jwoc :: middle finals


Today's JWOC Middle Distance finals presented the closest orienteering races of the week as the men's podium was covered by only 30 seconds, with a tie for both 1st and 5th places. In sweltering heat, once again around the 30°C mark, the courses were dramatically different from the qualification, much trickier technically and physically, visiting much more of the green areas of the map.

The B and C finals were first off in the morning and saw Ruth Holmes take 10th place, Rose Hodkinson 28th and Rebecca Roberts 37th in the Women's B Final while Joe Mercer took 21st in the Men's B Final.

From 10am though it was the time of the A final and, due to their qualification positions, all of the Great Britain runners apart from Oleg Chepelin faced an uphill battle starting in the first 20 minutes. James Tullie and Anne Edwards being first into the fray for GBR as 2nd and 3rd starters on their courses respectively. Both found it tough with the heat coupled with more demanding courses and finished well off the expected pace. Douglas Tullie and Lizzie Adams both suffered too, Lizzie faring the best of the early GB starters taking joint 38th place, surprisingly with Hanny Allston who couldn't match her middle qualification and classic final form.

After dissapointing early results it was on the shoulders of Oleg Chepelin that hopes were placed following his 4th place in qualification. However he too ended up dissapointed as a 4 minute mistake at the 3rd control effectively ended his race. Afterwards he said that despite that error he wouldn't have been clean enough around the course to have made the podium, let alone the top 10, and is keen to keep it clean in the relay tomorrow.

The men's race saw long time Classic race leader Olav Lundanes once again sitting at the top of the podium after his early start on the 4,7km course but once again he was to settle for the 2nd fastest time. This time however it was not one person that beat him but two, the pint size Dane Soren Bobach took the lead by 5 seconds. This time of 25:09 was then equaled by Czech Jan Benes whose run-in time 2 seconds faster than the Dane proved cruicial in gaining him the joint 1st place. He was left ruing a couple of route choice errors at controls 10 and 15 where he lost around 40 seconds in total while 3rd place Lundanes lost 45 seconds early on in the course at number 4 when he went off 45° in the wrong direction.

In the women's race it was the classic race silver medalist Betty-Anne Bjerkreim Nilsen from Norway who claimed gold with a solid, clean run which saw her complete the 3,7km course in 26:19. 2nd place went to the Finn Ulrika Uotila and the Danish 16 year old Signe Klinting taking 3rd spot.

The relays tomorrow see a well rested men's team of Duncan Coombs and Scott Fraser joining Oleg as the two older guys seek to sign off their junior careers on a high. Joe Mercer, Doug and James Tullie make up the other team. The women's teams will be Lizzie, Anne and Ruth with the other being made up of Tess, Rose and Becca. Races start at 9:30 for the guys and 9:45 for the girls (lithuanian time).

Middle Final Results
Men A
1 Bobach Soren DENMARK 25:09
1 Benes Jan CZECH REPUBLIC 25:09
3 Lundanes Olav NORWAY 25:14
4 Gvildys Jonas Vytautas LITHUANIA 25:21
5 Taivainen Olli Markus FINLAND 25:37
5 Puusepp Markus ESTONIA 25:37
36 Chepelin Oleg GREAT BRITAIN 30:09
50 Tullie James GREAT BRITAIN 33:09
56 Tullie Douglas GREAT BRITAIN 42:48

Men B
1 Mathys Christian SWITZERLAND 23:11
21 Mercer Joe GREAT BRITAIN 26:57

Women A
1 Nilsen Betty Ann Bjerkreim NORWAY 26:19
2 Uotila Ulrika FINLAND 26:38
3 Klinting Signe DENMARK 26:57
4 Persson Anna SWEDEN 27:05
5 Svensson Eva SWEDEN 27:14
6 Jahren Silje Ekrole NORWAY 27:39
38 Adams Lizzie GREAT BRITAIN 33:53
47 Edwards Anne GREAT BRITAIN 36:36

Women B
1 D Harrevile Karine FRANCE 24:54
10 Holmes Ruth GREAT BRITAIN 28:37
28 Hodkinson Rose GREAT BRITAIN 34:30
37 Roberts Rebecca GREAT BRITAIN 39:15

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