For me it can depend on a lot of things. This leg is the second in the course, so taking the safe route would be my preference in terms of being easy to plan. Maybe later in the course, if I had time to plan more, I would be more tempted to take the more direct route. However taking the trails means that I can plan the next number of legs. The other big thing is the attackpoint, and in this case coming from the trail would be, for me, definitely better. It's also a question of how far you deviate from the line offset by how much faster you can run off the line. I know I tend to take trails over forest!
(Sidenote) What are the three yellow stars beside the intensity?
Thanks Pia! The stars are technical intensity, I use them to denote how challenging the course/terrain is from 1 to 5. Sort of like the regular intensities but for your brain.
The straight choice seems to have been almost as fast but the small micro routes had to be very well executed. I suspect the world class runners like TG would have gone straight and that is most likely the best choice. If you are as good technically and fast forest runner as he is that is of course. But that is what we aiming for, right...;-)