Local orienteering returns

Post date: Jul 19, 2020 10:34:26 AM

Waggaroos resumed competitive orienteering on a superb winter's day last Sunday with an event at Rocky Hill, Kooringal, albeit with several changes to the usual event protocols to ensure Covid safety. The changes did not trouble participants who adapted quickly to the revised systems.

Starting from the eastern end of Mount St the 1.5 km Easy navigation course proved popular with family groups. It followed some of the paths and tracks around the north-western end of the area requiring a steep descent and an equally steep ascent challenging participants to find particular thickets and boulders along the way.

Times were quite close. Melanie Bradley and her two young sons Alexander and Nicolas had the fastest time just ahead of Julie Gooding and son Jarrah. The Farquhar family group of Emily, Alexander and Ella finished a competitive third. Visiting from Leeton, first time orienteers Rachelle Ward and her daughter Camilla Halloran were a little off the pace and finished fourth but thoroughly enjoyed the experience.

The Hard courses wound around the steep hillside having participants locate specific rock features and the occasional small gully. Although visibility was excellent, the steep ascents, difficult descents and profusion of grassy regrowth following the recent rains made the courses physically demanding and relocation difficult if navigation was not perfect. Missing a control site meant some more hard scrambling across the hillside and significant time loss.

Stuart Young scrambled particularly well winning the 3.2 km Hard navigation course comfortably, finishing more than 10 minutes ahead of the rest of the field. His was an excellent run in the deceptively difficult terrain. John Oliver finished second with Phil Roy and Loren Edmandson in third place.

Sharni Rajasekera similarly had a comfortable win on the 2.3 km Hard course finishing more than 10 minutes ahead of Pauline Moore who had a few navigational problems on the first half of the course.

The other half of Leeton visitors and newcomers,Greg and Ellena Halloran certainly enjoyed their introduction to the sport, winning the 2.0 km Moderate navigation course. Despite making a few mistakes, none were serious enough to allow veteran Bob Moore to sneak past.