This blog is in recess. New contributions will still appear from time to time and new contributors are welcome. Check out and the facebook o scene for your regular online orienteering fix.

Wednesday, 30 October 2013

Read it and weep

Thinking about investing (spending) money on a garmin. I don't think there is another training tool out there and will give you the same ability to analyse your navigation and grow confidence in your compass work

See this training session that Matt, Nick, Laura and I did today at Osgiliath. With Matt and Nick's tracks imposed. Thanks Matt for the courses and art work...

Wellington Champs Review

I'll post some maps if I get a chance tomorrow, specifically to have a look at a few different legs, but firstly a great weekend of orienteering with a great variety of terrain and courses.

It was good for a change to have a solid farmland classic, with enough detail to keep you interested. Unfortunately the splits on winsplits are incorrect, so don't go drawing too many conclusions. Nick Hann was streets ahead in the mens elite, he seems the complete package at the moment, while Lizzie Ingham was chased harder by both Laura Robertson and Penny Kane in the womens.In the Junior elite womens rising star Kayla Fairbairn was trailed home by locals Lauren Turner and Lara Molloy, while Callum Herries finally managed to hold it together for a whole race to win convincingly.

The highlight of the event for the elite fields at least, was definitely the knock out sprint held on Sunday. Eketahuna was more of a prologue, one for the cameras but it still accounted for Herries and Tane Cambridge as only the top 12 qualified for the final (with the elite and junior elite fields combined). Rathkeale College was the venue for the real deal and it proved more than adequate. Detailed buildings surrounded by nice forested grounds gave just enough challenge at speed.

The format was two semifinals of 6 in each gender, with the top two in each going through to the final along with the two fastest losers. In the womens first semi-final Lizzie Ingham disappeared off the radar early and required a great comeback to recover lost time and outsprint Kayla Fairbairn for the win. Penny Kane finished third and had an anxious wait to see if she would go through as one of the fastest losers. She just made it. It was Laura Robertson, Georgia Whitla and Piret Klade coming through in the second heat, and Lauren Turner just failed to upset Kane by 10 seconds. In the men the first heat had the most depth and the six were only separated by 30 seconds. Surprisingly though it was Jamie Stewart, Shamus Morrison and Devon Beckman who qualifed with Tim Robertson the one left crossing his no avail though...Duncan Morrison spoiled our top sprinters party finishing a strong 3rd in the second heat to Matt Ogden and Nick Hann to knock Robertson out.

The final was perhaps slightly less dramatic, but only because of the dominance of two athletes. Matt Ogden and Laura Robertson clearing out. In the latter case it was definitelty an example of the apprentice overcoming the master. Robertson's rival and coach Lizzie Ingham watching her glide into the distance.

After the sprint , the middle distance back on Hacione on the banks of the Ruamahunga River, had a lot to live up to and it damn well did. Tight, intricate and accurate courses with a variety of leg lengths and direction changes. Good, solid orienteering challenge, and back into Hann territory. Too easy for the lanky one after the maestro Matt Ogden made early errors. Lizzie Ingham wasn't expecting Sarah Gray to be her closest challenger...but she was, a morale boosting result for the DSquad Coach. In the junior women two different contenders came to the fore, Sonia Hollands and Rebecca Gray, dominating proceedings and demonstrating their technical proficiency. It could have been Gray's day, but a lonely and late mistake let Hollands through.While in the junior men Callum Herries tore it up, with some of his competition running elites, and Beckman still learning his craft in terrain, it was Herries to win and he had no mercy. Looking forward to Sprint the Bay and the competition for JWOC spaces next year keep an eye on these two guys from the Hawkes Bay.

Friday, 25 October 2013

Halcyon Days

For Jim Barr...landowner, controller, orienteer.

Not from successful love alone,
Nor wealth, nor honor'd middle age, nor victories of politics or war;
But as life wanes, and all the turbulent passions calm,
As gorgeous, vapory, silent hues cover the evening sky,
As softness, fulness, rest, suffuse the frame, like freshier, balmier air,
As the days take on a mellower light, and the control flag at last hangs
really finish'd and indolent-ripe on the stand,
Then for the teeming quietest, happiest days of all!
The brooding and blissful halcyon days!

(Walt Whitman)

What to expect tomorrow in the Halcione fields

Thursday, 24 October 2013


Mattias Ogden set a course on Halcione and put it on would you deal with each control...

And yes the length of the course as advertised is a worry, particularly with the form of Matt Ogden and Nick Hann. If the organisers are comparing the k-rate to the 2000 Nationals of Darren Ashmore and Jamie Stewart they are operating off some flawed assumptions!

Auckland Champs - Some Thoughts

(update: check the new link to Tane Cambridge DOMA for some Auckland Champs maps).

I really meant to convince Chris or Matt to share some of their technical wisdom with us, on this one. It is hard to offer anything of substance when you have been completely owned by a terrain. But here are a few lessons/thoughts. I have excluded my ponderings on how to switch between childcare and racing pyschology in the blink of an eye.

1. If you buy a new compass practice with it before you use it in a race, or at least check that it is designed for the right hemisphere. Penny Kane and I bought new compasses immediately before the Auckland Champs and both were MN.

2. It is fine to know that you should be running straight on a compass, it is hard to do without practice. What do the best athletes do to make sure they are able to do this: a) years of practice b) use of a garmin gps system to review performance c) use of exercises like corridor or night orienteering to build compass skills in an environment more difficult than a typical race situation.

3. Relating map to terrain, and particularly terrain to map is a skill which requires continued practice ahead of a big event. Particularly for forest orienteering. In sprint orienteering this is a much more black and white skill.

4. Start smart not slow. Several times in big races I have deliberately started slow, but slowly getting lost is no better than quickly getting lost. The start is about getting into the map. Making connections with the terrain. Sticking on your compass. Starting a race how you mean to continue.

Anyone, care to comment about how they approached  Control 16 below...I went right around the tracks which was a complete cop out (and I knew it). Is any variation from the line justified? Should one be in touch with the map the entire way, or more carefully relocate when crossing tracks...

Part of the mens elite long distance course

Wellington Champs Accomodation

Wellington Champs Accomodation information at the Tararua Country Retreat.

The website is here.

There are still a few beds available if anyone is looking for last minute accomodation. And campers welcome.

The location is here:

The kitchen is fully equipped with cutlery, crockery, etc. Pillows provided but not sheets.

The accomodation is available on Friday night. There are a few of the crew from Wellington orienteering club heading up then.

Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Auckland Champs Review

Georgia Whitla won the Auckland Champs middle distance last Saturday, but it would have been a hollow victory. The joy of orienteering comes from performance not results, and dropping 7 1/2 minutes to win an elite middle distance is not the performance to tickle a self-respecting elites fancy. She was hardly the only one plunging the depths of Woodhill forest though last weekend.

Auckland Orienteering Club put on three events over the two day weekend, with the Woodhill Middle followed by a Sprint at Farm Cove on the Saturday and a long distance at Woodhill on the Sunday. Everything was much as you expect, and much like many of us have experienced many times. The organisation was friendly and efficient. The maps were good (except the "maze" area which should not be used for serious orienteering), the courses were good (except the sprint distance which needed to use the detail more and provide spectator appeal) and the weather was pleasant. Entirely unremarkable and prodigiously unmemorable. I'm struggling for images and words to bring up in my head to describe.

The Auckland clubs are at risk of losing access to parts, if not all, of Woodhill forest. This is an opportunity, not a calamity. Give us some new experiences please, you live in a beautiful part of the country.

One athlete that is always remarkable though is the irrepressible Chris Forne. How a man who has barely run since his injury in the World Games can complete with the race sharpened Nick Hann and the maestro Matt Ogden on his own terrain is beyond me, but he did winning the middle before losing only in a very close and high level race to Ogden in the long. These three were a long way ahead of the other elites in their split times, brutal navigational efficiency and speed through the terrain. Tane Cambridge and Tim Robertson held on to their boot straps but the others were left eating their dust.

The stand out result in the womens grade was Laura Robertson win in the long distance. One early mistake, but otherwise very consistent, and well clear of Greta Knarston and Penny Kane.

In the junior elite men it was good to see Matt Goodall register a couple of wins in the forest, and Tommy Hayes take out the sprint. Devon Beckman was close every time and Callum Herries was leading both the sprint and long for significant periods before just not finishing it off. The junior elite women was dominated again by Alice Tilley, who has been proving hard to beat recently. Kayla Fairbairn was the next most consistent but only made second in the sprint with Sonia Hollands and Rebecca Gray having a good run each. Lauren Holmes wasn't far off the pace either, just looking for the next level of improvement to get her right up with the others. Good racing.

Monday, 21 October 2013

Auckland Champs Review

There will be an Auckland Champs review on the OSquad Blog, just excuse me while I gather my thoughts. Often orienteering is a good friend, but it still hurts when a good friend kicks you in the guts. I need a bit of time to absorb the splattering that my personal orienteering technique received, and hopefully will catch up with someone that managed to deal with some of the technical challenges.

The results are up on winsplits, here

Will update this post when someone chucks some maps up.

Wednesday, 16 October 2013

A Quick Exercise

I will hopefully do a final preview of the Auckland Champs once start lists are out, but we are on the road to Auckland as of early this morning, so it may be difficult. Here is a technical exercise for you though.

Get a piece of map - like this one snipped from the long terrain for this weekend:

Complicated right? Now pick a point, perhaps say the high point just north of the centre of the map. Imagine this hill in the terrain forget about the point knolls and depression, just the hill and the ridges going off in three directions. Smooth out the contours of the ridges, iron them like the crinkles in your shirt. Feel the re-entrants coming up between these ridges, put your hand out and carve their shapes in the air in front of you, don't worry about the slight undulations in their bottoms. Rotate your computer slightly to the left and peer up that eastern re-entrant that curves up from the track struggling over a broad saddle and then ploughs down the reentrant on the other side forgetting the U, the form line, and even the tagged depression. Put both hands out this time, tilt the screen back and starting with your hands together at the saddle push each hand out down the edge of the valley feeling its firm shape. Keep your thumbs in, and use them when you feel able to brush the detail on the valley floor. Flow the fingers out feeling the terrain, as the valley fades away and you hit the track.

You've got to be in the right mood.

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Two Horse Race

Some interesting results coming through from the weekend, especially from Whangarei where Nick Hann and Matt Ogden had a butting of heads in the Akld double OY....and one former junior world champion came away with a very bruised head...

It was an America's Cup like duel. Two boats very much ahead (though no discredit to their competition), and like the America's Cup the individual races seemed to settle into a pattern, which in this case was Hann 1st, Ogden 2nd.  On this weekend Hann just seemed to have the edge. In the second race Ogden came out firing early, perhaps unsettled by the competition, but couldn't hold it together and the pattern reasserted itself for a similar result. With Ogden missing for the Auckland Champs this weekend sprint excepted) the question is whether the likes of Chris Forne, Tim Robertson or Tane Cambridge can rival Hann...given the terrain it seems unlikely.

Meanwhile further south, Hawkes Bay held an OY at Ranui Farm, and visiting Wellingtonian Shamus Morrison strolled to victory, after Duncan Morrison ran out of steam and Callum Herries was abducted by aliens.

Monday, 14 October 2013

Orienteering on Woodhill (a rough "how to")

The attention of the NZ orienteering world now switches to the 2013 Super Series and first up the Auckland Champs this weekend. to be held on Woodhill and somewhere "out east" for the sprint distance.

Here is a chunk of the embargoed middle distance map (I wish Wellington Orienteering Club would adopt the Auckland Orienteering Club policy of embargoing an area for two weeks before a competition).

This is typical Woodhill terrain: detailed coastal sand dunes, with a narrow open coastal strip backed by a denser pine trees with some vegetation detail, one or two soft windy motorbike tracks before Coast Rd itself. On the eastern side of coast road there are broad dune landscapes with a consistent amount of detail. The organisers have not stated how old the trees are in this block currently, so runnability and especially visibility will be determined on the day but here are some basic rules for Woodhill navigation.

Rule 1: Straight is great

There is seldom a good reason for varying far from the straight line in Woodhill (long legs in the thick dunes paralleling the coast may be a small exception). Look at the following map from Matt Ogdens DOMA

Every time you take a weak option, looking for a short cut that doesn't exist, or contouring around a hill you have to climb anyway, you are running further, and probably slower, than your opponent keeping tight to the line. Matt Ogden, and the likes of Toby Scott and Gene Beveridge, are the heirs apparent to the former masters of Woodhill, Alistair Landels and Darren Ashmore who first realised going straight was a good first golden rule for orienteering on Woodhill.

Rule 2: Exit is Everything

On Woodhill you must exit efficiently from each control on a bearing directly to the next control. Rough enough is not good enough. Here is a system:

- control spotted (or detail read so you know exactly where it is in the terrain)
- orientate your map
- check rough exit direction
- punch control
- take 3 steps in rough exit direction
- confirm direction and orientation with compass
- run straight

If you exit each control correctly Woodhill is now your oyster. The  detail that seemed murky to you before will roll out in front of you along the red line in crystal clear 3D. Starting on the right line is the equivalent of engaging auto-focus on your camera.

Rule 3: Leave the Line Deliberately

When you do need to vary from the straight line is when doing so will minimise your risk of a navigational error. The variation needs to be deliberate and planned. Consider the following snippet of map, again from Matt's DOMA

No 7. No variation from line. Tricky control but no detail left or right of the control to bounce off. Note double contoured knoll 220metres out that Matt ran straight over (200metres between the grid lines on a 1:10,000 map). The only handrail from there is your compass. Read the two depressions, run up the vague spur to the re-entrant just before the top.

No 10. Variation left through saddle to attack control from top of prominent re-entrant. Note how Matt slowed down in the re-entrant after the saddle to ensure he executed the final part of the leg properly.

No 13.High speed leg with two prominent stepping stones before Coast Rd, the big hill and the clearing, note how Matt skirts both. Attacking 13 Matt veers left to use the large open hill on his left to steer him into the control down the re-entrant.

......So get your exit direction right, and be deliberate about leaving the safety of the straight line. A small recipe for success on Woodhill...

Contributions Welcome

Hey all, there has been a bit of a break for the OSquad Blog over the last week or so after the enjoyment of following the Australian carnival from a distance day after rainy day (the break also coincided with some changed sleep patterns of one Mae Stewart). A fantastic post by Lizzie kept things going though and I hope a few people have taken up the offer of a Tasmanian training camp in January. Going forward to Oceania 2015 (amongst other worthy goals) we need to keep making the most of these training opportunities.

Lizzie also mentioned the fantasticness of contributing to the OSquad blog, and I can only encourage this wholeheartedly. I'm keen as to hear from any one who might be interested in becoming a regular "author" or contributing anonymously, or flicking me photos or links to put up, a "researcher" if you like. In the past Lizzie, Tane and Tom have all contributed regularly and they all seem to have become mighty fine can be done. Contact me:

These photos caught my eye from Anna Robertson. Worth clipping from facebook and placing into the OSquad scrapbook.

Steph Harding hamming it up for the cameras

Thomas Eatson hamming it up for the cameras

Thursday, 10 October 2013

World Cup 2015 Tasmania Training Camp

Hey Crew! Yep, it turns out that people other than Jamie can still post here (so if you want to help him keep the blog up to date, just drop him a line!)

Orienteering Australia is holding an elite training camp for it's HP group from the 2nd - 7th January, based around St Helens, Tasmania. This camp will offer vital training in relevant terrain for those aiming to race in the Tasmanian World Cup races in Jan 2015.

After discussions with Nick Dent at Aus Champs, he's kindly agreed to allow some of us Kiwis to join the camp if we wish. Preliminarily there's 5-6 spots in the accommodation open for us, although I'm sure we can negotiate or find alternative accommodation if more people are interested.

Bicheno Sprint Map. Absolutely Stunning map,
unbeatable on a nice day!
And not bad on a terrible day either!
The camp will be staying at good old Queechy Cottages, which many of us will have fond memories of staying at before. Terrain around the area varies from intricate mining to classic Aussie granite terrain. If you want an idea, have an internet stalk for pics from Aus Champs 2012 (the website has expired, lazy...or sneaky protection of clues on WC 2015?!). Anyway, the camp is bound to return to such maps as Little Child Creek, Lively's Bog and hopefully the awesome sea-side sprint map at Bicheno.

So if you're interested, drop me an email or leave a comment here, asap, let's say definitely by the end of October, and we'll go from there! The earlier we get onto it, the cheaper flights will be!

One tough tough map. Lively's Bog.
If you want to extend your trip and get more orienteering for your buck, then there's the X-mas 5 days to incorporate into your trip as well. This year to be held up around Orange 27-31st December, on some wicked maps like Kahli's Rocks.
One of the toughest maps I've been on.
8 yrs after my first visit, finally nailed it last year!
Another awesome Orange map, Gumble's Pinnacles
Not sure 5-days is visiting it. Probably a good thin,
 I'd just get lost again!

So yep, hopefully I'll hear from some of you soon, and won't be the only Kiwi in Tassie come Janurary!
Peace, Love and Orienteering to you all from over the ditch!
xoxo Lizzie

Monday, 7 October 2013

Australian Champs Relays

Well the Australian Champs carnival has wound up now, some relief for those of us back at home just dying to be fit and fast and running through the Australian bush, but a fantastic trip I am sure, especially for those venturing to Australia for orienteering for the first time. The kiwis again had some fantastic results, and isn't it going to be great to see some of these performers on home turf over the next few months as head into the Super Series, then Sprint the Bay and of course Nationals 2014.

Firstly, Lizzie Ingham, after a disappointing middle distance Lizzie turned on the afterburners and dealt to Grace Crane and the rest of the first leg field to set up victory for her Australian state side. She also pysched out Thomas Reynolds on the start line.

Lizzie looks worringly good in gold.
Secondly Nick Hann, the anointed one has been there and thereabouts over the last week, but in the relays he showed some more of his real talent overtaking David Shepherd to have New Zealand leading after two legs. A lead Matt Ogden would only surrender to Matt Crane.

In the Junior grades, Tim Robertson, the flying freak, could not quite gain enough time back on Ian Lawford to take the victory for the Junior men - with Brodie Nankervis taking 3minutes out on both it looks like there was plenty of opportunity, but not this time for Tim after Shamus Morrison and Nick Smith set a solid platform. In the junior women the kiwis again took second, to a consistent Tasmanian team, Kayla Fairbairn again was the star performer. As of all these kiwi women have plenty of time left in the junior grades it is hugely exciting to see the depth in competition and bodes well for future JWOC's should they continue on the right track. Oh, and did I say that the kiwi teams finished 1st and 2nd in W16...

Sophie Harrison saved her best until last, and Katie Cory-Wright continued her fantastic week. There are pros and cons of having famous orienteering parents, but Katie is perhaps starting to step out of the shadow of her illustrious family. May she have Jeans technique, Al's speed and Ed's confidence. I am not exactly sure with this, but it looks suspiciously like our B team, may have beaten our A team in this for the underdogs! Oh, and we won M16 as well; Tommy Hayes, in his best race for the week setting up Cameron d"Lisle and Ed Cory-Wright. Damn good effort allround. Congratulations to the whole team and special thanks to those over there in support, and especially Anna Robertson for her photographic and facebook skills.

Sunday, 6 October 2013

Good day for the Aussies

The top Australian elite and junior orienteers defended their honour with plenty of skill and speed at the Australian Middle Distance Champs yesterday, the kiwis were close, but not quite close enough. The winsplits results are here.

There were 50 starters in the elite men's course, and the kiwi's three young gun: Matt Ogden, Tim Robertson and Nick Hann were placed 3,4,5. If only the course had ended at control 14 they would have been 1,2,3, but over the last part of the course it was experienced international competitors Matt Crane (GB) and Simon Upphill (Aus) that held their nerve. The decisive leg appears to have been the long leg 19, up until this point Robertson had dominated the lead but Crane and Uphill moved into first and second here,and once they settled in there, they proved impossible to dislodge. I will make sure to get some analysis of this part of the race when the guys are back in the country

Fantastic though to see these three young kiwis racing so hard and so well. They will be hard to compete with in the Super Series races they can make it to over the next couple of months.

The Maestro in ecstasy
In the women's elite race Lizzie Ingham was out of contention early, you can't give Grace Crane 5 1/2 minutes by control 6 and expect to win. Lizzie was the fastest over the second half of the course and clawed her way back to 3rd helped by a big mistake from the other favourite Hanny Allston. Greta Knarston also lost time early. I am not sure how Lizzie's steak sandwich would have tasted after this performance.

In the junior women's race Kayla Fairbairn was the standout kiwi with 2nd place, with Brianna Massie coming in 5th. Kayla also lost time early, but was consistent in the rest of the course. Looking at these results you see huge time gaps appearing quite quickly, the painful reality of difficult red course orienteering is firstly we don't get too much of it in New Zealand and secondly, sometimes you need to learn to walk before you run even if you have been successful in other terrain and competitions. Kayla's result shows solid technique, good mental application and bodes well for the future.

The Australian Juniors, and in particular Ian Lawford, reasserted their authority in the junior men's race. Lawford dominated from start to finish, winning by 2 1/2 minutes after a mistake free run. First kiwi home was Cameron Tier narrowly ahead of Shamus Morrison and Nick Smith who both blew potential podiums by making early mistakes. For Tier this is a great result, he just has to keep mixing it with these guys as much as he can, they are on the path to something great.

Conor Cleary wins M14A

Further down the grades there was a great performance by the kiwis in M14 (Conor Cleary and Stephen Harding producing a one, two) Katie Cory-Wright produced a 2nd place in W14 while Alice Tilley cemented her growing reputation with a 2nd in W16 (great also to see kiwis outnumbering Aussies in the top ten in this grade).

Saturday, 5 October 2013

Australian Middle Champs - The introduction of the Maestro

We are now on the last weekend of the Australian Nationals carnival, and my favourite race, the middle distance. This is the race I have been waiting for, firstly it is Lizzie Inghams best distance, and the one I think she cares most about. Secondly, today sees the introduction of New Zealands orienteering maestro into the play, Matt Ogden.

Lizzie with two of her biggest rivals: Grace Crane and Hanny Allston

While Tim Robertson is the efficient, and brutal, speed machine and Nick Hann the intuitive smooth and assured athlete, Matt Ogden is the maestro. He has the rhythm, the attention to detail, the ability to build his race into a crescendo of well pitched decisions. He is the conductor of his own performance and a leader to his peers. That said it is going to be a huge challenge to come into the middle of this carnival and win. Today my money is on Hann. I'm not sure about Matt Crane in this terrain, so perhaps Simon Upphill is the Aussie to watch, though if any of the old timers like Dave Shepherd or Grant Bluett are running they have the ability to win.

The Maestro

Lizzie's race is in her own hands, she can win it if she wants it enough, and keeps on wanting it right to the end, and by that I don't mean wanting it so much she runs hard. I mean she wants it so much that she makes disciplined decisions and manages the risk that this technical terrain will create.

In the juniors, it will be interesting to see if Sonia Hollands can replicate her classic form. Those who raced the school races are possibly at a disadvantage as they will find it harder to pull their speed back a few notches for this race. They would be wise to orienteer before they run. I would love to see a close tussle between Nick Smith and Shamus Morrison, two outstanding orienteers, and if either of them can get up on top of that podium it would be a huge achievement.

(If you have been doing your recommended reading you will know that Lizzie was looking forward to the catering today - unfortunately that catering has fallen through and she will have to make do with a steak sandwich provided by the "Blue Lightning" the ACT juniors...I'm never a huge fan of franchise names, but the "Blue Lightning" surely wins the prize for the one that sounds the most like a toothpaste).

Thursday, 3 October 2013

Victory for NZ in Southern Cross Challenge

For the umpteenth time in a row New Zealand has cleaned up in the Southern Cross Junior Challenge. Exact results have not yet been published but the New Zealand manager Anna Robertson has confirmed that with three victories and one mispunch the title has been retained.

The senior grades were a walk over with both kiwi teams leading from go to whoa. Great starts were rammed home by the final leg runners Tim Robertson and Alice Tilley. They probably could have walked to make things interesting.

The Senior Girls relay team celebrate

The junior grades were more interesting. Lara Molloy had a great run to be right up there, then Katie Cory-Wright sadly mis-punched, a harsh lesson for a young orienteer who has been flying in this competition. In the boys the start was slow, but Stephen Harding running 2nd pulled one out of the bag. His run was matched by Cameron d"Isle, result: see you later Aussies.

Stephen Harding - no sweat

A fantastic, consistent performance by the Schools team, orienteering within their ability and doing us proud. The coaching/management team of Derek Morrison and Anna Robertson remain undefeated.

Proof of victory - hands on the trophy

Wednesday, 2 October 2013

Simone Niggli Retires

The big news in World Orienteering is that the dominant woman orienteer of her generation, quite possibly the best of all time, Simone Niggli has announced her retirement. The World of O reports here. Simone Niggli, is not only known for winning 23 gold medals at World Championship level, but for being a true sporting champion. At times her speed and consistency drove her opponents to distraction and verbal outbursts, but she kept her aggression for the terrain and was a humble winner.

Niggli developed a taste for gold

Unbelievably, Niggli twice won all 4 gold medals on offer at the World Orienteering Championship. Firstly in 2003 (Switzerland then 2005 (Japan), while this year, 8 years after her last such success, she came so close with victories in all the individual events and a bronze in the relay. The orienteering world salutes our champion.

Tuesday, 1 October 2013

Tim Robertson wins again

Tim Robertson today became the first New Zealander to twice win the Australian Secondary Schools senior boys title near Canberra today. The JWOC bronze medallist beat fellow Wellingtonian Shamus Morrison by several minutes in a comfortable victory.

Robertson was the only New Zealander to win on the day, but others came close, particularly Alice Tilley in the Senior Girls class who finished second, and Katie Cory-Wright, who finished 3rd in the Junior girls. It looks good for the relay tomorrow, with the Kiwi's having considerable depth in most of the grades.

Alice Tilley on her way to 2nd in the Senior Girls

The senior girls course, a good mix of short and long legs

Video from 2013 Australian Long Distance Champs

So how will this lot go....

Coverage starting at 10am AEST