Light rain didn’t deter orienteers from exploring the relatively newly mapped Upper Crusoe area of Big Hill during the fifth event of the Bendigo Bush Classic series on Saturday. More than 70 competitors raced on courses ranging from the 2.6km novice loop to the 7.6km route featuring hard navigation and a particularly challenging long leg through the bushland.
Australian representative Bryan Keely, from Bendigo, led the way on the tough course one, finishing six minutes clear of junior world championships team member Matt Doyle, from Central Highlands, with Bendigo’s David Brownridge in third. Dandenong father-daughter combination Martin and Lanita Steer scored the quinella on the 5.8km course two, ahead of Bendigo young gun Louis Cameron. Cameron’s younger brother Jimmy cleaned up on course three, completing the 3.3km in 24.50 minutes, with Matt Jackel and Will Toy filling out the top three.
It was a good day for the extended Cameron clan – Reuben Cameron came up trumps on course four, punching the finish control 44 seconds ahead of Henry Cameron. Veteran Merv Bendle, from Dandenong, was third. It was good to see some new faces out in the bush on course five, with primary students Charley Harris and Declan Ives teaming up to finish first, with Annie Claxton second.
The event provided several of Bendigo’s younger orienteers a final run before the Victorian secondary schools championships at Hawkestowe Park in Melbourne on Friday.
In other news, two Bendigo club members are headed to Sydney this week for gruelling endurance runs through the Blue Mountains. Craig Feuerherdt will take part in The North Face 100 – an epic 100km trail run – and Darren Eenjes will tackle the challenging 50km course. Both races start and end at Katoomba on Saturday and feature spectacular scenery as runners descend through the Great Dividing Range and then climb back up to the finish line. We wish them both well.
Results can be found on our results page, where you can use Eventor, WinSplits or draw your route on (RG) Route Gadget