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Route to Christmas: Day 4 2014

Today we move to Portugal – and take a look at a long leg from the course placed 4th in the Course of the Year 2014 – the Mediterranean Championships Long, organized February 23rd 2014. The chosen leg is the 8th leg in the M21E course.

There were several top names on the startlist – with Thierry Gueorgiou and Edgars Bertuks being the strongest. Thanks to Rafael Miguel for the tip – please help by providing tips! How many different countries can we manage in Route to Christmas 2014?

Saving energy is probably a very important factor when taking a choice

The leg is as usually first provided without routes – you may take a look at it and think about how you would attack this leg (if the image is too small, you may click on it to get it larger). There are three distinct choices here: Going all the way to the left using paths and the road, taking various straight options or trying to stay as much up in the hills as possible. This is in the middle of a long distance course – and saving energy is probably a very important factor when taking a choice. Another important factor is keeping the risk as low as possible – i.e. keeping the orienteering as easy as possible. Finally you don’t want to take a route choice where you loose significant time. So, what is the choice?


You find other maps from the area in omaps.worldofo.com here. See also latest additions in 3DRerun from this area in order to learn more about this terrain type.


Next you can draw your own route using the ‘Webroute’ below. Think through how you would attack this leg, and draw the route you would have made. Some comments about why you would choose a certain route are always nice for the other readers.

Then you can take a look at how the runners have solved this leg below – several illustrations are provided to give you as much information as possible. As you can see, running around to the left on the road was definitely too long – the runners taking this choice lost a lot of time. Trying not to loose altitude (rightmost choices) also proved difficult. Firstly the runnability is not the best up there – and secondly the orienteering is tricky and many loose time when approaching the control. The best choice is to take a left choice not going all the way to the path/road – but using the areas which have good runnability without running too far. Thierry Gueorgiou took this route – and so did several others.

Density map

See below for a density map of some of the ones who have drawn their routes so far.

Additional information

You find the complete map in omaps.worldofo.com at this location.

Route to Christmas series

The ‘Route to Christmas’ series at World of O has been very popular the last years – and I have therefore decided to continue the series this Christmas as well. If you have got any good legs in RouteGadget, GPSSeuranta or 3DRerun from 2014-competitions – or old forgotten ones which are still interesting – please email me the link at Jan@Kocbach.net, and I’ll include it in Route to Christmas if it looks good. Route to Christmas will not be interesting if YOU don’t contribute.

Not all legs are taken for the interesting routechoice alternatives – some are also taken because the map is interesting – or because it is not straightforward to see what to do on a certain leg. Any comments are welcome – especially if you ran the event chosen for todays leg!

Note that there may be some errors in the Routegadget data (sometimes somebody draws a route for another runner just for fun). Please add a comment below if you spot en error.

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. Finnish champs long has couple of nice longer legs:


  2. may be the RtC example from Switzerland?

    Relay Champs, ME, leg 7-8 1st and 2nd relay, 6-7 3rd realy


  3. Zbigniew Malinowski

    Ay, ay…

    I quickly draw a route that is basically equal to Edgars Bertuks choice. But Thierry’s route was a real KO for me…

    I think to understand what he did: he must have seen beforehand that 7-8 leg is at part a reverse of 5-6 leg and he used it perfectly well as a beginning part. I’m pretty sure he looked for some well visible points leaving control 5 already. For me it’s a masterpiece! Yes, surely, this kind of opportunity is rathen unusual, but w real champion have to be ready to use the oportunity once it happens.

    Basically – this explains a bit why he is the best one…