This was followed by Sunday’s Scottish Relay Championships at Sluie with local Mar Orienteering Club (Maroc) coordinating the event.
Athletes arrived from throughout Scotland and further afield to compete amongst the tough Deeside terrain. Course planners for Glen Dye – Gareth Yardley, and Sluie – Nick Hale, had their work cut out to ensure competitors were able to avoid the extensive windblow following the winter storms and local mapping expert, Jon Musgrave had extensively updated the areas
Maroc competitors brought home some great individual results with plenty members on the podium with Ewan Musgrave M18E (Dess) and Ruth Gooch W16 (Aboyne) becoming 2022 Scottish Champions with Adam Barrie M18 (Drumtochty) & Dougal Mather M10 (Logie Coldstone) being runner up in their classes.
Short course winners were Sue Barrie (W55S), Nick Hale (M60S) and Emily Bichard (W14BS) took second place with Jenny Ricketts finishing third W21S.
The Elite men’s race was closely fought over the physical 15.975km course with 435m of climb and the top three finished within 4 minutes of one another. Forth Valley’s Alasdair MacLeod took the win in 100:13 mins with runner up Alastair Thomas (Edinburgh Uni) and third-placed Phil Vokes (Octavian Droobers – West Midlands) finishing only 45 seconds apart.
In the Women’s Individual, Mairi Eades (Edinburgh Uni) had a convincing 8-minute win over her team-mate Niamh Hunter, completing the 10.55km 325m climb course in 92.50 mins. Helen Bridle (Edinburgh Southern) took the Bronze Medal.
The action on Sunday brought some highly competitive, fast, furious, and fun relay racing centred on an exposed, open hillside at Sluie, near Potarch. The addition of a spectator control adjacent to the assembly area brought some entertainment for relay athletes awaiting their incoming team members in the Quarantine area.
Fresh from her class win the day before, Sue Barrie put in a huge amount of preparatory work along with course planner Nick Hale, controller Tim Griffin and the many Maroc volunteers to make the event run smoothly.
The mighty Edinburgh University (EUOC) team members continued to dominate the results taking both the Men’s Open (David Bunn, Alasdair Pedley, Alastair Thomas) and Women’s Open (Niamh Hunter, Ellie Bales, Mairi Eades ), and also WO Bronze (Kirsty Campbell, Alice Wilson, Louise Adams).
Maroc Juniors did a great job with several younger members participating in their first relay. The mini team of Dougal Mather, Dara Tivendale & Emily Bichard were delighted with their Bronze medals. The older junior boys stormed their class taking Gold (Ewan Musgrave, Jonas Newey & Yann Newey) and Silver (Adam Barrie, Joel Gooch & Ranolph Whitehead) finishing just ahead of the Forth Valley team in third place.
To find out more about orienteering in the Deeside area, visit www.marocscotland.org.uk