Friday, December 26, 2014

Presents open- What's next?

Well Santa has been, presents open, titanic battles with Christmas tucker completed. All that is now left is a traditional day watching the Boxing Day cricket.

Well almost.

With Christmas done and dusted many Uringans are looking forward to the Xmas 5 Days. For the first time ever the event is being run in Sydney.  Entries are high with a top of 360 runners at Cockatoo Island and an average entry around 270 a day. Uringa on average has 24 runners each day.

Day 1 is a long sprint in the scenic surrounds of Georges Head. The views of the harbour from here are absolutely stunning. Day 2 is a sprint on Cockatoo Island. No parking worries here as you must come be water transport. This will be interesting as there are road tunnels, stairways and huge buildings as well as a vast variety of ship building debris.
Day 3 see a return to the Summer Series format at Pyrmont. Great venue and great houses of coffee. Day 4 is a traditional bush event at Lapstone and finally Day 5 is Uringa's event the Ultra-sprint at Kippax Lake directly across the road from the Members Entrance to the Sydney Cricket Ground.

92 controls will grace an area about 600m X 300m

Dining Table test event
For my part running the computers for the 5 days is a job but running the IT at the Ultra-Sprint is a real test. Each runner runs 3 legs, after each leg they download into a computer that matches the leg. Hence 3 of the computers you can see. Now we will be having enter on day so we need a computer to cope with that and then computer number 5 is to produce the results and handle any issues.
Fortunately Gayle wasn't home to see the kitchen / dining room swamped with IT. Then again it is not the first time

Gees they hide the controls in the Dining Table test event!
Set up for the event will commence at 6.30pm on Tuesday evening as we bang 68 stakes into the ground which will be the framework for a complex maze. Course setter matt reckons someone will enter or leave the maze every 9 seconds.
Then at 6am on Wednesday it will be complete the maze and set up the 3 starts, 3 finish, results and other bits of infrastructure that we need. Come 11 am we should be working in reverse.

We have a good number of Uringans lending a hand but if you want to drop in please do so,you will be given a job.

I would suggest that there will be a number of Uringans who will probably not see in NEW Years after a very hectic 5 days.

A small crowd of Uringans- Shane, Jakob and Serena  Doyle will be joined by Dave Lotty, Dick and Maureen Ogilvie, Gayle Shepherd and Ron Pallas are travelling to Tasmania for the Oceania Championships in the new year.

We wish them great runs and an opportunity to take in the delights of one of the best tourist locations in Australia. Mmm will we get to MONA again!


Monday, December 15, 2014

Southern Sydney Summer Series 2014 Wrap-Up

Coordinator Dave Lotty has reported the final placings for runners in the Southern Sydney Summer Series for the year.  Uringans feature widely:

Junior Men
1st Hugh Halley
2nd Jacob Doyle
3rd Finn McKay

Junior Women
1st Serena Doyle
2nd Maree Doyle
3rd Maggie Mckay

Open Women
3rd Alice Westwood

Masters Women
3rd Jody Mielke

Veteran Men
1st Shane Doyle
2nd Jim McKay

Veteran Women
1st Linda Sesta

Super Veteran Men
1st Matt Peters

Super Veteran Women
2nd Helen Murphy

Legend Men
1st Dave Lotty

Legend Women
1st Mary Jane Mahony
2nd Angela Murray

Immortal Men
1st Brian Cleland
2nd Dick Ogilvie

Immortal Women
2nd Maureen Ogilvie

Walking Women
1st Penny Field

Persistence was the key in a number of classes.

An orienteering feast served up in Little Italy

Our last Sydney Southern Summer Series event was set by Shane Doyle on a lovely Leichardt map (borrowed from Garingal). Sunshine, not too much in the way of hills, a mix of parks, laneways and, thankfully, quiet streets.  A good days for family orienteering.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Not all our lives are about orienteering... Lisa Lampe

From Sydney Alumni Magazine “Your Favourite Teachers”:

Nominated by Robert Turano (BA ’94 MTeach ’97 BTeach)

Dr Lisa Lampe taught me to think for myself and not be constrained by church or state, and to follow my feelings. She helped liberate me from negative thoughts, and to search for the truth.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

XMAS 5 Days- Sydney

Usually the Xmas 5 Days is held up country with Orange and Armidale two of the more favoured locations. This year it is being held in Sydney with the events held within the Sydney basin.

Day 1
Georges Heights
27th December
Long Sprint
Urban bush environment with amazing harbour views
Day 2
Cockatoo Island
28th December
Beautifully located in the middle of Sydney Harbour
Day 3
29th December        
Score Event
45 minutes
Race through the historic Pyrmont area; mixture of urban and harbourside parks
Day 4
30th December
Middle Distance 
Bushland located on the doorway to the World Heritage-listed Blue Mountains
Day 5
Kippax Lake (SCG)
31st December
Ultra sprint
Historic recreation park just a stone’s throw from Sydney Airport and the CBD

The courses / classes are structured to suit a variety of abilities

Available Classes
Men                 Women
Men A
Hard 1 Hard Navigation
(longest course)
Men B
Women A
Hard 2 Hard Navigation
(medium length)
Men C
Women B
Hard 3 Hard Navigation
(Shortest Course)
Men D
Women C
Moderate Navigation
Men E
Women D
Easy Navigation
Very Easy Navigation

The highlight will be no doubt the chance to orienteer on Cockatoo Island. Now I have been to the island a number of times but just yesterday I went there with a copy of the map ( I am not running) and I can tell you this is going to be brilliant. With two distinct levels, tunnels, large buildings, inside which you could easily place controls. Magnificent views, beautiful sandstone buildings, seagulls who are very raucous- the Island has it all. After your run you can head to one of the slipways for a swim (it has netting across the entrance to keep out the "noahs arks") There are also a number of coffee shops and then there is the harbour...
You will need to catch a ferry to the island or kayak or if you have your own boat?

The second highlight will no doubt be the Ultra-Sprint just outside the Sydney Cricket Ground.
Three short, fast, furious, confusing, brain draining sprints is the order of the day for each competitor. Uringa will be taxed to the limit to put this event on- Did I mention the maze? Yes there is a maze which all competitors will visit at least once per courses (twice for some courses)

Entries close on 14th December. Whilst each day's competition will have Enter on the Day in Very Easy, Easy, Moderate and one of the hard navigation course, there will not be a limitless supply of maps. Especially for the ultra-sprint where each competitor has 3 maps. So rather than chance it - enter. You do not have to run all 5 days but can pick and choose.
The runs at Georges Heights- Sydney Harbour Vista and Pyrmont - inner harbour scenery are also worth a visit. Lapstone is just a hop skip and jump away from Katoomba or Wet and Wild

It's Raining Again- Oatley Park

For those who regularly attend the events staged by Illawarra Kareelah there is a certain predisposition to rain at some stage during the event.

One does not need to cast their mind back very far to remember the infamous Cronulla Street Event when the skies produced widespread thunder, lightning and rain. Participants in this event had to ford raging torrents that were once quiet suburban streets. Some even took the opportunity to shelter in open garages.

Well fortunately the storm that arrived at Oatley Park brought a lot of noise, a fair bit of lightning but fortunately gentle cooling rain. Vicki Wilmott set a challenging course that would have seen the big guns really have to work hard to collect a big score but that said most people were able to harvest quite a few points from the very scenic, if not hilly, Oatley Park.

I guess the surprise was just how many Uringans were there.A total of 15 runners from our club were on hand.

Result wise we did rather well:
Junior Men:
1st Finn Mackay - 170 points
Junior Women:
1st Maree Doyle -  220 points
1st Serena Doyle -  220 points
Veteran Men:
1st Shane Doyle - 410 points
1st  Jim Mackay - 410 points
3rd Titus Murray - 290 points
Veteran Women:
1st Linda Sesta - 430 points
Super Veteran Men:
4th Matt Peters - 330 points
8th Ron Pallas - 230 points
Legend Women:
1st Mary Jane Mahony - 260 points
Immortal Men:
2nd Brian Cleland - 300 points
3rd Dick Ogilvie - 240 points
Immortal Women:
1st Maureen Ogilvie - 60 points
Short Line Course:
1st Alexander Murray
2nd Jasper Parker

Uringa has two more events prior to the end of the year.

Sunday 14th December- War Memorial Park - Leichhardt 4pm-6pm - Shane Doyle is the organiser for this Southern Sydney Summer Series Event.

Wednesday 31st December Kippax Lake (West side of the Sydney Cricket Ground) 8am - 10am (or so)
This event is a big one as it is part of the Xmas 5 Days which is being run in Sydney this year. It is an ultra-sprint. Each competitor runs three short sprints ( around 900m) Each courses has lots of controls (around 20) and in the course somewhere is a maze just to make life interesting.
However this is a complex event and we need 3 start teams, and 3 finish teams as well as a number of people to construct the maze starting around 6am. If you haven't already volunteers then contact Ron Pallas to let him know your availability.

For more information:
Xmas 5 day Web Site:

Information on the Ultra-Sprint:

Muggers or Muggees

The President Cup Winners- Big Mug - Maggie, Mini Mug -Michael, Small Mug Rick


Monday, December 1, 2014

Christmas Party and President's Cup

The 2014 orienteering year isn't over yet for Uringa - there is still a Sydney Southern Summer Series event to be run on Dec 14 in Leichhardt. Still, the social event of the summer season has come and gone...  and what an enjoyable party it was.  There will be more reports added to Uringa News (the dessert recipe to die for, the winners of the President's Cup, probably some other photos), but for now here is a taste for those who weren't there - put it the club's annual party on your calendar for next year.

The President's Cup

Some newer club members may never have experienced cards and pencils. This year each control description was a question to be answered on arriving at the control location. This could be challenging (don't mention the arrow on the pole or what brands were sold at the butcher shop). The map was a mixture of streets, the very lovely Warraroon Reserve, Hodgson Park and foreshore, and St.Ignatius College, Riverview.

The Party

Sarah and Rick offered their home (and pool, sorry no photos of it but there was a lot of jumping in after the President's Cup). Convivial surroundings, much delicious food and drink, a crowd of interesting people - what more could we ask for? Oh, yes, the opportunity to see the photos from Matt and Helen's daughter's wedding, the opportunity to hear about various plans (and prior experiences) of overseas trips, of walking in Tasmania's Southwest, and the upcoming Bangladesh adventure for Rick and Sara. Dave and Jerrad managed to get a computer feed of the A League derby between Sydney FC and the Western Sydney Wanderers, so the football tragics could keep in touch with the action.

 Santa Claus Always Comes to the Christmas Party

 Certificates and Badges

Someone else took photos of the awarding, from a better vantage point.  Just a mention though, that the club pays for any State League badges won during the year, and gives them out at the Christmas Party. Orienteering clubs all appreciate that it's nice to receive an award. Brian Cleland and Mary Jane Mahony weren't able to stay back in Wagga Wagga for the presentation - the Waggaroos sent their certificates on to Uringa.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Presentation night

Unfortunately no Uringa members attended the Presentation night, therefore I can only really give you the information about the "Orienteer of the Year" awards. These awards are based on participation at State League events and points are calculated from the competitors best 7 results out of the 12 SL events.

Congratulations to all juniors for their participation in the State League events, in particular Georgia Jones who won her age class with a clean sheet (7 wins), and to all the other place getters.

Open Easy    Jakob Doyle                    4th
W10A           Maggie Mackay              3rd
W12A           Serena Doyle                  4th
W14A           Sophie Jones                   2nd
M14A           Finn Mackay                   4th *
                     Jared McKenna               8th
W16A           Georgia Jones                 1st
M17-20A      Lawrence Jones              3rd

W35A           Danielle Kopriva            3rd
W45A           Linda Sesta                     1st
M45A           Ian Jones                         2nd
M45AS         Dave McKenna               3rd
M55AS         Dave Lotty                      1st
M70A           Dick Ogilvie                    1st
W80A           Maureen Ogilvie             1st

(badges will be handed out at the UR Christmas Party)

*12 year old Finn deserves a special mention. He started the season off running in his usual age class M12A notably in his first bush orienteering season! After a few events he decided to run a class up M14A as he wanted more challenging courses, and he managed to win 3 SL events in M14A, and an overall 4th placing! Congratulations Finn, that's a really great effort!!

Monday, November 17, 2014

Wednesday Sydney Summer Series in Eastern Sydney

Eventor called its location Double Bay. Mapper Dave Lotty usually says Bellvue Hill. The park is Cooper Park, but this year Brian Cleland's course setting mostly went elsewhere. Nevertheless. well over 140 runners turned up to face the challenge of hills, roads and stairs.

The set up for running the event was slick. Every helper who wanted a run had one. And the only reported hiccup was Dave Lotty losing his car key (and only discovering this after everyone else had left).

Monday, November 10, 2014

SSoS Haberfield in photos

Ron neglected to mention in his otherwise comprehensive post on the event that Uringa has gone even more high tech (following on, it must be admitted, from Big Foot). Registration for anyone who is already in the system with a stick meant only a quick signature (with an emergency phone number) and a dipping of the sport ident stick. Details come up on the pad, changes made if required, and it's done. Not much more to do for runners who have to hire a stick.

 Jim's map was challenging in working out route choice. There were a few controls where runners were observing coming from every direction.

South Sydney Summer Series- Haberfield

Attendances are growing to the South Sydney events as we grew a further 5 competitors on our previous event.
Robson Park, the start / finish was on the far west of the map which made the task of reaching controls set almost on Victoria road only a target for those fleet of foot and not faint of heart.

We had a good turnout of helpers to run the event and first time course setter Jim should be pleased with his efforts. Tuck that event under the belt!

Results can be found at:

 and split times at:

For the club there were strong performance across the board
Junior Men
Hugh Halley 1st
William Nolan  2nd
Jonathon Nolan 3rd
Alex Murray 5th
Open Men
Matt Westwood  4th
Myall Quint 9th
Open Women
Catherine Murphy 1st
Alice Westwood 3rd
Veteran Men
Titus Murray  3rd
Super Veterans Men
Matt Peters  1st
Legends Men
Dave Lotty  1st
Legends Women
Mary Jane Mahony  1st
Immortals Men
Brian Cleland  1st
Walking Women
Penny Field  1st

Great to see Alice out there having a run as well as lending a hand-  baby due in February! Impressive

So another event in November bites the dust and  it is on to Cooper Park, Double Bay this coming Wednesday, when big brother North Sydney Summer series rolls into town.

Monday, November 3, 2014

Ultrasprint or how to create hectic orienteering!

Well, all of you who didn't turn up for this event, missed out on a very new form of orienteering with fun being at the centre of the whole affair. This form of orienteering has been run in other countries, I believe mainly in the UK, and Matt was the master minder of creating this event in Australia. This new idea coupled with some IT challenges which Ron solved marvellously, and a few savvy members getting on the job - et voila - here you have a fun, cool, challenging, fast event. So here are the details:

-it's essentially a 3 leg relay
-every runner runs each leg
-legs can be run in any order
-no control descriptions
-no control numbers
-some or should I say a lot of controls were mere metres apart
-1:1500 map, which meant every tree was mapped
-each leg was about 900m - 1.1km in length
-21-23 controls on each leg
-a maze through which you had to navigate to get controls
-if you mispunch, you don't get DNF, you just get a 30 sec time penalty added to your final time.
-neuroplasticity at it's best!!!

If you weren't there to experience this novel event, I can highly recommend the next Ultrasprint event which will take place on 31 December in the Moore Park area as part of the Xmas 5 Day. See Eventor   for registration.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Sprint the Southwest

It was earlier this month, and what fun! Organised by SWOT (South West Orienteering Trekkers) to follow the Australian Champs in WA, it was two days and four sprints in WA's terrific southwest. Uringa participants were Dick Ogilvie, Maureen Ogilvie, Dave Lotty, Brian Cleland and Mary Jane Mahony. The final event (see map below) included a maze, a maze like garden and some bush, all offering up a substantial challenge. The most fun though was at Cowaramup, with a control seemingly behind every cow.

Thanks to the Spring the Southwest photographers for most of these photos.

Uringa Party Time: Revisited - the Winter Curry Night in September

Too much going on recently with this correspondent, but we are settled back in Sydney and a little catchup is in order.

To those of you who missed the great annual Winter Curry Night (held this year as Helen and Terry Murphy's home), Don't miss the annual Christmas Party!   Food, fun and frolic and an orienteering run as well. If somehow you missed the email with the details sent out by President Linda Sesta, follow it up.

And to inspire you, here are a few photos from the 2014 Winter Curry Night.

It's not all food and fun, or is it. There was testing of new Spooks in the Park games.

 And, yes, the Social Secretary gives out prizes.

And sometimes it's just all a bit much...or is this just the effect of the lead up to the HSC?