Euromeeting 2013



“The organisers of WOC 2015, Moray 2013 and Scottish 6 Day Company welcome you to Euromeeting to be held at Moray 2013, the Scottish 6 Days of Orienteering based within easy reach of Inverness in North East Scotland.

The Scottish Six Days of Orienteering has a long history promoting performance and development through high level competition.  Euromeeting at Moray 2013 is also ideal preparation for the World Orienteering Championships 2015.

  • Compete in relevant disciplines of Sprint, Middle and Long Distance
  • Familiarise themselves with Scottish orienteering including training opportunities
  • Meet the key players involved in organising and delivering WOC2015

The competition is open to National teams. 12 runners are eligible to run M/W courses. Each national team can consist of up to 12 men and 12 women runners, selected by the national orienteering federation.”


Ireland will be represented by the following at Euromeeting which begins tomorrow:

Men Women
Colm Hill Aine McCann
Colm Moran Olivia Baxter (Sprint)
Josh O’Sullivan Hourihan Susan Lambe (Sprint)
Jack Millar
Kevin O’Boyle
Conor Short
Ruairi Short
Hugh Cashell
Team Manager – Paul O’Sullivan Hourihan

Euromeeting consists of 3 individual competitions, Sprint (Wednesday), Middle (Thursday) and Long (Saturday).

The start list for the Sprint is available: Sprint Startlist 20130723

The organisers have advised that there will be GPS tracking for some runners. There will also be other ways of following. I presume details will be made available on the Euromeeting website.


Good luck to the team,


Darren Burke

Director of High Performance Orienteering

Irish Orienteering Association


July 2013 – Summer break for TIO

World Orienteering Championships, Vuokatti, Finland

You were probably following the World Championships team in Finland on the IOA web site, on facebook or on the Senior Squad blog, so there’s no immediate need to rehash their adventures here. Well done to all the team, particularly Nick Simonin on qualifying for the Long final, and to the Men’s Relay team of Nick, Neil Dobbs and Darren Burke, but also to Rosalind, Susan, first timers Olivia, Kevin, Conor and Josh, and to Darren and Niamh.You can see some photos of the team in action here.
This is the last of the current format of World Championships, and next year we’ll be facing a new reality as a Grade 3 country, entitled to one runner in the men’s and women’s long finals, but without the possibility of running three men and three women in the qualifiers, so forest orienteering is taking a back seat to the more TV-friendly Sprint format. As a result there are many good Irish orienteers who will be denied the chance of ever running a forest WOC race.
However, we may still get more runs than we did in the past: at the 1976 WOC, the first in which Ireland took part, there were just two races, an individual (long) and a relay. We sent a team of six runners to Scotland ( Monica Nowlan, Eileen Loughman, Pat Healy, Paget McCormack, Wilbert Hollinger and Wally Young). In those days the WOC was run every second year, and in 1979 it changed to even years, but still every second year.
In 1991 a short race was added, which changed to “middle distance” later, and in 2001 the “Sprint” race was included. From 2004 the event was run every year, and in 2014 the format will change again.
The change from even to odd years in 1979 was to avoid a clash with the summer Olympics, as in those distant days the IOA still hoped that orienteering would become a full Olympic sport.
You can read the plans for WOC2014 and beyond on the IOF web site here, and also read the submissions from the member federations in favour of and against the proposal here.
From Ireland’s perspective, and that of the other smaller, under-resourced countries, the change is not a welcome one. Maybe the format will change back in future to allow more countries to try to qualify in the forest?
See the squad facebook page here.

Junior World Orienteering Championships, Hradec Kralové, Czech Republic

Just before the World Championships, the Junior WOC was on for under-21’s in the Czech republic. Again, you could follow the fortunes of the team on-line on the IOA web site or various other places. Well done to Aine, Niamh, Jack, Eoin, Jonny and Niall. You were running against the best in the world in your age class, so don’t be disappointed with your performance – it’s a great experience and one you can build on.
Just after exams isn’t a great time to have to run at JWOC, but  don’t be disheartened. You will have seen the support, funding, facilities, maps and terrain that other countries have. Orienteering is a very small sport in Ireland, numbering active orienteers in the hundreds, not in the thousands or tens of thousands, but we can still compete with much bigger countries and hold our heads high.
Next year’s JWOC is in Bulgaria …

and coming soon …
After the Scottish 6-Day, Moray 2013, events start off at home with the World Police and Fire Games in Belfast and the Mournes, then 3ROC’s three Tuesdays (13/20/27 August) in Dublin’s Phoenix Park, followed by Fingal’s Sunday Scatter Series in September. The Autumn League series starts in Cotk too.
Also in September we have the Connacht Championships at Ballymahon, Co. Longford on the 15th, the Junior Home International in South Wales on the 14th/15th, the Mournes Mountain Marathon (and the London City Race and UK Southern Championships) on the 21st/22nd, the Senior Home International in Carlingford on the 28th/29th. See the IOA fixtures list for details of most of these.

How about this?
If you want to add an additional challenge to your orienteering, here’s a little titbit from the internet which you might find interesting: the Swedish Orienteering and Firing a Rat from a Cannon Championships: see here. (Warning: If you are of a sensitive nature you might not find this amusing, or you might even be offended, so don’t go there …)

See you in September!

John McC.

WOC2013 The Conclusion + Other Squad News

WOC 2013

Those of us who were privileged to have been on the team for this years World Championships in Finland have had the past week to reflect on what was a well organised championships, and what will have been the last WOC to have qualification races for the Long and Middle finals. From next year a new format will see the addition of the Mixed Sprint Relay, with both the Long and Middle finals having 1 spot only for Ireland.


Middle Qualification

The qualification races for the middle were tough, and that was reflected in the results. Mistakes were costly, with few runners having clean runs. Looking at the GPS for the race you will find some spectacular mistakes. Nicolas Simonin was very unlucky not to make the final, missing out on a top 15 place by only 11 seconds in Heat 2, competition for the last spot in that heat was very tight. In the Women’s heats, Niamh O’Boyle was 19th. Full results can be found here.

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Niamh O’Boyle in action Men Middle Qualification Heat 1

Middle Distance Final

The Irish Team were spectators for this race. The start was near the top of Vuokatinvaara, the hill adjacent to the event centre, and the TV broadcast of the final began with shots from Koptercam of Marten Bostrom with his gold medal on top of the ski jump. Simone Niggli again showed her class by winning the Women’s race with Leonid Novikov of Russia the surprise winner of the Men’s race. Full results can be found here.

mf1 mf2
Men’s Middle Final – Part 1 Men’s Middle Final – Part 2



And finally we arrived at the last race of the 2013 World Orienteering Championships. In the Men’s race we had Nicolas Simonin on Leg 1, Darren Burke on Leg 2 and Neil Dobbs running the 3rd leg. The Women’s team was Niamh O’Boyle, Rosalind Hussey and Susan Lambe, running in that order. The relay was held first in front of a very large number of spectators who were located on a slope overlooking the run-in/change-0ver and with good views of the big screens. The Men finished in 21st place and the Women in 25th. The results can be found here. The men were particularly satisfied with their result, within touching distance of the top 20, an improvement of 5 places from last year, and beating nations such as Germany and Poland (10th in 2012).

RelayMEN Image00033
Men’s Relay Neil Dobbs celebrating


Paul O’Sullivan-Hourihan filled the role of team manager at WOC, and the team are very grateful for the support he provided.

The WOC team would also like to thank the travelling members of the Junior Squad and their parents who took part in the WOC spectator races. Their support was appreciated, particularly during the relay.


The WOC website has full results, maps and other links for those who want to catch-up. All runners had GPS tracking (except Women’s Long Qualification) so if you want to see how the Irish ran compared to everyone else, the GPS links are here.


In conclusion, next year will have a different feel to WOC, and in order to get 2 runners in the Long and Middle Finals for 2015, the results we achieved this year will have to be built upon. Based on how other teams in the same scenario as Ireland did this year, there is definitely an opportunity to gain additional final slots for WOC2015 in Scotland. So the build-up to 2015 starts now…



Euromeeting 2013

This competition is being held in conjunction with the Scottish 6-day and it is an opportunity to race in terrain relevant for WOC 2015. Further details on the large Irish team and the races closer to the event.



SHI 2013

This year is being held in Ireland, based in Carlingford. In order to give our team the best chance of succeeding, a training weekend is being organised on the weekend of September 7/8th in Galway, based in Oughterard. Anyone interested in attending (invitation open to those outside of the SHI team) should contact to express your interest.



Darren Burke

Director of High Performance Orienteering

Irish Orienteering Association


New Rules and Map Register

Following the consultation process after the publication in March on the Forum of the proposed new Rules and Appendix relating to maps and map registration, several changes were incorporated into the final versions that were approved at the Executive Committee meeting on 20 June. These documents are now available at

The principal changes from the consultation document are
1 There will be one Map Register not two
2 There will be one map registration form that will be used for the initial registration of the intention to map an area, and for the registration of the completed map
3 One registration fee will be payable at the time of initial registration but none on registration of the completed map
4 No fees will be payable on the registration of existing completed maps that have never been registered, but where the club now wishes to register them to establish their Registration Right for the use of that area
5 Maps of 0.5sq km or less, intended for club or training events, shall not be registered unless they are to be used for Category C1, C2, or C3 competitions

We would very much like to thank the clubs and individuals who contributed to the consultation process

Clubs will shortly be receiving a letter with copies of the new map Rules and Appendix, inviting them to register their completed maps with the Association. Forms to do so should be returned by 30 September and from the information provided the register of completed maps will be compiled. No record of completed maps has been maintained since 2003, and this registration process will re-establish the Register, and the right carried with the registration of completed maps.

Harold White
Controller of Technical Standards

WOC – Update

Long Qualification

On Sunday the Long Qualification heats were held. Nicolas Simonin finished in 13th place in Heat 2, qualifying him for the final. Of the rest of the Irish in action Neil Dobbs was unlucky not to qualify as he finished in 16th place in his heat, with the top 15 getting into the final. Conor Short finished in 25th place in his heat and our only woman running the long, Rosalind Hussey, finished in 22nd place. Full results can be found here.

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Neil Dobbs in action in the Long Qualification Race Long Qualification Map

Sprint Qualification

After the long qualification race on Sunday the next race on the programme was the Sprint qualification heats early on Monday. The women started first with Susan Lambe 21st in her heat, Niamh O’Boyle 20th and Rosalind Hussey 17th. Rosalind only missed out on 15th place by less than 30 seconds. Once the women had finished it was time for the men to run in the same area, Katinkulta, a holiday home complex adjacent to a lake in Vuokatti, Finland. Kevin O’Boyle finished in 33rd place in Heat 1, Darren Burke finished in 23rd place in Heat 2 and Josh O’Sullivan-Hourihan finished in 24th place in Heat 3. Full results of the sprint qualification can be found here.

IMG_4961 Sprint Q Men 2
Susan Lambe in action during the Sprint Qualification Sprint Qualification Map

Opening Ceremony & Sprint Final

The team attended the opening ceremony in Sotkamo where the WOC song was performed live. The World Championships were officially opened and after the ceremony had been completed the Sprint Final began. The womens race was won by Simone Niggli, and in the Men’s race Marten Bostrom from Finland won. This got the home crowd excited, a good start to the competition for Finland as Venla Niemi also won a bronze medal in the Women’s sprint. To make the town of Sotkamo more interesting for sprint orienteering, the organisers built a number of uncrossable fences. The Sprint Final results can be found here.

Sprint F Women

Sprint Final Map

Long Final

Nicolas Simonin achieved an excellent 33rd place in this race. His time of 1.57.13 was 15.34 behind Thierry Gueorgiou (France) who ran the 19.8km course in 1.41.39. Will be interesting to see if the organisers comment on this winning time as it was 10 minutes slower than the estimated winning time. Finland again medalled in this race, with Jani Lakinen 2nd, and Edgar Bertuks of Latvia was 3rd. The Women’s race was again won by Simone Niggli (Switzerland), with a gap of 2.59 to 2nd place, Tove Alexandersson (Sweden) and Lena Eliasson (Sweden) 3rd. Local favourite Minna Kauppi was 4th having lost 2 minutes on one control. Full results of the Long Final can be found here.


Nick passing through the coaching zone, approximatley half way round the course

Long F MEN 1 Long F MEN 2
Long Final, Men – Part 1 Long Final, Men – Part 2

Rest of the Week

Today, Wednesday, is a rest day for the WOC athletes, with many choosing to either relax or to train on the model map for the middle qualification race tomorrow. The Middle final will be held on Friday and the competition will end on Saturday with the relays. There is a shift in terrain type with the middle/relay areas being held on hills to the west of Vuokatti, more typical of Nordic terrain than that experienced in the long area of Tipasoja.

GPS tracking of the various races can be found at this link. YLE (Finnish Television Broadcaster) is showing the races live on TV, with it also possible to view the live broadcast on their website, races so far have been shown on YLE2. The WOC website has links on the homepage to the online results services, and other services they are offering for coverage of the races.

Darren Burke

WOC Team

WOC2013 – Long Qualification Start Times

Not long to go until the start of WOC, with the Juniors finished at JWOC, the focus now shifts to the Seniors who will race in Finnish forests surrounding Vuokatti tomorrow morning. The startlists for the long qualification race have now been published.

Neil Dobbs – 0939

Conor Short – 1030

Nicolas Simonin – 1057

Rosalind Hussey – 1040

All these times are Finnish times, so -2 hours is the Irish equivalent, eg. Neil is starting at 0739 Irish time.


Details regarding how to follow the Irish, with the men having GPS tracking, are available on the WOC website,

Startlists are also available on this website.


Darren Burke

WOC Team

WOC 2013 – the build up

The start of the 2013 World Orienteering Championships are only days away, with the team moving into their WOC accommodation today. The team will also be complete today when the last few members join those who have been on a pre-WOC training camp.

Those running the long distance ran the Long Model event this morning and the Sprint model is on tomorrow (Saturday).

The long qualification race is on Sunday with Neil Dobbs, Nicolas Simonin, Conor Short & Rosalind Hussey running. They can be followed online with details available on the WOC website, (there’s an english version of the site). There is GPS tracking for the men in this race, and for everyone in the other races. But I think this might be a paid service, which also includes tv pictures. More information on the website.


Darren Burke

WOC Team

Orienteering in Ireland
  • Orienteering Ireland
    Irish Sport HQ
    D15 DY62