How should I start the write up about this year’s Suncoast Orienteering Championships? I could write “It was a dark and stormy night.” That line has been used to start a few stories but it would have been true in describing the night before the final event of the Suncoast season. Just like our event two months earlier in the same park the area was hit with a downpour the night before. For a while I was thinking we should rename the park from Oscar Scherer State Park to Oscar Showers State Park.
However in time for the event the skies cleared and the air cooled leaving us with a perfect day for orienteering in Florida or anywhere else for that matter.
Port Charlotte High School JROTC handled the hosting duties for the JROTC part of the event. They attracted just over 100 cadets from eight schools ranging from Ocala to Boca Raton. Many of the top ranked JROTC orienteers in the state were there creating tough competition on all three courses as they competed to improve their point standings. Six members of JROTC teams not entered on Saturday came out to compete on the public side of the event, earn ranking points and two, Jacob Sizemore and Peter Rosche of Dunedin finished in the top three of the Suncoast Championships.
So who won? Aliaksei Memelau of Belarus eked out a 25 minute win over May-li Cuypers on the Blue Course. May-li was the top female as I think she has been in every Florida orienteering race she has entered. Blaik Matthews finished as second male and Hank Pogorzelski third.
Outside of the JROTC competition Sizemore topped James Nici and Dylan Sands for the top three on Green. Sands, one of the original Suncoast orienteers three years ago will be missed next year as he will be joining the Navy at the end of the school year. Best wishes Dylan. Tracy Acuff was the top female on Green, behind only two JROTC participants.
Rosche was the best civilian time on Orange followed by Ed McLean of St Petersburg and Joel Middlebrooks of Boca Raton. Fanny Hourigan of Boca was the top female following a couple of cadets.
Middlebrooks and Hourigan were there to support the Boca Raton NJROTC team. Good on them for joining in the fun and doing so well.
Congratulations to Pamela Corson and Miriam Neville from Miami. They are a mother/ daughter team that look like sisters. They did well on the Yellow and White courses respectively. Pamela edged Amy Jo Reed of St Augustine by less than a minute on Yellow.
Neville had the fastest time on White followed by young Devin Vitello of Tampa, a Boy Scout working on his orienteering badge.
Gord Hunter, Event Coordinator
|Amy Jo Reed||55:15|
|Tom @ Allan||NTR|
|Rick Holly& Mindy||2:16:38|
|Tom & Allan||NTR|
|DNF||Did Not Finish|
|DQ||Disqualified (Missed Controls)|
|OT||Over 3 Hour Time Limit|