Off the back of the 2nd National Orienteering League round of the 2023 at the Sydney Sprint Weekend, Brodie sat down with one of the weekends top performers, rising talent Callum White. Callum was 1st M20E in the individual sprint and would have placed 8th in open men in a strong field. He then went on to have the equal fastest leg junior men’s leg time in the sprint relay, helping the Victorian Vikings team to secure 3rd place. On the knockout day Callum cemented himself as a true challenger in the open class, narrowly missing out on the knockout final, but then taking the win in the B final.
Hi Callum, firstly, congratulations on your very impressive results in Sydney, were they a surprise to you or was this the breakthrough you had been waiting for?
Hi Brodie, thanks very much. I had been waiting for a breakthrough, and although I was a little surprised, my individual result in Sydney was what I was after. I felt I was in great form coming into the Sydney Sprint weekend and believed I had a decent chance. I ended up having a really fast and clean run (very stoked to get my first NOL win). Overall, the knockout was pretty good. Although I was a little disappointed in my run at the semi, the final was awesome fun (and the uphill-stair finish was brutal!).
Great work, it definitely looks like you are in form. I’m guessing you have big goals for this year, what aspirations do you have for the rest of the season?
My main goal this year is definitely JWOC in Romania in July. I would also love to go to Europe to race over there, which would be super exciting!
That would be exciting, good luck! Tell us a little bit about how you got into orienteering and your journey to where you are now.
I went to a Park and Street about 8-9 years ago with my family, and got hooked to the running and thinking (at the same time) aspect. I went to MelbushO and Sprint into Spring races for the next few years, as well as Primary and Secondary Schools Champs. In 2018, 19 and 23 I went to Nationals running for Vic and now I’m in men’s Junior Elites (M20E).
And what are you doing outside of orienteering?
Currently I am studying a double degree of Environmental Science at RMIT and working as a senior team member at Anaconda Preston.
Sounds like you are keeping busy! Ok, let’s get into the quickfire round. What is your favourite sprint discipline? Individual, knockout or relay?
Oooo, very hard choice, but I’d have to go Knockout. There’s nothing quite like the intensity, chaos, and speed that you get in knockouts, which make it so much fun to compete in.
Favourite orienteering map or terrain?
Woodend in Christchurch, NZ. It’s a super-fast sand-dune/pine forest map, and extremely pretty.
Favourite training session?
1K reps are probably my ‘favourite’ session, but the burn feeling doing hill reps is pretty nice too.
Country you would most like to visit? Event you would most like to run?
Orienteering-wise, any Scandinavian country – their forests are super lush and look amazing to run through. O-Ringen would definitely be one race I’d love to do. Running-wise, Chamonix in France looks incredible, and I’d love to run UTMB.
What food would you choose if you could only eat it for the rest of your life?
Hard choice but either Pascalls Jubes or Salt and Vinegar Chips
What’s something most people don’t know about you?
I listen to metal music.
Thanks Callum, it was great to learn a little bit more about you and excited to see where this year takes you. Where can people go to follow along?
Definitely on Strava, search Callum White (Find the ‘Run Like the Wind’ photo), or Instagram (callumwhite.2804)