Thursday, August 1, 2013
Tomorrow we race the sprint and you can find start times, results, and maybe even live tracking here. We race in the morning and are on central daylight time, so you can watch without having to get up in the middle of the night! Well, most of you, I assume.
Wednesday, July 17, 2013
|Sometimes it feels like the world is against you.|
|A sample of daily schedules from WOC 2013, aka masterpieces.|
A team leader is a familiar face at the start and end of the race, someone to say, "You know how to do this, go out and have fun!" before the run, and "Well done!" at the end of the run. You're allowed to ignore us and storm off when your run sucked. Or you can spend 15 straight minutes talking in excruciating detail about every step of your race, and we're guaranteed to listen and actually be interested.
Humor aside, the most important thing a team leader can do is make sure the team is well fed with sugary deliciousness. This means buying exotic foods like Angry Birds gummies and giant Kvikk Lunsj bars, and making them available to the team as often as possible. A satiated team is a happy team.
|It's something I'm working on.|
Tuesday, July 16, 2013
|We're a good looking team, aren't we? (All photos by Kenny!)|
Friday, July 12, 2013
For the US it was a mixed day. Ali Crocker, continuing her brilliant performances so far this week, managed a fairly clean and controlled race, finishing 11th in her heat and qualifying for the final -- her third this WOC! Sam and Hannah both had uncharacteristically rough days, though not as rough as some of the others. They were 17th and 18th in their heats, both less than 2 minutes from qualifying. On the men's side it was Eric who came through with a very satisfying run in this extremely demanding terrain. At 24th in his heat it was the best for guys.
You can see results and GPS tracking linked from this summary page from World of O.
The middle Final is today, Friday, and Ali starts at 15:26 Finnish time (7 hours ahead of east coast). Gather your friends around your glowing monitors for the online coverage. I'll try to tweet from the arena. And, best idea ever, get out to a sports bar and watch the tv coverage!
I leave you today with exciting shots by Kenny of Brendan and Sam from the Middle Qual:
Thursday, July 11, 2013
Wednesday, July 10, 2013
Sharon had a score of 16 for 37th place. She was excited about her success on the timed controls, which are often a weak spot for her. Today she got all four correct. Disappointed, however, with a lost point due to a mispunch. She accidentally punched control 16 on the line for control 15, making two punches on that line. Unfortunately, in Trail-O this is a mistake you cannot recover from. Even though she had solved #15 correctly, it didn't count.
President Peter Goodwin made his WTOC debut with a score of 15 and a placing of 44th. The dreaded Z tripped him up today, with many of his misses being cases where he chose Z and one of the flags was actually the correct answer.
But it's not over yet. This is a two-day combined competition. Tomorrow we tackle more map problems to see if we can best our rivals. Stay tuned for the final results.
Tuesday, July 9, 2013
See below Ali's route (red) compared with the race winner and 22-time world champion Simone Niggli (green). Ali's split for the leg is 14:18 compared with Simone's 14:29! Only two other women in the final chose an around route similar to Ali's.
Sunday, July 7, 2013
Saturday, July 6, 2013
Start teams for Team USA:
Ali Crocker 10:22
The terrain is fast, so even though the courses are 8km and 12km, you can expect to see some very fast times!
Here's a video from the long model area, taken earlier today:
Thursday, July 4, 2013
Janet Swartz: The Tour juniors at the Sprint
I am Dan's mother -- he is doing the JWOC Tour but was not able to do the training in Trutnov because of his school schedule, so we joined teh group in Hradec Kralove. This is our first JWOC and our first orienteering in Europe -- a little over a year after our first A-meet, to put it into perspective. It has been really exciting (and really humbling) to watch the European kids race. Today was a great experience for a lot of reasons. First off, it was the first day the JWOC Tour kids didn't have to take a 20-minute public bus ride to the Tour center at Strbny Rybnik to catch the bus to the event. It was the Sprint in the old part of Hradec Kralove, and you could walk to the arena. We got there by noon to see the start of the JWOC sprint. Big Jumbotron with shots of kids running through the city plus GPS images of route choices (fascinating on this fast paced course). It started raining lightly about an hour into the race, when some of the US kids were still on the course. It was fun that Izzy came into the arena to huge cheers, even if they were for the Czech boy in second place! It started pouring but slowed down for the JWOC awards ceremony.
After the awards the crowds left, the announcer left and the Jumbotron with the race feed from the course shut down. The JWOC Tour starts weren't until 4:00 so there was a while to wait. The really impressive thing to see was the support and positive spirits among the JWOC Tour competitors (6 boys, 2 girls, plus 4 adults -- Connor was still resting his toe). The boys all ran between 4 and 5 o'clock, reported that it was a tough course running on cobblestones and up and down a lot of stairs. Kudos to whomever designed the US team shirt: there were a lot of red, white and blue shirts, but the stars on the US shirt really stood out as athletes neared the finish. The US competitors came in and compared their route choices. At this point it was really cool that Ethan came back to the arena (JWOC athletes can take public buses for free) to talk to the Tour runners, ask about their route choices and bring them cookies. Although the JWOC Tour boys finished by about 5:20, they all stayed at the arena to wait for Elina's 6:01 start. We all went to the Finish chute and gave a rousing cheer as Dave Y and Tim P came in from their courses and waited for Elina to come in. I was really proud of these athletes on the Tour who had a great time and really positive attitude. At about 6:30, we ran out of the arena to catch a bus back to the hotel for dinner.
Bud O'Leary: The Tour juniors at the relay
Wow, Czech gold for men and women in the relay! The home crowd was elated. And so am I at our wonderful JWOC Tour juniors. They truly personify the best in sports and sportsmanship. They arrived at the event arena at the 10 am JWOC starts and cheered our JWOC teams in a hot field with no shade. Only after the awards ceremony and departure of all JWOC teams did they get start times for their own courses - most started between 3:30 and 4pm!
Then a long series of bus transfers brought them back to the JWOC area for a well-deserved shower and dinner. What a long day in the hot sun for our JWOC Tour athletes. They deserve all our cheers and applause. JWOC is closed but what great memories.
Sunday off to Olomouc for extra training.
Duncan Miller: Blog post for Wednesday
A lot has happened since I last blogged. We’ve been busy. Monday was the start of the JWOC Competition and JWOC Tour. Being an alternate, I am participating in the tour which consists of 6 races. No rest days. No slowing down. One race a day, every day this week. At this point in the week I’m starting to feel general fatigue in my body. It’s nothing I can’t handle, but its noticeable the Tour’s schedule is more rigorous than the JWOC one.
So yesterday was a middle with almost no climb. Jake and I being from West Point love this type of terrain. I felt good physically and once I got going I got a great flow of movement while making decisions. I almost never stopped moving. I kept a good pace throughout the course that enabled me to move fast but also navigate and maintain really good contact with the map and compass. Everything was clicking together and my training really came through. I focused a lot on checking the next control when moving to punch the current one. This is one of the reasons I was so successful. Navigate, punch, and take off again. The map excerpts below are from the course. It was a 6.5k H20A course and I completed it in 48:12.
Click on the map images to see a larger version.
Today was another middle but with 235 meters of climb and the shorter distance of 5.8k. It was not fun. Some of the worst boulders ever existed in the area and it was very technical. I made two major errors. One was on a parallel feature and the other was due to bad compass usage and attentiveness. I was going pretty smooth until point 10. I had maintained good contact with the map and moved up the hills at a steady pace. However, 9 to 10 was a longer leg and I completely screwed up by racing this other orienteer to my point. I beat him there, but I wasn’t really there. I misestimated the distance and had gone through a field and along the cliff face where I was SURE the control was located. However it was further to the SW on a different cliff face south of a different field…almost identical to where I was at. I should have relocated sooner, but I was stubborn and was overconfident from doing so well on the first 9. Lesson learned…relocating, confidence, and distance estimating. The other mistake was on the shortest leg of the whole course. 17 to 18. So naturally I sprinted downhill without much attention to my compass. I was running around in a large rock field for quite a long time before I realized it was wedged between two massive boulders. I had forgotten that short legs can be very technical.
So today, my performance wasn’t great but the rest of the night was a blast. The team treated me and JWOC graduates to dinner. Barb and Erin planned a nice Italian dinner since next year this time five of us will be 21 and no longer be eligible for JWOC. Dinner was delicious and afterward Erin and Barb started presenting each JWOC graduate with a short speech and gift. Jake and I both got new compasses which we were quite grateful for (Super psyched). Erin also when on to say I was the “heart” of the team…which struck me pretty hard. I felt truly blessed to be thought of in that way. The rest of the team also said some very nice words about me as well. I am bummed that I will see them infrequently once this is all over. Since arriving I have become a big brother to some of them and a great friend to the ones of the same age. I have loved having the opportunity to get to know such an incredible group of individuals. Some of them are so young...and seeing them grow in the coming years is going to be quite fun.
Tomorrow the Tour has another middle. More rocks. But hey…it’s just more good training. Tomorrow is also the Fourth of July. My favorite holiday. Jake and I have already talked to the French team and allied ourselves with them. I don’t know what is going to happen tomorrow but since the British team is here it is going to be interesting. USA! USA! USA!
Duncan at the team dinner
Wednesday, July 3, 2013
Tuesday, July 2, 2013
Bud O'Leary (Dan's father): Recreational orienteering at the JWOC Tour
Each day affords teh non-competitive orienteer opportunities to enjoy the terrain and courses of the JWOC Toru.
We decided to experience European orietneerign on Day 2 of the Tour. The terrain was flat so we chose an intermediate course. We DNF'd the course but had a lot of fun and learned a lot.
We realized why everyone says you need to experience the courses in Europe! The mapping is subtly different than US maps at A meets and club meets. That subtly confounded our mediocre orienteering skills for almost an hour to locate a relatively simple feature /control. Gradation of trails and vegetation are subject to interpretation. We find the maps we've used in the States much easier to interpret than the maps we have reviewed here. For this experience alone joining the JWOC Tour has been well worth our effort.
Since in the excitement of the start of the tour we fell of the radar, I guess that I get to recap the last two days. Yesterday was the JWOC Tour long, occurring concurrently with the JWOC long. We were on a map that was adjacent to the map the competitors used. This let us both: be close to the arena and be able to race on the same terrain as JWOC. The terrain was not especially challenging but it was hilly. The thing that messed with most of the juniors in this race wasn't the terrain but the start procedure. You were not given clue sheets at the start but had to have gotten them at the arena, 1 kilometer away down hill the whole way. By the point that many of us couldn't run back and had to run sans clue sheet, not too bad if it was printed on the map, which (of course) it wasn't. Otherwise the races went well and we finished in time to see most of our racers finish, which was quite exciting.
Today we had a middle race, held at the campgrounds most of the people on the tour are using. The terrain was very flat and pretty open, due mostly to the logging in the area. A grid of trails kept route choice quite import on every leg. The run was quite fast and the vegetation was much kinder compared to the New England variety. Personally I felt that the race went well with a few slight navigational errors, mostly misreading vegitation boundaries. Thus far Europe has been very exciting and fun. The team has been bonding really well and our karioke skills have been steadily improving over the course of the week.
The JWOC long was a race I was both dreading and looking forward to. I didn't have to wake up early because of my late start, but this also meant a lot of sitting around with nothing to do for a few hours. Finally the time came for me to warm-up, and the warm-up was just dandy,but it didn't have much climb. The course was much different, having virtually no areas where running was easy (or physically possible for me despite my training), unless you wanted to add considerably more distance, and even then it hardly was easy. This course was designed for people who were very, very, VERY strong runners. For example, the Swiss did extremely well because that's all they can run anyway: hills. The hills were also steep enough that running up was unrealistic (in my case), and they There were also usually at least three options for long legs, so picking the best one was extremely difficult as welt-I'm not sure if I picked the optimal route even once. were steep enough going down that you couldn't go top speed and had to exert energy to slow yourself town. I'm really interested to look at the routes for the top runners, because it feel they will be very different from my own, and if they aren't, it says a lot about how much more I need to prepare.
Monday, July 1, 2013
Ali won the overall, with a 1st in the sprint, and a 2nd in the middle. Brendan was 10th in the sprint, and Alex was 8th. (Results). Below is Ali's quickroute from the Middle Distance race - those woods were not easy, with deep moss and fairly thick trees impeding your forward movement.
Looks sort of like an A meet.
Go CSU! Waiting for awards and looking at the river (that doubled as a shower).
Shower area! What they meant by that was buckets by the river.
Investigating the posted old map of the area before the middle distance.
After the race, we drove north to Vuokatti, which is where WOC will be held. We're spending the week before living in a [much larger] cabin that is situated right ON one of the training maps - sweet! Vuokatti is actually a ski school and ski resort, so naturally Ali and Alex are excited about that part of things. The early birds are here to train for a week, and then the rest of the team arrives, and we'll start racing! Sidenote - Finland is home of Angrybirds, and there is an Angrybirds amusement park in town here...
Newer cabin! lots of space!
Base of the Vuokatti ski area.
Tiiiiired after racing twice in a day!
Alex's route from long-distance training this morning, on some really sweet terrain at Pöllyvaara, with incredibly sexy forest (see below).
Brendan's track from this morning's middle distance training, at Pökkelopera.