Pyne power as young Sam does Otterton proud witn first place in orienteering event.

Many families new to Orienteering braved the wind and rain to come and try the sport for the first time, writes Tess Stone.

Over 100 competitors took part in the various courses.

The String is the easiest and is aimed for younger children who follow string or blobs of flour through the woods to get to the marked controls (orange and white flags or kites). The fastest competitor on this course was 7-year-old Sam Pyne from Otterton.

The White course takes competitors only along paths. The Parkes family was first on this followed by 7-year-old Flo Somers of Payhembury.

On the Yellow course, the controls are along earth banks and paths and was 2.3km in length, the winning time of 16:52, was by Oliver O’Brien from Torquay Grammar School, Dominic Walker from Talaton was second in 19:49.

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The Orange course gets a little harder in difficulty as the controls are on features (knolls, pits, spurs etc) a little way from paths and banks ,so needs a little more confidence in navigational skills. This course was won by Emily Keenan from Sidmouth, who did the 3km in 30:08.

The Red course was an extra at this event, it is the same degree of difficulty as the Orange only longer being 5km. Alan Cade from Crapstone, Yelverton was first in the event in a time of 46:05.

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The other two courses on offer were more challenging, the Technical course, (where fundamentally everything is longer and harder) of 5.4km was won by Geoff Keenan in 68:38 minutes very closely followed by Grey Greirson of Ottery St Mary in 68:46 minutes.

The remaining course was of a different style. There were 28 controls on it and you gained 10 points for each control you visited, however you lost one point for every minute you took; this was a popular choice, with 28 people having a go.

Matt Atkins from Exeter was the winner with 215 points, second was Michelle Spillar from Wimbourne with 199 points amd third was Robin Carter from Talaton with 198 points.

Further details of the results can be found on the Devon Orienteering web site The next event is Saturday at The River Dart Counrty Park near Ashburton. If you would like details on coaching sessions look at the coaching section of the website or contact Tess Stone 01297 553421.

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