Summer League #10: Glenbower Wood, Killeagh Tuesday July 12th Results and Report

Post date: Jul 14, 2016 9:45:54 AM

Glenbower Wood in Killeagh was the stunning destination for the 10th and last competitive event in the 2016 CorkO Summer League. Despite some torrential showers early in the day the skies brightened and aside from a sprinkling of rain it remained dry for most of the event. With our league finale taking place next week this was the final opportunity for competitors to improve their overall league standing or edge their way into the winners enclosure. So heading to the start some competitors felt extra pressure to run fast and navigate well on the night.However, for others it was all about enjoying the outdoors and making the most of the long summer evenings. The start and finish were in close proximity and with over 90 orienteers in action on the night there was a real buzz about this area. The planner set out a testing Long course which required complete concentration throughout and as a result there were lots of post race discussions regarding the varied route options and some misadventures along the way.

The Short course comprised a fast and scenic loop around the river taking competitors too many of the charming features in the wood. The Long course was an altogether more challenging affair. The first control was situated above an enormous crag and this really set the tone for the grueling course which lay ahead. From here there was a sharp decent over a steep earth slope toward the second control. There were several routes that let to this control and perhaps the most scenic was the beautiful trail along the river’s edge.  When exiting control two some competitors doubled back on themselves as they failed to notice the more direct trail through the rough undergrowth. The next two controls provided an opportunity for some fast running before the search began for control five which was well concealed by the surrounding vegetation at the base of a crag.

Once again there was plenty of route choice on the leg from 5 to 6. Anyone who took the time to read the control description might have selected the route which led directly to the control which was positioned underneath the impressive Metal Bridge. The sounds of the Dissour river could be heard along many of these routes. The next cluster of controls took competitors through an intricate network of paths through an area of large rhododendron this region required some careful navigation. With some of this area marked as slow run no doubt some participants were tempted to take the direct route to some of these controls. Those that stuck to the paths got to enjoy some lovely running along these soft trails. The only stumbling block here was that these trails were a little greasy at times so delicate footwork was necessary to stay upright.The long leg from nine to ten proved costly for some on the night. Control 10 was positioned on the west side of an earth wall and perhaps some misjudged the distance on this leg and began looking for the control too soon or maybe it was the strong aroma of wild garlic which distracted some on this leg. Control 11 was another that was obscured by the flora in its vicinity. The planner had a bit of fun with the final three controls. These took competitors back through the start/finish arena and provided a bit of entertainment for the organisers as they watched contestants race each other to the final group of controls. There was no time to relax over the final trio of controls which were positioned in an area of forest run. Straight line routes could be taken on these short fast legs. Following control 14 there was a nice fast sprint to the finish line. This course was a fitting test of one’s orienteering skills amassed over the course of the league.The award for the most determined orienteer in the Glenbower must go to Donal Burke. Following a fall in the wood were he bumped his head and broke his glasses he returned to the start to retrieve his keys before going to his car to locate his spare pair of glasses. He then returned his keys to the starters before continuing to finish out his course! Perhaps the bump to his head clouded his judgement but full marks for perseverance.

On the Long course the Corbett family demonstrated their orienteering pedigree again this week. In theory the best way to foil anyone else's attempts to over take you on the leader board it to go out and win the event. This seems to be the strategy Brian Corbett employed on Tuesday night and he successfully executed on it. Despite a strong challenge from his son Cillin, Brian’s orienteering experience proved superior on the night and he took the event winner title and assured himself the runners-up spot on the Long course in the 2016 Summer League. This father and son duo has chased each other at various locations in the league and just 22 seconds separated them over the 3.7km course in Glenbower. Brian completed the course in a time of 30:33 while Cillin had to be content with the runners-up spot on this occasion. Gerald Duffy was another competitor who was eager to move up the leader board and he pulled out all the stops on Tuesday night and managed to complete the course in a time of 31:12 to take the final podium spot. This third place finish sees him jump up three places on the overall leader board and gives him a share of fourth place alongside Dan McDonnell. This excellent balance of speed and accuracy by Gerald also means he pushes club chairman Rob McEvoy out of the top five!A number of ladies were also looking to advance up the leader board on Tuesday night but it was another member of the Corbett family who scuppered some these plans. Niamh Corbett claimed the title of the fastest ladies around Glenbower Wood when she completed the course in a time of 38:20. Runner up on the night was Elaine Sheridan she punched all 14 controls in a time of 43:15 and this second place finish strengthened her 3rd place position in the overall results. The final podium spot on the night was shared between Sinead O’Donoghue and Trishia O’Mahony who both completed the tough course in a time of 47:18. Sinead’s third place finish also saw her move up one position on the leader board as she now overtakes Michelle Ahern and stakes her claim on fourth place. Trishia also improved her overall points but it wasn't enough to equal our Summer League Women's winner Claire O'Brien so Trishia keeps the overall runners-up spot.On the Short course it was Matthew Kearney who took the event winner honor when he completed the 2.1km course in exactly 15 minutes. Chiara Bosonnet was eager to maintain her position as runner up in the Short course league and had a fantastic run in Glenbower which saw her finish runner up on the night. She finished the course in a time of 17:04 and this second place finish knocked 10 points off her overall points total and guarantees her the 2016 Short course runner-up honor. Desmond O’Brien made a gallant attempt to overtake Chiara on the night. He finished just 20 seconds behind her and held off a strong challenge from the Brett family. This third place finish saw him improve his points total by 9 points but given Chiara’s speed on the night it just wasn’t enough to move up the leader board. So despite all three Short course chasers improving their overall league standing there was no change at the top of the leader board following the Glenbower event.Well done to all who participated. Full individual results with split times are available here.Huge thanks this week to Liam O’Brien for planning the courses. Thanks also to Claire O’Brien for manning the registration bench on the night and to Dan McDonnell and Cathal Lane for taking care of starts and assisting with control collection on the night.

Now that the competitive element of the Summer League is complete our next event is all about having some orienteering fun. Farran Forest Park will be the delightful destination for our Summer League finale which will encompass a fun two person relay race, BBQ at the national rowing centre followed by prize-giving. It is sure to be a fun and social evening and we hope you can join us as we celebrate the end of another Summer League.