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Course of the Year 2011: Submit your suggestions!


What was the best orienteering course of 2011? Last year’s winner was Jukola with great courses in fantastic terrain. Which course will take the prestigious top spot this year? The search for the course of the year  will be fun, for sure as it was last year! The rules are simple: Suggest a course from a competition or training in 2011, and state the reason why you think this course deserves to be “The course of the Year 2011″.

The best among all the suggestions will be chosen – and there will be a voting process among the readers of “World of O” in order to name “The course of the year 2011″. Prizes from sponsors make it more fun to be in on the suggestions and voting – Croatia Open, Lipica Open, Fjord-O and EOC Tour are sponsoring “The course of the year 2011″ with starts (see below). Note! There is still an opening for more sponsors if you are interested in getting publicity for your event.

Use the comments below, and submit either

  1. The course which in your opinion is the best course you run in 2011 yourself!
  2. The best course you set this year as a course-setter.
  3. The overall best course you have seen/heard about in 2011

Most course-setters surely have to make some compromises, so finding the perfect one is probably not possible. Still, it is interesting to see which is the best course you run or set in 2011! Here are my choices for last year.

Starting point

To provide you with a starting point, I’ve picked out a few very different candidates for you based on maps and courses I have seen in omaps.worldofo.com and comments on various webpages:

  • The WOC long final should in my opinion always be one of the best courses of the year – but was it this year? There are many compromises in a WOC race, but still this course had a lot of interesting bits… See the full map here
  • WOC selection race on Le Revard in May 2011. While some of the technical “feinschmecker’s” were disappointed by WOC courses, the selection races ahead of the WOC had it all. The Le Revard race in May was one of those really nice ones. See the full map here
  • I think that some time in the future, a type of labyrinth or Orient’show will get into the sprints at elite level to make it even more interesting for both TV and spectators – and also for the runners. Thus I am always interested in the various attempts to make nice show-orienteering. This indoor labyrinth from Latvia will surely not be the Course of the Year 2011 – but it is still nice to be able to highlight it here.
    See full map here
  • The Swiss O-week offered some really spectacular orienteering this year again. The courses the third day started at around 2600 meters height, and offered a lot of interesting orienteering. See full map here
  • – One of my nicest training ever, map super precise with all the single vegetation details – amazing, Thierry Guergiou tweeted after this training (see map at the top of this article). Probably not the course to be named the course of the year in 2011 – but the most popular map on omaps.worldofo.com of those posted in 2011. See the full map here.

I am sure you have a lot of better suggestions than the one I gave above – this is just a starting point to see the wide variety of candidates there are out there. Submit your suggestions now!


The following rules are given for “The course of the Year 2011″.

  • The course must have been run in competition or training in 2011.
  • Suggestions are submitted as a comment to this post – including link to the map with course in a quality which is good enough for the readers to understand the course and the challenges involved. Please add information about location/date if that is not clear from the link provided. Also include which sponsor prize you are interested in if you win.
  • You must give a reason for why you think this course deserves to be named “The course of the Year 2011″ (or why it is the best course you run/set this year)
  • All reasons are valid. Examples can for example be “varied orienteering challenges”, “extremely technical orienteering”, “high fun-factor”, “fantastic map”, “spectacular orienteering”, “fantastic nature” – a combination of these – or a totally different reason. To get all the way to the top you should probably have a combination of reasons…
  • The course may be any discipline – e.g. a long distance, a middle distance, a sprint distance. It may also be a technical training course – like e.g. a corridor orienteering exercise.
  • There will be a voting process among the readers of “World of O” in order to name “The course of the year 2011″.
Prizes from our Sponsors

Prizes from our Sponsors always makes it more fun! There will be a prize for the course setter in “The course of the Year 2011″, a prize for the first one suggesting the course which ends up becoming “The course of the Year 2011″, and prizes drawn among the ones suggesting and voting. The sponsors will be presented in more detail later on – for now you can see some information about them below.


For the record: All sponsor gifts/income related to “The Best Course of 2011″ goes directly to the WorldofO.com readers.

About Jan Kocbach

Jan Kocbach is the founder of WorldofO.com - taking care of everything from site development to writing articles, photography and analysis.

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  1. where i have to send my suggestion?

    • Vesi, please add your suggestion as a comment in this article. If the map/course is not available online, send me a file at jan@kocbach.net, and I will put it online. At the same time you can add a comment here, and I will add the correct link to the map to your comment (I can edit comments that way).

  2. http://browncup.org/images/maps2011/sprintw21.jpg -This is the map from Tsarevets Fortress, V.Turnovo,Bulgaria.The competition was held in early April.It was great challenge,really fun and technical,because of the scale – 1:2 500.

    Pictures from the event: http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.154346541295991.36224.100001619398008&type=1

    • Wolfgang Pötsch

      Great sprint race , fascinating terrain, map, courses, in my opinion a big favourite to win , all the best Wolfgang

  3. I really liked the long distance from Arraiolos International Meeting (WRE) which was held 12. – 13. 3. 2011 in Portugal, close to Évora. Although I haven’t run tho whole course, I really enjoyed how it was set. Variety of technical aspects and different types of terrain, “royal” long leg and tough last controls in the slope.


  4. Hi Jan,

    This year was for me absolutely amazing !
    As a course-setter I have made some high level course with the top level orienteer !

    First, the WOC 2011 Middle Final : http://omaps.worldofo.com/index.php?id=45064
    Not so simple like the comment of Tero the King ! Remember the very big mistakes !!

    Second, a CDL in Corrençon where a lot of good runner came to test their technique (Gueorgiou, Huovila, Tranchand, Lauenstein, Fohr, Coupat …)
    http://www.matrace.fr/gadget/cgi/reitti.cgi?act=map&id=611&kieli= (The link is not good here : http://omaps.worldofo.com/index.php?id=37378 )

    The best course I enjoy to follow this year was the WOC Relay !! It was amazing, What a thriller !!!

    The best I run ? What a pity this year ! I didn’t run many course .. Perhaps this one : http://photorientation.files.wordpress.com/2011/04/110320ldnoisy.jpg
    The First Nationale of the year in Fontainebleau. Fontainebleau is alway a good trip for orienteering. Weather was good and the spirit of long distance was respected.

    So it’s my prefer subject of World Of O’ with the advent calendar, cause I always discover new and amazing map of orienteering :)

  5. The course which in your opinion is the best course you run in 2011 yourself!
    -too much good courses this year, but i’ll give just few o them…
    1)JEC long – http://omaps.worldofo.com/index.php?id=47357 really impressed with terrain and course…amazing
    2)Croatia open – 3rd day http://omaps.worldofo.com/index.php?id=48518 fantastic competition, very nice new map and i was enjoying there
    3)Training camp Kras (Lipica open terrains) – http://omaps.worldofo.com/index.php?id=33110 rainy morning, nice terrain and map and demanding course is everything you need to enjoy :)

    The best course you set this year as a course-setter.
    – didn’t set too much courses this year, i will nominate just one course – Samobor open – 2nd day
    http://omaps.worldofo.com/index.php?id=48514 Samobor open (2nd day) – i think terrain is very nice, but map should be more accurate…don’t want to speak about the course, because i was course-setter, so i just want to hear comments from others
    – here you can see course for 1st day – http://www.okjapetic.hr/doma/show_map.php?user=Matijarazum&map=56 and one training in spring on same map… http://www.okjapetic.hr/doma/show_map.php?user=Matijarazum&map=11

    Don’t want to nominate any in last category as i don’t know much about terrains on this competitions. POM looks nice and WOC was amazing… I have run too much good courses this year, e.g. Croatia open, EYOC long, Lipica open, etc. Just hope next year will be at least good as this one.

    “Also include which sponsor prize you are interested in if you win.” – it doesn’t matter, but as i can’t go on Fjord-o because of JWOC, i would like Croatia or Lipica open.

  6. 1º Spanish Middle distance Championships
    Hazel wood(it is not a typical forest in Spain),a race where you had to fight against the bushes, all the time running in the forest, few paths and tricky downhill in the last part of the race.http://omaps.worldofo.com/index.php?id=36717

    2º Petit Prix 3rd day ( Lucany nad Nisou, Czech Republic)
    Nice classic distance,wet forest, greens,stones,streams, big cliffs with a detailed czech cartography. Good combination. map(it is not my category)http://www.bestik.cz/mapy/show_map.php?user=basa&map=770

    3º WOC Tour 6th day
    One of my best race I have ever run. I liked so much to run similar WOC Final legs. Fast forest with a lot of contour details. All the time you had to be concentrated from the beginning to the end.
    (its not my category)

  7. I don’t compete much abroad, so I put these maps as my best experienced:

    Best foot-o: http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-3Sq3EEu1QU4/Tiw2clOztvI/AAAAAAAAA0I/yROlzfTmDtM/s1600/2011-07-16+-+Kistil%25C3%25A4%252C+p%25C3%25A4evak%252C+anal%25C3%25BC%25C3%25BCs.jpg (Training competition near Turku, Finland)
    Because terrain and map was very interesting.

    Best MTB-O: http://www.o-worldcup.spb.ru/files/sprintM21e.jpg (EMTBOC sprint in Vyborg)
    Beacause that urban sprint gave often route choices and fast navigation.

    Best Ski-O: http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-0s_mDHYoiZA/TVgYVCJy9FI/AAAAAAAAAxs/DoieP7FWRVk/s1600/2011-02-13+-+Holstre-Polli%252C+Eesti+MV+SO+tavarada.jpg (Estonian Ski-O Championships long)
    Because it was partly very technical map reading and the net of tracks were very dense partly.

    Best indoor-o: http://www.osprint.ee/2011/sise/sise6/Cs_Meeste_2__jooks.pdf (Estonian Indoor-o 6th stage)
    Because of great labyrinth design and different route choice opportunities.

    As a reader, Venice O: http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-KBNHNkUN4EU/TsGi8BSvUoI/AAAAAAAAAig/8FD1e85EBrU/s1600-h/MOV2011_Dusan_V2.ME.jpg
    Because it seems always interesting. Hope to compete there in the future.

    (I prefer EOC tour as a prize)

  8. Suggestion by email from MB:

    The most demanding course of this year (at least for the races I did) was by far Arctic Midnight Orienteering in Greenland.


  9. – Spanish Championships ( Middle)
    hazel wood(it is not typical in Spain),technically demanding race, few paths and tricky downhill in the last part of the race
    -Petit Prix day3( Lucany nad Nisou,CZ)
    Wet forest,greens,stones,big cliffs,streams and a detailed czech cartography= good combination.
    (it’s not my category)
    -WOC Tour day 6
    One of my favourite O’race I have ever run.You had to be all the time focused on the map, from the begining to the end.Fast and technically terrain. I liked to run some similar WOC Final legs.
    (it’s not my category)

  10. WOC long final was great! If minna kauppi couldn’t find the first control you know it was excellent!

    • The first half was really great, but controls 13-17 were not hard at all. And generally parts of the bigger loop in the last butterfly weren’t as technical as it could have been. The course was really good, but the map had potential for it to be even better.

  11. I suggest the swedish champs long final, H21: http://www.tulospalvelu.fi/gps/20110911SMLangH/

  12. 1. WOC Sprint Final in Chambéry was by far the best sprint race of the year : http://live.woc2011.fr/data/uploads/maps/scan_sprint-final/Hubmann_1.JPG and http://live.woc2011.fr/data/uploads/maps/scan_sprint-final/Hubmann_2.JPG

    2. Best record of the year was the selection race in Prépoulain : http://ben5907.free.fr/show_map.php?user=maxx&map=106
    Storm, crazy map and surprises, everything made it the course of the year, and we knew that we day we ran it !

  13. Suggestion by Wolfgang Pötsch by email:

    1. This course was one man relay in a cave near Leibnitz in Austria – used for Dubai Orienteering Team during training camp in Austria beginning of June, Course planner Wolfgang Pötsch.


    2. Two examples from 5 days of Puglia in Southern Italy, very tricky cities, course planner Wolfgang Pötsch.


    3. Istanbul 5 Days – Grand Bazaar:

  14. Thanks all for your great suggestions! Please keep them coming – there were a lot more great courses out there this year!

  15. Stockholm Rogaining – with two additional maps (1:15000) covering the forest-controls. The challenge is to visit as many controls you can within 6 hours – each control worth the point of its number (101=100p, 14=10p)
    The mix between this map and the two smaller ones offered a nice variation during the race. It was also very fun getting to run through the southern suburbs of Stockholm and experience the city in a new way. The course setting by Gustav Bergman was thorough and offered tricky route choices, no matter in what order you choose to visit the controls. Consider also the fact that the runners started at 12.00 and did not finish until 6 PM, therefor the last two hours were in darkness…

  16. Wolfgang Pötsch

    In my opinion its hard for a course not used at a big event as Worldchampionships to have a chance to win. If there is a difficult terrain as this year in France its not difficult to make difficult and demanding courses.Everything will be great, but there should also be a way how to judge abilities of course planners how they manage courses in not so demanding terrain.

  17. Maybe M21 Ultimate course day 3 at Oocup this year? It was interesting because the terrain was really difficult both technically and physically and the weather conditions were not easy either – in the middle of summer runners had to cope with only 8 degrees, rain, wind and slippery steep terrain. Many runners were struggling (not only in Ultimate classes) and comments like: ‘Epic!’ ‘Hardest ever!’ ‘Crazy!’ etc. were pretty common after the race.

    Besides this, the Ultimate courses bring something new to international multi-day events. They are also a kind of antipode to what IOF seems to be trying to do with WOC.

    In case you don’t know – OOcup’s ‘Ultimate courses’ are run on “handicapped” maps without paths.

    Course planner: Daniel Lebar
    Course (day 3) can be seen here:

  18. Jo Inge Fjellstad

    The best courses i ran in 2011:

    1. Day 3 of Cappadocia Cup 2011, 27th March, Turkey, mostly due to fantastic, spectacular and unique terrain/nature. The courses included interesting route choices and had technical demanding parts, but must admit that the terrain mapped so far makes it difficult to avoid some “transport legs” – still special enough that it might be ranked among the best courses of the year. [Map] [Pictures]

    2. Midnattsolgaloppen/Fjord-O, Troms, Norway June/July, all races (excluding the Tromsø race). The map and terrain probably don’t need further description, the NOC 1984 map named last century’s best map – and the terain has changed so little that large parts of the map hasn’t been changed! Day 2 provided the most enjoyable running/terrain, but day 4 probably had more tecnical challenging orienteering.

    (Croatia Open sounds nice …)

  19. More maps suggested by Wolfgang Pötsch (by email):

    – Arge Alp -2011, 800 competitors, Martin Hubmann winner in this nice area close to Regensburg in germany
    – Selinunte at MOC March 2011, between antique temples, course planner jaroslav kacmarcik
    – Sciacca MOC 2011, sprint in old town, course planner Jaroslav Kacmacik
    – San Marino Map for Peo tour with famous runners as Sixten Sild, Susanne Lüscher, Annika Björk
    – A map from Tirana Lake, Albania, Peo Tour 2011
    – The long course from Gibellina, MOC 2011
    – several loops for Dubai O Team in Rogner Therme in Steiermark, quarter final, semi finale , Finale – a great area
    – San Marino 2011 Peo Tour great race for 100 Swedes
    – Easter egg searching race, course planner Hannes Pacher, for his children Paul und Lisa
    – Promotion race for children – they got map and pictures in a sculpture park south of Graz
    – Monte San Angelo – Puglia, sprint training from Austrian national team runners,
    – 5 days of Istanbul, final stage, special atmosphere in front of Hagia Sophia and Blue Mosque, many people, some restrictions for course planners

    Map images:
    http://omaps.worldofo.com/upload/ArgeAlp-Bahnen-OCAD 8-11.08Bahnen.H21.jpg
    http://omaps.worldofo.com/upload/longcourse_gibellina.Course 1.jpg
    http://omaps.worldofo.com/upload/PEO11,SanMarino.A.jpg [Fixed link]

    Wolfgang: I think you have to explain closer which image belongs to which description – there were a lot of emails and descriptions in between.

  20. Hi, I want to contribute also in this very interesting discussion!

    I think the more exciting course I would have wanted to run in 2011 was in Greenland, for the location unusual to orienteering in such a fascinating place!

    Then the nicest terrain on which I ran a competition were the one hosting the WOC middle final / 6th stage O’Festival (link yet provided),
    and the 4th stage of italian Cup in Civezzano (Trento). Here’s the map: http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-gjM64rFqcdQ/Tezzix3XspI/AAAAAAAABBA/bgibSTyNnhg/s1600/MA.jpg

    a long distance course with of different kind of terrains in the same map. it was exciting!

    • Jo Inge Fjellstad

      Regarding the O-festival/WOC: Was thinking of suggesting that one myself, but was involved in organisation, so not quite objective ;-)

      Link to one map/course here.

      Might serve as an example how courses often ar better from the runners perspective without the constraints from federations, media etc. (the H21 E course probably better than the WOC course …)

  21. Course of the year?? It has to be Sprint the Bay Stage 4, in Hawkes bay, New Zealand – without a doubt.

    See the course here: http://www.doma.sprintthebay.org/show_map.php?user=rossmaxmo&map=24

  22. In amongst the physically and technically hard races at the Scottish 6 Day event at Oban we had a fantastic Sprint Race at Tralee Bay on the “rest”day. See http://www.scottish6days.com/2011/rest-day-events/ for photos including Wolfgang (Goggi) cooling off in the sea. This fast race in open forest, caravan park, sand dunes and beach was the perfect antidote to bogs and heather. The night before included Scottish dancing too!

    Colin Matheson, Assistant Coordinator Oban 2011

  23. I would like to nominate the JLVK 2011 (a race for the youth and junior teams of the regional federations in Germany). M20 or W20, both are great course even if I think M20 was the best.

  24. Martin Veitsberger

    Best Sprint Race this year for me was WMOC Qualification in Pécs. Much fun, very challenging and a very nice town!
    Map and courses:

    Best Long distance Race for me this year was in Austria, ÖM Lang in Arnoldstein (map also used for JEC, view comment of Matija) in one of the most beautiful and demanding areas in Austria, the landslide area Schütt-Dobratsch

  25. The best course must be from WOC or WOC festival.
    My choice is third day of the O’Festival: http://s.exs.lv/575
    I agree that WOC middle/O’Festival VI terrain and courses were much fun!

  26. Has the O-Ringen Day 3 course been suggested?
    The H21E course was very good. It offered very technical orienteering in an area with intricate contour and rock detail, with varying vegetation as well. The course, like any good long should, gave short tricky legs combined with long routechoice legs, most notably 17-18 as shown here in webroute: http://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-I5QD7XTJsEM/TjEVZNaAhgI/AAAAAAAAGRQ/kT4ruQ1M528/map20110728093850_l_blank.jpg
    I couldn’t find a proper image of the full course though, although here is Eva Jurenikova’s map from the same day where the D21E course was equally well planned: http://evajurenikova.com/d/show_map.php?user=evaju&map=274

  27. Blue Mountain, NY –
    2011 US Team Trials Long Distance Blue course (men).


    It’s beautiful, intricate forest with loads of rock and contour detail but a mostly good running surface. The best routes were not obvious, as the choices of the top runners show. And it is just one hour by train from New York City.

    But I’m biased…