Garingal junior Aidan Dawson and SHOO senior Dave Meyer are the new NSW faces in Orienteering Australia's High Performance Squads for 2014.
The OA high performance pathway has been thoroughly reworked under new mentor Nick Dent, who has introduced extra squads to define a clearer path from talented junior to world championship athlete.
High schooler Aidan's extensive fitness program throughout 2013 is paying big dividends, and he joins older sister and dual JWOC rep Michele in gaining selection in the OA junior development squad.
Dave Meyer ran at JWOC a decade ago and it's great to see him back in the green and gold as a member of the High Performance Squad, just one level below the Elite HPS. His brother Ian is in the National Development Squad.
The family theme continues with junior squad member Nicola Blatchford joined by older brother Josh, who has returned to Australia after a year training in Sweden and is in the High Performance Squad.
Our ONSW representatives in the OA squads are:
Elite HPS: Julian Dent (CC), Felicity Brown (CC).
High Performance Squad: Josh Blatchford (NC), Dave Meyer (SH), Matthew Parton (NC), Rob Preston (NC).
National Development Squad: Kasimir Gregory (NT), Alex Massey (NC), Ian Meyer (SH).
Junior Development Squad: Nicola Blatchford (NC), Aidan Dawson (GO), Michele Dawson (GO), Daniel Hill (GO).
OA is seeking specialist coaches as a result of expanding this program. Applications close on December 22 with Nick Dent. Details are in the story linked above.
Andrew Brown is our Stinger of the month for November.
Known affectionately as 'Brooner', Big Foot's lanky Scottish import has racked up some impressive results of late.
He was third at the Victorian sprint titles over the weekend, backing up his win in the two-race Big Foot sprints at Sydney Uni by a commanding 38 second-margin.
Andrew also ran in each round to help the Feet land a fifth straight MetrO League championship, and has been very generous with his time this year, helping out with coaching at numerous junior events.
We wish Andrew the best of luck with his training and racing. He wins an Endura pack – nutrition for elite athletes to help them train harder, race faster and recover quicker.
Since 2001 the Carbine Club of NSW, a philanthropic organisation that supports the development of junior sports through sponsorship grants, has supported the NSW Schools Orienteering Team.
The team is known as the NSW Carbines in recognition of this support.
Funding provided by the Carbine Club helps reduce the costs to team members of competing at the Australian Schools Championships.
Over the 12 years of continuous support the Carbine Club has donated more than $35,000 to the NSW junior team. This year ONSW was fortunate to again receive a grant of $5,000 for 2013, presented by Carbine Club member Tim Cox (L) to ONSW president Paul Prudhoe recently (pictured).
Whenever we can reduce the costs of training and competition camps we can immediately improve the opportunity for participation of all NSW juniors.
The NSW Carbines and Orienteering NSW greatly thank the Carbine Club for their continued support. A special note of thanks is also extended to Tim Cox for his assistance and support as a member of the Carbine Club.
It's time to join up or renew your membership for 2014, and for the first time this process is now available through Eventor.
If you are after a family membership, each person will need to register and 'join' or 'renew' separately. This is due to the way Eventor has been set up.
Click on the 'My Pages' header in the left-hand column, then click on 'My Memberships'.
This will show your current membership(s). From the dropdown menu, click on '2014'. Now select your state and club. Then choose your membership type.
Check your details are correct, then proceed through the payment steps.
Once you have finished, each subsequent family member will need to log in to Eventor and proceed as above. Except... when they click on family membership they need to find your name in the dropdown list and click on it - this will link them to the membership already generated by you and as such they will not have to pay a second time.
Waggaroos are the latest of our ONSW clubs to launch into summer series mode, with their first event for 2013-14 this Thursday.
They offer 30-minute score courses as well as the standard 45 minutes, and kick off at Kaloona Drive, Bourkelands on the southern fringe of NSW's biggest inland city. Views over Jubilee Park to the west and along Willans Hill make this a lovely spot for the series opener. The start window is 6-6.45pm.
At the recent Albury-Wodonga championships, Waggaroos showed plenty of girl power with Briohny Seaman winning the women's 3.5km title (and Debbie Davey 3rd), and Kath Oliver taking out the women's 2.5km short course.
And a reminder to Sydney juniors that our Saturday morning schools series finale is this weekend at Centennial Park. Meet at the Education Centre. It's 9am rego for a 9.30am start. Rumour has it the event will be a fun relay with parents invited to join in - and possibly even a surprise on course.
Sep 25, 2012: "The current state of my lungs... is they will not sustain my life. So I'm hooked up to a machine to assist my breathing. If there is any further deterioration the machines will not help me. So while death is not the desired outcome it is only wishful thinking to think it is not the most likely."
Fast forward 14 months and it is heartwarming to see Michael Free running again in Sydney Summer Series events and getting fantastic scores (around 70-80% in the highly competitive veteran men's class).
Unbelievable is really the best descriptor because Mike's recovery - from being on the verge of respiratory arrest just getting out of his hospital bed to go to the toilet, to running (let alone walking) competitively - is nothing short of miraculous.
It's also a great advertisement for remaining fit, healthy and active because it is undoubtedly Mike's previously very high level of fitness (a former Mens Masters SSS champion) that enabled him to survive.
Mike now runs with a fingertip monitor that tracks his oxygen levels, and he has to slow down whenever it goes off (curiously, it sounds just like an SI unit beeping).
This weekend's Saturday morning schools series event has been moved to St Ives Showground.
It's the second last week of this inaugural series and a chance for everyone to catch up on the round we missed out on due to bushfire smoke a fortnight ago. The showground is left off Mona Vale Road as you head from St Ives to Mona Vale.
Don't forget our series finale is on Sat Nov 23 at Centennial Park.
Grafton’s first Street-O event was held late last month in conjunction with the local Jacaranda Festival - and it was a huge success.
More than 100 people from across the Clarence Valley, ranging from families with young children to experienced veterans like Ian and Merran Warlters of the Southern Highlands club, took part.
Locals were excited to be able to participate in a family-friendly sport that was affordable, challenging, social, and got them out and about in this beautiful part of the world. The feedback was unanimous – they loved it, and will definitely be back for more!
Event organisers Julie Irvine (who has been heavily involved in orienteering for 30 years now), Gavin Rayward (a former Street-O Newcastle participant, occasional rogainer and avid adventure racer) and Naomi Rayward (Gavin’s wife who orienteered once... a long time ago!), were blown away by the turnout. A promotional poster generated interest and regular updates on their own Facebook page keep the locals informed.
A reminder to everyone that entries for NSW Rogaining's 6-hour Socialgaine in the Sutherland Shire on Sunday 17 November close this Sunday evening at 11pm. This is their last event for 2013.
And in even bigger news, Australia has been chosen to host the 2016 world championships. They will be conducted in the East MacDonnell Ranges just east of Alice Springs over July 23-24.
Summer series stalwarts used to running on maps that cover 2 sq km check this out - the competition area for WRC 2016 will be about 250 sq km !
Long-time ONSW admin officer and Uringa committe member Dave Lotty has been nominated for a Distinguished Long Service award at the annual NSW Sports Federation presentation night later this month.
Dave, who retired in November 2010 after a phenomenal 37 years running the daily operations of Orienteering NSW, is one of 20 nominees in that category.
A life member of ONSW, Dave was a gun track athlete prior to taking up our sport in November 1971 - that's before Gough even became Prime Minister!
These days he co-ordinates the expansion Southern Sydney Summer Series and does loads of mapping for schools, parks and bush.
He has produced all 14 versions of the Centennial Park map that now hosts a permanent course.
ONSW is looking for new coaches and managers in 2014 for our Junior development squad and schools team.
After many years of dedicated service, NSW Junior Development Squad and Schools Team Managers Karen (below, right) and Russell Blatchford (NC) have decided that it's time to hand over the management reins, and with Squad Coach Nick Dent (CC, below left) being involved in Easter 2014, his increasing role in OA's High Performance activities, and an overseas trip planned for the July school holidays as well, Nick has reluctantly decided to pass on the squad coaching baton.
Orienteering NSW sincerely thanks Karen, Russell and Nick for all that they have done over many years of involvement with the junior squad and school teams.
As a result ONSW is now seeking applicants for the positions of Squad Manager and Coach as well as Schools Team Manager and Coach. It has been the practice for the Squad Manager and Coach to also look after the Schools Team at the Australian Schools Championships. Whilst this is desirable, ONSW will consider alternative arrangements.
For information about the roles, in the first instance please refer to the information contained in Section 8.2 of the ONSW Association Manual. Prospective candidates should be aware that ONSW is currently updating its Junior Squad policies, and the Board is currently considering an additional Assistant Manager position to support the Squad Manager, primarily to manage and administer the squad and team finances. The Board will also consider alternative divisions of responsibilities or role structures dependent upon applicants and the skills and time that they can bring to the role(s). It is expected that the incoming Manager and Coach will work with the ONSW Board to help develop and finalise the new policies.
Applications are open now, and close on December 10. Please send your expression of interest to ONSW President Paul Prudhoe.
Tracy (Big Foot) was very consistent throughout the season and the Stingers' top performer in the sprint and long at the Aus champs. She was 15th in the NOL standings but missed five events so was really knocking on the door of the top 10. Soon to reach a 'significant birthday', Tracy is still more than comfortable competing against women much younger. Further evidence of this was her second placing at the NSW Sprint champs.Alex (Newcastle) has stepped up to M21 this year and has had some promising results. His Aus champs placings (14th sprint, 15th long, 21st middle) augur well for him in elite company. Finishing in the top 20 in the NOL is a promising sign.
We wish these talented winners the best of luck with their training and racing. They each win an Endura pack – nutrition for elite athletes to help them train harder, race faster and recover quicker.
Bookings for our presentation night on Saturday November 9 are now open.
We will be at the Town Hall Hotel, Balmain, from 6.30-10.30pm.
Bookings close on Wednesday November 6.
We apologise for the late notice but space restrictions at our original venue forced a change of plan.
For those people seeking some informal O prior to the awards, Anthony Nolan (UR) is putting on an architecturally themed walk/run around Balmain from 2pm that afternoon. Assembly is at Mort Bay Park and entry fee is a gold coin donation.
While the "Archi-O" is underway we will have orienteering games and activities for the younger children and their families from 4.30-5.30pm at Mort Bay Park. Then we all move to the hotel for the junior awards, dinner (finger food) and the senior awards.
It seems Coffs Harbour residents just can't get enough of orienteering, after very encouraging attendances at ONSW's two free taster weekends.
As part of the Australian Sports Commission's Participation and Membership expansion program - and similar to the promotion held a year ago in the Lismore/Ballina region which led to the establishment of ONSW's newest club NROC (Northern Rivers), ONSW now expects that this latest foray will create another new club on the mid-north coast.
The first weekend's three events - staged at Coffs Botanic Gardens on the Friday, The Jetty on Saturday and Woolgoolga Lakeside Reserve on the Sunday - attracted 80 people amounting to 88 participations.
And last Friday evening, the nearby city of Grafton hosted its first ever event and drew almost 100 participants! Thanks to Gavin Rayward and Julie Irvine for pioneering such a successful initial outing.
This Sunday (Nov 3) we have a double helping of events a bit different to our standard foot O offering - and ones we recommend to all comers.
Newcastle are hosting the second DuO of the summer at O'Donnelltown.
This is a multisport adventure race combining traditional Foot O with MTBO (mountain bike orienteering). You can do one format or both. There are 3 course lengths to choose from.
The MTBO section will also double as the sixth and final event in the annual ONSW Super Series.
Greg Bacon, our DuO co-ordinator and the 2012 ONSW Cox's Cup Encouragement Award winner for his dedication in getting the concept up and running, is hosting the event. Entries close on Wed Oct 30 via Eventor. There will be enter-on-day but it's always best to pre-book so Greg knows how many maps to print.
On the same day at South Turramurra on Sydney's north shore, Garingal is putting on its second annual Goanna 'goat race' - a wacky form of line orienteering in which:
* there is a mass start (10am)
* following is allowed (this is usually a no-no)
* you may skip a control (yippee!)
* there are forked controls (see map segment left)
This novelty event is the brainchild of GO member and ONSW marketing officer Ian Jessup, who wanted to offer something unusual but still an O challenge in its own right.
There are 3 course lengths (4km, 6km and 8km), with the varying between easy and moderate depending on where you are on the course.
Tactics have to be made up on the run - which control will you skip?, which fork will you take?, and in which order will you do 'the box'? Last year's inaugural event generated a lot of discussion about strategy, and great enthusiasm for the format. A 'fun' run in its own right.
Entries close 8pm Thu Oct 31 via Eventor.
It's only 2 days until Spooks in the Park, our fun-filled Halloween-themed introduction to orienteering for younger children.
After last year's outrageous debut (400 kids, hundreds of parents, and most of them dressed up in fantastic costumes) event, this Saturday afternoon we are expecting more than 600 goblins, ghosts, ghouls and gorgeously dressed devotees to again hit Centennial Park.
There's still time to book and if you bring 4 kids you only pay for 3. Now that's a treat!
There's a new activity in skeleton golf, and the zombie run should be a big hit like last year. The forecast is for a lovely 25 degrees and sunny - you'd be batty not to miss it!
A huge thanks to our organising team of Maggie Jones, Barbara Dawson and Helen Murphy - plus their army of 60 volunteers.
Our third season of the expansion Sydney Summer Series gets underway today at Glenwood in the Hills district.
The West SSS has settled in to Monday afternoons and will run until Dec 2. The series runs for 7 weeks and features two new maps (Castle Hill and North Rocks).
The South SSS starts next Sunday, having moved to weekends to allow more members to volunteer their time in organising. The series will run for 9 weeks, ending on Dec 21 at Randwick. There will be two new maps (Sandringham and Randwick) appearing.
These series have been made possible with funding from the Australian Sports Commission.
Around the state, the first event in Newcastle's popular Summer Street Series gets underway on Wednesday at New Lambton.
And Western Plains get that summer feeling on November 1 with the first of their Friday evening runs.
The carnival, based in Clandulla State Forest between Lithgow and Mudgee, is expected to draw more than 800 entries from around Australia and overseas.
It consists of 4 days of racing over Easter (April 18-21), a midweek fun "match race" on Wed Apr 23 plus the NSW Sprint Champs / NOL Sprint Relay (Fri Apr 25) and NSW Long Champs (Sat Apr 26) over the Anzac long weekend.
And if that's not enough, ONSW will also be putting on a DuO event at Glenbrook at the foot of the Blue Mountains on Sun Apr 27.
Discounted early bird entries are on offer until December 20, then normal entry fees apply until March 14. After that late entries can be made until March 21.
This will be the biggest orienteering event held in NSW since Dubbo hosted Easter 2008 and the Junior World Championships in 2007.