Dyrick & Knockboy (Mount Melleray)
Wasn't feeling too motivated for some reason leaving the car but was ready to race by the time I got to the start. Course look straightforward, a loop on the western side of the map with another loop on the east side with a good bit of forest road in between.
Up the road and cut up the hill to 1. Lost nearly 40 seconds to Conrad on 2. Used my compass for change to cut across in a more direct line to the control but with the dark green being slow with low branches it steered me too far left so time lost as a result. Sticking to tracks like Jens did with a similar split to Conrad would have been more sensible.
3 was easy and so was 4. Problem with 4 was the ride to get out onto the mountain was wet so not easy to run on. Used compass again to 5 and was fairly accurate.
To 6 I lost time. Knew the earth walls as I passed them but misread the track. I did see the control below me but didn't think it was mine. Met Jens and figured out where I was. A minute lost here. Had Jens on my tail from here until 11.
7 definitely seemed higher than I was expecting, had to climb up into it. To 8 I hit the top of the hill but the control was a lot lower than I thought it would be. Only realised the reason for this after finishing. They were 10m contours on the map! Lost time as a result for climbing.
9 was grand and so was 10, downhill after a couple of uphill legs. Long road leg to 11 (10.30 split), had looked at options earlier and decided to attack the control from the start triangle. Had Jens on my tail all the way on the track which definitely helped keep the pace up. Was feeling the effort at this stage, some tiredness creeping in. Got 11 fine in the light green and then followed the more indistinct path in reality than what was on the map to the open. Followed the even more indiscinct path around the open before cutting downhill to 12 on maybe the path. Had to climb to 12, not that there was a contour on the map to show this. 13 was easy and then back uphill to 14 which I was finding tough. Then took a straight option to 15 and the finish.
Based on the splits the finish box might have been off. At the finish I went over to the pre-start tent to wait for Jens. No sign of him though. Then jogged to download to find Jens there already. This confused me as I couldn't figure out where he passed me out. Based on Strava flyby and the splits I must just have missed seeing him finish and he must have taken a more direct route back.
Fitness definitely an issue at the moment which is no surprise, so need to build it up over the next few weeks. Catching Jens and having him keep me honest definitely helped my pace today. Would probably have been slower over the last couple of controls without him. I did consciously tell myself to push the last bit too. Used my compass more often than I normally do, new area with low visibility contributing to that. Good to run somewhere new too.