that a chicane took us through and beyond, into an open courtyard.

I trotted purposefully to my first two controls, and then two longer legs encouraged me to stretch out a bit. Bad idea. My right hamstring began to trouble me once more, so I hobbled along gamely the best I could. I saw Margi ahead, so gave chase, as Pat joined us from the left on her course. We did a few common controls together, but I couldn't catch either of the two ladies. We came to leg 7-8 (the sprint leg for the green jersey!) and I passed Pat and Margi, up the grandstand steps to control 11. A lot of people had trouble with this one, not sure why. Troubles of my own arrived on the next control as the usual error occurred. I turned too early and overshot my control, having to double back, losing maybe 40 seconds in the process. Ilze lay in wait with her camera at 17 (see below), and Margi and I reached the finish together, with Pat arriving not long after.

The new Sprint Series in Melbourne goes from strength to strength, with 120-150 people at each event. This is pretty good by Victorian standards. I seem to be doing well enough in the overall standings due to my dogged perserverance, but the prizes will certainly go to younger and faster legs.

All the details are at

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