World Schools: Middle Distance


At today's ISF World Schools Championship Orienteering middle distance at Barr Wood near Stirling, the success for the host nation, along with the other home countries, continued with more individual and team medals. England topped the medal tables ahead of Sweden and Latvia, while Scotland picked up a second individual bronze and a team silver.

Representing Scotland, the Aboyne Academy junior boys' squad won team silver with a second individual bronze for the week going to Finlay Langlan of Maroc. Finlay was their first counter home in the middle distance event, with Joab Matthews and Sam Burgess finishing in 12th and 14th positions to give Scotland a total time of 2h 44m 32s, four minuted down on winners Latvia. With the times combined from the long race on Wednesday and Friday's middle distance events, Scotland had gone into the second day of competition just 8 seconds ahead of Poland but extended this by almost 90 seconds with today's results. This was a first ever team medal for the Scots at the ISF orienteering championships and Finlay, who clocked 14:29 and lost ten seconds at one control, missed out on individual silver by just seven seconds behind Latvia's Ivars Klavins (14:09) and Portugal's Luis Silva (14:22) over the 2.5km course. England's Jack Wright finished in 4th, just outside the medals with a time of 14:41.

The English team picked up three gold medals, two silver and two bronze today with long course winners at Devilla, Charlotte Watson and Jonathon Crickmore, making it two wins out of two in the D2 & H2 select courses respectively. In H1 Select Swansea Bay's Kristian Jones, who finished third on Tuesday, beat the long distance winner Albin Ridefeldt of Sweden, into second by over 30 seconds, winning the 4km course in an impressive time of 19:57. 3rd place went to Peter Hodkinson from Nottingham with a time of 20:48.

Charlotte Watson won the 2.1km D2 select course in a time of 12:01, just under a minute clear of non competitive Aine McCann of Ireland, with Latvia's Elina Svilpe taking second place in 13:15, just ahead of England's Zoe Harding with a time of 13:23. In D1 select Julia Blomquist improved on Wednesday's 3rd place, going one better to take home silver today, again behind Johanna Olsson of Sweden who was almost a minute clear, winning the 3.1km course in a time of 20:25. Alice Leake finished in fifth with a time of 22:57 while Rebecca Harding finished in 11th, with Scotland's Jessica Orr in 13th spot.

Sweden again took a clean sweep of the D1 School class, Anna Segersson winning in a time of 18 minutes, almost 2 minutes clear of her teammates Johanna Persson and Beatrice Gustavsson with England's Kate Farley just 30 seconds down on silver and 12 seconds down on bronze in a closely fought 3km race.

In the D2 School class it was Vera Miranda of Portugal who won the km course, comfortably clear in a time of 12:42, Ireland's Cliona Galwey finishing in 7th place with a time of 15:46. Some good results, particularly for Rachel Barr in 11th and Kirsty Brown in 19th, helped Scotland's B team from Biggar High School again outscore the A team from Aboyne Academy.

To take nothing away from the English team, their success in the medal table owed much to Spain's Antonio Martinez, sprint silver medalist in the European Youth Championships last year, who won the senior boys school division by almost two minutes, preventing a Swedish 1-2-3 result in the H1 School class.

In the H2 Select class Jonathan Crickmore's second win of the week was again comfortable, winning the 2.8km course in a time of 14:55, one minute clear of teammate Thomas Louth. Latvia's Valters Lubinskis finished in 3rd as the English packed well behind, 5th and 6th spots going to Jack Benham and Graham Hemingway respectively.

Full results, both individual and team, along with photos and routegadget, will soon be available on the event website.

Tomorrow will see the week's competition come to an end, as participants race around Edinburgh as part of a friendship relay event.

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