Thursday, February 24, 2011


A great evening at Olympic Park with 'King' Richard 'The Lionheart' Green taking all 600 points, and the gold, in a magnificent run. Richard's 43.52 was the only sub forty five, claiming from the other two 'all stations' ponies Glenn 'The Thermos Flask' Horrocks and Andy Hill - both a minute over for 590's. There was a bit more five work on the night with the runners to the fore at Gill's 'four-corners' flog. More of these beasts of the track in a minute. Firstly, let's get a grip on the event.

Sadly, and despite lots of lead up liason from Andrew Lumsden, Gill's course had to be reworked at the very last minute - with the large central showground area being excised from the map because of (apparently) Easter prep. The best laid plans etc, etc. Anyway, the five controls effected were redeployed, possibly giving the central 'tummy' region more interest, and adding a bit of pull factor in the east with #14 tempting runners to walk the ring. Probably the biggest influence of route choice however, was the relocation of #25 to the south of the map, making the southern circle of 28,10,25,29 mandatory. In fact it was a bit of a circular story, once you worked out how to plan through the central tummy tickler, because most of the biggies were on the perimeter.

The north looked the most foreboding, with the north east well beyond most abilities. These impressions seemed to be emphasised by the A3 map size and 1:5,000 scale, with many punters somewhat transfixed in the mounting yard and reluctant to begin. Once underway, things seemed to get better, although, as an almost contourless outing (in complete contrast to last week!), you had nowhere to hide, or hills to coast down. It was a flog from the starting pistol.

The south seemed to figure in most plans, with the many going 18,19 before a bit of trainspotting - others beginning to 19 or 9 and then following on. The mid east also had fans, with starts to 9,4,16,7,27,5 being noted, before bagging #30 and either going the Wagner route on the ring or doubling back to sweep the south in clockwise fashion. Michael Burton '& Ernie' made a strange start before his clockwise circuit - going in/out to 18, before collecting 8,4,16,3,15,26 and around the north and east (11 and 22 were taken as in/out's from the eastern road). So, despite the concentration of biggies towards the edge, the puzzle was working towards as many of them as possible via the central grouping. It proved to be an all direction night which is how it should be. Fun huh!

Some good locations. The trees at 16 and 6 were fun, and I always like the pass under control points - the alcove at #19 being one of the nicer ones. Also good stuff were 7 and 27 where concentration was needed to pick your way through the impassable features. Oh how we remember these sites from the World Masters a couple of years ago. And how about #21. Magnificent possie to hear your finger go beep. Probably #11 would have had similar views although correspondent P Pie didn't make it to this northern outpost. One tale of woe in the north, was from Terry 'Mr Sprint' Bluett, who ran towards 22 on the lower track, only to realise that the only way out was complete retreat - and no points! Not sure if any others were trapped by this one, but a sobering lesson from Tezza.

Given the scoring, the scatter which looked daunting at first glance, proved almost picture perfect. Going to the four corners is generally too big an ask for most areas, but the flat nature of SOP means it worked here. Thanks Gill and the Feet for another night of exhausting fun on the flog as the Summer Series surges towards its nail biting conclusion.

With the sportident system once more deployed, results are already up on the website! Rosscoe's scribbled scoring with its incorrect categories, missing winners and poorly spelt nags names, is all a thing of the past. Hardly fair, but I'll try to give the fancies a touch of trouser in checking on their runs. Listen up punters!

How about we begin with the Power Walkers. Yep, sounds like a plan.

In the WW's, Miranda 'Fair' Coulson pushed the shopping trolly to good effect, picking up 290 packets of OMO to take the onions from Jo and baby and Kath Cox, both on 270. Alison Pearce and Nerise '& Shine' McQuillan bagged 250's to point from 'Aunty' Gail on 230 and Barb Junghans back a bit on 130 in the Garingal colours. The blokes had more furious intent, with the mad route analyst Chris 'One Day It Will Be Back In Fashion' Brown holding three from Jimmy Merchant (330/300) and another length back to Mel Cox on 280. The 'Cheese' and 'The Termite Mound' are going all out here, with Jimbo knocking off his younger rival in this most interesting contest. Ian 'Cafe Con Leche' McKenzie was back from Spain (arriving yesterday morning!) and worked the legs and groin back into the Sydney air for the lot and 30 points. Welcome back Mr Mack.

Continuing with the older classes, we see Dave Lotty and Ken Jacobson enjoying the flat track, both posting winning 390's in the Legends. Ted was ten short on 380, but ahead of rivals Chippy and Ron 'The Forest Fire' Junghans with 370's. Ronny forgot to download, that's why he is currently missing from the tables (poor old bloke, too much pumpkin). The Gledhill boys were at it, with Mal taking a tenner from Lloyd (350/340), but holding out Dave Dash on 330. A brace of old stallions then followed, with Tim Cox and Graham '& Eggs' Horrocks (300's) a head clear of Brian 'The Surgeon' Cleland and The Stittster.

In the LW's, Bryony had a close call with Angela 'Berlin' Murray fading at the post to be only ten back (330/320). Also, close here was Sue Thomson, running strongly on the pavers for 310 and a 94 aggregate. An excellent run from Sue. Janet Morris held 250 to June Stanley's 220, with Bev (bless her) going for glory with another zero! Good stuff,and close racing for a change from the legends. Things might get interesting if 'The Right Angle' gets to all the remaining races.

Lets flip back to our junior runners, where we see once again a splendid see-sawing in the JW's with Rachael 'The Saxaphone' Noble giving the tenor full blast to reverse last weeks outing and hold Michele by twenty (430/410). Gee, this is great racing here. Georgia and Sophie Jones had fun as did the 'Shunter' - with a tidy 270 - to complete a small field. In the colts, the Garingal stars once again were to the fore, with Aidan and 'The Mattress' running magnificent races, both clocking 500's to be forty clear of Huon Wilson, in turn thirty ahead of Luke Petterson. Kerry Xu posted 410 different lions and tigers to also get amongst the leadership action here.

Andrew Hill led the open field with 590, twenty clear of Steve Ryan. The 500 club must have known drinks were on the house, because lots of them were there. Mark Schaefer did a 560, Simon Williams 'Street' 540, 'The Ink Bottle' put on 520, as did Tom Joss, with Dan Dohle's 510 shading 'The Put Put' and 'The Sausage' - both on 500. Exceptional running from these young blades. The 'Cossie' was next across the line with 470, a short half head from Andrew 'On The Blackboard' Graham, Peter 'The Coal' Hopper and Neil 'I'm Not Well' Lefevre, all running in with 460 glasses of Reschs. The scoring then descended in tens, although nobody seemed to like 410. Nathan and Paul 'The Boot', you should have tried harder!

In the Open Women, Lisa Grant was well clear with 530 points, to claim from a great run from Catherine 'Make Mine A' Murphy (490). Cath is in good form, giving sister Clare (410) a touch up here, and earning 92 points for her troubles. The mid fours saw some good running, with Carolyn Haupt posting 450 and 'Lake St' Claire Winnick nicking ten from CW and Emily (440/430's). Shazza 'The Lamb' slaughtered 400 to be 'mid field', with the next four runners posting quality 350's (Amy, Emmanuelle, Marisol 'The Parisol' and Rochelle). Good running girls.

The Masters were more fours than fives, although we include our overall winner here of course. So, after Rich and Glenn, Kar-Soon looked the best of them with 540 to be well clear of Pete Annetts (500) and the 490 twins, Anthony 'The Beach Boys' Petterson and Graeme McLeod. The 'Sweet Re' Frain, Fallows and Fergus were all mid four golfers, as were Richard 'Yards' lauder and the brace of 440's - Dmitry, Martin and Pope Paul. The MW's was a race in two, with Barb Hill and Cath Chalmers both carding 500 points to be well clear of the field here. Angela 'Hospital' Malpass worked well for 430 to take the silver, ahead of Margy Jones on 400 and Julia Clements's 390. Linda Sesta was back with 360 to be out of the lollies on the night.

The Vets only had four fives, with Wendy posting 510, Eoin 550, Malcolm 530, and Mike's 560. Still, pretty amazing running here from these stars, and well clear of the next ranks in each respective class. The LW's silver goes to Robin Cameron with 430, from Karin's 400 and Hilary Wood's 360. Great to see Hill & Nick down from Terrigal for a bit of SSS action. Other vet men to note, were Michael Halmy with a strong 480 pointer, claiming from Graeme Dawson's 460 and Colin 'T Bone' Burnett smokin' 450 (same as Robinson 'Crusoe'). The 'Ketchup' ran a 410, Dan timetabled 400, as did quieter runs from Larry Weiss and 'The Cupboard'. Dave Noble was also quieter last night, putting up 370. Dave must like the hilly stuff more.

The last lot, and boy, what a smelly lot! The Super Vets are fluid machines, but boy can they go! Wazza Selby can't have been drinking old milk with his 490, a great score from the surgeon. Gordy roared back to form with a sensational 460, to hold the point from Nick Dent's 450. James and 'Moscow' both put on 420's with the senior man rather pleased with himself in this company. The 'Flash' must have had his mind on the Amber Ale that followed. Rosscoe Emslie ran a great 410 to point from Ian Cameron and Teddy Woodley (400's), in turn shading Ian Miller, 'The Prude' and 'The Tyre' on 390, and, suprisingly, Steve 'The Farmer' Flick, with a very modest 380. Good to see Selwyn Roper once again on the Cluedo board with 340 points, and hoping the earthquake doesn't upset The Crusaders. Also good to see last Sunday's Rogaine setter and SSS legend Graeme Hill on the ponies again - although his 310 is a modest result for this great runner. Maybe warming to the task after a long spell.

I also note Michael 'The Bikeal' helping the start crew but also finding time to return a 320 pointer. Great to see 'His Majesty' on the SSS tracks again - and powering up the leader board. The SVW's could only put seven mares on the paddock, with Dale taking the points from Jai and Pauline Evans (350/330's). Excellent to see 'Hill &' putting in to claim here, and reminding us all what a great mare she is. Helen Murphy was only ten back from the 330 girls with 320 (an excellent run Hels), but a tenner clear of Carol Jacobson's 310. Not one of 'Oh's' best evenings. Robyn Dunlop and Connie complete the picture with 260/240 points in the handbag.

So, a good 200 plus turn out - I think around 220 people all up, and a top evening wearing the racing silks. A pity about not being able to run the ring (park management to Andrew as a condition of use), although there were reports last night of non orienteers running there! Anyone that did walk there would have enjoyed the experience, it's quite spectacular. Also, I should note because it is a vital part of our permission to run SOP, that several competitors were seen to run across out of bounds features and get over uncrossable features. The route 3-16 had a gap in the fence, but was marked OOB on the master maps, and should not have been directly run. Also, even though this was not a 'sprint' event, the map is to sprint standards, and the gardens, walls and gates shown as 'not to be crossed' must not be crossed. Sadly, several were seen doing this. Hmmmm!

Anyway folks, a top night. Exhausting to Pork Pie, who like a bit of downhill - and a bit of walking! There was nowhere to hide last night, with the lungs needing to be on full blast right from the start. Thanks Gill for another biggie.

Next week sees the SSS caravan retreat to the north side, and Rob Spry's Clontarf Beach setting 'Sandy Bay'. This is a very beautiful harbourside reserve and beach, and a great place to run. There is a touch of the upsey involved in getting up the hill, but good fun on the run home. Great harbour scenery, great views and sure to be another cracker. See you there.


Bruce S said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Bruce S said...

Thanks PP
We are enthusiastic late starters to this sport and look forward to your weekly comments ...
do not know how we will overcome the withdrawal symptoms come April.

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