Ditto adventure tag along for sale

Ditto Adventure folding tag along, trailer bike for sale – one careful ‘young lady’ owner !
rrp new £129.00

Fantastic condition single speed and one of the best designs, folding down to go in the boot of a car and tows off the seat post.

Collection from Stafford, Altrincham or Taunton. contact mark@stodgell.co.uk
£80.00 ono








World of O Route to Christmas

World of O, the main international news feed for orienteering, is running a “Route to Christmas” series. Everyday there is a new leg to ponder over and submit your proposed route. Most days end up getting over 300 routes added, such is its the popularity.
Days 1-3 to get you in the mood are here…..




for more days go to World of O’s homepage at http://worldofo.com/




New MTBO rules for 2012

The IOF have just publishes new rules for MTBO that take effect from 1st jan 2012 for all IOF events.




The main one from the competitors point of view is that waterproof paper should now be used  which I’m sure we will all appreciate. Perhaps all UK MTBO events should follow suit as the costs are negligible.

I also think the revised definition of MTBO is also quite good

'Mountain Bike Orienteering is a sport in which the competitors, using cycles,
navigate independently through the terrain. Competitors must visit a number of
control points marked on the ground in the shortest possible time aided only by
map and compass. The course, defined by the location of the controls, is not
revealed to competitors until they start. Mountain biking and navigational skills
shall be tested in such a way that navigational skill is the decisive element. The
course shall be completed by the cyclist riding, carrying or pushing his/ her
mountain bike. Riding off the track or trail will normally be disallowed unless
specifically agreed by the organiser and the IOF Event Adviser'


All male line up for BBC sports personality 2011!

Its not often I rant on my blog, but it’s time for one: Why, oh why, do we have a 10 person short list for the BBC sports personality 2011 that does not include a woman? Why, why, why are there 3 golfers in the line up?!

Decided by a ‘panel’ of sports editors the short list is (in alphabetical order): Mark Cavendish (cycling), Darren Clarke (golf), Alastair Cook (cricket), Luke Donald (golf), Mo Farah (athletics), Dai Greene (athletics), Amir Khan (boxing), Rory McIlroy (golf), Andy Murray (tennis), Andrew Strauss (cricket).

I thought I would look into how they were selected. The BBC website shows the sports editors publications and how they voted http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/sports_personality/15895642.stm

Zoo, Nuts…… no wonder there are no women, I don’t see any female targeted publications in the list.

Obviously a panel needs to contain a spread of publications from all spectrums, and most magazines concentrate on one particular sport so are excluded. It is good to see a regional spread but one that produces no female finalists does nothing to encourage ½ of the UK population into sport, or give them a role model they can associate with.

I also think that one sport should have no more than 2 places in the final for two reasons. With 3 golfers in the final list the ‘golfing vote’ will be split meaning that it is likely none of them will win however well deserved, and with ½ of the finalists being from just two sports (athletics and golf) it does restrict the public vote and disengages even more those viewers who are interested in more minority sports.

Time to look at the selection policy for 2012 I think.

No prizes for guessing who my vote goes to – good luck Cav.

Rant over.




European MTBO Camp 2012 – now a WRE (or two)!

Venue for the Ultra Long

It seems there is now even more reason to attend the 2012 MTBO camp (to be held in Hilleroed, north of Copenhagen) as 2 World Ranking Events have been added to the program.

The forests were last used for the 2009 European Championships and are fantastic mountain bike orienteering terrain….

Final details for accommodation, events and training are now out.


Fri 21.00 Night Short – Praestevang and St. Dyrehave Nord
Sat 10.00 (WRE) Middle – Grib Skov Syd
Sat 14.00 Training – Stenholt Vang and Gl.Grnholt Hegn
Sun 10.00 (WRE) Long – Tisvilde Hegn Nord
Sun 14.00 Training – Tisvilde Hegn Syd
Sun 20.00 Paallikkoos Diavolo Challenge
Mon 10.00 Long – Tokkekb Hegn
Mon 14.00 Sprint – Urban
Tue 10.00 Ultralong – Grib Skov All

We have booked our flights and accommodation tonight (Hilleroed Hotel option and Stansted – Copenhagen, 7am 30th March for those interested in following suit).

For more details go to http://www.mtbocamp.dk/2012/

Back on the bike!

Well, I hadn’t ridden a bike properly for 2 months until yesterday, just the odd easy turbo session to keep the legs ticking over. My physio gave the OK for gentle road riding earlier this week, so I have been out twice, once for 40 minutes and once for 70! I’ve been using the new Max Light Pro3 mountain bike to give an extra bit of comfort to my back, and to bed it in.

It was great to get back out and enjoy the autumnal landscapes, as I suspect with today’s winds there won’t be too many leaves left by tomorrow. There don’t seem to be any repercussions from the rides, so the plan now is to slowly up the ride lengths over the next two weeks but not get too carried away with effort, and certainly no mountain biking to cause any jarring impacts through my lower back.

2 months is a long time without any training, even for an extended winter break. I’ve only put on about 1-2 kgs in weight which should fall off fairly quickly when I get back to it. The main problem will be finding the 6-9 hours a week needed for training again as I seem to have filled this time with other stuff!

New Years Eve Mountain Bike Orienteering 2011

The Venue is now confirmed – Canal Side Farm shop, Great Heywood – www.canalsidefarm.co.uk
starts 9.30 – 10.30 am

2 and 3 hour score options available.

online entry and more details at www.bmbo.org.uk or www.walton-chasers.co.uk





Route Choice!

There were some huge route choice decisions to be made at the Gisburn MTBO last weekend. Route Gadget is now available here http://www.pfo.routegadget.co.uk/pfo/reitti.cgi?act=map&id=25&kieli= please put up your routes if you rode, its is a great way to review your performance against others and a valuable asset for novices to learn from.

Route choice is what the long distance format is all about (well that and physicality) and planner Alan Hartley exploited the Gisburn map to the full with his courses.

Below are his thoughts on the long legs, plus the potential routes colour coded.

Green – 3.9km, 90m

Blue – 4.2km, 90m

Yellow – 4.7km, 95m

Red – 4.8km, 85m


Probably blue is too close to green distance in hindsight, maybe should’ve had 9 further south, although this would’ve affected the B route choice so prob would’ve had to have two controls. Perhaps without local knowledge the singletrack on the green route too risky.

A lot of singletrack on an MTBO map hides many bends which can’t be mapped at 1:15,000 – it is certainly the case on several of the tracks in Gisburn, but not these ones but that’s not what competitors would know in advance. You can see the southern section is marked with the medium symbol, not slow and it’s not very long before you’re back

on fireroad, so pretty quick up to where the yellow route rejoins – I think this rules out the yellow route and splits seem to indicate that e.g. Houli went this way. I don’t know anybody who took the red on the A course although at least one did on B but from different start control. The B splits and routes do seem to indicate that green is faster than red and yellow.

Because of the all the one way trails it does make 9-10 and 10-11 completely different legs, and certainly the best way to 11 is round the north back along the blue route, but because 11 is south of 9 it did make a few riders go round to the south to 11. The original A legs were actually the other way around, so from 11 to 10 then back to 9, then it is a better leg on the way out, but then there was no real choice on the return. It’s actually a real pain trying to put long route choice legs in with so much one-way, I was originally trying to get a leg back to the SW corner to then go direct to finish from there, setting up a great “run-in” route choice of north or south, but you can’t have a leg of any interest against the singletrack without tempting cheating.

When planning I don’t like to be too scientific with route choices as I think you do need a discrepancy with routes rather than tweaking control placement until all routes are equal as then there is nothing to be gained. It’s only a shame that by not being scientific perhaps the best routes involved using the same track a lot.