Natasha Key does the double at World Masters

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Natasha Key dominated the W45 age group at the World Masters Orienteering Championships in Estonia, winning by large margins in both the sprint and long distance events. In the sprint, held in Tallinn’s Old Town, she had a minute in hand over the rest of the field, and in the long distance she was more than four minutes clear, huge margins at this level. Her runs are indications that she is in excellent form as she moves on to her elite international comeback at the World Orienteering Championships in Sweden later this month.

Geoff Lawford almost managed to repeat his 2015 sprint triumph in M60, but had to settle for silver, five seconds behind Great Britain’s James Crawford. There was a near-miss for Wendy Read, who after winning her qualifying race, finished seven seconds outside the medals in fourth place in W50.

In W35, Anna Sheldon was 7th in the sprint and 14th in the long distance, while there was also a pair of top-20 results for Amber Tomas, about to return to Australia after many years in the UK and US.

Other Australians to achieve top-20 results were Gayle Quantock (12th, W50 sprint), Jim Russell (13th, M55 sprint), Basil Baldwin (17th, M75 sprint) and Liliia Glushchenko (16th, W45 long).

One of the most keenly anticipated Australian contests of the event, in the M35 sprint between former WOC team members Troy de Haas and David Brickhill-Jones, turned out to be something of a fizzer after both missed the A final (de Haas picking up the wrong map in qualifying, although he did have the fastest time in the B final).

Full results, along with videos (spectacular ones from the sprint), are available at the WMOC website*.

*website no longer available