Partners in life, Shannon Jones and Grant Bluett, shared the honours in event # 3 of the 2020 ACT Sprint Distance Series over a distance of 2,400 metres with 24 controls at Orana School on Sunday. Of the 135 entries, only 85 started as a number of ACT orienteers are still in New Zealand, competing in the Sprint the Bay series. Course planner, Matt Crane, made good use of the extended map, with the irregularly-shaped buildings challenging many competitors sense of direction.
Jones completed her course in 17 min 30 sec, a minute faster than second-placed Young, with Marina Iskhakova 11 seconds behind Young in third place. Jones was equal first with Caitlin Young and Maria Deptulska to the first control, Young led the second control and Deptulska lead through controls three and four. Iskhakova got to the lead at the fifth control and led through the 13th, only for Jones to grab the lead on the long leg to 14 and was never headed. The top four placings were unchanged from control 14 to the Finish.
Bluetts’ win was much more emphatic in a time of 13 min 38 sec. He was fastest to the first control and was never headed. Patrick Miller, who had a mixed day, was second in 14 min 19 sec, with Tomas Krajca third 14 seconds adrift of Miller. Patrick Shelton Agar had the fastest split of 14 seconds for the 70-metre finish chute.
Next Sunday’s event will be at Haig Park.