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Orienteering at Balcombe

Published on 13/03/18

Steep wooded slopes strewn with large boulders and rocky crags are topographical features rarely encountered in this part of the country, but they can be found occasionally in places like the Balcombe Estate on the shore of picturesque Ardingly Reservoir to the south east of Crawley. This sort of terrain provides demanding physical and navigational challenges that sort out the really strong orienteers and string out the field, which is why Balcombe was chosen for the regional heat of the inter-club Compass Sport Trophy competition. The competition is not open to schools, so the three members of the Claremont Fan Court School orienteering squad who took part were, on this occasion, running in the colours of Mole Valley Orienteering Club.

Despite finding it very hard work, the Claremont Fan Court boys acquitted themselves creditably. On the Junior Men’s Green Course, Alexander O was 9th in a time of 76:40, only a few seconds behind Nathan J who was 8th in 76:13. Jack P had a very good run on the shorter Orange Course to come 5th in 19:01. Sadly, with Guildford Orienteers taking first place by the tiny margin of 8 points, the boys’ efforts were not quite enough to enable Mole Valley to win the heat and progress to the national final, but they certainly made a valiant contribution and the club was very appreciative.