Occassional thoughts about orienteering

Saturday, July 17, 2004

Ages of elite orienteers


Runners at the Euro Champs long distance qualifying race by age:
under 20 years old 0 (0%)
21-25 years old 69 (37%)
26-30 years old 75 (40%)
31-35 years old 29 (15%)
36-40 years old 15 (8%)
over 40 years old 0 (0%)
The median age was 27.
I didn't have ages for all of the 225 runners in the qualifying race.  I had ages for 188 of them.  I don't think the results would change if I had all 225, but you never know.
The age distribution at the Euro Champs is very similar to the age distribution at the WOC in 2003.  The median ages for both events is 27.
Last year I also look at the age distribution for riders in the 2003 Tour de France.  For the TDF, the distribution is a bit different.  The cycling tended to be a bit older (52% between the ages of 26-30 and 32% between the ages of 31 and 35).
If I had to guess, I'd say that the cyclist ages tended to be a bit higher because cycling is a professional sport while orienteering, with a few exceptions, isn't.  A world class orienteer is more likely to have to give up serious training and get a full time job at the age that a world class cyclist is pulling down a good salary from a cycling team.

posted by Michael | 7:45 PM


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