The dark Finnish forest!

1860 teams in the men class, 1600 teams in the women class, and a total of almost 20 000 runners fighting for honour and glory in the deep forest of Lahti, Finland. The terrain was expected to be really difficult with a lot of different challenges, from deep depressions and dense areas with small birch trees, to diffuse contours and extremely good runability with tall pines.

Since orienteering is a true gentlemen’s sport, the women had the privilege to start first and run in the almost untouched forest at Venla. In IFK Mora we had three strong teams, and the expectations were high. The women weren’t too happy about the Tiomila result earlier this season and wanted to get a revanche! And what a thriller they gave us! After some small trouble in the start, Paula, Olha, Denisa and Kristin fought like lionesses and after a tough finish against Maja Alm and Sofia Haajanen, Kristin was able to sprint the team into 11th position. Cool!

In the men team the mood was good after the women relay and it felt like we could recreate the good result from Tiomila. We had prepared well, we knew what to do and really wanted to do it... But somehow it didn’t work out as we planned. To make a long story short, it wasn’t neither our nor mine night this time at Jukola. I ran really stable in the beginning, gained places and had everything under full control, until I did a really stupid parallel mistake and lost nearly seven minutes. A mistake like that is really unforgivable in a relay and I am sorry for it. Sadly I wasn’t the only one having problems in the Mora team, and after a dark night in the Finnish forest we ended as number 41. That’s really an ocean from what we were aiming for, so next year I think it will be time for both men and women in Mora to perform good relays at the same time!  

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