Moray kids have the mapping skills to show the way

Moray primary kids picked up some map reading skills at Cooper Park
Moray primary kids picked up some map reading skills at Cooper Park

A FUTURE GENERATION of international Orienteering competitors were just perhaps set on their road to glory in Elgin yesterday morning.

Some 22 youngsters aged from seven to 11-years-old who are attending a number of Moray schools took part in the latest Active Schools Club ‘Links Day’ at Cooper Park.

One enthusiastic group consisting of Urquhart Dyce, Hector Dyce and Jacob Gault – all pupils of East End primary school – planned and set out their own Orienteering course before all participants conducting races over their handiwork – all planned with the aid of a 1:4000 scale map of the park.

Members of the Moravian Orienteering Club were on hand to keep them along the right lines – and chose the best course designed by the participants before laying out the ‘controls’, a series of electronic check-points between which every Orienteering race is run.

A spokesman for the club said: “We finished the morning off with our own ‘world championships’ with the winners a team consisting of Jacob Sutherland, Charlie Sutherland and Cameron McBain in a time of six minutes and nine seconds – Jacob clearly benefited from a visit by World Orienteering Championship contender Murray Strain, who visited his school, Greenwards Primary, back in March.”

Two of the control sites chosen by the youngsters coincided with sites that had been used in the Team GB Test race in Elgin two weeks ago, after which the final selections for the British team competing in the World Championships from next week were selected.

Lending a hand to the session was Moravian Orienteering Club junior members Chris Hornby and Kenneth Maciver along with Donna Brown, Roy McPherson and Anna Riddell from Active Schools Moray and Mike Rodgers, the sport’s Regional Development Officer.

The session was part of a series of sports being tried out by Moray primary school pupils this month including Karate, Touch Rugby, Bowls, Cycling and Fencing.