Thierry Gueorgiou and Helena Jansson were the winners of the POM's Long Distance WRE. Facing a challenging and well demanding terrain in the best way, both got comfortable victories by margins of around four minutes over the second placed, respectively Albin Ridefelt and Annika Billstam.
The most awaited POM's stage has finally arrived and, with it, the thrill of the great races. Not that the Middle Distance stages, in the event's first half, revealed lack of emotion and competitiveness, but the weight of a race scoring for the World Ranking is different and all participants wanted to show up to the occasion.
In the Men Super Elite class, Thierry Gueorgiou (Kalevan Rasti) got his third victory in as many stages on this POM. A good one – as they always are – but this time in another “special” terrain, using his own words. Winner of the Long Distance in the last three World Orienteering Championships, the best orienteer of all times talked about his race today: “I'm very happy, mostly because it was a really good terrain. That's what I'm looking for every time I come to Portugal. Some experiences really special like today. The terrain was very difficult, very tricky, very demanding physically because of the climbing but also technically, asking for a good navigation between the rocks and the green. It was necessary to think twice before to make an option and this is very interesting in a Long Distance. It's this duality, both physical and technical, that we found often in the Portuguese terrains.” About tomorrow, the last day of the Portugal O' Meeting, “the goal is to winning overall, but we never know what is going to happen. The most important is to enjoy once again. I don't have terrains like these every day, so tomorrow I'll try to take benefit from that and get some more experience.” Albin Ridefelt (OK Linné) and Olle Boström (Järla) were second and third, respectively.
Helena Jansson (OK Ravinen) did also a great race and took the victory in an indisputable way. In the end, the Swedish left also some opinions: “I'm really happy. I did a good race. I had some trouble going to the first control, but then I took it easy. It was a really technical race and I kept focused all the way. I could run together with Annika and Eva and it was really nice. It was a good start field also today and I caught some other girls. It's always nice to compete against the best and I'm happy for doing a good technical race.” About to skip yesterday's stage and be more relaxed today, Helena said: “I can't run everyday, yet. I run about four times a week, so it wasn't an option not to run yesterday, but I had also a very good competition, just walking in the difficult long course.” Annika Billstam (OK Linné), second, and Eva Jurenikova (Halden SK), third, filled the remaining places on the podium.
Men Super Elite
1. Thierry Gueorgiou (Kalevan Rasti) 1:35:21 (+ 00:00)
2. Albin Ridefelt (OK Linné) 1:39:15 (+ 03:54)
3. Olle Boström (Järla) 1:39:23 (+ 04:02)
4. Baptiste Rollier (Kalevan Rasti) 1:40:55 (+ 05:34)
5. Olli-Markus Taivanen (PelPo) 1:42:37 (+ 07:16)
1. Helena Jansson (OK Ravinen) 1:23:55 (+ 00:00)
2. Annika Billstam (OK Linné) 1:28:05 (+ 04:10)
3. Eva Jurenikova (Halden SK) 1:32:56 (+ 09:01)
4. Anastasia Rudnaya (MSP) 1:34:02 (+ 10:07)
5. Svetlana Mironova (KooVee) 1:35:28 (+ 11:33)
Complete results and further information on the event's webpage, at www.pom.pt/en.