Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Park World Tour in China

In the last half of October I spent a week in China participating in Park World Tour. This was the fifth time I was going for PWT in China, and it has always been one of the seasons highlights:-)

The tour this year was called Vasa PWT Orienteering Festival, and was arranged by Nordic Ways, that are organizing a lot of different events on China in typical nordic sports such as skiing, running, orienteering and biking.

The first races was held in Changchun, 1000 km north east of Beijing, where I ran PWT last year and also participated in the Chinese Vasaloppet in 2011.

PWT-prologue, Changchun
The first racing day it was held two competitions, and we started with a Prologue in the morning. It was 3 km course with a combination of middle distance and sprint character. I did an OK performance, but I lost some time to the winner Mårten Boström the last half of the course because of the route choice to the 8th control, a small mistake to the 9th control and generally to slow running speed.

Østerbø nummer 9 i Kina, orientering.no

PWT-1 Sprint, Changchun
In the evening the first real PWT race was held as a Sprint in Changchun Sculpture Park. My race was again OK, even if I lost some seconds several places, but I felt the winner Yannick Michiels was running very fast.

The PWT China tour 2013 on the way, pwt.org
- Manglet litt fart, orientering.no

PWT-2 Middle, Changchun
The following day we ran a Middle distance in a really nice forest with mainly great runnability and several counter details.

My speed was good enough to fight for a top position, and I did also a good technical performance, but a huge parallel mistake to the 18th control destroyed a good result. I left the valley one spur earlier then I had planned, and was quite confused when I came to a control with code 48 in stead of 47. The control I came to was the 20th control, that I should have on the second loop, and in total I lost 1 minute on the mistake and a possible to 3 position. Edgars Bertuks won the men's class, and in the women's class Karolin Ohlsson won all the three first races.

China tour continues with middle distance, pwt.org
Parallelfeil ødela for topplassering, orientering.no

After two intensive days with three races in Changchun the plan was to fly to Beijing the next morning, and have the last race the same evening. Unfortunately it was very foggy, and we had to wait on the airport for 7 hours before we could fly to Beijing. The last race was therefore postponed one day.

PWT-3 Sprint, Beijing
The race in Beijing was a sprint held in the Ruins of Yuanmingyuan Park. It was a great area for a sprint race, and the water and bridges made it passible to make complex route choice legs.

After being too slow in the first sprint race I tried to open more offensive today, and succeed quite well. Unfortunately I lost a few seconds on some of the route choices in the first part of the race, but I did well in the control picking part and managed also too keep up the speed in the easier last part. My result was a 2nd place, 6 seconds behind Yannick Michiels, and it was great to end the tour with a good result.

PWT China tour 2013 concluded in Beijing, pwt.org
Sekunder fra seier, orientering.no

The Great Wall
After the race we went directly to the Great Wall. The weather was quite bad, compared to last year, and most of us was running on the wall to avoid getting cold. The wall is partly very steep, and it was quite slippery on the wet stones. In the evening we had a Beijing Duck dinner.

The following day I spent shopping and in the evening we had another fun night with good food and happy people. The last day I got a haircut and had a short run before the flight home.

I want to thank Nordic Ways (with Gåvert Wååg as General Manager), Jaroslav Kacmarcik (who had contract with the runners and fixed most with maps and curses) and all the runners participating for making this great trip possible!

In my Picasa you can find 200 pictures from PWT in China. My pictures from 2010 and 2012 can also be worth a look.

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