Record entries from around the world for World Orienteering Championships

Anticipation is building for Highlands 2015 when the world's finest Orienteer athletes will gather alongside club competitors and enthusiasts from around the world.


The Scottish 6 Days event, which will take place from July 31 to August 7 alongside the World Orienteering Championships in the Highlands and Moray, has already attracted over 3300 advance entries.
Described as "quite unprecedented", the number of entries received at this stage is over 1000 higher than at the corresponding stage for Moray 2013, when the Scottish 6 Days was last staged.


Orienteering Regional Development Officer for Moray, Mike Rodgers, said: “In 2013 we had 2130 entries by the end of discounted-rate entries, so to surpass that by over 50% is beyond what any of us envisaged.
“The course planning teams are already looking at designing extra courses to cope with the volume of runners.  It could well be impossible to fit everyone in at the required staggered start intervals without having more than one course for each age class.


"This sort of thing simply doesn’t happen at orienteering events in the UK."
It is believed that the added attraction of being a spectator at the World Orienteering Championships is a major factor behind the massive interest, although organisers are also pointing to the fantastic welcome competitors were given when the event was held in Moray two years ago.


In terms of the countries participating, 287 entries have been put in place from Sweden while another 254 have arrived from Switzerland - Norway is also well represented with 131 entries.


Mike Rodgers added: "The rate of entries does not appear to be slowing down.  Another 15 came in on the first day after the price increase, a rate that would mean around 5,500 runners in each of the six race days.
"There will be even larger numbers of spectators at the elite World Championship races, which are being beamed live on TV to an estimated overseas audience of 2million people."

 

 The Director for the World Orienteering Championships, Paul McGreal, said the Scottish 6 Days entry statistics auger well for WOC2015, which like the Scottish 6 Days will be centred on Inverness with events being held at various locations around the Highlands and Moray.

 

Mr McGreal said: "Highland 2015 event organisers only recently concluded negotiations to set up an event campsite at Bught Park in Inverness while the official event centre will be at the Eden Court Theatre.


"The interest in WOC2015 is growing as evidenced by entries to Scottish 6 Days - these events will certainly draw a great deal of attention on the Highlands and Moray and we were only recently informed that television companies will be carrying events live to around two million people, double the number we originally anticipated."

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