Occassional thoughts about orienteering

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Belgian orienteering?


I know next to nothing about orienteering in Belgium.*

As I was comparing the U.S. sprint results to peer nations, the results of the runners from Belgium caught my eye.

Here are the results from the sprint qualifiers:

Men A Bart Delobel 23rd (3:25.7 back)
Men B Jan Gilot 5th (0:46.9 back)
Men C Pieter Hendrickx 2nd (0:17.2 back)

Only one woman from Belgium ran, Greet Oeyen, who finished 16th, just over 8 seconds from qualifying for the final.

Those results look pretty good to me.

In the final, Hendrickx and Gilot finished 20th and 22rd. Those results are comparable to the top two Czech (18th and 30th) or Norwegian (19th and 27th) runners.

Gilot is young (24) and running his 3rd WOC.

Hendricks is fairly young (he ran a JWOC in 2000) and is running his 2nd WOC.

If you'd asked me before the races if I thought Belgium would have results similar to the Czech Republic and Norway, I'd have said, "not a chance." Maybe I'm just revealing my ignorance...or maybe those are really good and unexpected results. In either case, I'd say "congrats on nice results" and I'd wonder what the story is of orienteering in Belgium:

Are these results expected?
What are these guys doing to improve?
How is the team from Belgium coached and managed?
Will we be seeing more good results in the relay and coming WOCs?
What can the U.S. team learn from the experiences of the team from Belgium?

If I could manage the language, I might find some answers over at De Laatste post.

*I have taken a few looks at Fabian Pasquasy's web page.

posted by Michael | 7:20 PM


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