Penn Wood, one of the largest ancient woodlands in the Chilterns Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, was the venue for this year’s Southern Night Orienteering Championships organised by Thames Valley OC.
Much has been made in the news this week about the super-Moon in the night sky but this was surely eclipsed by the super stars of Sarum who flooded the dark of Penn Wood with light from their head torches as they raced to take the top podium places in several classes. Rob Ashton was the clear winner in the top M21L race with Dan Gallagher winning M40L . Charlotte Thornton continued her great record of success by taking home the W70 trophy.
Kerrie Larsen was 4th in W35L and Chris Huthwaite, despite nursing a leg injury, won the M40 short race. Ian Peirce and Brian Hart were 4th and 5th respectively in M70 which was won by former Sarum stalwart John Parfitt, now running for BOK. Pat Hart was 2nd in W70 and Freda Peirce 3rd in W75.
The following day saw a clash between the Penn Wood day event and the BOK SWOA Galoppen at Brierley, Forest of Dean. Sarum runners were rather less successful in the daylight. At Penn Wood Paul Lane (M60) came 16th on the Blue course with Ian Peirce M70) and Gwyn Davies (M60) 34th and 44th respectively on the Green and Freda Peirce 34th on Short Green.
Over to the West, at Brierley, another small group from Sarum was competing in the BOK Galoppen. This time the local club could only manage one winner with Peter Hambleton (M70) leading home the runners on the Short Green course with Charlotte Thornton (W70) and Joan Hambleton (W75) taking 17th and 30th spots in the same class. Jeff Butt (M50) made a solid 25th place on the Blue course despite having to herd vast numbers of the SWOA Junior Squad and having slept on a hard floor over night!
Acknowledgements to Andy Johnson BAOC and Ian Buxton TVOC for images.
Results from the BOK Galoppen are here.