Boxing Day Score event – Trent Park – Monday 26th December 2022

Annual LOK event with Happy Herts orienteering club. Score event – visit as many controls as you can in any order, within 60mins. 


Routegadget here

Planner’s comments:

Many of you will be considerably more familiar with Trent Park than I am – it appears I last ran at the Boxing Day score back in 2009. I can’t remember what the weather was like then but it was a joy to have such a fine day this year and putting out the controls in the early morning sun was a treat. I hope you enjoyed it too.

I tried to focus on avoiding the brambles, using the most attractive parts of the area and offering plenty of options for all abilities, which inevitably meant a fair bit of path running. I hope the points allocation worked well for all of you, with enough accessible 30-point controls to keep things interesting – thanks to my fantastic controllers for correcting some imbalances between the different “sectors”. Julie and Ronan put many more hours into the event than I did. Aside from keeping me on the straight and narrow they updated the map to include/exclude many new/vanished paths and vegetation changes etc, and transported the controls etc to the event itself. Thanks very much to them. And of course thanks to all those already mentioned by Catherine for placing/collecting controls – you made things wonderfully painless. Additional thanks to Anthony for giving me a lift to work after the event!

The geeky bit

The four runners who visited all 30 controls took three different approaches. Jack and James E opted to go clockwise with a dogleg from the fence corner (130) in the far west (both 9.5k by the redline, after adjusting line for out of bounds areas). James M (also 9.5k) and Christopher (9.3k, but a fraction more climb in the south-west) took two different anticlockwise routes and went “round the back” to 130. You can see these line routes (without OOB adjustment) in Routegadget by clicking in the left-hand column.

See attached PDFs for my idea of the optimum routes, both 9.4k. No 2 is similar to Jack and James E’s routes, but I’ve a slight preference for No 1 (“round the back”, clockwise). Going right back across the open area past the start is a bit counterintuitive but you get two long straight path/open runs to get your head down and run/plan ahead. It’s probably six of one and half a dozen of the other though – and Christopher and James M’s routes must be contenders too. Take your pick.

Optimum1 [link to PDF]

Optimum2 [link to PDF]

Richard Lloyd

Controllers’ comments:

Catherine & Richard have thanked all the volunteers and companies who helped put the Boxing Day event on, so it just falls to us to thank all the participants who entered and competed on Monday.  Didn’t the weather make such a difference from last year – if you ran in 2021.  Let’s hope for the same sunshine in 2023.

Happy and healthy New Year.

Julie & Ronan

Organiser’s Comments:

The going was better this year – much less waterlogged than in 2021 and with bright sunshine (circa 5c) rather than murky gloom. Scoring was in consequence noticeably higher.

Due to the improvement in the Covid II situation we were able to reinstate the 11.00 mass start, enhancing the atmosphere and spectacle of the event for the near record turnout of 110 competitors. Thanks to Richard Lloyd of LOK for planning the course and to Ronan & Julie Cleary (LOK) for controlling the event, presiding over the mass Start and then setting up the Finish (see photos below). Thank you also to Mike Bennett of HH for making up the quad hanging out and checking controls from 08:15.

This year 3 competitors got round all the controls within 60 minutes compared to none last year. Congratulations to Jack Kosky (M21) who amassed the most points: 670 – 600 for visiting all the controls plus 70 bonus points for getting back with over 7 minutes to spare. James McCormick and James Errington (M21) of HH also were back within time having visited all the controls. The highest scoring female was Rachel Kosky with 480 points.

This year the Boxing Day event attracted many younger competitors. Oliver Bardsley (M16) and Maggie Soulsby (W16), both of HH, provided the top performances, amassing 540 and 390 points respectively.

Don’t forget to markup your route in RouteGadget (here).

Thanks are also due to LOK volunteers Marion Shipman and Charles Spence (featured in the photograph below) who, along with Clive Hiller, supervised parking and the event arena. And to Kevin and Laura Parkes (HH) for organising the IT without hitch. Once again we are grateful for the co-operation of both the Southgate Hockey Club, Bridge Security and Berkeley Homes for parking permission. The latter is responsible for the upmarket new housing development in the centre of the park on the site of what was most recently a campus of Middlesex University.

Finally many hands made light work of collecting the controls – Simon and James Errington, Hedley Calderbank (all HH) and Anthony Flick, Yen Nguyen, Richard & Clive (all LOK)

See you all again next year!

Catherine Galvin (LOK)

10:15 Calm before the storm: newly installed LOK Chairman Charles Spence prepares to greet early arrivals.
10:59 Controller Ronan Cleary finishing the safety briefing at the Start 30 seconds before the off.
10:59 Competitors setting their GPS watches moments before the off
11:00 And they are off! Some competitors choose to study the map before deciding which way to head
12:25 All quiet at the Finish —no mistaking — after all 110 competitors are safely back