Steve leads the way …

Date: Friday 15th February 2019

A LARGE turnout of orienteers enjoyed excellent courses in the lower Gelt Woods, near Brampton, on Saturday.

The Border Liners Orienteering Club event was their second of the season and a perfect warm-up for a full weekend of orienteering for some.

Bringing fitness with him from recent success in the Marmot Dark Mountains race, West Cumberland Orienteering Club’s Steve Birkinshaw was the standout winner around the 4.7km (165m climbing) green course. His time of 37.27 was more than 10 minutes clear of runner-up and team-mate Sam Stead (47.57).

Karen Parker was Border Liners’ top finisher in fourth place in 49.24, just 18 seconds ahead of husband Dan’s 49.42. Emily Brown — home for the weekend from university — took ninth place with 53.16, just ahead of Solway runner Zoe Graham (54.06).

Around the 3.7km (130m climbing) short green course, Natalie Hawkrigg continued to impress with a race-winning time of 41.22, just less than two minutes clear of South Ribble orienteer Alex Matthew.

Rosalind Weir was next Border Liner home in eighth place in a very respectable 57.32.

The 3.1km (85m climbing) orange course was won by W12 runner Hannah Birkinshaw, with a host of youngsters and families making up the top 10 places, which was excellent to see.

Sunday’s event at Hawse End, on the shore of Derwentwater, was promoted by the West Cumberland Orienteering Club and was the first round of the 2019 Cumbria Galoppen League. Just as in Saturday’s event, the terrain was all wooded with generally good running and well identifiable features.

Steve Birkinshaw was again the runner to beat around the 8.9km (250m climbing) brown course. He was just over two minutes clear of second placed Graham Patten, of Warrior Orienteering Club. Keith Tonkin and Dan Parker were Border Liners’ top finishers, both just inside the top 20 with times of 73.20 and 73.36.

Natalie Hawkrigg had another excellent result around the 4.6km (150m) green course, with a fourth place. She was just under two minutes behind top placed Charlie Rennie, of West Cumberland. Their times were 43.13 and 45.02 respectively.

Three Border Liners youngsters who are now running with the north west junior squad had great results on Sunday.Tom Rawle and Laura Hazelhurst both recorded gold standard times around the green course, while Ruben Razzetti recorded a gold standard in the process of securing second place overall on the 3.6km (80m) short green course.

Border Liners’ next event is one of their bigger fixtures of the year as they host the northern qualifying rounds of the Compass Sport Cup and Trophy. The action will take place on Bampton Common on Sunday, 17th March, and orienteers wishing to be part of the competitive club team should enter in advance.

Details of this event and many more can be found at