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England made a solid start at the World Schools Orienteering
Championships in a cool and damp Butgenbach, Belgium, today (Wednesday).
A few eyebrows were raised back home when the start lists were unveiled
to reveal no balanced starts for the classic and middle distance races
and infact the running order of the first day is pretty much repeated on
Thursday and it was left to the team coaches to make the difficult
choice of running order within their allocated starts.

Particular strength was shown in the younger girls and boys select teams
as Emily Garside won the former with a 3 second lead, Alice Butt brought
in 4th place and Emily Benham 6th. Jack Wood took 4th for the boys with
four of the English boys junior select team finishing in the top 10.

Most of the older girls in the select competition were packed in from
10th to 13th with Ed Cochrane getting best position for the boys in
11th.

For the most part the schools teams found the competition tougher with
the notable exception of the younger boys where Ross Thistlethwaite and
Andy Spain of Ulverston finished 3rd and 4th and Emma Taylor, also of
Ulverston, finishing fourth in the younger girls. Tom Winsor for
Lancaster Grammar school got a 9th place in the elder boys and Rosanna
Burrows 11th for the Ulverston girls.

Latvia, Sweden and the Slovak Republic are looking like the teams to
beat. Full results and pictures can
be found

here

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