Summer League #3: James Fort, Kinsale Tuesday May 28th Results and Report

Post date: May 29, 2019 12:13:43 PM

The historic setting of James Fort in Kinsale was the destination for the third event in the CorkO Summer League. This is always an interesting location with the stone fort and its earthen bastions taking centre stage on the map. The compact area and steep slopes make for fast and tough running and on Tuesday evening over 90 eager orienteers converged at the Fort to battle it out for the Long and Short course event winner honours. We were delighted to welcome so many local Kinsale residents to the event. It was great to see so many families in action on the night and many of these were trying orienteering for the first time. We sincerely hope you enjoyed the orienteering and had some fun at the Fort and will consider joining us again for another orienteering escapade. The Short course comprised a nice scenic loop around the Fort with lots of opportunities to appreciate the fantastic views in all directions. The Long course was an altogether more challenging affair. With a double sided map participants knew from the start they would be visiting all areas of this charming destination and would be traversing the rolling slopes multiple times. Challengers cross paths many times throughout the course which not only gave an insight into what lay ahead but also provided extra motivation to catch rivals along the way. The Long course began with a long leg from the start at the car park to a shallow depression at the front of the pentagonal Fort. From here competitors visited the first of the spear shaped earthen Bastions on the course. One of the novel features on this map are the tunnels leading into the fort and some may have taken a moment to appreciate the stunning views across the harbour to Charles Fort before ducking down the tunnel steps towards controls 3 and 4 on the North West slopes. From here there was a tough climb up to control 5 before a fast descent to control 6. On this terrain the downhill running is to be enjoyed as it is inevitably followed by a grueling climb up the hill side and in this instance, it was back into the fort for control 7. Another fast-downhill run followed this before traversing west to control 9 and then a return to the fort for control 10.

Here competitors flipped over the map and it was time to do it all again. Those that plan ahead would have immediately spotted that a visit to the block house was on the cards for the second lap. There were some route options on the leg to control 12 with an option to use or avoid the tunnel. Again, the down hill running to 13 was to be savoured as were the stunning views of Kinsale harbour and town. What followed was a tough climb up and over the hill before the long run down to the block house. There was a long hard leg from here back up to the fort with a visit to another of the earthen bastions this time providing picturesque views up the Bandon river.

A few short last legs around the fort followed taking entrants to a third bastion this time with fabulous views of the dock beach and Kinsale harbour. Competitors were on the home straight at this stage but the planner had one last climb in store. Following a race down to control 20 located at the building on the south west of the map there was one final ascent to the shallow depression for control 21. From here it was all about speed as competitors sprinted down to the large depression high above the Dock beach. The middle part of the run in was tricky along the sandy beach before emerging onto the path and dashing to the finish control. The course was 3.6km as the crow flies but at the finish line competitive would have logged close to 5km criss-crossing in and around James Fort. Towards the end of the evening the sky darkened, it got a little damp and the temperatures dropped but this didn’t deter lots of locals and many orienteers from enjoying a post-race swim or a picnic on the beach to end their evening. On the Long course over 50 competitors lined out to fight for the James Fort event winner honour and it was exceptionally close between all our podium finishers. Conrad Daly showed great speed and stamina when he completed the gruelling 3.6km course in a time of 23:28. Chasing Conrad down was runner up Darragh Hoare who punched the finish in a time of 24:38. Hot on Darragh’s heels was third place finisher Liam Cotter who visited all 21 controls in a time of 25:02. Things were equally as competitive in the lady’s section and there was a very closely fought contest for the honour of fastest Lady around the Fort. A meager 37 seconds separated the top three ladies at the finish line. It was Aoife O’Sullivan who claimed the bragging rights when she finished in a time of 35:29. Second place went to Sinead O’Donoghue who finished in a time of 35:47. Not far behind Sinead was our final podium finisher Elaine Sheridan who completed the course in a time of 36:05.

There was another spirited race on the Short course on Tuesday night and it was the Ni Chearnaigh sibling who jostled it out for the first place. Aine narrowly edged out Eimear to take the Short course event winner title when she finished in a time of 15:29. Not far adrift of her was runner up Eimear Ni Chearnaigh she punched the finish in a time of 16:12. The final podium spot went to Ciara Fitzgerald who punched all 14 controls in a time of 16:36.

Well done to all who participated on the night. A special well done to a number of Juniors who ran the short course for the first time on their own this week. The open nature of this terrain was ideal for their first solo orienteering quest. Full individual results with split times are available here:

A big thanks this week to Una Buckley for planning and organising the event. Thanks to Rob McEvoy for controlling the event and to Emily Cronin, Conor O’Mahony and Conrad Daly for helping with starts and control collection.

Next week the Summer League roadshow moves on to the Regional Park Ballincollig. This park was once home to a major gunpowder works but has now become a very popular public amenity. Check out the link below for a map and some area trivia.

Finally, best of luck to all those participating in the Cork City Marathon, Carrauntoohil Hill run and any other adventure activities this June Bank holiday weekend. Remember the flat parkland terrain in the Regional Park Ballincollig presents an ideal place to loosen out after a strenuous weekend of activities or alternatively a nice workout after a very laid-back long weekend.

Hope you can join us.