Flurry recently represented GB at the EYOCs in Bulgaria - this is his report
Since November 2017 I have travelled across the country to multiple GB Squad training camps, each one focused on preparing me for the selection races starting in April. Following tough races, I managed to gain the results necessary for selection for the GB team which would be going to the European Youth Orienteering Champs in Bulgaria. On the 27th of June I flew with the rest of the team to Sofia where we were surprised to find thunderstorms and heavy rain as we had all done "hot weather training". We were driven to Velliko Tarnovo, the ancient capital of Bulgaria, which is built around a steep ravine. The following day we ran on the model areas they had provided and prepared for the first event: the Sprint. The Sprint took place in the grounds of the fortress and the old city. Steep slopes and a small scale map made navigation hard and also extremely physical. With only minor mistakes I was pleased with my 30th place in a hard field.
Next day was host to the Long in the wooded hills at the base of large mountains. It was very beautiful countryside. After 3 hours of waiting in quarantine, I began my race in heavy rain going straight into steep and muddy slopes with little traction available. Long legs offered lots of different route choices and I tended to take a risk and trust my compass going straight through the undergrowth. With only one mistake near the end, I knew that I had run a good race. Finishing 14th place in the Long far exceeded my expectations of what I wanted form this year's EYOC. The rest of my GB team came 15th and 16th split by only 25 seconds.
The last day was the Relay in the grounds of a monastery. With such a strong team for M16, I was nervous on last leg. However, the first leg run mispunched. This did not stop our team having a close race with the German team, which I just managed to out sprint on the run in.
It was great experience and I learned alot. I am grateful for the support of Devon and SWOA.
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