Report on the Vets Home Internationals 2022

Welsh Champs October 1st 2022 and Veteran Home International Competition October 1st and 2nd 2022

On October 2 and 3 2022, MWOC and Eryri hosted the VHI competition for the four nations, alongside the Welsh Championships. The event was admirably organised by Jim Wood, who never stopped, and yet always had a smile on his face and maintained a sense of calm and perspective, even at the most fraught moments.

Both events were planned by Robert Griffiths, with Henry Morgan POTOC controlling, on Gwanas on Day 1, and Richard Lewis WRE controlling for the relay event and open score on Day 2 at Llechweddgain.

Use of the land for access, parking and the event itself, was very kindly provided by Mr. Geraint Evans, Gwanas Farm, who has always been very welcoming of our club in the past. We had access to parking thanks to Mr. Geraint Williams on Day 2, and Mr. Gethin Davies assisted the transport of equipment to the Day 2 assembly on both days.

Fabian4’s Adrian Moir, with assistance from Graham Tough SWOC, ran the entries and results on both days, and did a great job.

The organisational administration of the event was overseen by Jean Lochhead, WOA. Jean saw to it that the HI teams got their Bulletins in a timely fashion, hired Fabian4 to take the entries and provide results on the day, managed logistics around food supplies to the teams (we had some amazing locally baked sandwiches and pasties provided to the teams at the event each day!), provided the mementoes for the VHI runners on behalf of WOA, and managed all the WOA event finances.

Jim gathered in all the trophies from the here-there-and-everywhere, and Jane Wood collected these, and maintained an enquiries station, ably accompanied by her small dog Sam, on the assembly field on Day 1. Compass Point had a stand at assembly, and hopefully made some sales.

Thanks to the team of helpers, from all clubs. Naming individuals risks missing those who stepped in when things needed doing but the whole competing community did that and just got on with it.

In particular, a massive thanks to the following for their help; Ian Jones (who was on site from 6.30 each morning) & Mike Snell Eryri, who both stood in everywhere.

The Enquiries team of Jane Wood Eryri, Diana McClure SBOC, Bridget Stein SBOC & Mike Kay MWOC.

The Start teams of Brian Yates of the Scotland team & ESOC, Katie & Freddie Lake SBOC, Bill Teahan & Sarah Barnwell Eryri, and the Sharp family TVOC.

Roger Stein SBOC who untangled the trophy returns and sorted the prize-giving.

Major Brad Percival who helped with the set-up during the storm the day before. Lieutenant Anne Spiller and the team of cadets from St Brigid’s School Combined Cadet Force who helped with the Day 2 build on the Saturday, and ensured parking went smoothly on the Sunday.

James Clemence presented three lots of prize-giving, with speeches, as WOA Chairman earning his keep and keeping everyone entertained with some good stats and suspense.

The weather was, thankfully, dry. It was mild and blustery, with the odd squall, at the start, and then perfect for running on the wonderful open hillside of Gwanas. Thanks to some clever planning, all age groups had a challenge, with numerous technical legs, and the HI teams were given a tough and very enjoyable competition. There was a hiccup with the controls at the start, and the SIAC did not switch on. Adrian & Graham did an amazing job of unravelling this technical hitch to provide us with results for the Welsh Champs prize-giving at 3pm.

There was a bar and supper at Ty Siamas in Dolgellau on Saturday evening for the VHI competitors, the food provided by the Syrian Dinner Project in Aberystwyth.  Buffet, venue and bar were arranged by Kate who managed to fit this in alongside her Welsh team manager duties.

The Rose Bowl prize was awarded to the best team on the Individual day, England, and at that point, Scotland were second, Ireland third and Wales in fourth place.

Day 2 was again breezy, but with a clear sky and fantastic views of the Rhinogydd to the west. The assembly gave a great view of the last couple of controls and the long, tough, boggy run-in for the teams. There were some pressured moments as teams ran in head-to-head, and it was a close-run thing between Ireland and Wales, until the last teams were in. Wales just pulled ahead to win the Wall back, and England won the relay trophy and the Tower trophy for the overall event. Scotland were not far behind. After the relays, a score event was held, and 39 competitors made the most of their Welsh Champs weekend, running in this infrequently used and quite technical area. A big thanks to our control collectors, Jenny, Vanessa, Seth, Reuben, Freddie, Ian, Kate, Jean & Tom.

 A massive thanks again to Robert, for the massive job of planning two excellent events, to Henry and Richard for their expert controlling, to Jim and Jean, and all of Jim’s team of volunteers, who made it all happen.

MWOC Chair 2022

24th Oct 22  by Terry Smith