Halden 10mila Test - 5th, +5mins
It was always going to be tricky racing at 10pm on a weekday. Saying that, I seem to have done the eating right and wasn't even too sleepy when it came to racing. Good WU having sat by the fire for 1.5 hours waiting for it to get dark and then feeling ready to race by the start line.
Goal was good compass, using outstanding features such as rock, green and marsh, and hitting the first control smoothly to initiate a good race. Textbook stuff off the start line, probably some sleepiness creeping in as the really cool terrain began giving me feelings of Catching Features. The bushes began making that classic rustling sound and everything seemed very clean/ordered(/computer generated?) in my beam of light. I glanced behind but unfortunately there was no monster chasing me as was the case in the game (still have nightmares). Also lacked the comical backward fall when I ran into a tree and instead was met with some not very funny pain. Anyway I hit number one bang on and took the lead.
Overconfidence took over and even gluing my eyes to my compass didn't stop me from heading right of the line to 2. I was probably running too hard to make a proper bearing and then I mistook an open marsh for the lake. All previous experience of the leg up until that point went out of the window (there was no way I could have got to the lake) and I made a bad parallel mistake. Relocated well though and after missing the control slightly, was back on track 3mins down. Salvageable, and my 3min man hadn't caught me yet. Headed off to 3 on a good line but the same thing happened on the final approach. Bad relocation, all previous events forgotten, and I turned the wrong way. Knut caught me as I found the control 4mins later and we raced off together.
I was tempted to give up but thought I could still at least have a good second half. So injected some speed and pulled away from Knut before the long leg. Apparently making him quite upset, I left him behind and had an amazing rage split winning the leg by 45s with a slight miss at the end. Orienteering super cleanly aside from this and head was suddenly really focused and understanding the map/terrain. Caught Mats (-3min man) again through the final few but couldn't drop him. Small hesitation to 9 and then got stuck coming down a waterfall to the finish, allowing him past again.
So a very mixed race but satisfied with the second half; nailing some good splits and even feeling very good physically overall. Might have something to do with the pressure on the race. Think my confidence and technique have improved as I don't think I'd have been able to drop Knut a few weeks ago, especially at night. Good run at 10mila definitely on the cards, but very dependent on which leg I'm on and who I'm with.
GPS - http://loggator2.worldofo.com/?idstr=logatec2018ti...