Orienteering race (World Cup) 41:14  **** 5.1 km (8:05 / km) +285m 6:19 / km
Middle - Chase, The Slump.
Having finished 13th in the morning I just missed out on scoring some bonus seconds. So when it came to the chase I felt very much like the bunny in front of the greyhounds, with 7 starting within 60 seconds behind me. With no forking, it was never really going to be my day.
By the first control there were a few others around me and by the third they were all nearly in front of me. I ran in the pack and then slightly off the back of the pack through 4 & 5, but was losing touch to c6. Was thinking at this stage what a stupid kind of race I was in but tried to push those thoughts away and concentrate a bit more instead. Out of c6 it was pretty steep and I lost contact with other runners; I hesitated into the control and got it just as Tess appeared (she had been in the pack with me). We went around to c8 but maybe this was a bit slower than going straight. I got c9 and then Tess got c10 (after we wasted a bit of time crossing a fence - Tess stuck in the fence and me unable to tread onto the fence without squashing Tess :s). Running to c11 I could see the pack a long way ahead, just about at the control. I got c11 and then around to c12. It was really steep out of c12 and I was really feeling it now. Tess got c13 - the map change, and then c14. Just nearing c14 the wind whipped my control descriptions out from my holder and they blew away - I found it a bit disconcerting but then realised I still had my map and could carry on! I got c15 a bit behind Tess and saw she was going around the hill to c16. I decided to go over for something different and got it ok with no Tess in sight, so ran hard(ish - under the conditions!) up to c17. Then I chose a route to c18 which involved ascending the steepest of steep hills and while labouring up here I saw two Swedes and Tess contouring around below me! I dug in and came over the top of the hill. The first Swede had stopped and was unsure. My line in was better and I ran straight to the control, with the others punching just after. While completing my sub-optimal route to c18 and seeing that I might be in a tight race to the last control, I had taken a quick glance at the map and decided to go right of the line to the last control. I didn’t even look closely at the left route; I just saw that right was suitable and that I would take it. So after punching c18 I ran out across the bumps to the track and as I looked left I saw the Swedes, Tess and Piret all making their way along the other side of the depression! I thought I had taken the bad route so I pushed on hard past the pre-start and start, cutting down to the last control just as the first Swede came into sight. I was a few seconds up so I held on to the finish. Apparently I was one of only two runners in the race to take the right route to the last control, and it looked from the spectator’s point of view as though I might have just overtaken a small pack with my route choice. While I didn’t overtake them - I wouldn’t have fancied myself in a sprint finish with those four, and so I think it was the right choice for me :) I finished in 18th place and fairly shattered.