Thursday, February 25, 2010


On a perfect for running, cool Sydney evening, Andy Hill and Glenn Horrocks (returning from broken toe) both pencilled the lot to lead the scoring at Smoothey Park last night. Andrew's 570 (down 2.5) shaded the 'Lending Library' (550 after a 4.5 penalty), although the Yellow Tee would have to be pleased with his run after such a long spell playing Patience. GH fans, and coach Graham, thought he might be returning next outing but the bike and the backpack at the assembly area told a different tale - the 'Rock' was amongst us again!

So, a top night for a jog, and lots took the bait - with maybe around 230 giving the old 2B a chew. Course setter Mel Cox had gone for an east/west spread across the top of this excellent area, eschewing the Greenwich Point oil tanks in favour of a little heavy breathing around the old gas works (coke for diesel you might say). As mentioned in my preview, the devil at Wollstonecraft is always the deceptive Gore Cove track and its ability to absorb time. Well low and behold, Mel was thrown a curly one with the council jumping him with a track upgrade the day before. GC was suddenly off limits, changing the dynamics of the middle section of his course. The Island was still a tempter with 50 points, but suddenly you needed a road run and maybe a bit of steep bush track work to regain height. The focus shifted to the far right, and the far left - with the loop to #21 via #1 as one starter, or the pull up to #20 in your martial arts outfit as the other. More seemed to like the west. Those that went east seemed to be equal measures of 1-21 or just straight 21's. All these starts involved the early onset of bodily warmth, with few seeming to take the cool river route directly to #10.

The western pots were easy enough to collect in a nice loop, with the drop to 28 and 18 needing to be measured with the climb back. Many ran 20,9,29,27,17 after checking with their 'climb-o-meter' and saying "I'll leave those 50 for another day". The east was a different story, more of a Jackson Pollock story. Running down 11,3,22,23 etc worked - but how to add #2,4 or 12? Many left them out, although your correspondent heard of one 'in-out' to 22 before carding 12,4,2,3,11 on the way home from below. While on the subject of 'in-out' scoring, many would have used this ploy to secure #5 & 24 in their east or west running. A very worthwhile forty points.

For what it's worth, my 440 (in 44.30) was east first (1,21,11,3,22) and then down to 23,13,14, in-out to 5 and 24, 26,19,10 and down the creek to 30,8,16 and the puff up to 17 - and then a flog home via 27,29,9 and 20 - carefully avoiding the people in white pajamas! Seemed like a good route for an old goat, and not too far behind Warwick.

Plenty of good comments and different route choices, as one expects. Berry Island not quite tempting enough for me - but it may have been a very different story with the Cove track open. Always good views down there of course, a beautiful knob of Sydney sandstone bush.

My guess for the lonely pot would be #2 - I'm sure everything else was well visited in a night where runners were 'everywhere' on this great map. Thanks Mel and the Bennelong crew. Always a big roll up here, adding to the legend 'the harder the parking, the bigger the numbers'.

Now lets run the eye over some more scoring.

Half a head back from Glenn, Richy Green, Boris, Adrian 'The Paint Tube' White and 'Recalled Prius' Kar-Soon posted excellent 540's, shading a great run from Mounty (530) and our Masters leaders (Free and Annetts) going the bonk with 520. Steve Ryan was off script a touch this week (510), but still billed higher than Dan Dohle and Mal Bradley - both with 500's. Fantastic running from Vet Malcolm here, although pillion passenger Wendy pulled another fast one for ten more. The 'Bus' ain't stopping for no one folks!

Mary Fein held 490 in the MW's to pip Open star Lisa Grant's 480. Lisa might have troubled a fetlock, as she headed off to the vet soon after. Hope it's nothing serious. Other excellent scores from our leading women were Robin Cameron and Sue Login posting 420's, from junior Emily Bronte (ooops, Prudhoe) with 410, Carolyn Haupt on 400 and Super Vet gossip columnist Dale Thommo (watch for her article on 'Route' choice in an upcoming edition of WHO Weekly) - also scratching 400 with the Staedler. The 'Em Ruler' must had the afterburners at work, with her 410 landing her the 100, well clear of rising junior Rachel Noble's 350.

Good to see Bryony 'Frank Sinatra' Cox working the green and orange silks for 270 (no sign of Tim yet), a length clear of Jai 'The Tomatoe' with 250, and Pauline 'Ball' Evans on 240. The same score incidently as Connie McNamee posted, after the 'Con' was escorted on her course by Michael Burton in a rare non-running outing by our Masters leader (a twinge in the foreleg or maybe Pork Pies favourite injury - a groin strain!).

Matthew Hill run strongly for a 460 junior title. Tom 'Westpac' Joss the same. David Bray, Callum Thompson, Mal Roberts and James 'The Headlight' Lucas carded 440's. Larry 'The Lampost' and Ian McKenzie chewed through 430, ahead of a bevy of 420's - including Steve Flick, James 'Volvo' Lithgow and Michael 'The Bandage' Halmy. Shane Henry had his mind on treasury matters and may be disappointed in posting 390, although Selwyn 'Pine Tree Meads' Roper was happy enough with the same score. There was plenty of mid three action - Mal Gledhill leading the Legends with 340 (to Heiko's 300), Steve 'Cross Ply' Dunlop (350), Dan 'All Out, All Change' Redfern (340), James Stuart and David Gatwood holding 330 to Rod 'The Traffic Cop' Parkin and Dave Lotty with 310. Debbie 'In Other Words' Beyers also took home 310.

In the LW's, Janet Morris put 200 up to Anne Stewart's 190 (a close one), with Bev back a bit in the black outfit (130). Some of our groups enjoyed the fun last night, with the 'Normanhurst Map Chiefs' (Robyn and Viv) posting 200, and newbies Angela, Mandy and Sue finding all the hills (and where north lives) for an initial 110. Mick, Robyn and Josh (180) and Jasmine, Jesse and David (160) were also sighted keeping up the goss as they enjoyed the walking and talking category. Long may it continue.

So, a nice cool evening, a big crowd and plenty of running and thinking fun. More, more was the cry! And yes, there is more. Next week sees John Anderson working the magic of Gladesville Hospital. This was the sight of the recent Sprint event, and is always a popular venue. With the suburban stretch on either side of the fantastic old hospital buildings and parks, this river/harbourside map is one of Sydney's most special and hidden spots. Don't miss the views as you jump on a 30 pointer at Banjo Patterson's cottage, or find yourself on the wrong side of the asylum wall at 44.59! Great stuff. and a must run event.

Also note that the Summer Series will be extended, as in previous years, with three Autumn Evening night events into April. We are offering the beach, the bridge and the valley. Details available soon.


HondaPants said...

Crikey and strewth. A tough one to plan, it made my head hurt! Which to leave out was the problem - or which not to leave out. 8, 16 and 17 didn't look good - slow steep and rough track. 18 and 28 looked like a long way out with serious climbing. Berry island looked like a long run for not a lot of points. Then the east (13, 23 and22) looked like hard work - another big hill). Thus is was tempting to leave them all out and head straight to the pub having fully exercised the brain. Nonetheless I swapped the leathers for singlet and shorts and went as follows: 20,9,28,18,27,29,30,10,19,26,15,7,6,25,14,5,24,4,12,23,22,11,21,1 but was 30 seconds late.
An excellent course, and so pleased to find the pots not hiding away!

Chris Brown said...

Another great event! Thanks to good east/west split the SummerSeriesSolutions are available nice and quick. Enjoy :-)

Also Ran said...

Andrew Hill cleared the course in 47:15. For those of you wondering how the top guns do it, here is his sequence of controls:

20-9-29-28-18 (a cunning inclusion of 29 at this point, enabling the more southerly road towards 28), then 27-17-16-8-30-10-19-26 (this middle section virtually mandatory following the removal of the Gore Cove track from calculations).

Then to 24 and double back, then 5-15-7-6-25-14-13-23. Then up to 22 and double back along the road, finishing with 12-4-2-3-11-21-1.

So that's how the winners do it. Great run, well done Andrew.

Fly on the Wall said...

Interesting solutions Chris.
Your program for an optimal 410 points gave 20-9-28-18-27-29-30-10-19-26-15-14-5-24-12-4-3-11-21-1 which was 6.2km with 192m of climb.
I went 21-11-3-22-23-13-14-15-26-19-10-30-16-8-17-27-29-9-20 which was 6.35km but with only 93m of climb (as measured on but felt like a whole lot more). Given that 100m of climb = 1km of flat, I'm not sure your program delivers the ideal solution.

I finished in 43m 30s so had enough time to probably get #1 as well - or shd have skipped 15 to take 5-24. Oh well! Edging closer to a total of 1,000 but may need some Ben Johnson runs to achieve it I think!

Echo HondaPants - great NOT to see pots hidden in long grass 5-10m away from the middle of the circle (has happened on this map before), although this time I was prepared for the rusty bathtub at #14.

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