Mironova and Sild now double champions in Hamina – Polish athletes surprised with two
After their successful middle distance competition on Monday, Russian Svetlana Mironova and Estonian Timo Sild were again the strongest orienteers in Tuesdays’ long distance race in the World Military Championships in Orienteering.
On the women’s 7,3-kilometre course Mironova was 1.11 faster than fellow countrywoman Anastasia Rudnaya.
- I was tired after yesterday’s race. I could really feel it, especially along the final sandy uphill after the last control. Yesterday I was flying there, but today going up was a real struggle, Mironova smiled.
The winner tried to save her energy in the beginning and rather concentrated on technically perfect orienteering.
- I thought that Anastasia (Rudnaya) would win me today because she started later than I and there usually tend to be some paths for those who start later helping them in the forest, Mironova said.
Rudnaya was, in fact, leading the race on the middle part of the course, but problems that surfaced in the end lost her the gold.
- I had problems with compass orienteering, especially in the green areas, said Rydnaya.
Timo Sild took a clear victory on the men’s 13-kilometre course. Although the Estonian made a small mistake by the first control, he was afterwards able to perform optimally.
- After that minor mistake I was able to focus again, and I think that was a crucial factor in my winning the gold medal today. Of course I didn’t know how I ran compared to the others, but I thought that if I sustained the same tempo as yesterday, I could be satisfied with my performance, Sild told.
Apart from the Estonian Sild, it was the Russians who were the strongest orienteers on Tuesday. Leonid Novikov took the silver medal in the men’s class and four Russian women were part of the top 5 in the women’s class.
The Polish runners surprised today. Alexandra Hornik was the only woman who was able to challenge the Russians by taking the bronze medal 1.40 behind Mironova.
- We have had a three-week training camp in Finland so I was well prepared. I am physically in good shape so I just had to make a technically good run. Before the race I thought I would make it to the top 6, but
I was dreaming of a medal. Yesterday I made some mistakes in the middle distance, but I knew that today I could fight for the medal, Hornik said.
Wojciech Kowalski was the bronze medalist in the men’s class. The Polish orienteer said that the beginning of the race was important for him. He caught the Finn Miika Kirmula by one minute already by the first control, and after that the duo ran almost the whole course together. He admitted that Kirmula’s high tempo and precision were an advantage.
- To be honest, I thought I could make it to the top 10 with a good performance. I didn’t expect a medal, though. I guess I had luck today because I had a chance to run with Kirmula, Kowalski said.
The Polish coach Janusz Porzysz was very satisfied with his athletes’ performance.
- I did not expect any individual medals but, on the other hand, in the previous championships we have been running better in the long distance than in the middle, Porzysz said.
Tomorrow Wednesday the athletes take a rest day from competing, and the programme features a cultural day instead. The final competition will be the Relay on Thursday.