Last Wednesday Martin Peat and Counties Manakau Orienteering club set New Zealand’s first ultra-sprint orienteering race at Barry Curtus Park in Manakau. It was a fantastic afternoon of high speed racing and a great way to enjoy our ANZAC day in the sun.
The format of the afternoon consisted of 3 heats which could be run in any order before 3:00pm and the top 4, based on accumulative time, would race in a mass start final. Others who didn’t make the final would start afterwards as they pleased.
The special point about ultra-sprint racing is the extremely close together controls which require very quick map reading to get through cleanly. Planning ahead and sighting controls in advance on longer legs was a great technique to conquering the tricky parts. The other major difficulty was the maze which we visited twice on every course.
I missed out on the final which was won by NWOC’s Tom Reynolds closely Followed by Matt Ogden, Toby Scott and Jourdan Harvey. Places 5th to 8th formed an unofficial B-final which I finished 2nd in after losing my lead with a spectacular series of mistake while going through the maze.
I can’t wait for the next ultra-sprint and hope that this high standard is retained.