does it still count towards placings if you are shadowing?
Normally M/W10s are all awarded prizes (if any are given out), rather than giving out 1,2,3. And shadowing is usually advised if not required.
The aim is not to win, but to teach Sophie the skills of orienteering. She has only just turned six.
This issue generated long hours of discussion at VOA meetings in the 1990s - at one stage I was sufficiently exasperated to remark that if as much time had been devoted to coaching the girl concerned as had been wasted going around in circles on the subject, we'd have a world champion on our hands. I think the current situation of de facto acceptance in M/W10 is reasonable, although having a dedicated M/W10N (novice) class where shadowing is explicitly allowed might be better - this was a regular feature in the late 90s/early 00s but I can't remember it at national events in recent years.
I think if we ever get enough sub 10yo's to warrant a separate class for novices/shadowing, then that will be the least of our problems.
Bruce, I wasn't trying to stir - just genuinely curious, because I expect there are some fairly competitive 10yo's out there.
M/W10N was offered at Easter 2011, Frazzle Rock but there were no entries