Orienteering 33:52  6.64 km (5:06 / km) +95m 4:45 / km
shoes: Inov8 X-talon 212 - March 18
My legs were feeling very tired warming up but I was confident I'd be able to do my job of keeping up with Nixon and sending Sasha off with a chance, if I orienteered properly and found my controls. I knew that it was highly gaffled and there was huge variation in distance but there was no point worrying about it and I just hoped I had a fair chance.
Alex did his job and I went out with Nixon and Josh. We all split round the first loop and I did okay, bar a 15 second miss at #1, and I came out with Nixon, having dropped Josh and gone past Jonny. The next section I was racing Nixon but we had different gaffles so we kept crossing. I didn't realise at the time but I had a shorter gaffle in the far section and Nixon nearly followed me to my control, so I got ahead slightly, but then a 10 second wobble to #8 and a longer #9 got Nixon back to me, which was always easy to do in this terrain when you can see the lines the guy in front is taking. We took different lines going to #10 so I knew I had another different gaffle, and I took a safe line in to be sure going into the green. As I got close things stopped making sense (hilltop to my right wasn't there, then the green wasn't clear at all) and I hesitated a bit, but then saw the open and got my control. Maybe 15 seconds lost due to the hesitation, but Nixon also had a much shorter gaffle of maybe 1 minute, so he got away.
I kept pushing on and ran really well from there, hoping for a shorter gaffle to get me back in touch and give Sasha a shot, but I had another long gaffle in the last section and Nixon had the shortest one. As I ran back to the crossing point Josh punched and turned and I clung on back to the finish, sending Sasha off with Matt but 3 mins behind Kris.
I'm annoyed. I feel that I did my job well and I couldn't have done much more. Nixon wasn't much better than me today, and to lose 3 minutes on the last 3rd of the course with minimal mistakes is hard to take.
Perhaps I could have been fresher and perhaps I could have got more of a gap when I had a shorter gaffle in the far section, but I was never gonna taper for this and I guess I'm not yet confident enough to push off on my own at this level. Also I wasn't racing for a time, I was racing for a position, which I think is the right thing to do.
Ahh well, it was really fun and hopefully with another year of fitness and experience I'll be able to do better, and not let the team down again.