The second of this summer’s SLOW Park Race Series was last night, at a rather special venue – Battersea Park in south-west London. The last time this area was used for orienteering was at the Sprint finals of the Orienteering World Cup competition in 2005 – if it was good enough for the world’s elite, it was good enough for me!
The park is quite ornamental and I was expecting a run high on dramatic views but short on technicality, however Abi and Matthias planned a excellent Long course which got steadily more technical towards the end – I started making quite a few mistakes after the half-way point, and saw other people making bigger ones. My worst was not reading the control description at No. 14 (it is a sprint area after all!) and going round the Japanese Pagoda rather than up onto its plinth. The hot and humid weather probably didn’t help with the concentration either. There was some excellent long legs allowing for quite a bit of route choice – there’s too much “stuff” in the park to allow running along the leg line, unlike at Clapham Common a couple of weeks ago.
There was a great turnout – over 70 people started the Long course which is definitely a record for this series.
Looking forward to the next one in two weeks in Ravenscourt Park and next week’s Mobile-O (an orienteering race guided by mobile-phone!)