Yesterday I finished off the OY series with another win on the remapped Muriwai area. I will win the series pretty comfortably with Thomas and Matt no longer living in Auckland, but today’s race was not the same standard that I had achieved in the OY 1, OY 4 and OY 5. I was generally very distracted for the first half but I managed to bring some more focus to the last half of the race to finish. Here is a look at my GPS now that I have a Garmin again after my old one broken a few weeks ago.
The first 2 controls were in theory very easy but there was some very recent felling that meant you couldn’t run exactly where you wanted to. On 3 I struggled to hold my direction up the hill because I was thinking too much about running fast and so not checking my compass much. I got confused on 5 trying to work out the tracks and the things I expected to stand out really didn’t. Coming up to 7 I got distracted by a friend and lost map contact but picked up my mistake pretty quickly. The vegetation going to 9 was pushing me around a lot and I didn’t manage to realign coming into the control. 10, 11 and 12 were quite easy but it is obvious that I was not using my compass well. There was a lot of unexpected vegetation going into 13 but I still wasn’t reading the map much. I got pretty confused going to 16 as I must have found some old motor bike track instead of the ones on the map.
I still wasn’t reading a head much on 17 and 18 but I felt to be running quite fast. My choice from 18 to 19 was very risky but I got through the course although I did become a human pin cushion in the process. Some people found it more difficult to get through the vegetation than others but where I passed through was not as bad as shown on the map. From here on I sorted myself out and felt a very obvious change in how smoothly I was moving through the terrain. Compass. Simplification. what next? What next? What next? Leaving 20 I spent a lot of time avoiding cut down trees and although I was off the line I was still in contact with the map. The last 4 legs were almost perfect as I was actually reading the map.
So overall it is better to read the map when orienteering!
I’m really looking forward to Auckland Champs next weekend and will be doing all I can to hit that start line focused. I know my physical shape is steadily improving so I am very excited to apply myself to a race situation especially on 2 new maps.