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Moravians' Finlay McLuckie stars at opening round of Scottish Orienteering League

By Jonathan Clark

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MORAVIAN orienteer Finlay McLuckie was one of the stars of the opening round of the Scottish Orienteering League around Tarbert in Kintyre.

The weekend consisted of three events making five races over the two days.

Saturday started off with a middle-distance race in Torinturk, a fantastical area with virtually no paths and very complex contour and rock detail.

The early runners here had the advantage of some beautiful sunshine, but in the evening for the mini sprints the weather had turned very wet, windy and cold.

The mini sprints consisted of three very short loops around Tarbert Castle, a ruin perched on top of a steep craggy hill with a bit of woodland thrown in.

On the Sunday, the main event took place from Tarbert Holiday Park.

The weather was perfect for the beautiful deciduous woodland as well as very varied plantation, all on detailed slopes. All of that made for complex orienteering with real scope for going very wrong.

Finlay McLuckie (15) was the undoubted Moravian star of the weekend.

Finlay McLuckie with his trophy for last year's Scottish Orienteering League.
Finlay McLuckie with his trophy for last year's Scottish Orienteering League.

In the complexity of Torinturk, and against the might of elite Scottish orienteering, he came a magnificent 14th only to knock this performance into touch with two narrow second places and a similar third in the mini sprints.

Finally, in the Scottish League event, he won the ultra-competitive Men 16 class by nearly five minutes.

Finlay was ably supported by Michael Bishendon who came one second behind in Torinturk, and just pipped him into third on the final mini sprint.

Isobel Howard had a great run, beating all the ladies comfortably, only beaten by one man.

Neil McLean won M80 coming fourth on the course which was led by Men 65s.

Also very noteworthy on Sunday were Sophie Howard, fifth in a very strong W16 field and Andrew Campbell, seventh of the older men on his course.

At Torinturk, Kate McLuckie also had a superb run coming fourth lady on the open course.

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