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Thomass 2009 - Sunnybrook

January 4th, 2009

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Thomass 2008 - 2009
GHO Racing

Host: Various

Date: January 4, 2009

Type: Sprint Orienteering

Team: Brent Hysop, Frank Job, Doug Begbie

Thomass Extreme Winter Adventure Running 2009
Thomass (3) – Toronto (Sunnybrook Park) Jan 4,2009 - Franks Race Report

Hosted by Toronto Orienteering Club

The schedule:
Night before: get all items from O’ checklist ready – felt optimistic. Didn’t do
05:30 up
07:00 got dressed and packed Ok
07:30 depart
07:45 McDonalds coffee and muffin, no newspaper
08:25 arrive at wrong parking lot
09:00 move to correct lot and register
09:30 idle chatter with mates
10:00 Start – NO WARNING BELL!!!

From AttackPoint Posting:

Big News!!! The first O’ event that I have ever completed! Yep. Using my super handicap of 3, I got all CPs required. Took 1:45 A big day for me. Celebrations will be held all week at lunch time whenever I can get someone else to buy.

I knew this was my day. Up at 5:30 cause that’s what set on my alarm during the week. Fiddled about for a while, then got dressed, filled my pack, and over to the drive-thru. Yes, McDonalds. Got the blueberry muffin today for the high-glycemic stuff.

Arrived at Sunnybrook Park way early and went to a distant parking lot. The wrong one as it turns out but I was able to rest my eyes and prepare myself mentally for the event. A lot of people out running, walking dogs and several groups of old-timers (that means older-than-me) doing their walk-abouts.

Drove to the correct parking lot and met up with the other roving members of Team Novarobot. Checked in, changed like superman in my small car and shivered a bit.

Got our maps, and GOGOGO! Right away. Jeeps. I like a bit of relax time. I positioned myself squarely at the end and followed. I even made a pretense of looking at my map. Somehow, today, I couldn’t see it clearly. Maybe it was printed faint. maybe my glasses were dirty.

So forget that. Picked it up and passed a couple of folk even slower than me. Follow the leader right to the CP.

This map was easy. More my style. Most CPs just off trails. Close enough so I didn’t get tired out running. I practised pace counting. Worked well. Practised sliding on my bum downhills. Worked well except for once or twice where I went off the trail and there were no trees to grab. OhOH! better than falling anyway.

The box was easy for me since I could drop 3. Just made a sweep thru and continued on. A couple of wrong route choices cost me about 10 minutes.

After 8, I saw that 9 was across the river which we had been forbidden to cross. I was going to just forget it, but I saw that on the way to the finish there was a bridge and 9 wasn’t far back so I got it too. Good thinkin’.

Ran home, got my printout and hot cider.

Thanks to the Toronto Orienteering Club for setting this one up. And anonymous thanks to the lady who offered us some cold coffee at the start. If I’d known I wouldn’t have bought one on the way.

Now the rest-of-the-story. The first half-hour, my hands and toes were frozen. After that, I was sweating like a pig. Gonna give my clothes some more thought. I need to be able to shed or unzip a bit without taking off my pack. Glasses were fogging up. Even my compass got fogged. I think I might have breathed on it. A happy note: my dry socks worked perfectly. I would have been happy to run across the creek if we had gotten the go-ahead. Just to show-off.

And this time I had no regard for propriety. I was following footpaths. I watched where people in front of me went. If I saw someone in the distance, I made a mental note. I even felt a bit of pride when I noticed others making wrong turns when I didn’t. Sorry. Even Columbus stood on the shoulders of those who sailed before him.

Some of the hills were what I would term “killers”. I missed a path or two and had to go up the sides. Clutching at straws would have been more useful. Some ladies had mercy (or pity) on me when they saw me scaling a steep side. They called down that always-helpful phrase “You OK?”.

I of course said “Sure. Just gonna take some time”. They had followed a nice trail to the top. They weren’t even puffing. Well, I was sure happy to put some of my gym-bunny training into effect by grabbing trees and just hauling my carcass up.

The two bum-slides that went bad were scary. One would have ended up in the river and the other had no clear finish except the city of pain.

Good course set up in the heart of Toronto. When I told my mother I was going to run in the forest near Eglinton/Leslie, she had a difficult time envisioning a “forest”. Altho she remembers when it was all bush there, in her mind it has changed. I’ll call her to tell her I survived.

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