Queensland runners returned to the site of the 2005 Championships – Flagstone Creek – for the Badge Event last Sunday. The map has suffered from the spread of lantana in the drought and some seemingly indiscriminate logging but the winning males still averaged around 7 minute Kms on their courses.
In M21 Ollie Mitchell led for almost the entire course to eventually beat Dane Cavanagh by just over 2 minutes. The first few controls were even with Ollie holding a slight advantage and Dane taking a brief lead at the 4th control. However, he followed this with an error to the 5th handing the lead back to Ollie. Despite a valiant effort to cut back the lead between controls 9 and 15 Dane faded over the last 2 controls and Ollie celebrated his first win in open company, completing the 11.1 Kms in 77.49.
In W21 Ainsley Cavanagh was never really challenged as she increased her lead over Bridget Anderson through every control. Ainsley’s was a very convincing performance, particularly in the middle stages where she won almost all of the splits over some very competent, mature male orienteers running the same course. She eventually completed the 7.3 Kms in 56 minutes, a clear 13 minutes ahead of Bridget.
Simon Mee began very well in M17-20 to lead Matt MacGuire up to the 5th control. However, some small errors by Simon allowed Matt to take the lead and then Matt put together a good second half, enabling him to beat Simon by 1 minute, finishing the 8.4Kms in 59 minutes. Gary Flynn came in third some 6 minutes behind Simon.
Oliver Crosato and Aaron Breed fought all the way in M16 with Aaron managing to hold on to a slim lead for all except the first control. Aaron finally won by 30 seconds with both runners completing the 6.5 Kms in around 50 minutes.
In the older age groups the usual good performances came from Geoff Peck and Steve Doyle (both 62 minutes for 8.4 Kms). Greg Chatfield and Felicity Crosato both ran well to cover 5.5 Kms in 47 and 48 minutes respectively and Clive Pope ran his usual even pace to complete the 4.7 Kms in 44 minutes.
With just 3 weeks to the Queensland Championships this event was a good hit out in preparation for the expected fast times on the new Leyburn map.