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2011 – Controller’s Comments

Chris Hall and Bob Saunders

Chris Hall and Bob Saunders

Last year I made some very pointed comments about conduct during the Event. How does this year compare with last year ?

The first thing is that David, the Organiser, arranged for marshals to do rounds of the Mid Camp collecting empty cans. This lead to an improvement in the cleanliness of the site when you left but it was not any where near perfect. I also ask the question : “Why should the marshals have to clean up at all ?” There is a simple rule that you should apply : If you pack it in, you pack it out. If you want a lesson in efficient waste management, look at the rubbish that the teams doing Klets or Scafell generate. It squashes up into a ball the size of a fist and weighs practically nothing. With a little preparation and planning, everyone could achieve the same. Then there is the Landowner, in this case United Utilities. They are very concerned about pollution in a water catchment area. That is why the Wythburn was made Out of Bounds. I have my suspicions that some of you went downstream to wash. Do you not get the message !?

When we get access to the land we negociate the conditions under which we can use it. This puts restrictions on us and we plan accordingly. Thus, if a wall or fence is marked as uncrossable on the map we do not expect you cross it. We mark the crossing points on the map. The arrangement we had with the farmer at the Mid Camp was that I would supply marshals at the crossing points. He would have my ‘guts for garters’ if his flock strayed. Thus I ask the question : why did you cross a wall that was marked as uncrossable ? GR315124 on Day 1 and GR320123 on Day 2. I had to apologize to the farmer that we had transgressed.

The ground the Event was held on was rougher than last year so the courses were bound to be more physical. There was also the problem on how to get you back to the Event Centre on Sunday. I do not like having competitors running along busy, narrow country roads and will try to avoid that, if possible. Thus, I decided that we would go round the top of Langdale. The consequence of this was that the 3 shorter courses where slightly longer on Day2. One of the benefits was the final run in to the finish. Many of you expressed your appreciation of this.

Charlie’s courses generated universal approval. I will leave it to him to make any comments. However, I have one apology to make. Control 147 at GR248066 was slightly lower than it should have been. My process of checking that all controls were in the correct place failed. Again my apologies.

Along with Rob Howard, who was photographing the Event, we were trying a few new ideas. The first one was for prize winners. Rob took pictures of most of the prize winners which are available for them to download on his web site. In addition, we have been working on a certificate for each team. The certificate is free of charge without the photograph. If you want the picture as well, you buy this and it will be incorporated into the certificate.

Next year we will change the way prizes are allocated. At this year’s prize giving, we could not award several prizes because many veteran teams were not yet in. Next year, we will change it so that the Mixed and Ladies will be allocated before the Veterans.

The time of year this Event is held is one of the warmest. Although we can have wild weather, as epitomised by last year’s gales, we frequently have a lot of sun. Our resident doctor, Rhona, has suggested that we have a sunhat as part of the kit. This would help reduce the number of sun related injuries suffered.

Setting up an Event like this requires a team of dependable people. Apart from the main officials that you know about, there are several others that contribute significantly to the overall success.
Rhona, the Doctor, and Karen, the Physio.
Phil and Barbs who help setup the courses and run the starts.
Joe and Paul who help set up the courses and provide valuable assistance throughout the weekend.
Andrew who supports everything to do with the computing over the weekend.
Bob who David, the Organiser, invited along a year or so ago and seems to have stuck.
The Backpackers Club who man some of the controls and do sterling service in helping to bring in the controls once they are closed.
In addition, there is the team that David puts together to man the registration and help out on car parking and administration of the Event Centre.
Then we have Martin and Jessica who normally compete but this year saw the Event from a different perspective.

Without all the volunteers the Event could not take place.

So we now look forward to the next year. The main officials will have a de-brief in the near future and look at our performance. We also need to find a planner. How about you ? You do not need to have any experience of planning. After all, Charlie knew nothing about it a year ago and his courses were universally appreciated. We will guide you through the process and try to develop the ideas that you have about an Event such as this.

Vote for the best competitor photograph. The winner will receive a small prize and be used for next years Event. Email me with your choice.

As part of the Event policy, I try very hard to use local resources.
Pete Bland of Kendal who provided some of the prizes
The cider was supplied by Cowmire Hall Cider of Winster Valley (
Catering by Scotts of Plumgarth nr Kendal
Event entries and results by SPORTident of Sleagell, Shap
Web site support by MKH Computer Services of Brampton

Looking forward to meeting you again. Put Saturday 7th/ Sunday 8th July 2012 in your diary.

Chris Hall