Sunday, 23 April 2017
Today was the first day of competition for us in the World Masters Games. This is the first ‘World’ orienteering event I’ve done since the World Junior Championships in 1990. Of course in 1990 you had to be part of the Australian team to compete, whereas anyone can enter the Masters Games. Orienteering usually has the largest or second largest number of participants at World Masters Games - it’s strange to be in a majority for a change! The total number of Masters Games participants here in Auckland is around 26,000, which includes 1,750 orienteers from 40 countries. Sweden has sent the biggest contingent of orienteers with 352. Australia has 205.
Anyway - today was the sprint qualification. The idea is to finish in the top half (top 20 or so) your heat, so that you go through to the A final tomorrow. Those who don’t get relegated to the B final. The good news is that Jon and I (and almost all our friends) qualified, the bad news is that Paul had a good run, but unfortunately missed a control just like I did at Rotorua so he was disqualified - ouch. Clare had a good run to be 3rd in my class and would have to be considered in with a chance for a medal tomorrow (as are both Linda and Harald). I was 5th and happy with my run but realistically I’m not in the same class as the top 3 or 4 - I’m just happy I qualified as now that my class is filled with Swedes and Finns I was a bit concerned I wouldn’t make it though. so yay! The area was really detailed and tricky - there were no easy routes so the slower runners - better navigators were on a slightly more even footing than they normally on in Sprint.
While we were at the event the kids were hanging with the cousins and got to go with Helen and Kim to explore the tunnels at North Head Battery. They also participated in a NZ activity called Grass-Sledding whereupon you sit on a piece of cardboard and slide down long grass, losing your cardboard early on and tumbling down the rest of the hill. Surprisingly they survived this and we met them after the event at Takapuna Beach for some frisbee throwing and dog walking.
Another awesome NZ day.