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Summer League #7: James Fort Kinsale Tuesday June 21st Results and Report

posted 22 Jun 2016, 16:37 by Elaine Sheridan   [ updated 23 Jun 2016, 01:34 ]
On a glorious mid-summer evening the ancient site of James’ Fort in Kinsale was the destination for the seventh event in the Cork Orienteering Club Summer League. This picturesque sea side hamlet is always a very popular location and on Tuesday evening 129 entrants battled it out on this historic site for the Long and Short course event winner titles. We were delighted to welcome so many local families and individuals to the event and we are very grateful to Sáile - Kinsale Sport and Community Centre for helping promoting this event locally.

This is perhaps one of the few truly open areas visited during the summer league and on such a stunning evening the terrain offered fantastic vistas of the surrounding environs. With colourful views of a vibrant Kinsale to the West and the dominant stronghold of Charlesfort to the East combined with the tranquil waters of the river Bandon there was plenty to distract even the most focused orienteer.

The Short course on Tuesday night took in some of the scenic sites at this unique location while the Long course with 25 controls probably had contestants visit nearly all of the possible control sites on this compact map. The planner used a two sided map to aid readability and had competitors traversing the Fort from all direction. Despite the restricted scope of the map there was plenty of route choice on several legs.

In fact with the first control located at the Fort competitors were forced to make critical route decisions from the very start. Upon entering the Fort grounds either by scaling the earthwork bastion or via the more conventional road competitors were greeted to the sight of fellow competitors passing through these grounds in all directions. This provided a brief glimpse of what lay ahead as the Long course took participants in and out of this majestic Fort six times.

Navigation can be tricky at James Fort as the changing elevations can cause much confusion but by the end of the course all competitors would be very familiar with this area and would have identified all the short cuts through the tunnels and up and down the steep Earthwork bastions. Some routes were a little congested at times. Thankfully everyone remembered to duck when venturing through the tunnels and there was no major blood spills at the Fort during our orienteering battle just some minor cuts and grazes.

The grass was particularly long at James Fort on Tuesday evening and this might have delayed progress on some legs. The hilly nature of this landscape meant that the fast downhill legs were to be relished as they would inevitably be followed by steep ascents. Most notably there was only one route back following the sheer descent toward the Block house. However the uphill legs did provide an opportunity for some forward route planning. At all time fellow competitors could be sighted in the distance and this no doubt spurred some folks on when struggling up the hills.

Both courses concluded with a downhill sprint toward the sandy Dock beach followed by a twisty run to the finish control. The elephant tracks beaten through the long grass and down the bastions were very obvious when collecting the controls and gave the planner a good insight into the most popular routes taken on the night. With so many short legs there was little time for indecision and the winners on the night needed to demonstrate good speed and fast and efficient decision making.

Cillin Corbett set a blistering pace on the Long course in James Fort on Tuesday night and finished nearly three minutes clear of the rest of the field. In fact he had so much time to spare over his nearest rival he could have had a picnic or gone for a swim on the way to the finish control! He made light work of the hills and long grass with a winning time of 25 minutes and 39 seconds. It is however worth noting that Cillin did re-mapped this area in 2013 so perhaps his intimate knowledge of the terrain gave him the edge on the night or maybe there are a few secret tunnels which he didn’t map! The contest for the runners-up honour on the night was a much tighter affair. Rob McEvoy and Josh O’Sullivan Hourihan pushed themselves all the way for this prestigious honour and just 18 seconds separated these close rivals at the finish line. On this occasion it was Rob McEvoy who claimed the bragging rights when he finished the course in a time of 28:17. Despite running with an injury Josh O’Sullivan-Hourihan obtained the third place spot finishing in a time of 28:35.

The fastest lady around the Fort on Tuesday night was Trishia O’Mahony. She completed the 3.7km hilly course in a time of 42:52. Runner up on the night was Sarah Broderick who punched all 25 controls in a time of 43:47. Hot on Sarah’s heels was our final podium finisher Sinead O’Donoghue. Sinead covered the intense and challenging Long course in a time 44:31.

Of the 55 competitors on the Short course it was Desmond O’Brien who had the distinction of being the James Fort event winner. He completed the 1.4km course in just 11 minutes and seven seconds. Runner up on the night was Claire Lane she punched all 12 controls in a time of 11:54. Sisters Sienna and Chiara Bosonnet battled it out for the final podium position on the Short course and it was Sienna who won this sibling encounter. She finished in a time of 12:16 with a mere 16 seconds to spare over her younger sister Chiara.

Well done to all who participated on the night. Full individual results with splits times are available here.

Thanks this week to John Chandler for planning the courses and Darren Burke for controlling the event. We are very grateful to Stephen Murphy and Rob McEvoy for assisting with starts and Gerald Duffy for helping with control collection and ensuring refreshments were available at the finish.

The eighth event in the 2016 Summer League will take us East to Curragh Wood near Midleton. Similar to James Fort there will be no escaping the hills at this location. However, the art of contouring might help eliminate some unnecessary climb on this steep terrain. The area will surely present its own unique challenges to all who partake. For directions and some woodland trivia check out the following link:

www.corko.net/calendar/curragh-woods

Hope you can join us!