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Term 3 SOS starts this Saturday

ONSW - Wed, 19/07/2017 - 01:34

In Sydney this weekend, the SOS resumes its Saturday morning timeslot on a brand new map in the CBD taking in Hyde Park and the Domain.

Public transport is easily the best way to get there. Or park in the Cook and Phillip ($13) or Domain ($10) car parks.

Run by our partner organisation Bold Horizons, you can choose from line courses or a score course.

Term 3 for 2017 will be a mix of sprint and bush orienteering, and are excellent preparation for the NSW Schools championships in Wollongong next month.

2017 NSW Schools Team announced

ONSW - Sun, 16/07/2017 - 12:18
Seven new faces from Newcastle, Coffs Harbour and Sydney are in the 2017 NSW Schools team (the Carbines) for the Australian championships in Bathurst and Hill End in late September.  

Nea Shingler (Big Foot), Mikayla Enderby (Newcastle) and Andra Leung (Garingal, pictured) have all been selected in the juniors girls' team, Clare Jessup (Garingal) is in the senior girls, Thomas Gordon (KNOX) is in the senior boys, and Oskar Mella (Newcastle) and Sam Woolford (Bush n Beach) will debut in the junior boys.

Congratulations to the following students upon their selection:

Senior Girls: Claire Burgess (NC), Joanna Hill (GO), Clare Jessup (GO), Ellen Currie (GO)

Senior Boys: Alastair George (BF), Duncan Currie (GO), Thomas Gordon (KNOX), Lachlan Billett (WR). Reserves: Angus Leung (GO), Tom Kennedy (GO)

Junior Girls: Serena Doyle (UR), Nea Shingler (BF), Mikayla Enderby (NC), Andra Leung (GO)

Junior Boys: Alvin Craig (NC), Sam Woolford (BB), Ewan Shingler (BF), Oskar Mella (NC). Reserves: Clyde McGhee (Bennelong), Oscar Woolford (BB)

All selected will travel with the team to Bathurst and run in the three schools championship events from September 26-28 (Individual, Sprint and Relay), while also competing in the other major events on both weekends of the carnival.

Manager Sally Devenish will be in contact with team members to co-ordinate travelling arrangements.

ONSW thanks selectors Jock Davis, Hilary Wood and Rob Bennett for their time and energy spent in this important role, and to the Carbine Club for their generous financial support.

Newcastle puts on glorious SL weekend

ONSW - Sun, 16/07/2017 - 10:22

Our Newcastle club is truly spoilt for quality bush maps, and they rolled out another beauty for State Leaue 8 at Quorrobolong on Saturday.

The smallish Barraba Lane map had much fast open running, with a few steep watercourses thrown in to mix it up. And a smattering of tracks. A classic Middle Distance location and one that will see a lot of use in the years to come.

Georgina Macken (Central Coast) had a great win in W21A, while Gayle Shepherd (Uringa, pictured) crushed her W45AS opponents by eight and a half minutes - as well as taking out the 'chocolate leg' among rivals.

In M20A, Thomas Gordon (KNOX) pipped Alastair George (Big Foot) for a breakthrough win, while visiting Israeli Itay Manor (Uringa) edged out NSW Junior Squad coach Rob Bennett (Newcastle) in a closely contested M21A.

On Sunday it was a Long Distance event at Wallaroo State Forest on 'Rocky Ridges', a hybrid of two previous maps that offered some longer track running or more direct compass navigation, often to small point features such as tree root mounds or small rockfaces.

Nicola Blatchford (Newcastle) roared back to form in W21A, while Hunter Schools champs organiser Colin Bailey triumphed in a very close M45AS class. There were multiple victories in the Shingler (BF), Doyle (UR), Woolford (Bush n Beach), Enderby, Rigby and Craig (NC) families.

Our State League web page has links to all the weekend results, Attackpoint splits (by course) and Routegadget.

We also ask all participants to please fill out the very brief Course Setter of the Year survey for each day - this will provide important feeback for setters and controllers, as well as helping decide one of our prestigous annual awards.

A big thank you to Newcastle for a woinderful weekend, and a reminder that the next SL outing is in conjunction with the NSW schools champs in Wollongong on August 19-20. School students are to enter via Trybooking; everyone else via Eventor.

Tough start to JWOC for Toby Wilson

ONSW - Tue, 11/07/2017 - 02:29

NSW's sole representative at the junior world championships in Finland has had a baptism of fire in the Middle Distance qualifying.

Garingal's Toby Wilson - making his JWOC debut - finished 44th in men's heat 2 on Monday evening our time, meaning he'll be in the C final on Tuesday.

Eight of the Australians are in the B finals and 4 in the C finals. 

The event website has an excellent live stream and GPS tracking so you can follow the athletes.

Turkey Trot becomes day of jakes and jennies

ONSW - Mon, 03/07/2017 - 12:54

There has been a changing of the guard in the Sydney Turkey Trot, with Big Foot junior Alastair George ending Garingal gun Glenn Horrocks' long winning streak in the iconic annual multi-map event.

It appears Glenn, who had 9 wins in a row (including two deadheats) recorded an mp. 

Hosts WHO used the combined maps of Darks Common and Knapsack Gully at the foot of the mountains to set courses pretty much all in the bush for the three courses.

Alastair has been in red-hot form this year and must be a strong chance to make the Australian JWOC team in the very near future.

He won the 20km men's Long event in 1:45:18 (averaging just over 5 mins per km!), 40 seconds ahead of WHO's Andrew Hill, and three minutes quicker than Big Foot's Bart Vonhoff.

Al's sister Rebecca was second in the women's Medium course (12km).

Juniors performed well in other divisions, with Garingal's Duncan Currie winning the men's Medium course in 1:09:13 ahead off Big Foot junior Ewan Shingler and Garingal's Peter Fozo.

Georgia Jones from Uringa took out the women's Short (8km) while primary schooler Nick Stanley was third in the men's Short.

Bulletin 2 released for AUS MTBO champs

ONSW - Fri, 30/06/2017 - 00:11

Nothing brings out the banter quite like a bit of friendly trans-Tasman rivalry. 

So when we received word that our Kiwi cousins are bringing more than 50 eager riders for the Australian Mountain Bike Orienteering Champs at Wingello in the Southern Highlands from October 4-8, we thought we should put out a call to arms in response.

This is very inviting MTBO carnival, with:
* a midweek afternoon or night ride (Wed)
* a Friday practice event
* 3 championship races on the Sat-Sun
* FREE entry in the W12, M12, W14, M14 age classes
* a "Recreational" class for those who don't wish to do the full champs courses
* budget accommodation at Belanglo SF or Kirrikee Outdoor Centre 

And it follows the Australian Foot O championhips and carnival in Bathurst and Hill End, a leisurely three-hour drive.

First up, though - entries are open and Bulletin 2 is now out.


Happy holidays after high schools champs

ONSW - Tue, 27/06/2017 - 07:24

Term 2 finished in a frenzy of flag finding this week with championships or gala days in the Hunter, Southern Highlands and Sydney West secondary schools regions.

Thursday at Fred Caterson Reserve in Castle Hill rounded off a hectic three straight days for our team of volunteer coaches, setters and SI gurus. Debutants The Ponds High School easily won the Sydney West trophy under sunny skies.

This was the first time we have held a separate secondary day in Sydney West, and the 71 students were very keen to come back next year. 

Wednesday in Mittagong was mild with regular bursts of sunlight and none of Sydney's cold rain as eight schools gathered on the shores of Lake Alexandra. Numbers were encouragingly well up on last year's inaugural event, with 162 entries.  

As well as a number of younger runners competing in an easy course, Chevalier College (the 2016 winners) were knocked for six by newcomers Hurlstone Agricultural High School who took out podium places in all classes - resulting in their elevation to champions on debut.

Elderslie High School, Wollondilly Anglican College and Macarthur Anglican School were also represented in the placings.
A big welcome to Mt Annan High School, Lumeah High School and the local Home-School group who experienced real orienteering competition and had a wonderful day.

And on Tuesday at Pelaw Main, the annual Hunter schools champs drew 80-odd students for a complex track network. Regular orienteering kids and rookies alike were all smiles. 

Thanks to all the Newcastle, SHOO, WHO and other ONSW people who helped with these days - and especially the hard-working teachers who make them possible. 

Calling for NSW Junior Squad manager and assistant coach

ONSW - Mon, 26/06/2017 - 14:02

Two important leadership positions in our junior development program are now open for nominations.

Orienteering NSW is looking for an assistant coach for the NSW Junior Squad for 2017-18 and a new manager for 2018 onwards.

The blue links above contain the job description for each position and how to apply.


Gluteus to the maximus at Glengarry MetrO League

ONSW - Mon, 26/06/2017 - 13:39

One of the difficult things about setting on new maps, especially steep ones with lots of rock and a scale of 1:3000, is judging course lengths.

So the 188 hardy souls who turned out in glorious conditions for MetrO League 3 at Glengarry Girl Guide Camp in North Turramurra on Sunday got double their money's worth. And a glute workout to remember!

Setter Ian Jessup, also organising the event to raise funds for the NSW Junior Squad, thought he had courses about right - so he apologises now most profusely for what proved to be a challenging but arduous morning's orienteering.

Big Foot's Simon George (35:22) was the only runner to go under 44 minutes - as many people spent more than hour making several climbs and loops of the small venue.

Lots of rock, lots of loose leaf litter, and pockets of undergrowth all combined to slow participants - and place a premium on accuracy and route choice, as all courses should.

Having said that, there were enough attack points, catching features and handrails to guide the studious to the controls.

WHO Evers (Divn 1), UR-CC (Divn 2), Bennelong (Divn 3) and the WHO Hahs (Divn 5) remain unbeaten - and there were several upsets to make the points tables more interesting.

The Junior Squad wishes to thank Ian for setting, Mark Shingler for controlling, the GO SI team for results, and all the helpers on the day. 

The MetrO League web page has links to results, Winsplits and Routegadget.

More records at Sydney West schools champs

ONSW - Thu, 22/06/2017 - 18:28

Sydney West just keeps setting attendance records at our annual round of schools champs.

Last year 395 primary and secondary students were at Fred Caterson Reserve at Castle Hill, with its lovely mix of sportsfields and bush tracks. Numbers were so great that thi year separate primary and secondary days were scheduled.

And on Thursday a new record was set - 402 primary students on hand, with a further 200 having to be accommodated later this year as we were already at bursting point.

Another superb sunny winter's day had the kid going in all directions - and loving the venture across the BMX track in particular.

This time it was a small army of WHO organisers, SI gurus and coaches in charge - making it 700 students in two days.

Age race winners came from Carlingford West, Crestwood, Mt Riverview, Baulkham Hills, Rouse Hill and Sherwood Ridge.

Relays were won by Blackheath and Crestwood.

Tahmoor, Mawarra rule Sydney South West primary champs

ONSW - Wed, 21/06/2017 - 19:31

More than 300 excited students showed their skills at the annual Sydney South West schools championships on Wednesday.

Gorgeous weather and a relatively dry course meant the kids could speed around Camden Bicentennial Equestrian Park - as long as they read their maps carefully!

A small army of SHOO organisers, SI gurus and coaches ensured a seamless day capped off by the 3-person relay - always a hoot as 100+ students scarper off in different directions (see pic for a shot of the start).

Age race winners came from Tahmoor PS (2x), perennial champs Mawarra PS (2x), Holsworthy PS and Narellan Vale PS.

Mawarra then claimed a trifecta in the boys' relay and two of the three placings in the girls' relay.

Entries open for 2017 NSW Schools Champs

ONSW - Mon, 19/06/2017 - 16:31

This year our NSW schools champs are in Wollongong on August 19-20. The weekend is hosted by Illawarra Kareelah and staged in conjunction with State Leagues 10 and 11.

Entries are now open, with this reminder:

* all students entering the NSW schools champs must do so via Trybooking
* all non-students entering the State League events must do so via Eventor
* you may enter Saturday, or Sunday, or both days

Please note that Sunday consists of two sprints: at Uni of Wollongong and the nearby TAFE. Times will be added to calculate the winners in each class. Presentations will be held straight after.

Saturday's Middle Distance event is at Cataract Scout Park. Non-orienteers should refer to the information sheet for descriptions of courses; it contains links to map examples.

Parents of competing students again have the opportunity to go on a map walk with a coach, or try a free course and compare their route with their child.

Entries close August 10.

ONSW scholarship applications open

ONSW - Thu, 15/06/2017 - 13:48

Orienteering NSW is seeking applications for 1-2 visiting orienteering scholars this summer (September 2017 to March 2018).

Applicants should email Jim Mackay (development @ onsw.asn.au) ASAP, as should clubs willing to host. Hosting is for a minimum of 2 weeks duration and families will receive a small stipend to help cover costs.

Scholars can contribute greatly to local clubs through mapping, coaching and event organisation. Our inaugural scholar, Atte Lahtinen from Finland, has just left Australia after an extended stay.

More information about the scholarship program can be found here.

By George, a dam fine Sprint finish to the Aus 3-Days

ONSW - Tue, 13/06/2017 - 18:00

The Australian 3-days carnival finished on a spectacular note at CSU Wagga on Monday, with a Sprint event mixing rock with campus to throughly test brains and brawn for a third straight day.

And in the washup, it was Big Foot junior Alastair George with arguably the best NSW result of the long weekend - third overall in the junior men's elite class. Congratulations Al - we hope that JWOC selection lies in the near future.

Now, how could a seemingly urban sprint possibly have tricky rock? Easy - thanks to a new map extension on a steep hill to the west. After a short, sharp climb to the start (past a few curious kangaroos), runners were confronted with half a dozen controls in a small hilly area littered with boulders.

As usual, the race won't be won here but can certainly be lost. (Your tired scribe blew 4 minutes overshooting two controls on Course 5, but we digress!) From there it was a careful drop to the western edge of the built-up area.

Nothing about the campus section looks particularly difficult - until closer inspection reveals pedestrian overbridges, impassable building corners and a plethora of uncrossable garden beds.

Decision making at speed, and speedy decision making. An error of mere seconds can mean the difference between first place and merely second... or further down the results list.

The course climax provided a wonderful spectacle - runners converged from two or three directions on the last control (a sculpture, pictured top) in the corner of a large pond with two small bridges for access, then a 50m dash to the finish.

Innovative course planning by SHOO's Melbourne-based NSW Stinger Dave Meyer and a great venue for the presentations, for which we had the pleasure of the company of Wagga Deputy Mayor Dallas Tout

Our list of thank yous is extensive: organising clubs Waggaroos, Southern Highlands, Illawarra Kareelah, Uringa; carnival organiser Ron Pallas; all our course setters and controllers; and the generous landowners.

The Oceania and World Masters champs in New Zealand in April forced OA to move this carnival from its usual Easter date, so we are grateful to the 550+ participants who made the effort to enjoy three quality maps in glorious winter sunshine.

You can find all the results on Eventor, splits on Winsplits and Attackpoint, and courses on Routegadget.

Sunday's hit song is "Burngoogee, burn"

ONSW - Sun, 11/06/2017 - 17:40

Burngoogee is one of the many jewels in Waggaroos' treasure chest of maps - and first-timers found out just why at the Australian 3-Days on Sunday.

Top-ranked Australian Julian Dent set a demanding test for the traditional Long day, held in beautiful golden winter sunshine.

Courses generally started out through the steep, rocky section in the northwest corner of the map then swept east through some flatter open forest before some more rock and a final climb. 

Contouring or up-and-down was a constant dilemma for many, and most courses seemed steeper than Saturday's opener at Connorton. That didn't prevent some very fast times being recorded, especially on Course 9 where Ella Cuthbert from the ACT sped around the 4.5km course in 38:22.

The best NSW result among the elites was Alastair George (Big Foot) coming third in the junior men.

Click on the blue links for the photo album on our Facebook page; and for Day 2 results, Winsplits and Routegadget.

Another big thanks to Waggaroos and their helper clubs SHOO, Uringa and IKO. And a massive shout out to the Billetts who have worked tirelessly in the Junior Squad catering van on both days. Funds raised help offset the cost of sending the NSW All Schools Team to the annual Australian championships. 

Rock stars shine at Aus 3-Days opener

ONSW - Sat, 10/06/2017 - 22:30

Waggaroos promised "We will rock you" - and setter Briohny Seaman delivered as the Australian 3-Days made a brilliant start at Connorton on Saturday.

There were many fast times despite the tricky terrain; the NSW highlight being Uringan Georgia Jones (pictured smiling left) placing third in W20E. The other excellent NOL result among the NSW Stingers was Alastair George (Big Foot) coming fourth in M20E.

Almost 540 participants were on course in superb weather, and our close neighbours from the ACT won 17 of the age classes.

The parking area offered sweeping views over the surrounding farmland, and the start took people through some open area before delving into the rock. For those unfamiliar with granite terrain, it was like someone took the lid off the salt and pepper shakers and turned them upside down on the map.

It was all tremendous fun and a couple of startled Bennelongers even saw some wild goats on course - along with the obligatory kangaroos and wallabies. The uphill sprint to the finish had lungs burning once more.

Thanks Waggaroos and the other helper clubs. 

Click on the blue links for photos by Ian and Clare Jessup on Facebook, results, Winsplits and Routegadget.

Glorious weather for NOSH

ONSW - Mon, 05/06/2017 - 17:30

The 43rd annual Great NOSH Footrace was conducted in beautiful, crisp, sunny conditions on Sunday.

Twelve months on from the massive storm that forced the postponement of the 2016 race, the contrast could not have been starker: finishers remarking on how hot they felt as they emerged from the Bantry Bay bushland onto a dry Seaforth Oval after 16.5km of trail running and some serious climbs.

Richard Mountstephens, from our Big Foot club, was first across the line in 75 minutes and 4 seconds. Danielle Donahue (left, with Richard) was the first female in 86:38, taking 22nd place overall.

Alastair George, another Big Foot member, took out fastest junior in 81:59 (13th overall), with Olivia Piazza (99m33s) the quickest female junior.

There were 304 entries, including 26 in the walking category. Spealing of which, Alex Green scooted around in 104m34s - a phemonenal result for walking.

Results are here, and Tony Hill has compiled an album from all the volunteer photographers here.

A big thank you to Bennelong Northside, Bold Horizons, Online Timing, Seaforth Soccer Club, Northern Beaches Council, National Parks, and all the volunteer helpers from orienteering clubs.


Ski-O champs on again at Perisher

ONSW - Tue, 30/05/2017 - 19:23

What better way to usher in winter than to announce the 4th annual NSW Ski Orienteering championships?

Co-sanctioned with OACT, the event will again be held at Perisher Valley on Sunday August 13; organised by Red Roos, Big Foot and Perisher X Country. This event forms part of XC Ski week, with the start in front of the beautiful, warm and special Nordic Shelter at Perisher.

There will be (a) 3 line courses: Short (about 2.5km), Middle (about 5km) and Long (about 7.5km), with up to 10 controls; (b) a two-hour Snogaine for teams of 2-3 people, and (c) a family treasure hunt for parents and kids.

Everyone who loves or dreams of trying skiing or orienteering will be able to combine both skills. This is the only Ski-O event in Australia (and among just a handful in the Southern Hemisphere, as far as we know).

See the flyer for full details.

Cub Day Out tests our resources

ONSW - Mon, 29/05/2017 - 14:24

Emulating a Cecil B de Mille production, on Sunday we hosted 350 cubs, about 60 leaders and dozens of parents at Gough Whitlam Park in Earlwood for their annual Metro South Cub Day Out.

The logistics were huge: 30 groups of 10-12 cubs plus a leader or two, five stations of OK-GO activities, four star relays, a loops course and finally an 18-control score course in pairs using SI.

It was non-stop from 8.30am to 3pm and thankfully the weather was lovely, as was the feedback from young and old.

Many leaders inquired about incorporating further orienteering into their programs and badge schemes, and we can see the potential to map more campsites to mutual benefit.  

A big thank you to organisers Ian Jessup and Jim Mackay; coaches Lyn Malmgron, Neville Fathers, Georgia Jones, Maggie Jones and Robert Newman; helpers Ian Jones and Dave Lotty; and SI guru Ron Pallas.

And thank you to Jan from Metro South for the invitation to host this much anticipated annual outing for the cubs.

FYI, the fastest pair did the score course in 16:44 - very mpressive given they were all aged 8-11.

City, country combine for World Orienteering Day

ONSW - Thu, 25/05/2017 - 08:17

City and country; bush and big end of town. You'd be hard pressed to find two more contrasting locations for World Orienteering Day than sleepy Dorrigo and beneath the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

An initiative of the International Orienteering federation, WOD aims to promote our sport worldwide. So, with 2,000+ events in 53 countries on all 7 continents (yes - even Antarctica!), and more than 77,000 participants - that goal appears to have been well and truly reached on Wednesday.

In NSW the first event was at Mt John's Primary School (lower pic) at tiny Dorrigo, 30km west of Coffs Habrour, with 49 students doing Space Racing. In the afternoon a further 12 entrants were at the local showground, the first public orienteering event held in Dorrigo, on a new map prepared by Maurice Anker from the Northern Tablelands club to offer Very Easy, Easy and Scatter courses. A big thank you to Jenny Hawkins (NTOC) for putting this on.

The official population of the Dorrigo Plateau is only 2311, so 61 orienteers represented almost 3% of the town! 

Back in the big smoke by Milsons Point station, we doubt WOD had a better location than Bradfield Park.

Ninety participants, including 20-odd scouts, took in the Sydney Harbour foreshore, Luna Park, the PM's residence and other North Sydney landmarks under torchlight. The top photo was taken at 4.30pm as organisers were setting up. WOW!

We had guests from Israel, Ireland, New Zealand, the Czech Republic, Switzerland and Hungary among others. Course setting thanks to Ross Duker and seamless organisation by Garingal. A great way to cap off a 23C day.


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