I remember Yoko Bamba from several WOC races. She was usually something of a favourite of the announcing crew since she was by far the shortest athlete around.
I even remember a particular question from the team leaders´ meeting before the sprint in 2009. The question was about the mapping of impassable fences and it turned out that the mapper himself had no such problems since he was close to two meters tall (while Yoko would have problems even with some of the passable ones...).
I hope she gets the opportunity to take part in more of your events.
I think I ran with her partner Hiro at the previous o-cup.
Interesting! I'd seen her running well at the TOC O Cup but didn't bother to google her until Andre mentioned that her partner had been a medalist at the Asian level.
How long is she in Toronto for?
Looks like it might be awhile! Here's how Hiroyuki Kato (Yoko's husband) describes himself on Twiter: "Japanese and Asian orienteering national champ. Researcher in sports nutrition. U of Toronto. Dad of 2 girls. Hubby of brilliant lady."
I first noticed Yoko and Hiroyuki at the last O Cup a few weeks ago. They did very well but didn't stick around to socialize. The same thing happened this time. In fact Hiroyuki would have been 2nd overall but he didn't even stay to download.
Now that I'm googling, I've found results from some Canadian and U.S. championship events last summer so it appears they've been around for awhile. Maybe they haven't been that interested in the non-standard O events in Ontario.
We'll need to get to know them better, which may be difficult at the speed they move!
Wow, that's super cool, thanks for the research. Always good to have fast people in the elite categories.
They are both 36 years old so Yoko and Hiroyuki have handicaps of 3 and 1 respectively. We have a rule that orienteers ranked in the top 10 for their gender in Canada are not allowed to skip controls based on their handicap but that doesn't apply to non-Canadians. They should crush us all in next year's O Cup Series - awesome!