These results are now finalised.
The event is now on RouteGadget (please be aware that the map is initially zoomed in on portion of white in the north west corner).
With great enthusiasm I started planning the Buskett’s lawn event in August 2012 with the expectation of it all being over by Christmas 2012, I followed my usual principle of visiting the location, running around like a headless chicken for a couple of days looking for potential sites that had not been used on the November classic and noting any locations I had trouble finding, these were for the Blue/Brown courses. That done it was into dialogue with Jillian and indirectly with the New Forest to see where we could park vehicles, the response was no vehicles on the map so that gave me a start and finish point at the wrong end of the map and the planning process restarted. With the patience and guidance of Paul (The Controller) provisional Check points were agreed and some moved as we couldn’t agree which ditch or knoll was marked on the map – finally it was down to me to use OCAD to balance and measure routes etc. and everything was set for the December 2012 event, just in time for it to be moved to January 2013. Sadly due to snow it was too dangerous to put the controls out so the event was cancelled again. But at least the maps were printed and everything was ready to go, until the EMIT batteries started to fail during the November Classic, sadly those that failed were all planned to be used during the event and then to compound the situation on this ill-fated event I hurt my back and couldn’t continue with the laying out of controls, so I have to say a very big thank you to:
Paul Fox for sticking with the event and helping on the Saturday (I hope we get to do another event sometime soon)
Jillian Devine – who through all the difficulties kept going and at the last minute organised the Forest team to lay the last of the controls and bring them in, this on top of all the other stuff an organiser does.
Terry Smith – who kindly collected the required replacement controls from Aldershot and delivered them to me in a forest pub car park.
Others - whose names I do not know who at the last moment rallied to the call for help putting controls out and without whom the event would probably not have happened.
Finally my wife who let me spend some 20 days running around the forest getting muddy and enjoying the planning exercise and for putting up with me as I lay on my bed drugged up to my eyeballs on the weekend of the event.
To You all a big thank you and to the competitors I hope you enjoyed the courses and my apologies for not being there to hear your comments both good and bad.
I promise to do better next time, if I am allowed to do another one.
Best wishes for Christmas.
The east end of Busketts is tough in places, with variable undergrowth and some vague narrow rides, and the shorter technical courses possibly got the worse of it. The west end is a pure delight when it's dry like this year, and the conditions on the weekend of the event were as good as I've seen them in the last few months. The winning times were about what we expected.
The good bits:
- wonderful solo runs on beautiful days in the forest whilst finding tapes and checking sites;
- working with Iain through the planning process as courses were developed and refined;
- appreciating the extra efforts from Jillian, Kieran and Kevin as they stepped in at short notice to help the Planner out of his injury predicament and make sure everything actually made it into the forest in the 24 hours leading up to the event
The not-so-good bits:
- the last minute postponement in last January's snow - always a tough decision, and especially so for the club which had had to postpone the November Classic only weeks beforehand;
- the rescheduled event clashing with a big family birthday celebration, so I couldn't even be there on the day (which didn't dawn on me until a couple of months before the event, and thanks to Kieran for deputising!)
- the dreaded e-mail on the Friday night when the Planner tells you he's injured and only a third of the controls have been put out!
There are days when we all wonder why we do this sport (especially as volunteer officials!), but on balance the good bits prevail, and I've offered to do it all again with a different SOC team in a year's time. Thanks and well done for a successful event.