2021 North American Rogaining Championships

August 14-15, 2021

  • Event Director: Gavin Wyatt-Mair
  • Northstar Resort, Truckee,

2021 North American Rogaining Champions:

  • Mixed Junior – We Stretch
    • Keegan Harkavay M 18 USA
    • Kirsten Mayland F 18 USA
    • Bridget Hall F 19 USA
    • Anthony Riley M 20 USA
  • Women Junior
  • Men Junior
  • Mixed Open – Best Pace Scenario
    • Ashley Blake F 38 USA
    • Nikolay Nachev M 44 USA
  • Women Open – Tango Mike
    • Victoria Campbell F 47 USA
    • Maiya Anderson F 46 USA
  • Men Open – Bones Adventure
    • Roy Malone M 54 USA
    • Jason Quinn M 47 USA
  • Mixed Veteran – NCC-74656
    • John Beard M 57 USA
    • Marcy Beard F 52 USA
  • Women Veteran – Tango Mike (see Women Open)
  • Men Veteran – Bones Adventure (see Men Open)
  • Mixed Super Veteran – Pikes
    • Gelena Siganevich F 57 USA
    • Manfred Kopisch M 57 USA
  • Women Super Veteran – Map Mavericks
    • Ing Uhlin F 61 USA
    • Sue Kuestner F 62 USA
    • Vicki Woolworth F 62 USA
  • Men Super Veteran – phast generation
    • Ken Walker Sr. M 72 USA
    • Charles Leonard M 66 USA
  • Mixed Ultra Veteran – Nightcrawlers
    • Eric Smith M 78 USA
    • Mary Smith F 74 USA
  • Women Ultra Veteran
  • Men Ultra Veteran – phast generation (see Men Super Veteran)

Additional Media:

2021 Junior World Orienteering Championships

September 5-10, 2021

From Left to Right:

  • Jessica Colleran, COC, JNT
  • Ben Brady, COC, JDT
  • David Runde, MNOC and KristiansandOK (NOR), JNT
  • Anthony Riley, DVOA, JNT
  • Diana Aleksieva, QOC, JNT

Go Team USA!!

Follow TeamUSA through their personal training logs over on AttackPoint!

August 28-Sept 1 (Sat-Wed): Training

Friday, September 3: Arrival & Accreditation

Saturday, September 4: Opening Ceremony

Sunday, September 5: Sprint

Sprint Results

Men – Map71st – Anthony Riley18:21 (+2:42)
Men – Map119th – Benjamin Brady22:09 (+6:30)
Men – Map123rd – David Runde22:31 (+6:52)
Women – Map111th – Jessica Colleran24:16 (+9:19)
Women – Map112th – Diana Aleksieva24:28 (+9:31)

Monday, September 6: Middle Qualification

Middle Qualifier Results

Men A – Map31st – Anthony Riley27:27 (+6:59)
Men B – Map36th – David Runde26:57 (+6:22)
Men C – Map40th – Benjamin Brady32:32 (+12:00)
Women B – Map36th – Jessica Colleran31:11 (+11:39)
Women C – Map36th – Diana Aleksieva36:25 (+17:01)

Tuesday, September 7: Middle Final

Middle Final Results:

Men’s B Final – Map37th – David Runde30:40 (+6:44)
Men’s B Final55th – Benjamin Brady42:11 (+18:15)
Men’s B FinalAnthony RileyMSP
Women’s B Final – Map38th – Jessica Colleran47:51 (+19:56)
Women’s B Final40th – Diana Aleksieva49:03 (+21:08)

Wednesday, September 8: Rest Day

Thursday, September 9: Long Distance

Long Distance Results:

Men Long – Map68th – Anthony Riley1:25:26 (+16:29)
Men Long111th – David Runde1:43:36 (+34:39)
Men Long122nd – Benjamin Brady1:58:22 (+49:25)
Women Long – Map101st – Diana Aleksieva1:30:21 (+37:22)
Women Long104th – Jessica Colleran1:36:23 (+43:24)

Friday, September 10: Relay & Closing Ceremony

Relay Results:

Note: Diana & Jessica ran on a mixed team with Kristina Pashchenko from Ukraine. Because this was an ‘unofficial’ team, their results were not published in the official JWOC results.

34United States Mens 1 – Map2:34:19+50:05
1. Anthony Riley42:203342:2033
2. Benjamin Brady1:00:24411:42:4438
3. David Runde51:35332:34:1934+50:05

2021 Orienteering USA Nationals

August 6-9, 2021

  • Event Director: Gavin Wyatt-Mair
  • Friday: Sprint
    • Sierra College, Rocklin, CA
  • Saturday: Middle Distance
    • Little Truckee Summit, Truckee, CA
  • Sunday: Long Distance
    • Sagehen, Truckee, CA
  • Monday: Club Championship Relay
    • Burton Creek, Tahoe City, CA

The following information was posted on the BAOC website on April 24, 2021:

“The difficult decision to move the California Orienteering Festival (CalOFest) to 2023 was made in the interests of safety and fairness due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and international travel restrictions. The decision was made jointly with the International Orienteering Federation, International Rogaining Federation, Orienteering Canada, and Orienteering USA​—​along with our partners and landowners. This change affects the North American Orienteering Championships as well as the World Rogaining Championships. The delayed Festival will be held in San Francisco and Tahoe locations during summer 2023, with dates pending IOF and IRF approvals. (The complete announcement of the change is here.)”

Instead of hosting CalOFest this year, the Bay Area Orienteering Club hosted Tahoe 2021:

  • The 2021 U.S. Orienteering Championships including Sprint, Middle, and Long events, and a club Relay event. The events were held the same weekend dates (August 6–9), and at the Tahoe areas, as were originally planned for CalOFest.
  • The 2021 North American Rogaining Championships (separate page) were held on the same dates (August 14–15), and at the same Tahoe area, as the originally planned World Rogaining Championships. In addition to the 24-hour competitive event, there was a 4-hour “recreational” event.

Friday: US Orienteering Sprint Championship

Day 1 of the Orienteering USA Nationals took place on Friday morning on the campus of Sierra College in Rocklin, CA under warm, but thankfully overcast skies. This event was moved to Sierra College to preserve the Northstar Resort sprint venue for CalOFest/NAOC Sprint in 2023.

Photos: Nadim Ahmed, Clinton Morse

2021 US Sprint Champions:

  • M-21+ Gregory Ahlswede – DVOA
  • M-10 Reed Parker
  • M-12 Tucker Rupe – COC
  • M-14 Jackson Rupe – COC
  • M-16 Ben Cooper – COC
  • M-18 Benjamin Brady – COC
  • M-20 Dan Sebo – BAOC
  • M35+ Samuel Kolins – DVOA
  • M40+ Ethan O’Conner – COC
  • M45+ Francois Leonard – BAOC
  • M50+ Jeff Coker – TSN
  • M55+ Sergei Velichko – CTOC
  • M60+ Ken Vomaske – BAOC
  • M65+ Glen Tryson – DVOA
  • M70+ Dennis Wildfogel – BAOC
  • M75+ Chuck Spalding – BAOC
  • M80+ Rich Parker – BAOC
  • M85+ Edwin Gookin – SOAR
  • F-21+ Tori Borish – RMOC
  • F-10
  • F-12
  • F-14 Nicole Aleksieva – QOC
  • F-16
  • F-18 Alison Weber – GCO
  • F-20 Bridget Hall – NEOC
  • F35+ Allison Brown – GrizO
  • F40+ Ioana Fleming – RMOC
  • F45+ Marie-Josee Parayre – BAOC
  • F50+ B. Brooke Mann – RMOC
  • F55+ Clare Durand – LAOC
  • F60+ Ing Uhlin – COC
  • F65+ Debbie Newell – COC
  • F70+ Judith Karpinski – NEOC
  • F75+ Pamela Jill McBee – CROC

Additional Media:

Saturday: US Orienteering Middle Championship

Day 2 was to be contested at Little Truckee Summit (adjacent to the original CalOFest terrain) where the air quality was, well, horrible. Due to the Dixie Fire to the northwest, the entire area was blanketed in a thick smoke plume with an AQI in excess of 500 on Friday afternoon, over 3 times the level considered unhealthy for strenuous activity. Organizers announced that a decision to hold the race would be made at 7am Saturday AM.

At 7am the word came that the race was cancelled due to poor air quality, but that the forecast hinted that things might improve for the afternoon and thus another decision would be made around noon. At noon the notification came that the Middle Distance race would be held, starting at 2:30pm. Air quality was still hazardous, but better than the morning conditions and competitors were urged to make their own decision to compete or not. Mid afternoon starts meant that conditions were also quite a bit warmer than morning races would have been.

Conditions were still smoky, but most competitors chose to race, some with masks, most without. Everyone seemed to roll with it…

Photos: Clinton Morse

2021 US Middle Distance Champions:

  • M-21+ Michael Laraia – MNOC
  • M-10 Alaric Aaronson
  • M-12 Sullivan Rupe – COC
  • M-14 Erik Fey – Espoon Suunta
  • M-16 Colin Casler
  • M-18 Benjamin Brady – COC
  • M-20 Daniel Sebo – BAOC
  • M35+ J-J Cote – LROC
  • M40+ Ethan O’Conner – COC
  • M45+ Wyatt Riley – DVOA
  • M50+ Tom Herrnstein – OK
  • M55+ Sergei Velichko – CTOC
  • M60+ Nadim Ahmed – QOC
  • M65+ Takashi Sugiyama – BAOC
  • M70+ Jeffrey Saeger – NEOC
  • M75+ John Harbuck – EWOC
  • M80+ Rich Parker – BAOC
  • M85+ Edwin Gookin – SOAR
  • F-21+ Tyra Christopherson – COC
  • F-10
  • F-12
  • F-14 Kendal O’Callaghan
  • F-16
  • F-18 Alison Weber – GCO
  • F-20 Bridget Hall – NEOC
  • F35+ Allison Brown – GrizO
  • F40+ Ioana Fleming – RMOC
  • F45+ Victoria Campbell – NEOC
  • F50+ B. Brooke Mann – RMOC
  • F55+ Mary Jones – OK
  • F60+ Peggy Dickison – OK
  • F65+ Debbie Newell – COC
  • F70+ Judith Karpinski – NEOC
  • F75+ Pamela Jill McBee – CROC

Additional Media:

Sunday: US Orienteering Long Championship

Day 3 of the OUSA Nationals was met with another air quality delay, but this one was only 90 minutes so the Long Distance races got started late morning on another warm day. Similarly to Saturday, the competition was held on unused portions of the Sagehen map originally slated for CalOFest. As an “experimental forest”, there was a variety of forest type and undergrowth/debris to deal with. Presumably the best parts of both the Saturday and Sunday venues will be unveiled at the North American Championships in 2023 at CalOFest and that Tahoe 2021 was just a taste of things to come.

Photos: Peter Laraia, Clinton Morse

2021 US Long Distance Champions:

  • M-21+ Anthony Riley – DVOA
  • M-10 Alaric Aaronson
  • M-12 Mark Fey – Espoon Suunta
  • M-14 Jackson Rupe – COC
  • M-16
  • M-18 Benjamin Brady – COC
  • M-20 Daniel Sebo – BAOC
  • M35+ JJ Cote – LROC
  • M40+ Boris Granovskiy – GrizO
  • M45+ Wyatt Riley – DVOA
  • M50+ Jon Torrance – QOC
  • M55+ Sergei Velichko – CTOC
  • M60+ JP Lande – RMOC
  • M65+ Rick Breseman – COC
  • M70+ Jeffrey Saeger – NEOC
  • M75+ John Harbuck – EWOC
  • M80+ Rich Parker – BAOC
  • M85+ Edwin Gookin – SOAR
  • F-21+ Tori Borish – RMOC
  • F-10
  • F-12
  • F-14 Kendal O’Callaghan – RMOC
  • F-16
  • F-18 Alison Weber – GCO
  • F-20 Bridget Hall – NEOC
  • F35+ Alison Brown – GrizO
  • F40+ Ioana Fleming – RMOC
  • F45+ Angelica Riley – DVOA
  • F50+ Stephanie Ross – OCIN
  • F55+ Kris Beecroft – RMOC
  • F60+ Peggy Dickison – OK
  • F65+ Debbie Newell – COC
  • F70+ Nadezhda Popova – HVO
  • F75+ Pamela Jill McBee – CROC

Additional Media:

Monday: Club Championship Relay (non-NRE)

Monday’s Club Championship Relay was held at Burton Creek State Park in Tahoe City, CA and competitors were met with much clearer skies than the previous two days of racing. But the day was not with out it’s own set of complications – a local football team was practicing on the field that was designated as the relay arena and paving contractors decided Monday would be a good day to paint new stripes on the high school parking lots, forcing a last minute relocation of parking to surrounding neighborhood streets.

Competitors, quite used to delays at this point in the weekend, took it in stride during the roughly 90 minute delay required to iron out the kinks and get everything ready. The time was put to good use however, as teams socialized and an impromptu awards ceremony was held to hand out Sunday’s Long Distance awards. Although the format for assembling relay teams and determining club championships was a bit convoluted, everyone seemed to have a good time with head to head racing and cheering on their teammates in the arena area. Be sure to check out the YouTube video (link after the photos) if you haven’t already.

Photos: Nadim Ahmed, Peter Laraia, Clinton Morse

2021 North American Rogaining Championships

Media is posted in a separate entry.

Puzzle Friday: NARC 2021

Just rolled back home after almost 4 weeks on the road – Deschutes Daze in Oregon, OUSA Nationals in Lake Tahoe and the 2021 North American Rogaining Championships, also in Lake Tahoe, CA. It occured to me on the long drive home that it’s been a while since I posted a Puzzle Friday. So here’s a quickie from the rogaine while I sort through thousands of photos and video and make sense of things.

It was great to meet so many of you in my travels these past few weeks. Look forward to catching up with you at future orienteering events. Here is this week’s puzzle.

Virtual AGM – 2021

The 2021 Orienteering USA Annual General Meeting will take place online on Thursday, October 21 from 8:00 to 10:00 pm (EDT).

Your membership in Orienteering USA helps us to bring programs and services to orienteers and clubs throughout the country. Thank you for your support.


Clare Durand
President, Orienteering USA

IMPORTANT NOTE: As outlined in a September 22 email to all OUSA Clubs, delegate appointments were due to OUSA no later than October 6th. If your club has not appointed their delegates yet you must contact Shawn Callahan immediately to rectify the situation.

Accessing the Meeting

Virtual Meeting will take place using Google Meet, Federation members who are not delegates are welcome to join the meeting and may vote their own individual vote in accordance with the bylaws. Guests are welcome, space permitting.

Delegates must join via computer to have full access to the presentation and for voting. To watch on the computer but use your phone for audio, please use the video call link and then click on “Join and use a phone for audio.”

Google Meet joining info
Video call link: https://meet.google.com/hxc-ardi-mpp
Or dial: ‪(US) +1 252-486-4182‬ PIN: ‪705 412 542‬#
More phone numbers: https://tel.meet/hxc-ardi-mpp?pin=3266043240016

The Google meeting will be staffed from 7:00-7:30pm EDT for anyone to test their connection or ask questions about the technology. Check-in and credentialing will begin at 7:30pm EDT and the meeting will begin at 8:00pm EDT.


  1. Appointment of Parliamentarian
  2. Roll-call of delegates and members-at-large present and certification of the report by the Credentials Committee as to the number of votes and voting rights.
    • The Credentials Committee members are:
      • Matthew Robbins (chair)
      • Shawn Callahan
      • Ian Shields
  3. Approval of agenda
  4. Election of two certifiers of the minutes
  5. Minutes of the 2020 Annual Meeting
  6. Election of Board of Director members. There are four seats available for three year terms. The following candidates have been identified thus far:
    • Faye Doria (UNO)
    • Matthew Robbins (OCIN)
    • Ellen Stefaniak (CVOC)
    • Gale Teschendorf (CAOC)
    • NOTE: Bios for Candidates are included further down this page.
  7. Financial Report
  8. President’s Report
  9. Proposals from member clubs, none received
  10. Questions from the membership (time permitting)
  11. Awards Presentation
    1. Certificates of Appreciation
    2. President’s Awards
    3. Golden Service Awards
    4. Silva Award

DOC version of Agenda

Candidate Bios

Faye Doria (UNO)

I found orienteering in my mid-40’s – and fell in love with it. I spent several years trying to learn on
orange before finally graduating to green. Then it took me more years to master that, just as my body started falling apart. I mostly competed with UNO (Up North Orienteers) and NEOC (New England Orienteering Club), but occasionally found a meet elsewhere.

In the meantime, I found lots of other ways to contribute to the sport – learning a little about course
setting, being meet director for both local and A meets, being registrar for national and North American championships, and teaching lots of beginners at local meets. I was Numero Uno of UNO until I moved from New Hampshire to Nevada late in 2019. Now I’m literally in the desert, and far from any orienteering clubs. I occasionally go 4-6 hours to meets with LAOC or GPHXO, which become weekend trips. So the opening on the OUSA Board appeals to me on several levels.

Most of my working life was spent in financial issues. I retired in 2019 from 30 years as a personal
financial planner. I spent many years before that doing tax planning and preparation. There was 3-4
years doing all of the financial work (payroll, accounts payable and receivable, Medicare audit) for a
non-profit health care entity which was owned by two different hospitals. I was also a town treasurer for 2 years working with a budget of about $4 million. I took them from a manual ledger to a computerized accounting system in that time. Towns in NH run largely on borrowed money so I also had to monitor cash flow and borrow as needed to keep money in the bank. And I played a major role in developing and maintaining the budget.

I ran my own financial planning business for about 25 years, with all the accompanying headaches ofcash flow, budgeting, pricing, etc. And I’ve been treasurer of nearly every club I’ve ever belonged to – from golf leagues to hiking clubs to professional organizations. Now that I’m retired, I have plenty of time to devote to OUSA. I think I could be very helpful in taking the financial systems their final steps so they work for everyone involved.

I admit my orienteering experience is largely localized with a small rural club. But close ties to NEOC
also let me see the differences with a larger urban base. My focus has always been on trying to expand the recreational base. That means supporting smaller clubs with turn-key solutions and templates they can follow. I understand there is a subset of elite orienteers, but I feel that growing our base will allow us to attract those elite athletes.

I also think it is important to attract younger members who can shoulder the load currently borne by our aging members. Partly that requires finding younger talent. But it also means the more experienced members need to see the advantages of shifting responsibilities to others, even if it changes the way things are done. There is much collective wisdom to be captured to pass on to the next generation.

I love the challenges of orienteering. And I feel it is a good time to take on new challenges as a board
member. I would be honored to be a member of the board and help to develop the sport in any way
that suits my talents and interests.

Matthew Robbins (OCIN)

I’ve been an orienteer since I was a freshman at Rose-Hulman in 1984. I currently run SportIdent download for most of OCIN’s events, including all but one OCIN A-Meet since 2011 or so. That’s at least 12 A-meets and 36 national event download days. I was also OCIN’s President from approximately 2010 through June 2018. My first A-meet course setting was the 2005 US Team Trials Long, and I’ve set A-meet courses for Sprint, Middle, Classic, Long, Ultralong, and three US Relay Championships, two of which were forked (gaffled). My favorite discipline is Night O’. I’ve organized and taught a course setting clinic with Mike Minium and two other OCIN members. I help with OCIN’s junior TROL league as much as I can. I consider myself OCIN’s “Volunteer Number 2” because I’m running download at most OCIN events, over 30 per year, and because Mike Minium is clearly OCIN’s “Volunteer Number 1”.

My goals for the direction of Orienteering USA are:

  1. to increase the number of orienteers in the US
  2. to increase the number of juniors, scouts, cadets, parents, and adult leaders competing at orienteering
  3. to increase the number of people organizing and volunteering at orienteering events throughout the US
  4. to improve the knowledge base of the orienteering community in the technical side of orienteering: mapping, processing lidar and aerial photos, course setting, download timing (such as SportIdent), and the combination of course setting and download for gaffled events such as relays, billygoats, and mass-start ultrasprints
  5. to associate orienteering as a STEM activity because of the broad range of technical skills needed to compete in and organize events
  6. to grow MTBO and other alternate forms of orienteering, including building ties to the adventure race community

My main volunteer work in orienteering is creating basemaps from lidar and aerial photos. I’ve processed orienteering basemaps in at least 20 states, including Alaska and Hawaii. I’ve given several 3-hour lidar training sessions on A-meet weekends. I’m committed to helping motivated individuals build clubs around good maps. I have had some success asking government agencies to release lidar data. I submitted an Open Records Request to the State of Kentucky that released all of their lidar data on a publicly-accessible FTP website.

I am a licensed radio amateur, and use those skills primarily for radio orienteering, or ARDF, Amateur Radio Direction Finding. I’ve competed in (or been on the organizing team of) the US ARDF Championships every year since 2003, and I competed for the USA at the 2004 World ARDF Championships in Brno, Czech Republic. The ARDF community recently got BSA to amend the requirements for the Radio Merit Badge to include ARDF options, and we at OCIN are trying to include ARDF in our BSA orienteering events, and to help make merit badge counselors aware of ARDF and the new requirements.

In college, I was a member of the Rose Orienteering Club (at Rose-Hulman) for four years. It withered away soon after I graduated. We hadn’t done enough to build the club and create a critical mass of volunteers. We had some core club members who would decide if we were going to the US Championships or the Intercollegiate Championships, and they did the work to organize it for the rest of us. Later I realized I was just along for the ride. There are people in orienteering who inherently understand it takes more than just people showing up. I had to learn that the hard way. It takes people to organize and make events happen. I want to help people understand that, and to help remove barriers to entry for volunteers of all kinds.

Ellen Stefaniak (CVOC)

I am finishing up a 3-year term on the OUSA Board of Directors, including two years as the OUSA Secretary, and am interested in serving for another term.  I’ve been a member of OUSA since 2012 though I have been orienteering since first trying it at BAOC meets in 2003 & 2004.  In 2011, I was one of the five founding members of the Central Virginia Orienteering Club (CVOC).  I have served as club Secretary since then and handle most of the web presence, publicity, and records for the club.  I also assist with most of our meets through such activities as teaching beginners, timing, control pickup, occasional course design & setting, and other tasks as needed.

I feel that my experience with a smaller club within OUSA brings a different perspective from that of the larger and more established clubs. The needs of these smaller clubs are different and how we can support them varies.

In my professional life, I’ve held a variety of project management, process improvement, and business analysis positions in information technology at major corporations where I have developed skills that transfer well to service on the Board.  I enjoy planning and can see the greater vision as well as all of the details that go into making a project or initiative succeed.  I’m detail-oriented and enjoy working with teams and working toward shared goals.

I’ve learned a lot about the functioning of our organization during my time on the Board, which I feel can continue to make me an effective member. 

Gale Teschendorf (CAOC)

  • Experienced board member.
  • Earned a BBA with a minor in accounting.
  • Interested in growing local clubs and making USA orienteering much more competitive.
  • Have orienteered in most states & outside of the USA.
  • Have been an OUSA member since sometime in the last century.

WOC ’21 Recap

2021 was an odd year for international orienteering competition. With no World Championships in 2020 due to the pandemic, the organizers for 2021 scrambled to incorporate additional sprint disciplines into what was originally scheduled to be a ‘Forest’ program. With the pandemic still raging around the globe, many countries outside Europe elected not to send teams to WOC at all this year.

Due to issues related to family and coronavirus concerns, many of the standing US Team members elected to sit this year out as well. Veteran member Eric Bone (COC) is no stranger to WOC, making his 19th WOC appearance this year but teammates Sydney Fisher (WPOC) and Will Enger (COC) have each been to WOC once before this year. Three of the six WOC novices on this years team are currently members of the Orienteering USA Junior National Team as well (AJ, Diana & Alexis with Thomas Laraia from MNOC having recently aged out). So this year was looking to be a great experience building year and it certainly didn’t disappoint.

Leading up to WOC2021, team member AJ Riley (DVOA) got a head start by competing at the WOC Selection races and training in Europe beginning in early June. Joe Barrett (QOC) arrived in the Czech Republic a few weeks later and put in some solid training time well in advance of WOC. Diana Aleksieva (QOC) and Alexis Merka (QOC) did some training at Kost and the mother/son duo of Angelica Riley (DVOA) and AJ did a final tuneup race at Bukovel in Ukraine.

TeamUSA officially came together July 1st for their official COVID tests, registration and check-in followed by some easy explorations of the surrounding areas and sprint venue. AJ was selected by the IOF to take over their Instagram feed for the day – detailing some of his training, taking questions and more. You can catch most of the 40+ posts over on our Facebook page – Part A & Part B.

More Media: Official Site | Diana & Alex Training at Kost | Team Riley at Bukovel

July 3rd – Sprint at Terezín

First up in the competition schedule was the individual sprint at Terezín, a former military fortress composed of citadel and adjacent walled garrison town. Organized as a series of 6 qualification heats in the morning and a final in the afternoon, the racing was fast and furious. Unfortunately none of our TeamUSA athletes qualified for the finals, but AJ did give a nice post-race interview for the IOF.

Men A26th – Will Enger17:19 (+4:15)
Men B26th – Thomas Laraia15:35 (+2:41)
Men C25th – AJ Riley15:46 (+2:48)
Women A24th – Diana Aleksieva22:31 (+10:01)
Women B– Angelica Rileymsp
Women C22nd – Alexis Merka25:01 (+11:11)
Sprint Qualifier Results

Alexis – “Everyone seemed so fast I felt like I had to push that fast too, slightly forgetting that I’m nowhere near being in such good shape as them… But running down the finish chute was an amazing feeling..

Thomas – “Annoyed about losing focus to 9 and missing where I was exiting the track and generally not taking enough time to look at all the options. Too many legs where that hurt.”

More Media: Official Site | Sprint Q Photos | Will Enger – Sprint Q Video | Thomas Laraia – Sprint Q Video | More Sprint Q Photos

July 4th – Sprint Relay at Doksy

Day 2 took us to the town centre of Doksy with its irregular street network. The terrain consisted of urban areas with paved streets and parkland with grass surfaces. Artificial barriers added navigational challenges to the course. The US Team for the sprint relay was composed entirely of WOC novices with Angelica taking the leadoff leg.

She started into town on the heels of some of the fastest women in the orienteering world including the likes of Tove Alexandersson(SWE) and Simona Aebersold (SUI). A clean run, but well behind the leaders, she handed off to son AJ for the second leg. Though largely running a solo race at this point, AJ ran strong and clean and was caught up by some of the 3rd leg leaders, being pulled through the spectator control hot on the heels of race leader Gustav Bergman from Sweden. AJ handed off to Joe Barrett who admitted sprints weren’t his strong suit, but he had a clean run nonetheless handing off to anchor leg Alexis Merka to round out the race. Unfortunately the team was over the official time limit, but all indicated that they enjoyed the racing regardless.

AJ – “Apparently I was on TV with my homie Gustav so that’s cool.”

Joe“Mostly running solo, just a few of the leg 4 women at the very end of the course. No major misses. Just hesitant in some circles, and felt I was reading really slow around all the fake fences at 9 and 10… It was a good low pressure way to start.”

Alexis – “It was a super fun race, I enjoyed the course and I’m definitely satisfied with it… So we got pretty much completely lapped, but that’s okay. I think that definitely helped me focus a lot more on my own race and on pacing myself better than I did yesterday. It was really fun.”

More Media: Official Site | Alternate Sprint Relay Movie | Sprint Relay Photos | Sprint Relay Map (pdf)

July 6th – Middle Distance at Smržovka

After a Rest Day, the action moved on to the Middle Distance races which took place in some challenging mountain terrain. Physically demanding steep slopes with granite boulders, cliffs with broken ground and some marshy areas were prominent features on this map. Morning qualification heats – top 15 in each heat plus additional spots for under-represented countries advancing to the final.

Men’s A29 – Eric Bone43:31 (+12:45)
Men’s B21 – Thomas Laraia38:26 (+10:14)
Men’s C29 – Joe Barrett44:06 (+15:22)
Women’s A26 – Diana Aleksieva1:15:38 (+45:43)
Women’s B– Angelica Rileymsp
Women’s C27 – Sydney Fisher44:11 (+13:39)
Middle Distance Qualification Race Results

Thomas started out with a great run in his heat, pretty much matching pace with the eventual heat winners through the first 4 controls, then hit a patch of green which slowed him down more than the stronger Euro runners who moved right through it. He finished only 10 minutes back which earned him a spot in the final. Team mate Eric Bone filmed a nice interview with Thomas after his run. Sydney was also happy with her race, losing a little time to small bobbles, but otherwise running cleanly to secure her spot in the women’s final.

Thomas: “Felt a bit of pressure and heart racing but it calmed down a lot through warming up and didn’t feel it anymore on the start, so good to see.Strength lacking, will prioritize being faster and stronger next time. Goals for future are qualifying for the final on merit alone”

Sydney: “Pretty satisfied with this race. Small bobble on 1. A lot of hesitation to 5. Overall pretty clean though. Legs didn’t feel too energetic, but no one (around me anyway) was moving that quickly up the hills.”

Moving on to the afternoon’s Middle Final:

Sydney: “Disappointed in this race. I had no flow – lots of time lost in the circle and a couple of big mistakes. I started too fast and was tired from running earlier. Good experience though! So many cameramen/drones out in the woods.

Thomas: “Mostly a pretty good race. Things I remember, fat mistake to 22 being too high and seeing some random crags…. Big pack going to 15, absolutely running on fumes there, wish I could’ve passed and kept attempting to catch people but I was pretty ruined. Nice to work as a group on 15-18 with Paul and somewhat Tomas.”

Men’s Final49 – Thomas Laraia1:02:54 (+23:23)
Women’s Final52 – Sydney Fisher1:18:21 (+40:09)
Middle Distance Final Results

More Media: Official Site | Middle Q Photos | Extra Middle Q Photos | Women’s Final Map (pdf) | Men’s Final Map (pdf)

July 8th – Forest Relay at Kokořínsko

After another rest day that saw much of the team getting more training done, the competition then moved to the continental sandstone terrain of Kokořínsko with its intricate morphology consisting of valleys and reentrants crowned by massive sandstone rock formations. This venue would host both the relay and Friday’s long competition. Running the women’s race were Sydney > Angelica > Alexis. Sydney got in a clean run before the rains began, but the day would only get darker and damper as it progressed.

Sydney – “In a normal year I would not run first, but I was excited for the experience. Goal was to stay with the pack through the arena, plan a route to 1, and then run my own race.The terrain was amazing and I felt good physically…Hopefully next time I’ll have the speed to stay with a pack.”

Alexis – “…worst race of my life. Not because of the rain or the dark, i liked that. Just the hills were seriously way over my ability and I was completely dying. The cameras gave me a few anxiety attacks, which really didn’t help… I’m still glad I have this experience. Everyone has to have their worst race someday, and frankly I’m kind of honored mine is a WOC race.”

By the time the Men’s Relay started the rain was coming down pretty good, but AJ navigated well and hung with the pack for quite a while, making an appearance on the first couple TV controls. Eric, concerned about increasingly dark conditions, switched places with Will and ran second wearing a headlamp in order to read the map in the dark woods with the intention of handing it off to Will at the exchange. Things didn’t exactly go to plan though…. The photo of Eric below isn’t a poorly exposed shot – it was just that dark out there…

AJ – “I love relays and honestly had a great time. Good to see that I can be competitive with the top guys if I was a bit more fit.”

Will – “This was enjoyable and the terrain was awesome – but the experience was clouded somewhat by me not being able to orienteer normally due to the impending darkness. … [Eric] ran the second leg with a headlamp, and was going to pass it to me, but then they made us mass start just after Eric passed through the arena, so I never got itStill a fun experience, but would’ve been a lot better under reasonable circumstances.

More Media: Official Site | Forest Relay Photos | Maps (pdf)

July 9th – Long Distance at Kokořínsko

Back at Kokořínsko on Friday for the Long Distance race utilizing the same arena as Thursday’s relay, and used a larger version of the long narrow relay map with the latter portion of each course coming back through the terrain used on Thursday. Long legs frequently offered up long trail runs to avoid the steep, intricate cliff areas and many runners took full advantage of them but some options were clearly better than others.

Men’s Long56 – Joe Barrett2:17:32 (+41:37)
Women’s Long54 – Sydney Fisher2:15:24 (+58:13)
Women’s Long55 – Diana Aleksieva3:07:10 (+1:49:59)
Long Distance Results

Joe – “Definitely the best race of the week for me. Read the cliffs in the circle pretty well. Only going down the wrong gap to #4, and then left #5 in the wrong direction without map aligned, and got blocked by an unexpected cliff... the cliffs did create route options to gain/lose time

Sydney“Time wasn’t great, but the course was a lot of fun. I just didn’t have the speed on the trails around, or the endurance… the course used a lot of rock passages, which was really neat… I like longs”

More Media: Official Site | Long Distance Photos | Women’s Map (pdf) | Men’s Map (pdf)

Summary of WOC ’21

Sydney – “It was a great experience and I am glad I got to race. The sandstone terrain was fantastic. I haven’t (yet) traveled many places to orienteer, but it was definitely one of my favorites… I had a couple of good races and a couple not so good. I was a lot closer (% time wise) to the leaders than I was in Norway so I’m moving in the right direction… Goals for next time are to be more fit (I have 2 years to get faster…seems like plenty of time) and to hopefully spend some time in relevant terrain more than a few days in advance.

Will – “I never thought I’d get a second opportunity to finally run a forest race at WOC, and it took a funky, unique year with a lot of our best guys injured or declining, so I’m thankful for the memorable experience in any case.

Joe – “Super fun time for my first WOC… Sprint Relay was alright, not a whole lot of expectations going in, clean race, no major misses… Long definitely my best race of the week, felt strong, good pace (for me) through most of it… could have looked ahead more on short legs, not just the long ones

Kevin Fisher (TeamUSA Official) – “I think things went pretty well considering my complete lack of training or expertise in this area. Everyone got to their races on time and to and from the airport, which was honestly my main goal… it was inspiring to spend time with all of these athletes, and really fun to watch them compete, hear their experiences in the woods, and talk about routes… I would highly recommend the WOC experience to anyone (wait for a normal year though!)”

So that wraps it up for this year. 2022 will feature a Sprint WOC on June 26-30 in Denmark and sprinting will also feature prominently when the world’s best come to Alabama two weeks later on July 7-17 for The World Games 2022. Mark your calendars and plan to come to Birmingham to be a part of the action as the US hosts the world’s best orienteers for what is sure to be some great competition!

Photos courtesy: Kevin Fisher, Dasa Merkova, Angelica Riley, Tomáš Bubela, Lukáš Budínský, Jiří Čech, Petr Kadeřávek & Petr Háp plus screenshots from official IOF & WOC2021 video feeds.

Accommodating Youth Orienteers at National Ranking Events

A note from OUSA’s VP for Youth Initiatives:

As we return to holding National Ranking Events (NRE), I encourage everyone to think about kids who may have moved up a course – or two – during our hiatus from NREs. 12-year-olds who last competed on White in the fall of 2019 are now in their last six months of eligibility to run Yellow. Ditto for 14-year-olds moving from Yellow to Orange. These are big jumps in normal years, but made even bigger as most kids have not recently orienteered in major events with heightened attention to rules.

As we return to orienteering, we should be sure we are providing an experience for our youth aligned with the principles of the Orienteering Development Model, which emphasizes fun and play over a strict focus on competition for our youngest orienteers.

Fortunately, our Rules of Competition provide opportunities for us to support young orienteers in being able to focus on their races, be successful, and build confidence.  About five years ago, OUSA adopted several key rule changes that are even more important during this time of transition.  The rules are shown below in bold text.

A.28.5 Except at Orienteering USA Junior Nationals, White and Yellow courses may have open start times to allow parents to coordinate schedules with their children’s starts.*

Board rationale: This is a change from pre-scheduled start times intended to make events more family-friendly by allowing parents who are at events with their children to both compete, and still shadow their children. Clubs are encouraged to have the White/Yellow start as close to the parents’ start as possible, to accept parental requests for start times for their children, or to allow children to start at any time during the start window,  and to simplify the start procedures as much as possible. 

A.28.6 The competitors take their competition maps at the starting time at the start location or after the starting time at the map issue point. Except at Orienteering USA Junior Nationals, competitors on the White and Yellow courses may be given the map prior to their starting time, provided that the conditions are consistent for all such competitors.*

Board rationale: Allowing some time with the map before the clock starts allows them some time to plan a course.  Event organizers may also allow parents/coaches to review the course with their children during this brief window to help them to plan for legs and review where problems may occur. This will help to ensure that children are successful on their courses, having fun, and progressing in their orienteering skills. If white and yellow competitors will be allowed to review their maps with a more experienced orienteer prior to their start time, this should be communicated to all competitors in advance to allow for proper planning by the competitor and their parents/coaches/experienced orienteer.

*The open start time and map preview does not apply to Junior Nationals, because Junior Nationals does not offer age-class awards.

Because kids are behind on their NRE experiences, we encourage organizers to be more liberal with their implementation of these rules for 2021 and into 2022

Putting my club volunteer hat on, here’s how we are planning to implement these ideas at NEOC’s New England Championship NRE to be held in Massachusetts this fall. Other clubs may choose different approaches.

  1. Open starts for kids 14 and under and their parents. Start/Finish close to parking.
  2. Single start, with an opportunity for kids on White / Yellow to review the map with a parent or volunteer before starting when they are ready. It’s also an opportunity to talk about punching, checking control codes, staying inside the bounded areas on the map, and what to do if you’re feeling mis-oriented.
  3. Being vigilant about course difficulty. We should design White, Yellow and Orange courses on the easier side within the competitive rules.
  4. Making sure White courses have handrails for every leg. We often assume that if a control is visible from the previous control, then it is “easy enough.” However, the part of the brain that processes spatial arrangement of multiple point features isn’t fully-developed until age 14. Where streamers are necessary, we plan to string them on the ground as a linear feature.

Want to learn more about the Orienteering Development Model and our approach to introducing kids to the sport? Try the Orienteering Development Model for OUSA Members on the Education Portal, with a focus on stages 1, 2 and 3. Each lesson has a short video and the text of the relevant ODM stage. The course is free for OUSA members.

Do you have more ideas? Email vpyouth@nullorienteeringusa.org.  See you in the woods!

Tori Campbell
OUSA VP for Youth Initiatives

Photo credit: Dave Yee Photography

Puzzle Friday: Texas Junior Orienteering Camp

This weeks Puzzle Friday feature takes us down south to the Sid Richardson Scout Camp in Texas where the North Texas Orienteering Association (NTOA) recently hosted its annual Texas Junior Orienteering Camp (TJOC). This camp is a 6-day residence camp for orienteers aged 13-19 and was held June 6-11, 2021. 19 adult staff worked with the 36 junior orienteers who came together from California, Colorado, Georgia, Indiana, Ohio and Texas to improve their navigation skills.

Special thanks to the organizers and to Mike Minium (OCIN), one of the longtime coaches for the TJOC who took the photos used in this weeks puzzle. Check out the full gallery of TJOC ’21 photos over on Smugmug. Have a great weekend everyone!

Update: Tahoe 2021

Over the weekend, the Tahoe 2021 event hosted by the Bay Area Orienteering Club (BAOC) was sanctioned and approved by both the Sanctioning Committee and Orienteering USA Executive Committee and the event is now officially the 2021 Orienteering USA Nationals.

Venue permits for the middle and long events are still pending, which has become a routine situation in the age of COVID-19 as many agencies are not issuing permits until very close to the event dates. However, permit approval is anticipated and registration is currently open at EventReg. Please be sure to review the event page prior to registering as there are some event specific notes to be aware of.

Tahoe 2021 Registration Opens

In the schedule void left by the California Orienteering Festival’s postponement to 2023, the Bay Area Orienteering Club (BAOC) has assembled the Tahoe 2021 series of events.

The event program will include the 2021 US Orienteering Championships August 6-9 (pending sanctioning approval) with three NRE events: Sprint, Middle & Long plus a non-NRE Club Championship Relay. Also included in the program will be the 2021 North American Rogaining Championships to be held the following weekend on August 14-15 featuring a 24 Hour Championship event and a 4-Hour recreational event.

More information on the event can be found on the BAOC website.

Registration for all events is now open on EventReg.