Jo Allison dominated the women’s elite class at the 2016 Australian 3-Days. After making a solid start with fourth place in the sprint prologue on Friday, she won all three forest days by comfortable margins, taking her to an eight-minute win overall. Her only remotely close challenger, in a good weekend for the more experienced contingent, was Natasha Key, whilst Anna Sheldon completed a set of placegetters eligible for W35 (or beyond), just ahead of Belinda Lawford who had her best result at this level.
It was a much closer affair in M21E. Matt Crane won two of the first three days (both after taking the lead for the first time at the second-last control), giving him a narrow lead over Simon Uppill going into the final day. Uppill, though, had wiped that 29-second buffer out by the second control on the last day, and whilst it was close the rest of the way, the South Australian always had just enough in hand as he took the honours by 1.25. Leon Keely’s second on the final day ensured that he would hold third against Henry McNulty.
Matt Doyle swept all four days in the junior men’s event, although all four days were close with none being decided by more than about two minutes. Patrick Jaffe was second on all four days and was always competitive, ending up a bit over four minutes behind overall. Aston Key looked set to make it a Victorian trifecta, but was forced out of the final day by injury, opening the way for Jarrah Day to move into the placings.
The junior women’s event looked set to be a tight two-way contest when Anna Dowling led Lanita Steer by less than 30 seconds going into the last day, but Steer lost six minutes at the first control to end her chances, leaving the way open for Dowling to score a comfortable victory despite some late wobbles. Winnie Oakhill’s final-day win lifted her to second after steady improvement across the weekend, while Asha Steer was able to just edge out her older sister for third.
The Canberra Cockatoos moved into the lead in the senior men’s competition in the National Orienteering League by five points over the Victorian Nuggets, although their depth, imposing this weekend, will be tested over forthcoming rounds in South Australia and Tasmania. The Nuggets continue to have strong leads in the senior women’s and junior men’s events, and a smaller lead over the Tassie Foresters in the junior women’s. Simon Uppill’s winning performance at Easter has given him a useful lead in the individual competition, whilst, despite a disappointing weekend, Rachel Effeney’s early-season form sees her still in front, albeit by a single point over Natasha Key.