For the first time since 2005, a major international race was held in Great Britain at the weekend. Athletes from around the world descended on Perth in Scotland to take part in the Park World Tour. Friday was the prologue, held at Scone Palace just outside Perth - it was a really tricky race with many controls and lots of changes of direction. I seemed to be the only one to keep it together and not make any big mistakes, and I was able to win by over 30 seconds.
The final was held on Saturday in Perth city centre, to the amusement/bemusement of the local public out shopping. Another high quality race with loads of controls. Maximum concentration was required with almost every leg having some route choice or navigational challenge. There was no time to rest or plan ahead, and I made 2 big mistakes - one time I ran into the wrong passage, and another time I took the wrong route choice, and also couldn't find the same steps that I had just run up! My speed matched Oystein's, but he made fewer mistakes and deservedly took the victory. I was happy to take the second place.
The whole weekend was fantastic - run very professionally with international speaker Per Forsberg, big screen in the arena, light gate timing - the best event set up I have seen in Great Britain, or indeed in most countries! The courses were very good - challenging and contrasting, and the social atmosphere was also amazing, with entertainment including talks from several top runners and a ceilidh.
Maps with routesFinal