Michele Dawson was the star of the big Easter carnival hosted by ONSW, taking out the junior women's elite section by a minute and three seconds.
Michele (Garingal) recorded two firsts and two seconds to pip Victorian Lanita Steer for the gold medal. Newcastle's Nicola Blatchford was third overall, just five minutes behind Michele, thanks to four consistent runs.
Nicola and Michele were later named in the Australian team for the junior world champs in Bulgaria in July. It will be Nicola's second JWOC and Michele's third.
Michele was 2m32s in front entering the Long Distance event on Sunday but dropped six minutes to seemingly surrender the title. But a brilliant run in very steep terrain on Monday - and two sizeable errors by Lanita - saw her emerge in first place as she tore across the final stretches of the cherry farm (pic, left).
In the open women'e elite our best performer was Bennelong's Marina Iskhakova in 13th place, just ahead of Big Foot's Tracy Marsh. Former world champ Hanny Allston won by 18 minutes to signal she is back to peak condition.
Newcastle's Rob Preston was sixth in the men's elite class, a fantastic second placing on the final day a reward for his efforts. Dave Meyer (SHOO), Alex Massey (NC) and Ian Meyer (SHOO) finished in the top dozen overall.
Angus Roberts (NC) was our best in the junior men's elite in seventh placing, closely followed by Aidan Dawson (GO, 9th) and Toby Wilson (GO, 12th). Daniel Hill (GO) may have ended up the highest placed NSW runner had he not recorded a DNF on the Long course on Sunday after taking ill.
The Dawsons (pictured) also took out the family relays on day 1.
Each of the 4 days was also a National League (NOL) event. As a result the NSW Stingers continue to lead the junior women's section, with Michele atop the individual standings and Nicola third.
More than 800 competitors were blessed with beautiful autumn weather at Rylstone Common and Clandulla State Forest. A huge thank you to the dozens of people who helped put the carnival together.
The board of Orienteering NSW has decided to restructure the roles of its paid officers, following the recent resignation of admin officer Anthony Darr.
As such, the board is seeking applications for the following three part-time positions:
* Executive Officer
* Administrative Officer
* Financial Officer
You may apply for one or more of these positions. Likewise, successful candidates may be employed in more than one role. Applications must reach new ONSW president Greg Barbour by April 30. Please click here for brief job descriptions.
Many of the board will be at Easter so please feel free to speak to them if you have any queries.
As part of the annual Easter carnival, Orienteering Australia has scheduled 3 informative talks open to all members of the O community.
These will take place at 2pm on the Saturday (April 19) at Kandos High School. The talks will go for 10 minutes each.
The topics are: sport and pregnancy (physiotherapist Cathy Hogg), hydration (JWOC coach and former world champ Hanny Allston, pictured), and concentration (psychologist Jason McCrae).
Immediately following the talks, OA will hold its annual committee meetings at the school. See the schedule if you wish to sit in on any of the sessions.
Garingal's Karin Hefftner has won the Sydney Summer Series Cup for the second straight year - and came within one run of a perfect season.
Karin's tally of 2580 points (out of a possible 2600) included 25 wins from 26 events in the Super Veteran Women's class. Her only 'stumble' was in week 10 at Sugarbag Creek on the steep Big Foot map of Lindfield/Roseville.
Even more meritorious is that Karin regularly finishes in the top quartile of all runners each week! Final Cup tallies are on the SSS website.
Our 23rd SSS season wrapped up at Macquarie Uni under leaden skies last Wednesday and the top 3 overall placegetters in each class received chocolates or wine from series co-ordinator Ross Barr. Thanks to all the setters, vettors, competitors and clubs for another successful season.
For those Sydneysiders who need their fix of midweek score course orienteering, don't forget the monthly Moonlight Madness night-time series which starts on April 9 at Vineyard Creek, Telopea.
In Newcastle, our biggest club also concluded their summer season with a night championship at Brickworks Park at West Wallsend. This map has some serious contours! Alex Massey took out the long course and Jim Lee the short.
As has been flagged since last year's Presidents Forum in November, there were a number of changes to the ONSW Board at the recent AGM held in Armidale during the opening State League weekend.
A sufficient quorum of club delegates was in attendance as four members of the previous board stood down. After 6 years as President, and a similar number of years in other Board roles before that, Paul Prudhoe joined Barbara Hill, Peter Meyer and Kevin Curby in retiring.
Following last Wednesday's board meeting we are happy to announce our new President Greg Barbour and Finance Director Mark Shingler (pictured).
The Big Foot pair have decades of experience in orienteering and we wish them well as the new board builds on the tremendous growth and development of the past few years.
ONSW still has the director positions of Promotion & Development, and Special Projects to fill.
The 2014 ONSW Board currently comprises:
Greg Barbour - President
Robert Spry - Secretary (and Public Officer)
Mark Shingler - Finance
Andrew Lumsden - Technical
Carolyn Rigby - Coaching
Ian Miller - Planning
Maurice Anker - Communications (IT)
Paul Prudhoe continues to support ONSW as the acting Admin Officer at Sports House.
A copy of the 2013 Annual Report issued at the AGM can be found here.
Nicola Blatchford (Newcastle, pictured) and Michele Dawson (Garingal) have kept NSW on top of the junior women's National League after a tough weekend in round 2 in Victoria.
In a much stronger field than for the opening round sprints in Brisbane, Nicola posted two third placings in the intricate gold mining terrain of Yackandandah and granite of Kangaroo Crossing, near Wangaratta. That lifted her into second on the individual table.
Michele is third overall after a fourth and an 11th placing. Alinta Merrotsy (Northern Tablelands) was consistent with placings of 11th and 9th to sit sixth overall.
In the junior men's section Daniel Hill, Toby Wilson and Aidan Dawson were brought back to earth (after a big weekend in Brisbane), with both days bringing placings from 10-16 for the Garingal trio. That was enough to keep NSW second overall, however.
The Stingers' best effort in Victoria was Dave Meyer (SHOO) coming second on Sunday, after an 8th on Saturday. Josh Blatchford (NC) was 10th and 5th, while Matt Parton had a 14th and a 13th. Leading the comp after Brisbane, the men are equal second, close behind Victoria.
Tracy Marsh (Big Foot, 7th and 6th) was our best senior female. Lucy McGarva (Waggaroos) was 17th on both days.
In the non-elites NSW orienteers recorded the following podium placings:
Saturday: 3W Karen Blatchford (NC) 3rd; 4M Ron Junghans (GO) 1st, Jim Merchant (GO) 2nd; 7W Kath Oliver (WR) 3rd.
Sunday: 3M: Nick Dent (CC) 1st; 4M Ron Junghans (GO); 4W Karen Blatchford (NC) 1st.
We've got lots of great mountain bike orienteering coming up, with our first Super Series double header for 2014 in the Southern Highlands and the closing DuO Adventure races of the summer season.
The weekend of April 5-6 will see Mountain Devils open the annual Super Series at Belanglo State Forest (Sat) and Penrose State Forest (Sun). The Sunday will coincide with our next DuO (combined Foot O and MTBO), On the Sunday you can enter the DuO, or just the MTBO section, or just do some Foot O.
Accommodation is available for a small fee at Belanglo, either in The Hut or camping.
And for the first time, we are staging a NSW DuO championship. This will be at Glenbrook in the lower Blue Mountains on Sunday May 4.
Entries for all these events can be made via Eventor. Enter-on-day is also available but pre-entry is preferred.
Speaking of MTBO action, Newcastle's BOSS (Bike Orienteering Summer Series) wrapped up last weekend at Pelaw Main.
Our annual Sydney inter-club competition begins this Sunday when SHOO play host at The Australian Botanic Garden, Mt Annan.
There have been some promotions and relegations since the 2013 finals at Cataract Scout Camp. See the ML page for all the details. Can anyone stop Big Foot's State of Origin-like sequence of premmierships? How will Bennelong and Uringa-Central Coast fare in Division 1?
An innovation this year is to offer Enter-on-Day (EOD) on all 5 courses. We hope this will encourage more people to come along even if they are not part of a team that round. Of course, if there's a last-minute pullout... you can get a call-up!
MetrO League is an ideal first step in making the move from summer series / street orienteering to the bush. Some venues offer more of a park sprint while others serve up proper bush O.
Teams of 5 run against each other, with the fastest person in a match scoring 10 points and the slowest 1 point. While it is a competition, the atmosphere is always chipper and friendly.
Speak to your club captain about having a go.
On the subject of interclubs, Waggaroos have taken the first round of their annual fixtures against Albury-Wodonga. The event was conducted on Mt Terrible on the northern outskirts of Albury, named by the miners and loggers of yesteryear because of its steep terrain.
WaggaRoos won 9-7 when John Oliver beat Wayne Bajenoff on the 6.5km Red course. Wayne had an excellent run but mispunched at the last control.
The easier navigation courses were across farmland and through bush areas that dodged the steeper slopes. The harder navigation courses took participants well into the steeper country where the challenge was whether to go straight and accept the descents and ascents or contour around to minimise the physical effort. Points are awarded to each club according to places for an equal number of participants on each course.
Newcomers over the age of 55 will receive free entry (and coaching) to orienteering events on Wednesday March 19 as part of NSW Seniors Week.
These events are Newcastle's Park Tour at Walka Water Works in Maitland, and Bennelong's Sydney Summer Series at Clontarf.
Club members will be on hand to provide basic instruction, then our rookies will go out on a course and experience what orienteering has to offer.
Please help spread the word about these promotional activities, which have been supported by a NSW Seniors Week Grant.
It's a chance to catch up with friends from interstate (and sometimes overseas), in a lovely relaxed atmosphere... what the Germans call 'gemuetlich'.
This year the dinner is on Sunday April 20 at Rylstone Community Hall, with pre-dinner drinks at 6:30 and dinner served at 7:30. Organise a group to attend and at registration you can book a table for seating. BYO drinks.
The menu will include roast beef, pork and lamb with gravy, mustards, apple sauce, mint sauce. Six dishes of salads and vegetables: savoury rice salad, sun dried tomato pasta, home style coleslaw, Mediterranean salad, roast pumpkin, vegetable medley (5 vegies). Desserts: fruit salad, strawberry cheesecake, apple crumble, lemon meringue pie- all served with fresh cream.
All this for just $30. Children 10 and under pay $15. And it's BYO.
The formal part of proceedings includes presenting the Orienteering Australia annual awards including the Silva medal, coaching award, David Hogg medal for event management, athlete of the year, services to orienteering award and the champion club of the year.
You must pay by April 12 for the dinner on “Eventor” under services. Tickets for the dinner will be issued at registration to those who have paid.
And don't forget... entries for the Easter carnival close March 14. Late entries (attracting higher fees) close March 21.
Several long-serving Board members are stepping down next month after helping drive our sport to new heights in participation, publicity and memberships (both individual and club).
If you have the time and interest to contribute to the running of orienteering, please consider nominating for a Board position.
Meetings are normally held once per month in Sydney but the format is flexible and may include evening or daytime meetings and remote access such as Skype.
The ONSW Annual General Meeting will be held in Armidale on Saturday evening, March 15. At that
At that meeting the current President, Paul Prudhoe, will be retiring and a number of other Board positions will become vacant. These include Finance Director (Robert Spry), Communications Director (Maurice Anker), Promotions Director (Barbara Hill) and Special Projects Director (Kev Curby).
Nominations can be made from the floor at the AGM but if you are not going to Armidale, please express your interest to either Paul Prudhoe in the ONSW office, or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org. We would be happy to answer any questions concerning the positions.