Bit slack on updating this but anyway….
This year I booked a flight direct from Christchurch to Napier for Sprint the Bay…after last year. My flights had me go through Wellington, only when I got to Wellington I found my flight to Napier was cancelled and the only way I was going to get to Napier that night was to go via Christchurch! So my midday flight to Napier went very smoothly and I arrived in the Sunny Hawkes Bay…
I got my tent up just in time before the rain hit and it continued all weekend. Luckly the first race at Frimley was relatively dry but I was more than bit rusty on the Orienteering and made a bit of a hash of it! Some analysis that evening showed I had the speed…which I was previously worried that I wouldn’t have but was just letting myself down with unnecessary “admin” type mistakes.
Next Morning the rain lifted in time for the first sprint out at Te Aute College. I had my best run of the weekend and made only two very minor errors costing me less than 30sec all up. Next race of the day was at an old Mental Hospital in quite a cool little patch of forest. I made two mistakes early on and was caught up by Karl who started a minute behind. I made a further few mistakes in the forest and my Southerly Storm team-mate Carsten got one back over me. Again the rain cleared just in time for the race….but by the time 6pm rolled round and we were out to Te Mata peak the rain began to pour down….it was just like a southerly down in the south. I got away to an ok start but was soon caught by Rasmuss and soon after we caught Bryn. The rest of the race was a bit of a blur because it was just control after control at super high-speed with three of us in a pack. Later in the course we made a mistake and were caught by the fast running Julian Dent who came flying past me and Karl who snuck in behind. The next 3 mins were some of the most exciting intense orienteering through the downhill forest!
The rain kept it up and it bucketed down all night and through to the next day….so today we started ankle-deep in water and finished ankle-deep in water. I took a poor route choice as I didn’t have any attackpoints to come in off the road and went down an unmarked driveway by accident. I lost 50 sec and the initiative…I did however switch on the speed and ran really had to pull me back into a respectable place. Unfortunately the afternoon and final race was no better, the rain did not let up and the navigation was tight and fast which did not suit my current state of mind….I had a shocker of a run and just scraped through to keep 7th place overall in the competition. I finished a little disappointed as I had the ability to keep 5th place that I had overnight and just let it all go out the window by getting a bit carried away and not focusing on the task at hand!
Anyway as the rain settled in and continued to pour down I became worried I wouldn’t be able to fly out of Napier due to low cloud…but the rain stayed just far enough away to allow me to get out. It was a really cool weekend of racing, 6 sprint races in close succession. The body held up well, the mind suffered a little and I came away a little disappointed but at the end of the day it’s all experience…experience is the key to achieving your goals be that good or bad experience!