Night Orienteering race 1:11:08  9.43 km (7:33 / km) +147m 7:00 / km
spiked:24/24c shoes: VJ iRock 2016
Southern Night Championships, Penn Wood.
Various things happened but all boiled down to what starts to become my trademark for races, got there just in time, as in... I got to the start exactly when I was called up. So much for proper warmup/stretching...
That didn't really help to begin with. I started in the rain so it was difficult to see (and my eyes watered up often anyway in the cold). Nevertheless, 1-2 was reasonably safe (but not very fast), I have messed up the route to 3 though. Not yet in the mindset so I faffed about in the undergrowth not keeping direction so took a long time to get out to a road - it was OK from there to 3 but I lost probably 1:30 minutes just there. What followed was another mess-up to #4, I didn't have a perfect attackpoint, and dived into the woods from the open area a bit too late, expecting the fence behind the control to stop me if I have overshot things and then relocate from the fence corner. Would have worked if I wasn't so far ahead that I ended up only getting to the fence after a few kinks in it... took a while till I believed I was that far away and ran all the way back with the fence to the control. Lost about 4:40 mins there! From here on I started to do more pace counting which I should have done from earlier on to avoid such big mistakes, and so was a bit safer most of the controls. A couple of smaller misses towards the S of the map - amounting to maybe 1 min but nothing compared to the big losses. Then a 2:30 loss that I will attribute to the map: coming down the hill back towards the N part of the map I simplified my task to "run downhill and take the first path left", unfortunately there was an unmapped path leading into the OOB forest at the edge of the map... Clearly the mapper didn't think it made any difference, but as another path further up the hill was mapped, I wasn't expecting to find anything there and so took it. Taken a while until it got suspicious and then to figure out what happened before I had to trace my path back!
No real big mistakes from that point on, one may argue with some of my suboptimal routes (I was taking it safe), but as I wasn't making mistakes in the night I was OK with the last part of the course - apart from my physical shape, even though at the last bit I could keep up with some M18 youngsters.
So about 8:40 just from the big mistakes, that would have got me close to Geoff, which is surprising given my shape. Not sure what Paul did to miss a few of the last controls!