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Orienteering at Addington Hills

Published on 16/05/19

On Sunday 12 May, three members of the Claremont Fan Court School orienteering squad joined dozens of teams from all over the south east to take part in the South East Orienteering Relay Championships at Addington Hills. Although it covers a relatively small area, Addington Hills is the most technically complex contoured area within the M25, and its seven distinct valleys with numerous re-entrants leading down from a plateau to a densely wooded area provided plenty of testing physical and navigational challenges for the competitors. Since the rules of the competition require the sum of the ages of junior team members to be less than 40, the school squad could not run as a single team. They were duly allocated to three different teams running for Mole Valley, though all ran the same 2km Orange course with 85m of climb.

Thomas F, running the first leg in the handicap class, was on course for a fast time until he misread the contours and spent over 27 minutes on his 9th control, but his overall time of 52:28 was good enough to help his team ‘Holy Moly’ to 12th place. In the same class, Jack P had no trouble with navigation and his storming first leg run lifted his team ‘Black Velvet’ to 5th place. His excellent time of 16:50 was the second fastest on the course, only 11 seconds behind the leader.

Robert G, running the second leg for the ‘Molecules’ team in the Junior class, had a frustrating 85 minute wait in the changeover pen for his first leg runner to arrive, but ran steadily and made few mistakes, coming home in 27:07 and earning himself a bronze medal for his contribution to the 'Molecules’ overall 3rd place.

Other orienteering awards were presented at the prize giving ceremony for the Southern Navigators Junior League at Woking Park on Saturday 11 May, which none of the squad members were able to attend. Thomas F achieved a Yellow award for completing three Yellow courses within the par time, and Robert G, Nathan J and Jack P all achieved Green awards. Shields were also awarded to Robert G for his 2nd place overall in the Boys' Y12/13 class and to Nathan J for 1st place in Boys' Year 10/11. Congratulations to all of them.