It was our biggest undertaking since 1985 – an Australian Championship and World Ranking Event. The transformation of an ordinary school campus in Ballarat began at 7am when Ian began placing controls and I taped off out of bounds areas. By 9am the volunteer army had started to arrive, and were soon busy erecting tents, creating the finish chute, map changeover and start areas. The TV screens and commentary gear were next. By 11.30 things were hectic – the controller was checking the courses, and competitors were starting to arrive. The first competitors – a small group of DROC volunteers – went out on the course at 12.30, and the rest of us held our collective breath as we waited to see if everything worked. The elites were watching too, eager for a clue before their own starts 30 minutes later.
At 1pm on the dot the event got under way, and for the next 3-4 hours it was intense! Starts every minute meant a congested course, with competitors coming through the map change, and into the finish, every few seconds. Traffic management was vital, and no-one could afford to lose focus.
The arena was fantastic. Instant results were displayed on 6 large screens. Spectators crowded onto the terraces to watch the action from every vantage point, including the commentary balcony. Competitors did not disappoint, with many hurdling the fence onto the oval for the map change. Any mistakes here were in full view of the crowd! The Ballarat Courier and WinTV both got great footage, featuring Ian Dodd and Lanita Steer. For those wanting a more relaxed time, the grassy area, complete with O-shops, coffee van, and the colourful Schools tents, had a picnic race day feel. The weather was perfect, and most people stayed right through to the presentations.
The day was flawless, thanks to the DROC crew who performed above and beyond. expectations. Click here for photos from the day.
Besides organising two “world class” events, we all found time to compete, and some of us managed top five finishes, personal bests, and podium places!
- Victorian Middle Distance: Asha Steer 3rd W20E; Merv Bendle 2nd Mens Open B
- Australian Middle Distance: Lanita Steer 4th W20E
- Schools Sprint: Asha Steer 4th Senior Girls
- Schools Individual: Asha Steer 3rd Senior Girls (and named in the All Australian Team)
- Public Race: Lanita Steer 3rd Womens B
- World Series StreetO: Ian Dodd 2nd A Course
- Australian Sprint Distance: Asha Steer 4th W20E; Lanita Steer 5th W20E; Martin Steer 5th M50A, Ian Davies 5th M55A
- Australian Long Distance: Lanita Steer 2nd W20E; Merv Bendle 3rd Mens Open B; Asha Steer 4th W20E; Debbie Dodd 5th W55AS
- Australian Relays: Asha and Lanita Steer 2nd W20E; Debbie Dodd 1st W45B
Lanita Steer won the National League trophy in Junior Women; Asha and Lanita were an integral part of the 2nd placed Victorian Nuggets Junior Womens team.
Click on the Gallery page to see photos from the Carnival.
DROC were the instigators and organisers of the inaugural World Series StreetO Challenge, held in Ballarat as part of the Australian Champs carnival. Over 160 competitors took part, taking to the nearby streets, lanes, parks and university campus in a haed to head battle between States, and internationals from NZ, Hong Kong and Noumea.
The course was set by Ilze Yeates and Tina Smith, with Vic Sedunary as advisor. Starting from White Flat Oval, we fanned out in all directions. The Yarrowee River restricted options so most chose to cross it quickly and get into the main section of the map. Others headed for the adjacent School of Mines where 5 controls beckoned – the blowup map was certainly a great help in there! A number of historical features were chosen as control sites, adding interest.
The winning team was Victoria 1 (Bayside and Bendigo), with Victoria 2 (DROC and Eureka) 6th. Best placed individual for DR was Ian Dodd, who was second on A course.
Photos were taken by Orienteering Australia’s John Harding. More photos can be found here:
We’re a versatile bunch here at DROC – our club members love all forms of orienteering, from park and street, to sprint, bush, and mountain bike. The hugely popular MelbushO events are a particular favourite – in fact at Eltham Lower Park recently, we had the biggest showing of any club! Check out our Photo Gallery to see DROC members in action at MelbushO events in 2015.
MelBushO will be back in 2016. In the meantime, you have several options to continue orienteering in coming months:
Head to Ballarat – the Australian Championships Carnival offers Enter on the Day options for eight events, from Saturday September 26 to Saturday October 3. There are five events in the forest, two Sprints, and a StreetO Challenge. You can choose a Hard, Moderate, or Easy course, and pay at Registration. Visit the carnival website for more information. All the EOD information will be included in the Carnival Program, to be published mid September.
Sprint Into Spring – our popular Sprint series is back! Saturday afternoons in October and November will have you competing in parks and campuses around Melbourne. Choose any one of three courses and get amongst the action! Visit the website: www.parkstreeto.com.au/sprint/
Stay fit over summer – try one or more of our Park and Street series. We have events all over Melbourne, four evenings a week, from mid October to mid March.
Join our club – the best way to keep in touch with orienteering, find out what’s happening, meet new people and get involved. One low fee provides membership to DROC, and to Orienteering Victoria.
What a terrific day we had at Hawkestowe Park on July 19! An early start for our course setters and helpers – the grass was frosted white, and the puddles had iced over, but the sun was shining. The event drew the usual large crowd, with a mix of experienced orienteers, newcomers, and kids. We haven’t used this park much and it really is a great place to be out with a map in hand.
Courses were set by Ian and Sarah. They were interesting and varied with some fast open running, some tricky technical contour features, and some places where those contour lines were pretty close together. We (wisely) decided to leave the river crossings for another day after all the rain in the preceding days!
Results Splits Photos
DROC did very well, with A course won by Pres Pete, and 5 of the top 10 were club members. Jen and the kids won the D course.
Sarah was very busy all day assisting newcomers, helping with registration, and manning the finish computer and printing results. She had plenty of other assistants – thanks to all the club members who came along and supported the day.
Click to enlarge:
We had a very good turnout for the return to Belltopper, with all courses this year being set on the west side of Taradale Road. Set by our JWOC rep Lanita Steer, the courses challenged everyone and received great feedback. The terrain was mainly open spur-gully with some scattered rock and erosion gullies, and plenty of regrowth had sprung up in recent months to add another level of difficulty.
The event was the final selection race for the Victorian Schools team, which will travel to the Australian Schools Championships in Ballarat in September. Aspirants including DROC juniors Asha Steer and Sarah Davies were racing hard to secure their places on the team – and they have been successful! Asha was first overall on course 3, while Sarah was second on course 6. Our other placegetter was Peter Yeates on course 5 (but he is not eligible for junior selection!)
The event ran very smoothly thanks to the hardworking DROC team, and the JWOC Jam fundraising was a great success, with over 100 jars of jam sold! We’ll be able to provide funding to Lanita, Asha and Sarah as they represent us at National and State level.
Our next Sunday event will be at Hawkestowe Park, Plenty, on July 19. Meanwhile, follow Lanita at JWOC: http://www.jwoc2015.org/
Our blue-ribbon State Champs were held this weekend in Bendigo. They were preceded by a sprint race on Saturday, which was great fun and an excellent warmup for the main event. The forest was fast and open with numerous tracks, resulting in some swift finish times. Eight of the 14 competing DROC members made it onto the podium –
First: Sarah Davies and Asha Steer (both performing very well in the Vic Schools Team selection trial)
Second: Janine Steer, Martin Steer (only 20 seconds off first), Peter Yeates and Debbie Dodd
Third: Lanita Steer (running “up” in W21) and Ian Davies
Honorable mentions: Ian Dodd and Peter Dalwood were both edged into fourth. Peter Hobbs was a very creditable 5th in a strong M21 field.
Check the Gallery for some great photos of DROC members enjoying MelBushO!
Dandenong Ranges Orienteering Club welcomes you to our new website! Read our latest news, check out the photos, and find out which events are coming up.