Knut Valstads Minneløp H60 (12/05/2019)
Category: Competition
Map/area: Skullerudåsen
Distance: 5.82 km
Time: 42:37
Average HR: 158
Maximum HR: 174
My best race this year, almost perfect?

Very easy start, I just ran along the path until I saw the opening under the power line, then I took the indistinct path over the rock slabs before aiming for the hillside and the control on the inside of a small knoll. I won this split by 19 s, which was 2 seconds more than the sum of the time I was behind the best split on the 4 splits I did not win today.

Towards #2 it was very tempting to just stay underneath the cliffs in the very runnable old planted spruce (typical Norwegian mapping error, keeping green on old planted trees, even when the forest have become extremely fast), but I decided to play it safe and climbed up on the plateau above before dropping down into the control. Both Sture Ottesen (4th place in the race) and Øyvind Roger Hansen beat me by a second here.

I think I found a reasoable route to #3, but I was just 13/14 s in front of Kjell Markset and Sören Jonsson who ended up in 3rd and 2nd place today, so it is possible that they found equally good (or better?) options. The most interesting (but boring!) one would be to leave #2 towards NNW and then run on paths almost all the way to the control.

OK to #4.

I dropped 5-10 s to #5 when I cut across and started up the wrong path from the junction by the cairn, Sture and Sören were both a few seconds faster.

I felt that I orienteered very well to #6, just a few seconds hesitation by the edge of the circle while I verified that the green below me had to be the overgrown stream, but this was sufficient for Sture to beat me for the third time today.

#7 looked scary, very indistinct contours around the little marsh, so I made sure I had an exact bearing from the path/ridge crossing and hit it perfectly.

#8 was where I really wanted to run straight but my experience with the same hillside to #3 meant that I was pretty sure going around had to be faster: I won the split by 50 (!) sec.

#9 was the last forest control, I really wanted to run fast while maintaining control all the way into the flag, but I failed this and slid past the control one contour level too low. I realized this immediately and turned uphill, but the mistake probably cost me 15-20 s which I would have mostly avoided if I had just taken the totally safe route over the top of the hill. Even with the mistake I won the split by almost half a minute.

Fast running downhill through another old patch of planted spruce to the last control, then I tried really hard to make a fast sprint to the finish line but Øyvind was still 4 s faster than me.
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Knut Valstads Minneløp H60 (12/05/2019) Knut Valstads Minneløp H60 (12/05/2019)