Monday, August 08, 2016

WMOC 2016: Thirteen countries in the Sprint podium's highest place

Sweden with five gold medals and Finland with four, were the great winners of the World Masters Orienteering Championships WMOC 2016's first finals, that took place this morning in Tallin, Estonia. Held in the beautiful Old Town Quarter, the race had the participation of 3257 athletes, representing 42 different countries.

Tallinn's medieval Old Town is known for its well-preserved completeness and authentic Hanseatic architecture. But the historical space it's also a great sprint terrain with parks, city streets, some climbing and interesting route choices, as could live and feel the more than 3,200 athletes who competed this morning in the Sprint Final of the World Masters Orienteering Championships WMOC 2016. Nice courses, quite interesting challenges and tight fights were the 25 competition classes’ common denominator, with 711 male athletes and 562 female attending the Final A.

With more than eight hundred athletes entered, Finland is the most represented country in the World Championships, having achieved four gold medals in the first of two finals of the event’s program. Better than Finland, just Sweden, with five gold medals, one of which by the most veteran athlete present in Tallinn, Astrid Andersson, the first athlete ever to compete in the W95 class in 21 editions of the Championships. In the WMOC 2016’s book of honor, the host country is in the third place with three gold medals. Overall, there were sixteen countries with representatives on today’s podiums, with thirteen of these reaching the gold.

Finally, some interesting facts about today's race. The podiums of M70 and W70 classes were fully painted with the colours of Finland and Norway, respectively. The Bulgarian Tsvetan Todorov was the only athlete achieving the title for the second year in a row, repeating the gold reached in Göteborg, Sweden, in the previous edition of the Championships. The duels in several classes were particularly balanced, with the Czech Alena Rosecka achieving the tightest victory by the narrow margin of one second over the Norwegian Unni Strand Karlsen, in the W60 class. Other wins by narrow margin were those of the British James Crawford on the Australian Geoff Lawford by 5 seconds at M60 class, the Swedish Annika Björk on the Estonian Kirti Rebane for 6 seconds in the W40 class, the Estonian Airi Alnek on the Finnish Anne Nurmi for 7 seconds in the W50 class and also the Estonian Ilse Uus on the Swedish Birgitta Olsson, also by a margin of seven seconds, in the W75 class. In the W35 class, the Russian Galina Vinogradova, bronze medal in the last World Championships, achieved one of the most comfortable victories over the Finnish Katri Lindeqvist by the difference of 1:37.

World Masters Champions 2016

M35 Dmitry Mihalkin, BLR
M40 Petteri Muukkonen FIN
M45 Thomas Jensen DEN
M50 Tsvetan Todorov BUL
M55 Stefan Bolliger SUI
M60 James Crawford GBR
M65 Raimo Hyyryläinen FIN
M70 Olli Lehtinen FIN
M75 Helmut Conrad GER
M80 Jaroslav Havlik CZE
M85 Atsushi Takahashi JPN
M90 Arvo Majoinen FIN

W35 Galina Vinogradova RUS
W40 Annika Björk SWE
W45 Natasha Key AUS
W50 Airi Alnek EST
W55 Marje Viirmann EST
W60 Alena Rosecka CZE
W65 Maria Nordwall SWE
W70 Kari Timenes Laugen NOR
W75 Ilse Uus EST
W80 Ebba-Lisa Flygar SWE
W85 Vre Harzenmoser SUI
W90 Elvy Fredin SWE
W95 Astrid Andersson SWE

Complete results and further information at

[Photo: WMOC 2016 /]

Joaquim Margarido

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