Individual Results | Individual Winsplits| Relay Results | Relay Winsplits | Photos (Individual) | Photos (Relay)
On 17th/18th February the Varsity Match was hosted by JOK near Sheffield. There were 18 DRONGOs, 16 CUOCs, 15 OUOC, and 8 JOK entered. The accommodation was in a slightly remote bunkhouse in the hills above Hathersage. There was a cow in the barn next door. The postcode wasn't quite the same as the bunkhouse, so several people managed to go to a random different farm first. Dan arrived at the wrong place as Ben was leaving, and failed to interpret Ben's hand signals. However, he too found the right farm not long after. John, keeping up his reputation, told CUOC they should sleep downstairs so that he could have more peace and quiet, and continued drinking his brew. Dan decided he wanted a brew too, then Zuzka decided she also wanted one. So Dan, who had already got up to make it, sat down again and asked Zuzka to make his too. Smooth. James H, who was driving from Aberdeen, had estimated his arrival as midnight, and he turned up with impressive accuracy.
Saturday was the main Varsity match at Hathersage Moor. The parking was at Surprise View. Once the mist cleared and the sun started to come through, it lived up to its name. The area was quite physical with some tough heather and marshes, and early runners had mist to contend with as well. The course was good though with a nice mixture of long legs and short technical legs. Dan was the earliest start and Matthew was the earliest finisher, having caught Dan up by 11 minutes and then overtaken him three times. Results were as could have been predicted: DrongO won the alumni, CUOC won the women, and OUOC won the men. Top DrongO man was Ben Windsor, about 2.5 minutes down on the leader, while DrongO local Jenny Peel won the women's alumni match. After the match Ed Catmur invited Ben for a 'warm down jog' - which actually meant collecting most of the controls and running further than the course itself!
Afterwards went back to bunkhouse and some people had cold showers, some people got buckets of kettle water, and some people didn't bother. After many debates about the beer race, it was eventually postponed until 2 hours after dinner. Dinner was in a curry house in Hathersage, followed by prizegiving. Then the alumni went to the pub while the students went back to the bunkhouse with some cheaper booze, except Jeremy who was the only one to accept the offer from alumni to buy him drinks in the pub. Back at the bunkhouse, the lack of drinking receptacles meant most of the beer race was straight from cans. CUOC won for the fourth time ever. Looking forward to the second DrongO win ever three years from now.
Then the party continued with honorary DrongO DJ Philly V providing all three of his tunez. For the second year running, DrongO won the party, although CUOC did close the gap significantly from last year.
The next morning was the relay at Blacka. The terrain was more runnable but also more hilly than yesterday. Nick Barrable had armchair planned and the control sites hadn't been visited, however it still turned out to be excellent! It was quite cold so there were three mass starts 10 minutes apart. Well, four mass starts, because an unfortunate Fiona B from CUOC twisted her ankle, and so the nice people who stopped to help had their own mini mass start once she was safely back with her ankle surrounded by ice. We wish her a speedy recovery.
Once Dan had collected the majority of the controls, everybody was on their way back home!
Well done to Josh Milner for organising a VM with accommodation and relays, and we look forward to DrongO organising in 2019 - to be confirmed!