Yesterday (Thursday) was the Middle Qualification race and we had a full line-up: Ali, Sam, Hannah, Boris, Eric, and Brendan. Those watching the coverage online or in the arena, with gps-tracking, witnessed a lot of creative manoeuvring. Some of the world's best orienteers were seen making 5 or 10-minute mistakes, circling around controls, standing still... it was either entertaining or horrifying, depending on your perspective. The terrain is detailed and rocky, the ground lumpy and the visibility not as high as you might expect for white forest. In other words, this is not the smooth jazz woods of the long terrain!
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: