I love it. All the way down to the start time. Sounds like a great approach.
Working with the military orienteers (most of whom don't get to race much because they live too far away from a club), I think visualization and race routine simulation is going to be a new focus for us to help improve consistency when we do get to compete. We did this with Hannah prepping for the WOC sprint - Jon made a map of our neighborhood, we invited a few friends, and set up Saturday morning sprints with a chase start...slow folks like me for Hannah to catch, and some speed demons on the back end to chase her down. Hannah said it was her best international sprint (and that was even with some error), so I figure it was worthwhile.
I am further motivated to make at least one training session during our camp a mock race...
Absolutely. As Thierry said in his log about the build-up for WOC. Races at big events are more about racing with all the pressure than it is racing a particularly difficult course. The more we get used to that the better.
I completely agree that race starts are key. And if you can't get a race start, simulation is the best you can do. Awesome.