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Discussion: Matthias Kyburz at Olympic Games

in: Orienteering; News

Apr 7, 2024 8:20 AM # 
Matthias finished the Paris Marathon with 2:07:43 (7th place) today and qualifies for the Olympic Games. This makes him the 3rd fastest Swiss marathon runner and the fastest Swiss marathon debut.
Apr 7, 2024 9:11 AM # 
That's great - I'm wondering if he'll be the first currently active high-level orienteer to reach the Olympics? (if I recall correctly, Carsten Jorgensen qualified for the 10000m for the 2000 Olympics but was injured).

2019 JWOC relay gold medallist Megan Keith has an Olympic qualifier too (in the 10000), although I don't think she's done much if any orienteering recently.
Apr 7, 2024 10:26 AM # 
This could rather spoil the longstanding classic orienteering quiz question of 'who was the only athlete to compete at the Olympics and WOC in the same year?'

Apr 7, 2024 10:53 AM # 
OHH! I was wrong. I guessed at Anders Garderud. I guess he was good enough to win an Olympic gold medal but not good enough to qualify for Sweden's orienteering team.
Apr 7, 2024 11:08 AM # 
Of course, such a feat would not have been possible from 1980 to 2000.
Apr 7, 2024 11:11 AM # 
I don´t think Matthias will compete at WOC this year. It´s less than 1 month before the Olympic marathon.
Apr 7, 2024 11:16 AM # 
Finnish athlete Topi Raitanen competed at the steeplechase in the last olympics and had some good international orienteering results
Apr 7, 2024 11:32 AM # 
Will Tove Alexandersson be the first athlete to compete in WOC and Olympics in the same year AND in the same host country?

SkiMo in winter olympics and WOC Sprint both in Italy
Apr 7, 2024 11:35 AM # 
She’ll probably win both too
Apr 7, 2024 11:40 AM # 
Insight into Kyburz’s training
Apr 7, 2024 6:59 PM # 
Two orienteers ran the marathon at the 2012 Olympics in London. Martin Dent (AUS) and Elena Espeso Gayte (ESP)
Apr 7, 2024 8:29 PM # 
Indeed, although Martin was only orienteering intermittently at the time (he's become more regular since, but hasn't run a WOC).
Apr 7, 2024 9:45 PM # 
@Steffen - sounds like you're right - no orienteering for him until the Finland World Cups in September, with the goal of winning WOC Long in 2025:

Still, at least it gives someone else a chance of winning the Knock-Out Sprint at WOC this summer.
Apr 8, 2024 7:39 AM # 
Katharina Mo Berge competed for Norway as well in cross country skiing in the winter olympics 1968 and 1972 as in the WOC 1968.
Apr 8, 2024 1:27 PM # 
Not the WOC level, but Jan Andreas Schmid, a Nordic Combined athlete, had a bet with Anne Hausken in 2009 that he would qualify for the final in Norwegian middle distance orienteering champs. She promised to do a ski jump if she lost. He won the bet, he was 37th of 47 in the final. In 2018 he won silver in the Olympics.

At some point, I also figured out somehow that the Catching Features player janands is him, if so, he is a very good CF player, but I cannot find evidence of that anymore and I may be wrong.
Apr 8, 2024 4:12 PM # 
Ivar Formo of Norway medaled both in the Olympics and WOC. In the 1972 and 1976 Winter Olympics, he won four cross country ski medals, including a gold in the 50k race. Formo also excelled in orienteering, winning a bronze medal in the relay at the 1974 WOC in Denmark, where he placed ninth in the individual championship.

Ivar Formo lived nearby where I grew up in Oslo. In the mid 1980s, I would bike over to his house to buy orienteering shoes from him. At the time, he represented one of the shoe companies, and he would invite you into his family room where all these shoe boxes were spread out. Impressive and good-natured man.
Apr 18, 2024 2:56 AM # 
Just for the record lets add Olympic 5000m silver medallist Gordon Pirie, British and NZ orienteering champion and WOC team member (1978).
Apr 18, 2024 5:26 AM # 
Don't forget that Steve Cram, UK 1,500m runner and Olympian is the current President of BOF
Apr 18, 2024 6:14 AM # 
I'll throw in Peter Snell's career.

Was an OK 800m runner apparently, but also won M65 at the US Champs then chucked in a bit of Table Tennis as well.
Apr 18, 2024 7:59 AM # 
I'd put John Disley at or near the top of any list of Olympians turned orienteers. He was not only an oreinteering leader in Britain but he was brought to Canada for track and field clinics in the 1960s and spent time encouraging participants to try this new sport - orienteering. He was also Canada's first Men's Orienteering Champion. His presence at the event surely gained orienteering more publicity than otherwise would have happened. (Disclosure: John Disley and I served together on the IOF Council in the 1980s)
Apr 18, 2024 8:46 AM # 
If we're digging into ancient history, long time BOF coach Martin Hyman and multiple National Champion Gareth Bryan Jones both ran in the olympics back in the 60s, and Olympic gold medallist Chris Brasher was "Co-founder and chairman of the British Orienteering" (according to t'internet).
Apr 18, 2024 9:27 AM # 
Jon X:
And not forgetting multiple British orienteering champ in various veteran classes, Sheila Carey, who took bronze in W75 at the British Champs this past weekend in fact!
Sheila was 4th and 5th at successive Olympics, both times at the longest distance then available to women, perhaps both shorter than ideal for her I believe.
Jun 12, 2024 9:24 AM # 
Just turned 23, Megan Keith, won a bronze medal at the European Champs 10000m last night to add her collection, and as already by mentioned by Blairtrewin, she has been selected to represent GB at the Olympics this year.

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