The World Games 2013, Cali, Colombia
After forty hours travel, five airports and going back in time Georgia
Whitla and Rachel Smith arrived in Cali to meet Tane who had travelled
from Sweden. We were given our first taste of waiting as we waited
for a bus to the accreditation centre. We had the first night in a
hostel until our official accommodation was available on Tuesday 30th.
This day was spent waiting. Waiting for the hotel (in the tallest
building in Cali) to allow us to check in and then waiting for our
room key. “How long will it be” we ask, and the reply of 5 minutes is
given with a slight smirk. Due to a slight error on the room list
spreadsheet, everyone was one row out so Rachel was allocated to a
room with a Lithuanian boy and Chris with a Norwegian girl. We gave up
and slept in one of the allocated rooms and sorted it out when Chris
joined us in the morning.
European, Asian and Oceania teams had an extra day allocated for jet
leg so by the 31st all teams had arrived and the day was spent
settling in, running up and down the river and acclimatising to the
heat and noise. The buses were now on schedule and waiting is now
restricted to waiting for the lift to our hotel room. Lunch and dinner
are served in the large catering tent that we take a bus to with
police escorts stopping traffic so we can pass through red lights.
There are plenty of other sports already competing so we took the
opportunity of a free afternoon to go watch some acrobatic gymnastics
which included an entertaining mens group balancing competition,
sparkly lycra and all! While we have also managed to meet a few fellow
kiwi's competing such as the Womens canoe polo, a powerlifter and
several of the Hong Kong rugby sevens team.
Thursday was model event day, so we were all bussed to the park
adjacent to the sprint map. The map was a very simple linear park
along a river with scattered trees and neighouring residential areas.
Unfortunately we could only run on the streets so route choice was
minimal and it was obvious it would be a running race. We tried out
some alternative route choices through river versus around and over
bridge, but in the end this was irrelevant as we never crossed the
Friday, Sprint day. Luckily we had early starts as it has been getting
hotter over the last few days. Georgia was first starter and was lucky
to avoid the confusion where the first 3 runners started 1 minute.
Unfortunately for Kathryn Preston of Australia she had to run through
2 start boxes and had no time to gather her breath before starting,
Georgia had a pretty clean run on the course, while Rachel lost time
in the final part of the course where she navigated by the unmapped
tracks, rather than other more correct features. The course started
with 3 short controls in the park followed by several longer legs in
the residential area. It was then back into the park briefly, some
more long legs in the residential area, before finishing with some
close controls in a fast parkland with small earthwalls/hills and
The boys race was the same course except for three different controls
adding about an extra 300m.
Chris and Tane both had almost clean runs, with only 6-7s in total of
mistakes each. Both were running about the same speed, with Chris just
sneaking ahead over the final few controls. Tane is now eager to turn
the tables in tomorrows race, which we are all hoping will offer some
more challenging orienteering, and a bit less road running.
World Games live page
(Written mostly by Rachel, and a little bit by Chris)