Edinburgh Southern Orienteering Club

ESOC at the 2016 VHINorthern Ireland, 3/4 September

3 ESOC members were in the Scottish team at the 2016 Veteran Home Internationals.

The 2016 Veteran Home Internationals took place on 3/4 September 2016, in Northern Ireland. The Individual event was on Saturday, in conjunction with the Northern Irish Orienteering Championships, at Rostrevor Forest, Co. Down, on the SW side of the Mourne Mountains. The Relays were on Sunday at Hillsborough Forest, further north.

Alison Cunningham competed in W50, and commented: “The Individual was open moor and forest, 20m visibility and driving rain on the top and cagoules compulsory. I had a horror of a run and don't want to relive it ever! We had some winners and some losers. Lovely area and beautiful views if the weather had only been better. England had a commanding lead after Day 1, and we were 2nd.
Accommodation was a very basic dormitory and there were issues with the comfort of the mattresses. Unfortunately they thought they were catering for children, so the Coco Pops style breakfast and white bread sandwiches did not go down well on Saturday, but this was rectified for Sunday.
The Relays were in a tiny area of flat parkland with some good track and forest running, but also a lot of unmarked paths and scruffy undergrowth in places. England won the relays and overall by a country mile and we came 2nd.
Some flew and some drove but all travel seemed to work out well. A very enjoyable weekend with a very friendly Scottish bunch!”

Heather Thomson won W40 - she said: “On Saturday the visibility was very poor with the report for early starts that visibility was down to 20m at the top of the hill on the open moorland... in reality, by the time I walked up to the start I believe it may have been less than half that, as the start was not even visible from the edge of the trees! I was back out in the open again just after half way through my course and the mist had lifted a bit, but the mast on top of the hill should have been visible for miles, but remained well hidden for most of that long leg. Good use of compass, distance judgement and picking out contour shapes were essential for navigation. The finish was next to the Cloughmore - a huge boulder with a tale of warring giants linked to it.
Sunday was a complete contrast, with clearer skies and intermittent sunny spells. The Relay event used Hillsborough Forest and made use of the compact area by using a double-sided map for the longer courses. The majority of the forest was runnable, but there were some vicious nettles and brambles to be found by the unwary!”

Janice Nisbet is the Veterans Team Manager and ran W35 (though she’s W60) to fill a gap in the team.

Further information about the event can be found on the VHI event page of the Lagan Valley Orienteers website.
Results for the Individual can be found here.
The maps and courses from the Individual are available on the Lagan Valley Routegadget.
Results for the Relay are here.

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