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A full term of local training and racing had the Springs Orienteering team primed for 3 days of racing in the North Island SS champs.  A 5am start plus long drive to Whanganui had no ill effects or energy loss for the team on a lightning fast local high school campus sprint course. Speedsters, Max and Ollie took full advantage of the contactless control punching technology and finished 12th and 13th, just 2mins back from some of the top senior boys in NZ.  I’d challenge anyone at Springs to keep up with them.

The long race on day 2 in forested terrain on the rain soaked Wairarapa coast was our biggest technical challenge yet. Contour reading skills were key. It wasn’t a day for speedsters with high concentration needed when navigating away from lots of forest paths.  But it was an outstanding day of performances from Jed and Riley (1st and 2nd in Senior Boys Standard) and Eamonn (1st Intermediate Boys Standard). Grace in the Intermediate Girls championship race was unlucky with a navigation error at control 2 costing her a place on the podium – she finished 9th.

The rain cleared for the final day of spectator friendly and fast paced relays on mostly flat farmland. Aside from navigating small hills and farm ridges the greatest challenge was the drainage canals – do I jump it or run around? Missing the jump was harmless, just very wet! Both of our 3 person senior boys teams ran well finishing mid field, which was a great result against top NZ schools. An entertaining relay finish dual between a MAGS boy and Grace wrapped up a successful weekend for Springs. Huge thanks to Sami and the entire Western Springs sports department for supporting Orienteering.

Max Armstrong 12th, 6th (Standard), 6th
Ollie Burton 13th, 5th (Standard), 6th
Riley Crayford 1st (Standard), 9th
Jed Burgess 19th, 2nd (Standard) 9th
Eamonn Grayson-Hobbs 23rd, 1st (Standard) 9th
Grace Cory-Wright 12th, 9th (Championship) 6th

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