Mountain bike orienteers head for Estonia

Posted on | August 23, 2013 | Category: News

The World Mountain Bike Orienteering Championships at both senior and junior level take place this coming week in Estonia. 261 athletes from 26 nations will be taking part in the three individual races and the relay. Furthest travellers are from Australia, Japan and USA.

Rakvere in the north-eastern part of Estonia is the venue for the championships, which start on Tuesday with the Sprint race and end on Saturday with the Long distance. The Sprint will be held in Tapa, a small town where both urban and forest terrain will be used, including some specially prepared tracks. The Middle and Long distance races will be held in varied forest and open terrain, whilst the Relay is in ‘suburban forest’ in and around Rakvere.

There have been some very strongly-fought races in this year’s World Cup so far, and the same can of course be anticipated in the Championships. Amongst the women, Cecilia Thomasson, Sweden heads the World Cup standings with Ingrid Stengård, Finland and Emily Benham, Great Britain in joint second place – yet none of these won gold medals in the last championships or are in the top three in the IOF World Rankings! On the men’s side, current Long distance world champion Ruslan Gritsan, Russia leads the World Rankings whilst in the World Cup standings, Finland’s Jussi Laurila has a narrow lead over the Russian Valeriy Gluhov.

Biggest home hope for a medal is Tõnis Erm, who is currently seventh in the World Rankings. He won the World Cup Sprint on home ground last year and achieved two podium placings in the European MTBO Championships in June.

GPS tracking will be used to follow the best runners in all the races. Reports and leading results will be posted on the IOF website on each race day. More about the Championships can be found in the very informative Bulletin 3 on the event website www.orienteerumine.ee/mtbo2013.

Outline programme

Tuesday 27th August          Sprint

Wednesday 28th August     Middle distance

Friday 30th August              Relay

Saturday 31st August          Long distance

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