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Feb 29, 2008

Rothery takes win at Bull Island for Ajax, Quinns make it a double for GEN

Colm Rothery led in the field on the 9 km Brown course 37 seconds ahead of John Casey making it an Ajax one, two on Sunday.    4c01bf631c53877fd979a2ac3377e1b1.jpg

Off the back of a hard cross country the day before in which he beat rival Gerry Brady (Setanta) he was well pleased given it was his first outing on the map.   Reckoning the time could have been pushed into the low 50s his approach of navigating off larger features and isolated vegetation lost him time when the intricate contour detail of Aonghus O'Cleirigh's map was the way to go.

A rise in form may see him mount a challenge at the upcoming Leinster championships at Fair mountain but he will face stiff competition from some of the younger contingent absent on Sunday.
The Quinns, Laurence M14 and Jonathan M12 made it a double for GEN (Great Eastern Navigators) with Laurence taking first place on Light Green, Jonathan first on Orange.   Both won against large strong fields.

Una May (3ROC) showed her experience and put two mins between herself and Maritta Kymalainen (Setanta) at the top of the Green course.

James Millar, M10, LVO (Lagan Valley) was the winner for the Millar clan taking a clean win on the Yellow course.

Denis Reidy (Organiser), Donal Wickham (Controller) and Aonghus O'Cleirigh (Planner/Mapper) of the organising club Ajax produced a faultless, high quality event which must rank as a leading League event if not championship standard.

Two maps were used, the original Bull Island map and a new section, north of the original, the latter as technical as the first and deemed by some more so because of less large features.


Peter Kernan

Feb 11, 2008

AJAX Spring Cup 2008 - Bull Island Sun 24 Feb

441f6b5676394f1c71b5db78e75f3548.jpgFiona O'Brien (AJAX) at the beach.   Photo: Martin Flynn


Spring Cup Event Four:  The next Spring Cup competition, organized by Ajax, will be held on 24-Feb-2008 on Bull Island, Dublin.  (Grid Reference: O 233 370). 
Event Directions and Parking:  The event is signposted from the coast road (James Larkin Road).  Use the Causeway road to reach Bull Island.  Please park on the causeway and not on the beach - high tide is at 13:30.
Map:  The previously mapped area has been extended by 1.3 km North-Eastward along the coast.  Maps are pre-marked and printed at a scale of 1:5,000 on water resistant material.   Contour interval is 2.5 meters.
Terrain: For anyone not familiar with Bull Island, the terrain consists of grass-covered sand dunes with many small paths.  Power lines are not marked on the map. 
Orienteering hint:  Use the distinct lone trees dotted around the map to simplify navigation!
Start-times:  11:00   – 13:00. 
Courses close:  15:00. 
Timing:  SportIdent (SI) timing will be used.  Either bring your own SI card or hire one at event registration.  All participants must download their SI cards, whether they complete the course or not.
Event officials:          
Organiser:  Denis Reidy
Planner:  Aonghus O'Cleirigh
Controller:  Donal Wickham.
Course Details:
Brown, 9.1 k, 50 m, 28 controls, map exchange
Blue, 7.1 k, 40 m, 27 controls, map exchange
Green, 4.6 k, 25 m, 23 controls,
Light Green, 3.2 k, 20 m, 20 controls,
Orange, 2.2 k, 15 m, 16 controls,
Yellow, 1.6 k, 10 m, 13 controls,
Crossing Points:  Use the crossing points marked on the map.  For safety reasons please do not cross public roads or race on them. 
Important:  Bull Island is an EU designated Special Area of Conservation.  Please do not cause damage or litter.


Feb 07, 2008

Black Night by Slade

Marcus Geoghegan is nothing if not a perfectionist, so when 60 mins had elapsed with no sign of the front runner, Ger Butler, on the 4 km  Long course, doubts started to creep in.  

"Have I overdone it..some of it is tricky..there's some rough bits..."  he starts muttering.

Standing under an umbrella by the car with a light implanted in his head it was dark and wet.  His concern wasn't helped by the headlamp walking by the car reading a map,.. this isn't a normal route choice   "...WHERE did you get this Manky piece of forest..." spits the headlamp and grumbles off.

It's a strange sight..20 or so cars thrown up on the side of the road by the forest, it's dark wet and misty...no street lights...frightening for townies like us.    Apparently a local had pulled up and roared at the sight of the cars..."What's going on here lads?".     Probably expecting some normal pursuit like badger baiting he turned on his heels quickly when invited to take part in a spot of night orienteering.

The young Shorts, Ruari and Conor clatter up in their spikes to the car, grab control descriptions and go.   Tall and light they're seasoned O-soldiers at this stage, a couple of kilometers on a wet night in February is nothing to them, a mere skirmish.

Finally a finisher... Ger Butler comes in.  Shakes his head at the time and the missed controls, the one on the hide lost him time...it's a story that will be repeated. Marcus's mood improves immensely, going form zero to one finisher is a big step.
After that finishers start rolling in, despite the numerous tracks, and relatively open forest the mist in the forest turns picking up controls in the forest tricky, stories abound of the one that got away.

Ruari Short wins Long in front of Philip Brennan with Mary O'Connell snatching third ahead of  Martin Flynn and Conor Short.
Andrew O'Mullane leads in a small field on the short ahead of a brace of Redmonds and Patrick O'Brien.  Old names on young shoulders.

Finally I'm sent of on my allotted task with Gavan and Tony,  control collecting, the pinnacle of orienteering tasks.   My choice of a LED bike light as I was going out the door proves unwise... at 10:20 I can't find the last control.  Mobile phone calls in Marcus to sweep up the one in the hide.
Back on the road everyone is gone ... as though it never happened.    It's a strange one, night orienteering, you can't get it on Playstation or by pressing the red button.  You have to  go out in the black dark.    There's one left in the Dublin series... worth a try.

Peter Kernan