Cyprus wins three Gold Medals and one Silver Medal at The 2021 South East European Masters Orienteering Championships and Zagreb Open, held in Croatia, from 24th to 29th August 2021.
Orienteering is a group of sports that require navigational skills using a map and compass to navigate from point to point in diverse and usually unfamiliar terrain, whilst moving at speed. You need to think fast and run hard to excel. Participants are given a topographical map, usually a specially prepared orienteering map, which they use to find control points. Competitors compete against others in their age categories and it is a sport that can be enjoyed by all age groups, from small children right up to hyper veterans.
The 10th South East European Orienteering Championships (SEEOC) and 9th South East European Masters Orienteering Championships (SEEMOC) were held in Croatia this year, together with the 21st Zagreb Open five days orienteering event. The event was brilliantly organised by local Zagreb Club VIHOR, with over 500 competitors from twelve South East European Orienteering Association nations taking part, as well as participants from another seven countries, some travelling from as far away as Japan. Cyprus was represented in the Women 60 age category by Diana Bridger, a member of ORIENTACTION Club, from Nicosia.
The SEEOC/SEEMOC Middle Distance events were held in a forest to the East of Zagreb. In the W60 category, Diana was first in a time of 41:41. In second place was Natalia Cretu, from Moldova, in 44:55 and in third place was Maria Pia Virgolini, from Italy, in 46:47.
The SEEOC/SEEMOC Sprint was held in the old military, moated town of Karlovac, where four rivers meet. Diana managed second place, only 1:16 behind the very fast Maria Pia Virgolini, of Italy. Natalia Cretu, from Moldova was third.
It was back to the hilly forest for the SEEOC/SEEMOC Long Distance events, this time held near the picturesque village of Krašić. Diana won this event in 79:42, with Moldova in second place in 81:41 and Italy in third place some way behind.
For the overall Zagreb Open competition, only Diana managed to complete all five events in her category without disqualification and thus she won the Gold Medal, bringing her total of Gold Medals to three.
In 2022, The 11th South East European Orienteering Championships (SEEOC) and 10th South East European Masters Orienteering Championships (SEEMOC) will be held in Victoria, Romania and ORIENTACTION hopes to be able send more participants from Cyprus.
Diana looking a bit tired at the end of the SEEMOC Middle Distance event.
M/W60 podium following the SEEMOC Middle Distance.
M/W60 podium following the SEEMOC Sprint event.
M/W60 podium following the SEEMOC Long Distance event.
At the Zagreb city Sprint event
The official event poster.