Spring arrived with a vengeance and it was a glorious afternoon. The frogs in the pond were singing their hearts out. Course setter Vic led us on an exploration of Merri Creek, CERES, and the surrounding streets. He found some creative control sites – everyone was wondering what a “roll of path” was, and how you chained a control plate to it! Some of us were warming up for the next day’s Victorian Champs at Chewton; others were just out to enjoy the map and course. It was great to welcome our newcomers, overseas visitors, and our youngest competitor Kentaro out and about with mum and dad Miki and Jun.
Ian led the A course field, being the fastest to visit all 20 controls, just ahead of Peter, Karen, Jim and Simon. Karen has signed up for next year’s Oxfam Trailwalker in New Zealand, and will be selling her yummy sauces, jams and chutneys to raise funds, at the same time as she increases her already impressive fitness level. On B, Stephen scored 62 points, Phil was second on 57, and Steven took third with 56. Odin won C with 39 points, from Greg and Charles. A huge Power Walking contingent contested the event. Andrew and Peter had an exciting race, both scoring 66, but Andrew just beating Peter back to the finish. Steven was third with 62 points, while Michael and Robert rounded out the top 5.
Overall, as predicted Jim has taken over the lead on A1 from Roger who remains in second, but Peter is snapping at his heels. Lauris still leads A2 from Mark J and Peter but Karen is making a strong run for the finish. On A3, Noel has moved into second spot behind Dale. Allan is third, but Denise looks set for a late charge. On B1, Stephen has narrowed the gap on Phil to just one point, and Deb is holding onto third. I’m on top of B2, fending off Philippa in a tight contest, while Lyn is right in contention. On C, Ray, Pete and Charles will take the top 3 spots, as other contenders are running out of chances to qualify. Michael has increased his PW1 lead over Andrew to 3 points, with Steven still third. Ros remains in front on PW2 ahead of Lyn and Bernie, with Pat and Geoff the main dangers. Kay increased her lead over Pat on PW3, while Mike and Ilze are still tussling for third with a 2 point advantage to Mike.
Next week: the Berwick Springs map is pretty new and has just had a few more streets added. The area is relatively (but not completely) flat and full of complex suburban streets as well as a very nice lake area (still being constructed in the south). It will be Election Day so remember to vote before you depart for a quick drive down the freeway to this new southern suburb. A Radio course will be integrated into the normal score courses so you will need to listen at the pre-race briefing and make sure you go to the correct controls for your course! [The A and B runners will not score any points if they visit the special closer-in #20 CPWR control.] If you want to try the Radio course you can enjoy a walk around the lake area finding (hopefully) the nearby controls whilst the faster runners will be challenged to get the far out Radio controls. Plenty of Sniffers (antenna devices to find radio controls) will be available for hire.