World Cup Race number 2. Stockholm. After a night out at Jukola in a miltary tent, a cat nap at Helsinki docks and a night in a 4 man cabin on the boat I was tired. Still, I felt this was a really good chance for me to get a good result. I am confident in my speed, I had an encouraging sprint result a few weeks ago, this could be fun.
Cream crackered. Slumming it on the cobbles at Helsinki docks.
I needed to get through a normal sprint orienteering course first, and be in the top 30 to qualify for quarter finals. From there, there were mass start races and the first two would automatically go through to the next round.
I wanted to attack more than I did in Finland and I was happy to pick up the map and see it was mostly buildings rather than forest sprint. I won't go through the race in full detail, but I made three biggish mistakes: Control 2 - mistake at the end of the leg, Control 12 - right way, change direction, wrong way, Control 14 - mistake at end of leg. Having said I wanted to be attacking the race, in reality I was still hesitant. I took extra time to make decisions particuarly on route choice and I didn't attack the short legs hard enough. I felt like I used my leg speed when I could on the long legs, but it doesn't show up as I made mistakes on 2 of them in the circle.
In general I felt like my brain was not in gear. I think I haven't got the balance between being calm and nerves. When I was a junior I was always far too psyched up and nervous. Now I think I'm almost too calm, at least in my head. Its great to have the chance to be at these races and try things out. Obviously I realise that I am a way off the pace, and that there is a big amount of work to do before I am top 30, but at the same time it is good to get the little things right like preparation to get the most out of myself.
The highlight of the day has to be Graham getting through to the final round the Old Town in Stockholm and getting 5th place. Inspiring to watch. Very proud.