My second TVOC summer series evening event, and the seventh and final event in a busy month of orienteering. Getting to the event was a bit of a mission – leaving work at 1715, I had to get across central London, on a succession of 3 trains to Marlow, and then a 2 mile walk to the start – just made it for the 1930 start.
Bloom Wood is a fine area and it was great to run on it on a pleasant, but very warm, summer’s evening. There was very little vegetation even now in late June, and has been used in the past for a UK Cup middle distance race. The race was a mass-start, with the course arranged like a figure-of-eight, so that people started in four directions.
I made a silly mistake on the first leg, not bothering to check my compass, and was too far to the left. The first few controls were very fast and intense – my first loop was just 1km. The second loop was the big one, with a 900m leg, some tricky map detail, and a monster hill.
I saw no one going my way at all for the second loop, so assumed I was on to a very good time – I picked up the pace and powered around the course, unfortunately then making a 2 min mistake at 10, a 1 min mistake at 11 and a half-min mistake at 13. Still, it was a great run and I finished around 6th back – a much better result than at Hughenden. I beat Jon M but Rob P was well ahead of me.
Although the weather was cloudy, it was very muggy and so quite tough going. So two pints of lemonade and a huge meal at the local pub with the other JOKers/OUOCers was a top idea. Then it was just a case of getting back to London.
Thanks to the organiser for planning good courses, pre-marking and bagging the maps and choosing such a great area!