Event Report: NavDash 2 Claisebrook
Sunday, 13 March 2022
Mardalup Park, East Perth
In the very early days of Sprint Orienteering a National League event was held at Claisebrook in 2003, map and courses by Duncan Sullivan. West Australians did rather well, with Rachel West 8th in a strong Women’s field headed by future World Champion Hanny Allston, and John Toomey 5th in his best NOL result, less than a minute behind Easter and National Champion Dave Shepherd (then at the height of his powers) and ahead of such luminaries as Julian Dent, Bruce Arthur and Rob Preston. Duncan’s map was never used again, except for a few training sessions.
Sadly however, Duncan’s map was not able to be resurrected and a new map had to be fieldworked and drawn from scratch, a labour of love for Simmo aided by new aerial photos and contours from Noel, and Google Maps street view when it was too hot to be outside. The new map is drawn to the latest sprint mapping specifications (ISSprOM 2019v2) which includes new symbols to show complex, multi-level structures. It is recommended that elites, aspiring elites, mappers, course setters and those hoping to be competitive in sprint events read this document, along with the accompanying Guidelines for complex urban structures. These documents are available on the IOF Mapping web page (scroll down to International Specification for Sprint Orienteering Maps).
It seems that these new symbols confused some people – apologies for this and hopefully you will be better prepared next time! Studying the legend for the Claisebrook map should help.
Now to the event itself:
The Easy course had a lot of controls (21) and several younger orienteers enjoyed finding and punching them.
The Short course had some interesting route choice legs 4-5, 7-8, 8-9 and 14-15, the first and last of which were shared with the Long course and will be discussed later. 7-8 involved either negotiating the footbridge (shorter, but with climbing, several changes of direction and, as it turned out, avoiding slow tourists and cyclists ambling across the bridge) or a longer, but nice flat run around the cove. 8-9 had at least 4 different options, the shortest of which was not spotted by many and involved heading up the small park from the control, negotiating a few turns into Jewell Lane, then down some stairs and veering left onto a path leading to the grassed area opposite the control. Most people opted to go through the finish or follow the river around to the right.
Aside from the two legs mentioned above (the Long versions were 7-8 and 22-23) Long course runners had the Bridge or Cove choice with different controls (14-15) and several legs with micro-route choices. Of those who posted routes to Livelox, only Rachel and Craig picked the best route for 7-8 (30 metres shorter), and only Rachel chose the longer, but faster Cove run from 14-15. Four people – Rachel again, Sarah, Rob B and Jack on the Short course - saw the fast route from 22 down Jewell Lane to the first steps with the diagonal path leading to the control. Several people used Jewell Lane but took the second set of steps gaining an unwanted 25 metres.
Two younger orienteers who deserve a mention are 12yo Christopher Drury (WOW) in his first season of orienteering, 10th overall on the Long course with only a couple of mistakes, and 16yo Kate Braid (KO) who was highly placed in 3rd, 4th or 5th right up to control 17 where she was still 4th overall and well ahead of Mum, Dad and siblings. Those last few legs must have been very frustrating for Kate, but outstanding results are clearly coming very soon.
Also worthy of mention is Mark Lommers (LOST) who ran the hilly Darlington Half-Marathon in 1hr 28, then stopped off to run the Long course at Claisebrook on his way home!
Several people avoided parking problems and saved CO2 by riding their bike to the event, including Helen Bailey, Jennifer Binns, Anthea Feaver and Edward Plummer.
On a sadder note, people – including some very experienced orienteers – are still running across mapped garden beds. There was no direct route from 19-20 (Long) or 11-12 (Short) but judging from the splits several people hopped across the garden instead of taking the legal path routes.
Thanks are due to Melinda and Rosalie for operating the computer and taking registrations, and to Peter Gillon, Simon Spagnol and Jennifer Binns for running the Start. Controls were collected by Helen Bailey, Tracy & Paul Burns, Liisa Hirvonen, Rosemary Kullmann, Edward Plummer and Simon Spagnol.
And a big thank you to Tony Simpkins for setting the event!
Photo: Start at Claisebrook Cove, taken by Sue Dowling.