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WOC Middle

Show Profile  mick finn Posted: 11 August 2005, 6:24 AM  
Tania is out in the forest now, should be through to the last section very soon - so far 5 minutes is the quickest through the last section...

Show Profile  mick finn Posted: 11 August 2005, 6:34 AM  
she through! in 3rd so far! but its hotting up

Show Profile  Andrew M Posted: 11 August 2005, 6:48 AM  
Tania's still looking good, ahead of the two Aussies.

Show Profile  mick finn Posted: 11 August 2005, 7:04 AM  
still simone niggli to come, and other guns
Tania looking good for top 15 or 16 estimated!

Show Profile  Greg Posted: 11 August 2005, 7:11 AM  
WOO HOO 16th TANIA!!!!

Show Profile  mick finn Posted: 11 August 2005, 7:12 AM  
AWESOME!!

Show Profile  fraser Posted: 12 August 2005, 2:24 AM  
Here is Nic's report:

Tsukude, Japan; Thursday

On a day that two of the world's best orienteers blew away all opposition, Tania Robinson achieved the best result for New Zealand at a world orienteering championship since 1991 when she ran and navigated her way into 16th place in the women's Middle Distance final today.

The most experienced member of the New Zealand team, Robinson first ran in the world champs as a teenager in 1989. Since then she has accumulated a string of results just outside the top 20, always with the knowledge that she was capable of going that little bit better. Today she was able to put aside the disappointment of yesterday's sprint final where erratic running in the early stages had put her back to yet another 24th place to put together a near perfect run. Apart from a brief period about three quarters of the way through the 4 kilometre course when she was caught by eventual 6th placed Tatiana Ryabkina (Russia) and 4th placed Anna Marsell (Sweden) Robinson was otherwise alone in the forest, and felt that this was the most pleasing aspect of her result: "It was all my work, getting into that 16th place". In fact she was running so strongly that she felt that she lost speed when joined by Ryabkina and Marsell, and easily dropped them on a steep climb up to the last 3 controls to come into the finish arena alone, collapsing over the line.

Only Katie Fettes, 10th in the Long Distance race at the 1991 world champs in the Czech Republic, has placed higher for New Zealand.

At the top of the leader board Switzerland's Simone Niggli won her second gold medal from two finals at this championship, to bring her entire haul of individual world titles to seven (plus a share in the relay championship in 2003). She is in such imposing form that the only thing that may prevent her from completing the clean sweep against fresh opponents in tomorrow's Long Distance final is the impact of the punishing hot and humid climate of central Japan in August. Her dominance showed when she caught up to previous starter Sweden's Jenny Johansson, one of the few women tipped to challenge her this week, about two thirds of the way through the course. Normally a two minute deficit in a middle distance race will represent several places, but today Johansson took the silver medal. In third was rapidly rising Finn, Minna Kauppi, while the growing globalisation of orienteering was shown by the fantastic 9th place by Norwegian based Canadian Sandy Hott Johansen, and China's first ever finalist Mingyue Zhu taking 38th place out of 43 finishers.

The men's race was won in equally convincing fashion by Thierry Gueorgiou of France, his third middle distance world title in a row. While he felt under less pressure than last year's race in Sweden, he rated today's race as the toughest of the three. Yet he still was a minute and a half ahead of second placed Chris Terkelsen. The Dane was ecstatic with his silver medal however, as it comes after losing what should have been the peak years of his orienteering career with a series of injury troubles. The bronze medal went to Finland's Jarkko Huovila.

Two New Zealand men ran in the final. Darren Ashmore had little difficulty with navigation, but lacked running speed after competing in yesterday's sprint in the extreme heat of Toyota City. Given such physical limitations he was otherwise pleased with his 34th place. Karl Dravitzki should also be happy with his 31st, in his first world championship, but was frustrated with both a number of mistakes, and difficulty maintaining speed across the soft ground.

All the New Zealanders running today now have two days to recover before taking part in the closing event, the relay. Tomorrow another three team-mates, Chris Forne and sisters Rachel and Rebecca Smith will compete in the Long Distance final, where hopefully they will take some inspiration from Tania Robinson's result.


Middle Distance Final:
Men (5.0 km)
1 Thierry Gueorgiou France 33:00.3
2 Chris Terkelsen Denmark 34:32.0
3 Jarkko Huovila Finland 34:49.3
4 David Andersson Sweden 34.54.4
5 Oystein Kristiansen Norway 35:31.2
31 Karl Dravitzki New Zealand 41:12.2
34 Darren Ashmore New Zealand 42:06.3

Women (4.1 km)
1 Simone Niggli Switzerland 32:46.3
2 Jenny Johansson Sweden 34:59.7
3 Minna Kauppi Finland 35:50.0
4 Anna Marsell Sweden 35:58.3
5 Anni-Maija Fincke Finland 37:03.5
16 Tania Robinson New Zealand 39:41.4

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