Orienteering race 51:08  ***** 4.04 km (12:39 / km) +160m 10:34 / km
shoes: VJ Integrator
DVOA's Chasing the Star Middle Distance - I feared that my other competitors would feel that I had an advantage over them since I have run at Hickory Run before, but to anyone that knows the map that is nothing to worry about. My race alone should be proof enough. Overall, my race was fairly clean (besides being slow, of course), but I managed one major error and a couple minor ones that significantly added to my time in the woods. First of all I botched my route to #1 - I definetly was not focused and I hesitated and second guessed myself just out side of the control circle which added about a minute of error. I ran pretty cleanly until my leg to #6. I had a solid route choice, I just failed to execute it. Upon reviewing what I did and where I ended up, I think I actually took my compas bearing to #7 which was about 30 degress and just a little farther from #6. I didn't even question that I was going the right way because I found another spur to run down (which was my plan for my way to #6) and I even hit a swamp that I thought was the one that I planned to use as a collecting feature along the way. Since I was running on a rough bearing and had a pretty solid linear feature to catch me I didn't look too hard at my map. When I hit a marsh, rather than the stream I knew something was wrong. Fortunately there were three good features (marsh, rocky ground, and distinct veg boundary) to relocate off and I was able to use the vegetation boundary to lead me thorugh some otherwise bland terrain to the control. It was a nice recovery, but I'd say it still cost me at least 5 min. From there on out I didn't have too much trouble. On my way to #8 I found a bit of fence that had the line connecting the controls drawn exactly over it and completly covering it that would have made me less hesitant in my route choice and on my way to #8. I also bobbled #8 a bit as well as #13 and then had another hesitant route to #14, but other than that every thing else was pretty clean. Again, minus the whole being too slow thing. Another thing that also slowed me down were my shoes. I desperately needed a new pair and wore them for the first time today - even though they fit pretty spectacularly when I first tried them on they still rubbed a bit which made the last km or so pretty painful.