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mtbo in europe

Show Profile  Tane Cambridge Posted: 27 August 2008, 3:02 AM  
Georgia 15th in the JWOC race too

Show Profile  Michael Posted: 27 August 2008, 11:39 AM  
And to round out the results, Cath Copland (the kiwi who lives in Melbourne) was an excellent 26th, Emily Wall got tied up in some unmapped "looks like a track" and was 51st, and Greg Barbour was, um, the page is unavailable, 3/4 down the field.

Perhaps because the main meal in Poland is middle of the day, there is a big gap after the elites and the masters races start at 4:30pm. So we go back out into the forest, and the only results so far are the ones onsite. Michael Wood and Dave Laurie possibly 2-3 in M60, Rob Garden and Bruce Meder 5-9 in M50, Dave King wasn't on top of M40 this time. Viv Prince 2nd W50 but bent a derailleur, others here are Gordon Smith (PAPO), Trevor Knowles (OHV), Nick Collins/Annie Sanderson (Eg)

The forests are an orienteers' dream, they would be largely white for foot-o and the ground is moraine terrain on a fairly large scale, ie the features are soft and fairly spread out. It must have been covered by the sea after the glaciation because its now covered by a sandy soil. The forests are intensively managed, hence a dense network of tracks, logging when it occurs is of a little pocket and then its replanted and fenced off, making useful relocating features when you lose count of the myriad of junctions. There must be some grazing because there are feeding things - small open-sided buildings - but we haven't seen any animals in the forest.

In some areas there are minor tracks on a block pattern but the main ones are wriggly, making for great route choice. Add to that going off-track is allowed here - occasionally the best riders riding through the forest, in other times a short push can avoid a long way round. The 3 track speeds - solid, dash and dot are all quite ridable, one wonders how they would classify truly difficult or unridable tracks, like the Rock Garden!! So at speed, even the modest speeds reachable by a presbyopic M60 on a rented bike, it all becomes quite exciting. Hope this has painted a bit of a picture.

Next up - qualification for the long, and a middle for the oldies.

Show Profile  mick finn Posted: 28 August 2008, 11:31 AM  
qualification for long: AJ 1st in heat, Marquita 2nd and Chris 3rd!
2nd for Viv Prince and Rob Garden in the masters middle, 3rd for Michael !etc

Show Profile  Casser Posted: 28 August 2008, 12:14 PM  
All the women automatically qualifies (if they get through the qualification race) for the final as there is room for 60 in the final. But unfortunately Greg was just under 2 minutes outside the qualification otherwise the whole team wouldhave been in the final.

Show Profile  mick finn Posted: 28 August 2008, 2:22 PM  
Hi Greg

Show Profile  Greg Posted: 28 August 2008, 2:54 PM  

Show Profile  mick finn Posted: 28 August 2008, 3:21 PM  
Ha, Greg

Show Profile  Michael Posted: 28 August 2008, 7:05 PM  
In a controversial move, the organisers have bowed to complaints that one of the mens heats had too many top riders, and allowed 25 to go into the long final. The other two remain as 20. Unless there were special factors this is quite bizarre, as the heats are drawn randomly, and there are often small variations in the strength of the field and the nature of the course. The beneficiaries are Italy (2), Hungary, Germany and Japan.

Though today is a rest day for the senior and junior elite, there is no rest for the wicked oldies. Billed as an "ultra-long" race, there was a two-loop mass start course which took, um, about an hour. Rob Garden won M50, and also got the news that he has been elevated to 2nd in Monday's sprint where he was started a minute late. Viv Prince and Michael Wood posted second placings in W50 and M60.

Show Profile  Bryan Posted: 29 August 2008, 12:49 AM  
Great to see everyone doing so well.

As there is only two men competing, can someone from the WMOC classes be called up, so that New Zealand can have an official men's team in the relay?

Show Profile  mick finn Posted: 29 August 2008, 11:46 AM  
Or send Chris out twice

Show Profile  Alistair Posted: 29 August 2008, 12:46 PM  
...maybe with the way Greg is riding we should send out Chris out 3 times ;-)

Show Profile  mick finn Posted: 29 August 2008, 1:06 PM  
And get him to ride his bike instead of carrying it on his back

Show Profile  Michael Posted: 29 August 2008, 1:47 PM  
The answer to Bryan's question is that we can't use someone outside the team. But we are allowed to use one of the women.

I've just come back from the start of the long, and its going to be a difficult ride. There was heavy rain from about 4am to 8am and the tracks that are well used by vehicles will have degraded as they have a sandy surface which will be churned up and full of puddles. It is impossible to keep the sand out of the driving gear and by the end the brakes will sound like a coffe grinder. Those that are grassy on the other hand will be much better. Unfortunately the map does not tell you which is which, they would have been classified in fine weather.

I saw Emily, Cath and Georgia off, and there are about another hour of starts which contains Marquita and Chris, followed by Greg in the B final. I called in near the finish - I wasn't allowed in unless I promised to stay in, to prevent me conveying info to those yet to start. But I heard on the PA that the first Aussie was in - Melanie Simpson with 95min which sounds very good for an early starter.

The sky is overcast and there is still the occasional shower, so there's not going to be any improvement in the track conditions. Actually it may make off-track shortcuts relatively more attractive as this speed won't have changed. Now back to the finish where Em and Cath should have arrived. There we'll be quarantined until the last starter.

Show Profile  Michael Posted: 30 August 2008, 10:58 AM  
If you've been to the official website you'll know the result by now. Riding conditions DID improve as there was no further rain and the sun came out, but the course didn't suit our riders - simpler navigationally than the qualification and therefore needing a lotr of horsepower. Best results Marquita 11th, Chris 19th. Which is still extremely good for a little country that does most of its MTBO on 20m contours!

Later in the day the vets had a free order mass start event. Viv Prince won W50, Michael Wood 2nd M60, Bruce Meder 3rd M50. Today's the relay, with Marquita-Georgia-Cath, and Chris-Greg-Emily. Overcast and cool.

Show Profile  Michael Posted: 30 August 2008, 11:17 PM  
Marquita had an off day today, so even with good rides by Georgia and Cath we were at the back of the field - 10th country. But beat Australia though, whose best rider mispunched. Can happen to anyone.

But Chris came in within 2min of the leaders, and a solid ride from Greg saw us still ahead of Australia. However our notional male Emily was never going to match gold-medallist Adrian Jackson!!! Funny story - near the end Emily was riding with the Hungarian rider - who thought she was in a womens team and let her finish first:-)) NZ 16th by country, with 8 behind.

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