It’s taken me a while to write this blog post but I’ve still not got anything really insightful to say. I knew I wasn’t running as fast as I wanted to be, I know the reasons, I know what I’m going to change for next year. But the World Championships was about getting the best out of the legs I had and actually I wasn’t too far off that.
I probably did max out in the individual sprint. I picked almost every route correctly, I kept hesitations to a minimum and 12th place was the result I got. I’m not going to lie - the position wasn’t what has got me out the door this winter but it had threatened to be a lot worse as I’d been making bizarre mistakes in every race and training session in the lead up.
|Photo: worldofo.com and athlete profile here|
But there were a lot of things about that sprint final day that put things into perspective. Running in the World Championships final around the streets of Venice was such a privilege and it was nice to be able to realise that at the time. It really felt special and looking back at the photos of that run in does give me that goosebump feeling again.
The other awesome thing was that my family came out to watch
the race. Some of them haven’t been to an orienteering event before and it made
me proud of our sport as they got really into it. It was also cool to see my
Dad at the finish line who has been working in Ukraine since March. His
near-daily emails have certainly put my ups and downs during this time into
perspective. I’ll leave the politics to people like him but it was especially nice to see
Nadiya Volynska make it onto the podium.
|Amazing GB support every day despite the rain.|
Photo: Dave Rollins
|Four clean runs! Four soaked athletes.|
Photo: Dave Rollins
|First experience of WOC first leg.|
So am I happy with the season? I have to be to some extent. Measured against my own aims, I did manage to improve my forest orienteering. Time lost in mistakes has definitely reduced and I have even managed some decent international results. It’s hardly rocket science to attribute this to more hours in the forest in the winter/spring and I have to thank Silva for their support providing me with a headtorch that has opened up the world of night orienteering to me again! Although my WOC sprint result was disappointing, it was one of the best technical races I’ve run internationally. Ultimately I was just a bit too greedy this year, wanting success in forest and sprint orienteering, long and short hill races and all the local road and cross country races I like to do. And I was also a bit stupid, I didn’t deal well with things going wrong. But that’s all part of it and as bad years go I’ve been pretty lucky.
So, another WOC, another orienteering season done and the motivation is high. Next stop Inverness 2015*.