O Log - Short O Champs

[08-May-03] 

    Here is the prelim and final with my routes.

    I don't particularly care for short O. I like running in the woods, the more, the merrier. I guess that makes me a "recreational orienteer". Anyway, I drove 5 hours to run 5K, but at least I got 20K the next day. I think the real reason I don't like it is because it exposes some of my weaknesses, in this case sprinting and transitioning thru the controls.

    I ran my age in this race (red Y). The race had a 1.46 "prelim" and 3.54 "stage 2". I decided not to worry about the sprinting and go for 100% contact in the first stage -- even a 1 minute boom in the first stage would be demoralizing for the second stage. Give my self a chance to win in stage two, rather than blow it with a 4 minute boom right off the bat. I decided to go straight no matter what before the race; with 5 controls over 1.46K, I couldn't imagine that being too grossly wrong, and hopefully that would speed up transition. I couldn't believe how easy it seemed. I expected it to be ultra technical with the bags hung low on low e-punch stands. Crested the first hill and could see the second hill, which was the first feature. All the bags were hung high, and the features were easy to see. Contrast from recent experience which I was still shell shocked from. I was clean except for a little drift on 3-4. About 6.25min/k, not bad for me, first in my class, and probably about top 5 or so for the course. I should have run faster, not sure if I could have, tho. I was really nervous.

    For stage 2, I knew I was going to win a medal, but really wanted to win a championship. There were 3 of us all less than about 30 seconds apart. I decided on the same game plan. I caught J-J at the first control. We ran together until a different route choice on 3, but arrived at the same time. I lost the championship on 5, with a 4 minute boom. Thought I had a solid plan to use the reentrant to the west, and thought I saw the reentrant, but did not find the flag. I'll never know what happened, but had to hack around in some nasty woods. I know I boomed right, but am not sure how. I guess I mistook that real tiny reentrant up a ways for my attack point. I'll never know, and never know how I could have done it better. Nothing really made sense over there, and mobility was poor.

    Perhaps I ran faster than I should have figuring J-J would bail me out if I got in trouble. I think I tend to be more aggressive in company, and I think that can be a good strategy, but perhaps "rough contact" isn't good enough. But I don't know if I did this. Sometimes you do all the right things and still don't get the girl. You can't beat yourself up over it unless you know you did the wrong thing. All I remember was thinking about reading the map, finding my attackpoint and finding the control. I didn't account for the fact that the woods were trashy, thus a boom would be higher penalty. I don't feel I blew it, but rather didn't have the skill.

    J-J also boomed the control, so we ran the rest of the race basically together. I wobbled a bit on #8 due to extra water features that were a bit confusing, but nothing catastrophic. Ended up with the silver. Would have had best time on red Y without the boom. But I feel good about the race -- definitely a case of "not good enough" rather than "blowing it", which is easier to live with.

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