Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Two or three things I know about it...

1. After the preliminary entries' deadline, last 31st January, there are 98 athletes who expressed their interest in participating in the European Mountain Bike Orienteering Championships EMTBOC 2015, to be held in Idanha-a-Nova, Portugal, from 7th to 14th June. Russia, with 13 athletes entered, Finland with 12, Czech Republic and Denmark with 10 and Austria, Sweden and Portugal with 9 athletes entered each, are the most represented countries in a list that also includes, for the moment, the Great Britain, Germany, Italy, Lithuania, Norway, Spain and Switzerland. Parallel to the EMTBOC 2015, will be held the European Junior Mountain Bike Orienteering Championships EJMTBOC 2015, the European Youth Mountain Bike Orienteering Championships EYMTBOC 2015 and still the World Masters Mountain Bike Orienteering Championships WMMTBOC 2015, with a total of 220 athletes entered until now in all three competitions. Everything to follow at http://mtbo15.fpo.pt/index.php/en/.

2. With the echoes of the recent European Championships still sounding, the “tribe” of Ski Orienteering leaves Lenzerheide, in Switzerland, moving 2000 kilometers to north. Birthplace of the great Norwegian artist Edvard Munch, Løten and its region welcome the World Ski Orienteering Championships WSOC 2015, calling the attentions throughout the week. The competitive program starts already today with the dispute of the Mixed Sprint Relay's world title, which is owned by Sweden. The Sprint Final and the Long Distance Final will be held on Wednesday and Thursday, while Saturday and Sunday will be disputed the world titles of Middle Distance and Relay. Great names of the European Championships 2015, Stanimir Belomazhev, Erik Rost and Andrey Lamov in the men elite class, and Iuliia Tarasenko, Tatyana Oborina and Mervi Pesu, between the women, receive the largest quote of favouritism with regard to the conquest of gold. But names such as Josefine Engström, Tove Alexandersson, Hana Hancikova, Hans Jørgen Kvale, Christian Spoerry, Andreas Holmberg, Oyvind Watterdal and some others are able to contradict the forecast. It should be noted that, simultaneously with the WSOC 2015, will take place the Junior World Ski Orienteering Championship JWSOC 2015 and the European Youth Ski Orienteering Championship EYSOC 2015. To know more, please visit the event's webpage at http://www.orientering.no/ski-o-vm2015/.

3. European Town of Sport in 2013, La Nucía (Alicante, Spain) hosted last weekend the opening stage of the Spanish Foot Orienteering League 2015. Organized by CO Sant Joan, the XIV Trofeo International Costa Blanca de Orientación attracted a total of 802 participants representing 11 countries. Scoring for the IOF's World Ranking, the Middle Distance stage the filled the program of the first day of competition had in the Spanish Antonio Martínez Pérez and the Czech Jana Knapova the big winners. The event ended with a Long Distance stage, on second day, which saw the Swedish Jonas Leandersson and the Russian Svetlana Mironova win by very large margins. As a direct consequence of the second stage results, Jonas Leandersson won the Trophy in the Men Elite class with a total time of 1:55:40, against 1:59:39 of Roger Casal Fernandez and 2:03:46 of Ralph Street, respectively second and third placed. In the Women Elite class, Svetlana Mironova was the winner with a time of 1:57:04, with Léa Vercellotti and Jana Knapova occupying the following positions with more 1:51 and 3:27 than the winner. The best Spanish athlete was Violet Feliciano Sanjuan, occupying the fourth position with a time 2:15:12. Full results and other information at http://www.wre2015lanucia.clubosantjoan.com/es/.

4. A week after their triumphs in Norte Alentejano O' Meeting 2015, Oleksandr Kratov and Nadiya Volynska showed again at the highest level against an interesting number of strong competitors, winning the 3rd International Orienteering Meeting of Idanha-a-Nova. Scoring for the Vitalis Portugal Cup in Foot Orienteering 2015, the event attracted the attention of 405 athletes from 17 different nations, in what can be considered as a return to the magnificent terrains of Cidral, the same where, in 2013, took place the second half of the Portugal O' Meeting. In the Middle Distance WRE stage, in the first day of the event's program, the Bulgarian Kiril Nikolov was the fastest in the Men Elite class, beating by a narrow margin the Ukrainian Oleksandr Kratov and the Swedish David Andersson. On the second day everything was different and Kratov was unstoppable, winning the Long Distance stage and rising to the highest place of the Meeting's podium, followed by David Andersson and Kiril Nikolov. In the women, Nadiya Volynska surmounted the competition, winning both stages by comfortable margins and ending with another victory in Portugal. In the second and third positions in the overall standings classified the Russian Yulia Novikova and the Ukrainian Olha Panchenko. The full results can be watched at http://meeting2015en.weebly.com/.

Joaquim Margarido

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