I could hardly believe that 72 runners would brave a navigation event, at night and in the dead of winter. But they did and within minutes of the start they were warmed up and running through the suburbs surrounding Zoo Lake.
Compared to the previous Metrogaine held in April in the Rivonia/Gallo Manor area, this course was wide open with only two road closures and no security boom access gates. This makes a huge difference to the freedom of movement of the runners and opens up the route choices dramatically.
My guess was that a clockwise route would be the most effective to give gradual climb up towards Westcliff, where the points were nicely stacked, and to descend the stairs – taking in a lovely view down below. Where there are lots of points available in an area, always remember that you are going to have to work for them! I also kept a good number of points reasonably close to the start/finish for walkers.
In terms of penalties applied… Many of the one hour course runners were late; few of the 90-minute course runners were late. Latecomers lost 10 points for every minute or part thereof that they were late. Wrong answers were heavily penalised to prevent runners from guessing answers. The penalty here was three times the points value of the control. It is very important to make sure that the correct box is checked as some wrong answers may have just been in error.
I only had two ‘funnies’ out on the course. At briefing I told runners that if they find funnies, to move on and not hunt for the answer (if they’re sure they’re in the right place, that is). Controls as indicated on the map are pretty accurate in terms of placement (how far down a road) and also which side of the road. All answers should be obvious, even at night, and I’m more than happy to give them the points if their explanation is sound. The date at ‘Glenshiel’ was one of them. I used the 1904 date on the round plaque (cement base), “Established in 1904…”. As it turns out, there’s another date of 1903 on top of the gate, which I hadn’t noticed. The other was the location with the answer ‘Freckles’. The sign was on the other side of the road.
Results take a while to get because of adding up points and scores. It is really challenging to work the totals with people coming and going and under time pressure; we also don’t want to keep people waiting for too long after the finish. I’ll be certain to pack calculators for the next one. A bunch of people jumped in to help and their assistance is greatly appreciated. Koki pen or highlighter marks on the answer sheets was definitely easier to check; light ballpoint pen marks can be missed in the rush.
We had a few bloopses with the points tally. I have checked every entry and they have been corrected on the results spreadsheet. But, it does mean that we had two errors in the overall results…
On the one-hour course, Piers Pirow beat Nathan Thompson. Piers had 660 points but lost 50 for being late; Nathan had 620 points but lost 120 for an incorrect answer. Andrew Wiggett and Caroline Kelly beat the father and daughter pair of Derek and Zoe Brentano. Wigs and Caroline had 490 points and lost 50 for being late. The tally on their sheet read 370 when it should have been 440. Derek and Zoe collected 420 points so they end up second to Wigs and Caroline. My apology for the errors.
One hour course
Solo: Piers Pirow, 610 points
Pair: Andrew Wiggett & Caroline Kelly, 440 points
Solo: Christo Truter, 620 points
Pair: Brian Gardner & Neal Markham, 1020 points
The winning pairs and solos got edible awards plus free entry to the next metrogaine. As the event grows, I will certainly include more categories, like male, female and mixed other than just solo and pairs.
Pre-entry worked really well because:
- I know how many people are coming and thus how many maps and instructions to print and cupcakes to bake.
- Little to no cash on the night so that I don’t need copious amounts of change and my mom, Liz, who handles registration isn’t a sitting duck with cash in hand.
- I can brief the venue as to the number of people to plan for.
- I have lists of people to check off and to make sure that everyone is ‘home’ safe and sound.
Thanks to Liz for assisting with registration and finish. And then there were a bunch of helpers to jumped in to assist with adding up points. It is a really tough manual job, done under time pressure. The counters that I saw included Susette, Jono, Fred and Piers. If I’ve missed you here, thank you for helping with this task.
Yes, there will be another metrogaine, probably only in September. I’m thinking around Tuesday, 6 September. I’ll confirm in good time. I have in mind an idea for a ‘Power Points’ control or two where you can earn extra points. All will be revealed…
Total number of controls: 42
Total point score available: 1260
Highest score: 1020 (Brian Gardner and Neal Markham)
Highest one-hour course score: 610 (Piers Pirow – he had 660 but lost 50 points for being late)
Distance run by Brian and Neal: 18.6km with 295m of climb in 1:27:07
Total number of runners: 72
Runners on 90-minute course = 21 pairs & 3 solo = 45 runners
Runners on the one-hour course = 12 pairs and 3 solo = 27 runners
|1 Hour course||Time||Points||Penalty –
|Solo||Nathan Thompson||0:51:45||620||120||500||#41 is Multiguard|
|Pair||Andrew Wiggett||Caroline Kelly||1:04:59||490||50||440|
|Pair||Zoe Brentano||Derek Brentano||0:58:15||420||420|
|Pair||Fred Richardson||Allison Glass||0:58:15||360||360|
|Pair||Roelof Letter||Esmari Kilian||1:05:12||370||60||310|
|Pair||Sarah Pope||Magi Lingnau||0:58:15||420||150||270||#15 is 2; #45 is 1|
|Pair||Bettina Klein||Anisa Govender||1:02:36||250||30||220|
|Pair||Chris||Tamryn||0:59:07||310||150||160||#53 is mosaic|
|Pair||Abdul Ebrahim||Aneesa Hendricks||1:16:52||270||170||100|
|Pair||Cameron Naidoo||Angie Sanchez||1:17:57||290||180||150||-40||#55 is pick axe|
|90-minute course||Time||Points||Penalty –
|Pair||Brian Gardner||Neal Markham||1:27:07||1020||1020|
|Pair||Alex Pope||Tony Abbott||1:28:48||950||950|
|Pair||Patrick de Jongh||Ryan Burger||1:30:14||810||10||800|
|Pair||Charl Keet||Lizelle Smit||1:32:15||720||30||690|
|Pair||Mary Scorer||Lynette Jones||1:28:27||650||650|
|Pair||Shaun Brassell||Alexander Retief||1:28:24||590||590|
|Pair||Mark Dickson||Gareth Evans||1:24:56||520||520|
|Pair||Chris vd Merwe||Lauren
|Pair||Isabel Roux||Ilse Karsten||1:25:26||470||470|
|Pair||Erik Vermeulen||Karin Derwort||1:26:59||450||450|
|Pair||Jacques Booysen||Zurika Untiedt||1:31:04||450||20||430|
|Pair||Lobby Goulding||Pam Goulding||1:24:27||410||410|
|Pair||Larry Harmer||Nadine Nunes||1:15:18||370||370|
|Solo||Ari Vlastos||1:24:26||440||150||290||#53 is mosaic|
|Pair||Francis Rogan||Petra Anderson||1:21:04||370||90||280||#31 is white|
|Pair||Justin Nolan||Barry Schooling||1:32:54||330||30||300|
|Pair||Duncan Crous||Yasmin Palmer||1:17:29||260||80||180||#48 is metal|