O Log - Anticipating Difficulty

[14-Apr-04] 

    This is the first part of last weekend's race at French Creek.

    I had a decent race, winning by about 6 minutes (tho it is possible the first control was mishung, so it may not mean much), but I did boom one of these controls for about 3 minutes, and its been bothering me.

    The question is, which control did I boom? Is it obvious from the map? It certainly isn't obvious to me, or, it wasn't obvious to me beforehand which control would be especially difficult.

    I've identified this as a problem with my technique. I have trouble identifying difficult controls. All of these controls looked easy, and all but one were. I tend not to slow down when I think the controls are easy, and probably think they are easy more often than I should.

    I guess there are a few possibilities here. Perhaps all the controls are difficult, and I have about a 90% chance of hitting them under my present technique.

    Perhaps I should change from what I call my "line O" technique of more or less constant speed (when I am comfortable with the terrain) to more of a "traffic light/attackpoint" technique, which involves approaching most controls more cautiously from an attackpoint after running fast to the attackpoint (or so I'm told). If that is the case, I'll be unnecessarily cautious 90% of the time in situations like this where the controls look easy. But perhaps it will only cost 10 seconds per control, so an investment of 100 seconds may save 180 seconds. (O is certainly the same game as golf, but I've also always believed it is the same game as economics). OTOH, this race involved 17 controls, so it would have been more like break even, but with no chance of saving the 3 minutes if I were cautious.

    Or, perhaps there is a skill to discerning which controls to be wary of. Obviously, we have that skill to some extent, but it would be nice to hone it to such a razor sharp precision where you can have your cake and eat it too in this economic game. I wonder if that is possible.

    Well, I'm not particularly happy with the way I've explored this topic, tho I think there is money to be made here. Anyway, #7 was the one I boomed for 3 minutes. Seems hard to believe, such a well bounded control. I (apparently) misread the reentrant to the right on the way in. I'm actually not sure how I boomed it, to be honest. Then I boomed it again after a solid relocation.

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