High Woods, Colchester
Sunday 6th July 2008
Stragglers’ Relays 2008 nearly didn’t happen. When I came back from a brief trip away just a couple of
weeks ago there was e-mail correspondence to say that it was inadvisable to use our original venue, Hylands
Park in Chelmsford. This was after Dave had basically finished planning the courses.
So it is thanks to the flexibility and hard work of club members and Colchester Borough Council that
we could arrange the event in High Woods at a fortnight’s notice instead. My sincere thanks go to Dave
Skinner, Dave Birkett and Steve Cartwright for arranging venue, planning a fresh set of courses and
controlling at such short notice and to Kevin Machin for producing the maps in 2 days.
I am also eternally grateful to those who helped today. The difficulty with the relays format is that
competitors cannot easily help as well. Those who turned up early to help set up were much appreciated
and again I relied on Dave and Steve to help me through the bulk of the day.
I’m sorry that we couldn’t have the normal prize-giving – the trophy didn’t make it to Colchester
through no fault of last year’s winning team.
This year I have attempted to provide times for each of the runs. Given that intermediate starts were
not noted these have to be treated as indicative rather than precise. I’m sorry that one of the controls
on the Orange course went walkabout – we replaced it as soon as we became aware of it.
And thank you to everyone who came. I hope that you enjoyed yourselves. Certainly everyone was very nice
to me and I found it a good natured event. Nearly everyone was finished before it started to rain.
Tell your friends about it and we hope to see you and them next year.
Planner's Comments - Dave Birkett
This planner's journey had a few twists and turns, a water fight gathering, changing maps and believe it
or not a traffic jam at 6.00am on the A12 the morning of the event. However, whilst putting out the controls
it all seemed to make sense - skylarks rising on the morning breeze, a swooping Sparrowhawk, paths cutting
through fresh wild flower meadows and taking routes less travelled by through woodland shadows.
Learnt a few lessons on the way and tried to get the hobby/duty balance right when volunteering to help
out. Not too much time away from normal family life. Highwoods is no Culbin but I hope that the Light Green
made you at least think about using a compass once or twice and on one occasion looking for a contour
feature. Sorry to those who took the direct route choice down the meadow to the stream junction, 120? This
route was not planned but was due to the mysterious changing map. I tried to get the yellow controls off
the path and make it more than a long white and the orange could have used different controls but this was
down to my inherent laziness.
Thanks to Steve for stepping in at the last minute to control the event and going beyond the call of
duty tapping controls and even volunteering to put them out! The Newton family plus James for collecting
in controls, that was very much appreciated. Special mention for Nancy who organised so calmly and came
up with the switch of venue at the last minute.
I look forward, next year, putting a team together from SOS to challenge the mighty ‘This Little CHIGgy’
and the ‘Havoc Snails’ who came in first and second respectively. Well done to them and I hope you all
enjoyed the event.
Controller's Comments - Steve Cartwright
Theres nothing like doing things backwards. Although I'd looked at David's courses and made the odd
It was something of a new experience for me taping as Controller and hoping the Planner would be
able to find the tapes on the day ! Still there we go. David had been very busy with some schools
orienteering and was finding time hard to come by. Fortunately though he did manage a good look
round after I'd taped and we actually finalized courses after taping too!
All exciting stuff. I wonder if we may be better going for a JK type relay changeover in future to
avoid confusion but obviously that will need discussing. Well done to all and obviously pleased people
seemed to enjoy it on the day.
|2||This Little CHIGgy||CHIG||12:31|
|12||Justified and Ancient of Suffolk||SUFFOC||13:01|
|13||SUFFOC Young Team||SUFFOC||13:04|
|3||CHIGs Will Fly||CHIG||13:05|
|9||Russell + Friends||SOS||13:05|