Report from senior international training camp by Josh O’Sullivan Hourihan

Preparations for an “Italian Job”
PWT Italia – MOC Camp ‘23

Lake Garda

Having spent the end of 2022 and the start of 2023 injured and not running I was a bit
worried this training camp would come too soon and at best I would only be able to jog some
trainings and walk the others. After lots of hours on the bike, in the gym and with the support of DC
Fitness Physio I was back training and even ran a few workouts before flying out. The 2022 edition of
the MOC Camp in Apulia was fantastic with great maps, great people, sunshine, pizza and gelato so it
was a no brainer to get it in my calendar again this year. Despite being the sole Irish representative on
the camp I was able to link in with the Belgian trio of Yannick, Warre and Wouter along with Øystein
from Norway. This made logistics easier but also, and more importantly, it meant for the entirety of the camp I would be around better athletes than me, with a mix of major championship medals and WOC Finals. This was an ideal learning and development environment.

I started my camp a few days early and spent the first ~2 days in Milan and Brescia doing some tourist runs, sightseeing and some easy paced sprint trainings before meeting the guys on Monday afternoon. The camp itself was targeted to being relevant to EOC 2023 which will be held in this area. The mappers, course planners and course characteristics were as we could expect for the championships. Over the few days we raced a Sprint Final in Peschiera de Garda, Knock-Out Sprints split between Peschiera del Garda (quali) and Bardolino (semi-final and final) and finally a Sprint Relay in Lazise. Overall I got some quite positive feedback both physically, running the 5th fastest time of any athlete in the KO Finals, and for the most part I picked and executed good route choices and runners choice options. The trainings were a chance to get more map time and work on the processes at paces from easy through to “technical speed” as the Belgians called it!

The next training camp on my plans is in Berga for the Catalan Sports Week in June followed in August by the Antwerp Sprint Orienteering Meeting (ASOM) and Vienna Orienteering Challenge (VOC) a week apart with a training camp in between on maps relevant for EOC 2025 in Belgium.

For now it’s back to doing the basics and working to get up to speed again! Hopefully in October I will be
standing on that start line at European Championships ready to “blow the bloody doors off!”

Below is a breakdown on the training for the week. You can find more details, splits, data,
map images and photos on my Strava account if you want to see a bit more about what I got
up to.
Saturday – (AM) Travel / (PM) Long run in Milan
Sunday – (AM) SprintO in Parco Biblioteca delgi Alberi in Milan / (PM) SprintO in Brescia
Monday – (AM) Easy run in Brescia / (PM) Easy paced KO Sprint courses in Brescia
Tuesday – (AM) Sprint Final in Peschiera del Garda / (PM) Recovery run near Lake Garda
Wednesday – (AM) KO Sprint Q in Peschiera del Garda / (PM) KO Sprint SF & F in
Thursday – (AM) 2 easy trainings in Verona / (PM) “Technical Speed” training in Bardolino
Friday – (AM) Sprint Relay in Lazise / (PM) Recovery Intervals – 6 * 1500m w 90sec jog
Saturday – (AM) Tourist run around Sirmione / (PM) Easy map trainings in Rovereto
Sunday – (AM) Easy jog before traveling home / (PM) Travel
Total – 190.63km, 10 map trainings, 234 controls

If you want to see what I get up to you can follow my accounts here –
Strava – @joshoshourihan
Instagram – @joshoshourihan

Orienteering in Ireland
  • Orienteering Ireland
    Irish Sport HQ
    D15 DY62