Oh well, you can’t win them all.
After the cancellation of our regional qualifying heat due to the bad weather, the final was always going to be a busy affair and so it proved when Walton Chasers hosted the CSC and CST finals at Hayward Warren on Cannock Chase. Some 1061 orienteers from 26 clubs enjoyed a beautiful day of what turned out to be a pretty fierce competition on terrain made challenging as much by the undergrowth of bracken and brambles as by the intricacy of the contours.
Sarum fielded a team of 32 that was, inevitably, somewhat biased towards the Short Green Course for veterans. We were almost devoid of runners on the junior courses but Alice and Matilda Thirkell nobly represented the Club’s younger division.
The best Sarum performances arguably came on Course 3 (Blue Women) where Lucy Butt won (100 points) with sister Alice in 7th place (94 points).
Tom Butt (92) and Rob Ashton (91) also scored well on Course 1 (Brown). The pattern of Sarum runners being in sequence was repeated on Course 4, with Charles Bromley Gardner (96) and Chris Huthwaite (95), Course 6, with Mike James (89) and Paul Lane (88) and Course 7, Ian Peirce (89) and Peter Hambleton (88). Team Captain elect Dan Gallagher scored 90 points on Course 2 (short Brown), Jackie Butt 76 points on Course 5 (Green Women) and Matilda Thirkell gained 86 points on (B (Orange Women). This gave Sarum a total of 1176 points and 8th place out of the 25 clubs in the Trophy competition.
Everyone from Sarum put in a great effort and you can see the full results here.
This may seem a little disappointing but a mere 11 points covered 5th to 8th places and just 43 points more would have seen Sarum on the podium. Congratulations must go to winners Interlopers and to EPOC and SROC, second and third respectively; local rivals WIM were 5th.
Apart from the orienteering, other notable aspects included the first good weather appearance of the new Sarum Tent, accompanied by both windsock and feather banner. Brian and helpers managed to put the tent in a prominant position adjacent to the last control and run in.
In her last action as Team Captain, Charlotte presented the usual awards for ad hoc performances (fastest, slowest on selected legs etc.) with the premier Golden Shoe Award going to Martin (Lazarus) Thirkell for rising from his sick bed to compete for Sarum on the Short Brown course and still getting 64 points.
The Sarum Team were nourished before and after their races by exceedingly good cakes from Pat Hart.
It won’t be all that long before we have to start thinking about next year’s competition and one of our objectives should be to develop the skills and confidence of our newer juniors such that they can compete in the classes where we were so short this year. We will also need good performances in the senior classes so keep up with the training.
Thanks to Brian Hart and Alan Yeadon for the photos used above. More of their photos can be found here until January 2019.
The Gallery below contains images of some of the Sarum team taken by Steve Rush of BOK. A full portfolio from the event is available at http://www.walton-chasers.co.uk/category/results/