Selkirk Hill October 2016

There was a wonderful turnout of competitors today, Saturday 22nd October, for the event on Selkirk Hill. We got the best of the weather as the rain stopped just after Susan, Rob and I arrived at 9am to put out the controls and only started again just after we drove away at 4:30pm having collected in all the controls.

We were delighted to see the cubs, scouts and explorers as well as Mums and Dads from Melrose and Lauder. Thanks to Mhorag Heger for firing them all up with the enthusiasm to come along and get a taste of orienteering. We hope we have whetted your attitude for more and look forward to seeing you all at Bowhill in November.

Full results for the event including split times are available HERE

For the first time since I have been a member of Roxburgh Reivers we had more competitors on the Yellow course than any other course. There was also just one competitor less on the Orange course than there was on Light Green. The numbers meant we had to use a lot of non-waterproof maps with map cases on on the Yellow course and one or two on the Orange course but I’m pleased to say we never ran completely out of maps for the courses people wanted. I think we may have recycled a couple of maps. It was good to see a very sturdy push chair going round the Yellow course. You are never too young to start orienteering and you are never too old as I have been to competitions where a W90 was competing.

I planned the Yellow course to aim for a 15 minute winning time and three people got inside that. I was looking for a 30 minute winning time for the Orange and about 35 for the Light Green so I was delighted to see the first place runner in each of those classes coming in very close to the target time.

The Orange and Light Green courses were planned to give a choice of routes between the controls and the Light Green planning aimed to send competitiors across the path network on the direct route rather than along it. There are a lot of paths on Selkirk Hill so I didn’t always achieve the aim.

On Selkirk Hill, experience has shown that it is prudent to gripple the controls to a secure piece of tree or shrub and that meant that some of the controls were slightly further into the thorn bushes than would have been ideal. Sorry about that.

Congratulations to the winners. Ian Bethune led the field home on the Light Green finishing in front of all the Roxburgh Reivers with an excellent time of 34:42. Keith Murray was just 11 seconds behind. On the Orange course Paul Morris finished on 31:06 just over a minute and a half ahead of Colin Rooney. The honours on a closely fought Yellow course went to Joseph Kirk on 12:52 just over a minute ahead of Cameron Rankine.

Looking at the split times on the Light Green we can see that Patrick Heger was going well until 10 to 11 and 11 to 12 where he was passed by both Keith Murray and Ian Bethune. Looking at the map again this evening, I think I put the control on the east side of the knoll at 12 rather than the west as it says on the control description. Oops! Keith was actually fastest to the last control but then lost the lead to Ian on the run in to the Finish. I wonder if Keith and Ian went different ways.

Finally my thanks go to my wife Susan and Rob Cranston for helping put out the controls in the morning. Thanks to them again plus Keith Murray and Eb Rooney for helping to collect them in after the event.

Eb Rooney is planning the event in Bowhill on Saturday 19th November. Start times again are 1pm to 2pm. We had 43 competitors or pairs of competitors today. Let’s see if we can get well over 50 towards 75 at Bowhill.

Duncan Shiell
22nd October 2016