Ida Haapala of Finland and Viktor Svensk of Sweden are the World University Champions in the Middle-Distance. In a technically highly demanding Jura mountain forest with steep uphill and downhill passages, with a lot of rocks and boulders and often dense vegetation it was paramount to navigate carefully and precisely. This type of challenge was exactly what winner Viktor Svensk of Sweden likes and with a clean run and strong legs he managed to keep his team-mate Simon Imark in check, if only by a small margin of 15 seconds. The battle for bronze was a matter of seconds, too, which saw Mathieu Yves Perrin of France with a smiling face. His time was fast enough for third position, especially as Australia’s Aston Key made a small mistake on the last loop of the race.
For a long time, it looked as if Katrin Müller of Switzerland could win a second gold medal. She performed very well, kept calm in critical moments of the dense forest parts, and set a time that seemed to be unbeatable. But then came Ida Haapala of Finland, who had been on silver position in the Long-Distance race. Haapala had some uncertainties during the race, but certainly liked this type of tricky and often rough orienteering. When she crossed the finish line her time was the fastest by 15 seconds and she claimed gold. Bronze went to another very strong Fin, Elisa Mattila. For tomorrow’s relay in Gondiswil, we can expect a tight fight between the strong Swiss and the strong Finnish team in the women’s race.
Photo by Rolf Gemperle
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