Orienteering race 36:49  **** 6.0 km (6:08 / km)
Trooperstown downhill race organised by GEN.
Woke upto 4" of snow - had to shovel our way out to the road
The first 6 controls (75% of course) was on the open mountain side, knee high heather with snow cover - lovely sunny day though:)
mass start, we all headed off in roughly the same direction easy first two controls then a route choice to 3, up and over or around I went around with Paul Nolan. Gerard Butler, Connor Short, Jack and Eoin got there just before us. No 4 was a long leg - I went low PN went a bit higher and the rest went over the top, started to fall behind the leading pack and got caught by Dave Weston, Aonghus and two others. got into the control area (boulder)and found everybody doing the usual - checking every boulder in a 400m radius!
I went low again the others were higher up the slope. spotted PN making a get-away (bugger!) still no word of it. keeping one eye on the rest of the pack I spotted DW making a dart for the control - so did everbody else - the race was on again only now there was 9 of us. 3 more easy controls in the open - the boghoppers CS and GB flew off. Me, Jack and Eoin took a different route from 7 to 8 but lost time on the others.
The rest of the course was steep through the forest - I got ahead of Jack, Eoin and Aonghus by the last control, crashed through a swamp and pile of green to a track for the sprint home managed to catch DW and ? before the finish but Jack sprinted past and nabbed it before me!
We all collapsed at the finish and started congratulating each other etc.
when someone says "Hey this isn't the finish!!" (we had sprinted to the junior course finish) then followed a comical scramble by half a dozen or so up a crumbling bank 50m and then a proper rugby scrummage at the real finish!! Great fun! knee was sore after, I don't think it likes the cold