Keep it simple!

Posted by Jan Kocbach, 26 Sep 2010@22:11

Keep it simple!

This simplification exercise from the French Team WOC 2011 training camp in the Jura region found in the map archive of Vincent Coupat looks like a very good variant of the orienteering exercise “Run on a simplification map”. Making a good simplification exercise requires a lot of skill – and often making the exercise is even better training than running the exercise, as all of the simplification lies in making the map.

To get good value of running on a simplification map which you have not drawn yourself, it is important to do thorough work on analyzing the training afterwards. One part of this analysis could be to draw a new simplification map based on the outcome of the training.

Some resources related to simplification in

Maps from the WOC 2011 area on

Routechoice Analysis Norwegian Champs Long H21

Posted by Jan Kocbach, 11 Sep 2010@21:16

The Norwegian Champs Long distance was organized in Indre Østfold today in a terrain which is very untypical for Norway. The terrain has many deep valleys, giving interesting routechoices. Below you find the routechoices of some of the best runners in the mens class on some of the decisive legs.

Before taking a look at the routechoices below, take a look at the course without routes here:

Note that all the split times given below are taken from the GPS tracking, and may differ by up to 10-15 seconds from the actual splits. Still, this is interesting for the routechoice analysis.

Leg 2-3

In the interview after the race, the winner Olav Lundanes told that his tactic was to run around in this hilly terrain to save energy. We see this already on the first long leg to the third control where Lundanes (dark blue) choose a variant to the right around the forbidden area. His main rival Carl Waaler Kaas choose a more direct route – like he did in most of the race – earning around 30 seconds on Lundanes on this particular leg. The two fastest of the top runners have chosen a left/direct approach on this leg.

At this point in the race, Waaler Kaas has a lead of around 40 seconds to Lundanes.

Screen shot 2010-09-11 at 7.52.04 PM

Leg 3-4

On leg 3-4 we again see that Lundanes goes far around to the left (80% longer than direct), while Waaler Kaas takes a more direct approach. And again Waaler Kaas is faster. Weltzien chooses a middle variant going through some green areas – loosing some time compared to the other runners.

Waaler Kaas has now increased his lead to Lundanes to nearly a minute.

Screen shot 2010-09-11 at 7.53.55 PM

Leg 5-6

The really long leg in this course was the leg from number 5 to number 6. Looking at the route choices of the top runners, we can see that the routes are spread over a wide area. Fastest of the top runners is Olav Lundanes (13:03) with a left variant in which he follows the field for the first part of the leg – running flat in high speed for large parts of the leg (34% longer than the direct line, average pace of 4:53 min/km). Waaler Kaas looses 45 seconds with a variant to the right which is much shorter (only 12% longer than the direct line with a lot of up and down, giving average pace of more than 6 min/km). Weltzien goes even further to the right, and is some seconds faster than Waaler Kaas. Wingstedt runs all the way around on the road to the left – running nearly 70% longer than the straight line with an average pace of 4:12 on the leg, being about one minute slower than Lundanes.

Waaler Kaas is still in the lead, but his lead has shrunk down to just above 10 seconds ahead of Lundanes in second spot.

Screen shot 2010-09-11 at 7.57.22 PM
Screen shot 2010-09-11 at 7.57.43 PM

Leg 6-19

The legs between 6 and 19 were not that interesting from a route choice perspective, but it was in this part of the course the race was decided. Waaler Kaas lost 2 minutes to control number 8 due to a mistake in the open, flat area. From 8 to 9, Waaler Kaas lost some time in the part with cliffs – and Lundanes choose some better micro route-choices on some of the other legs between control 9 and 18.

Leg 19-20

Again Waaler Kaas chooses a direct variant, whereas Lundanes goes around to the left. Lundanes runs 184% longer(!) than the straight line, and looses more than two minutes to Waaler Kaas who is fastest of the top runners on this leg. Tiltnes and Hott also go around to the left – running approximately the same time as Lundanes, whereas Wingstedt goes around to the right (137% longer), and looses even more than Lundanes.

This leg could have been very decisive for the overall victory, but Lundanes had a 4 minute lead on Waaler Kaas before the leg, and although Waaler Kaas got closer to Lundanes, the gap was still to big for Waaler Kaas to fight for the gold.

Screen shot 2010-09-11 at 8.01.22 PM


The course setter (Tore Sandvik) presented an interesting course with many route choice options. Carl Waaler Kaas choose the best option on most of the route choice legs with his direct route choices – however Lundanes might have saved more energy for the rest of the course due to his routes going around on the routechoice legs. I was not present at the championships – so I might have missed some points in the analysis above. If you have something to add to the analysis – either based on the GPS tracking, the splits, or because you were running – please add a comment below.


Men 21

1 Lundanes, Olav Halden SK 01:34:12
2 Kaas, Carl Waaler Bækkelagets SK 01:35:18 +01:06
3 Weltzien, Audun Hultgreen Tyrving, IL 01:36:03 +01:51
4 Rollier, Baptiste Kristiansand OK 01:39:43 +05:31
5 Lucasen, Håvard Ås-UMB Orientering 01:39:53 +05:41
6 Karlsson, Mattias Halden SK 01:40:25 +06:13
7 Wingstedt, Emil Halden SK 01:42:52 +08:40
8 Tiltnes, Anders Tyrving, IL 01:43:23 +09:11
9 Hott, Holger Kristiansand OK 01:44:39 +10:27
9 Sagbereg, Torbjørn Tyrving, IL 01:44:39 +10:27

Women 21

1 Bagstevold, Heidi Østlid Bækkelagets SK 01:12:38
2 Wigemyr, Tone Bækkelagets SK 01:16:16 +03:38
3 Klechova, Vendula Halden SK 01:17:20 +04:42
4 Jahren, Silje Ekroll Raumar Orientering 01:18:41 +06:03
5 Holmström, Bodil NTNUI 01:20:54 +08:16
6 Bjørgul, Ida Marie Næss Halden SK 01:21:15 +08:37
7 Kahrs, Marianne Riddervold Fredrikstad SK 01:22:06 +09:28
8 Persson, Lina Kristiansand OK 01:23:25 +10:47
9 Bjerva, Elin Bækkelagets SK 01:23:41 +11:03
10 Palmer, Helen Suzanne Wing OK 01:25:42 +13:04 will look into more interesting routechoice legs when the autumn darkness comes upon us the coming months. If you have legs or courses which are interesting for analysis, please send an email to

Also, remember that the wiki is open to everybody for addition of o-training exercises and other stuff related to orienteering training. Please contribute!