Orienteering race 24:33  *** 3.5 km (7:01 / km)
spiked:20/22c slept:8.0 shoes: 200803 NB MT800
The DVOA Chasing the Star Sprint, which is also a WRE event (and my first such). The course was on a hillside urban campus of Lehigh University; because it started so high on the mountain, the streets initially are approximately contoured, changing only at the very bottom to the usual grid. Given the street complex and the many stairwells, runnable foresty sections, parking lots, and so on, there were plenty of route choices.
I was initially astonished by the sheer number of ways to disqualify yourself, including:
- Running through a garden marked olive green on the map
- Crossing an uncrossable wall
- Crossing an uncrossable hedge
- Looking askance at a marshal watching an uncrossable feature
Ok, so I made up the last one, but there were many olive gardens and uncrossable walls, and not much time to think about them.
I was pleased with my performance on the Sprint; because the buildings are unmistakable details (and typically were sufficiently unique that it was hard to confuse them), I was always in contact with the map. My typical problem on a sprint is not adequately understanding the features quickly enough; I might debate whether a particular object is a mapped rootstock, e.g. I took a route different from my intended route only on the way to control two, and corrected within about fifteen seconds. I would have liked to run faster, but I was near my threshold limit for map reading and navigating.
My route choices were in general fairly good; I took the low road to eleven, and while there was discussion about the low and high, I'm comfortable that the lower road was relatively faster for me. I didn't travel as linearly as would be desired on 13, I made a major (15-20 second) error en route to 19, and I made a poor route choice decision to 20, increasing my distance on that leg by about 1.5.
I encountered Eric Bone between controls six and nine, but lost him on the way to eleven. I passed Dylan Thies, who started a minute before me, and finished just before Jeff Schapiro, who started two minutes before me. Also, I beat Peter Gagarin (by a trivial :14) for what is the first and may be the last time. While I wasn't quite in the top half (28/52), I'm nevertheless pleased with my performance.
Running warm up/down 15:00  2.0 km (7:30 / km)
shoes: 200803 NB MT800
Run/walk up to the start with Jeff Schapiro and some warm up running at the start. I'm glad the course was downhill; I'm much faster (relative to the pack) on downhill than on uphill.