Skip to main content


The Home Internationals

Saturday, 10 November 2018 09:28

 England VHI Team

 The English VHI Team.

In orienteering there are 3 Home Internationals - all held in the Autumn. The competitions take place over 2 days with the individuals on the Saturday and the relays on the Sunday.

The Senior Home Internationals for M/W20s and 21s were held in early September in England. Both days took place on Hurstwood; an open area of complex mine workings. Three members of SYO were selected for the English team - Nick B, Kim and Cat. Cat ran superbly in the individual race to win W21 for England. Kim and Nick also performed strongly finishing 4th & 10th - particuarly impressive considering they are both veterans! England won both days retaining the trophy for a second year.

England SHI Team

The English SHI Team

Next up was the Veteran Home Internationals for M/W35 and above. This time the English team travelled to south Wales. The five SYO team members selected all performed strongly with Nick and Kim both winning M/W40. Martin won M50 and Amanda and Andy P were both 3rd on W45 and M40 respectively. England delivered excellent results over the 2 days resulting in an impressive win overall.

SYO junior at JHI relays

The final Home International competition was for the juniors in the M/W14, 16 & 18 age classes, which this year was held near Pitlochry in Scotland. Five SYO juniors were selected for the team and like their veteran and senior counterparts, achieved good results. In M14 Euan was 2nd, Sam C 4th and Max 8th, while in W14 Imogen was 5th and in M18 Dom was 8th. Unfortunately despite some very good English performances, Scotland were too strong on home terrain and won convincingly overall.

SYO relay runner at JHIs

The 2018 Peter Palmer Relays

Thursday, 13 September 2018 22:08

1st leg mass start

The Peter Palmer Relays are an annual junior team event held partly in the dark and partly in daylight. During the autumn of 2017, SYO received a slightly desperate email asking whether we would consider hosting the event as no other volunteers had come forward. As we have such a strong junior membership and knowing how much the juniors benefit from it, we soon agreed. Nick Lightfoot kindly stepped forward as planner and without remembering ever agreeing Jacky Dakin was suddenly wearing the organiser's hat!

Fast forward 10 months and the weekend of the Peter Palmer's was almost upon us. The doorbell rang constantly as headlights, a new generator, a big screen, batteries, maps and goodness what else arrived and the dining room was a hive of activity as Pete tried out the radio controls and results screen! No doubt the Lightfoot & Dakin houses were in a similar state as Nick bagged the maps and Jacky gathered all the paraphernalia required for organising the event!

Saturday 8th September dawned - the day of the Peter Palmer’s - but first only the matter of the Saturday Series 1 event at Endcliffe Park to get out of the way. Pete & I looked at the weather forecast and breathed a sigh of relief - it's due to rain, numbers will be down. How wrong we were! 549 runs, hundreds of new registrations, torrential downpours and resolution of a conflict at a wedding venue later it was finally over. Thank goodness for the many club members who stepped up to help, some for the first time, in very chaotic conditions.

By 5pm the cars had been loaded up with equipment and we were off to Tankersley in north Sheffield. The organising, planning and computing teams headed off to build the arena in the woods while Amanda and I established ourselves at the sports hall for meeting and greeting, not only all the SYO juniors, but also the club teams from around the country.


Eventually all 31 SYO juniors had arrived and laid out their sleeping mats and bags in our designated area in the hall; so we headed up en masse to take a look at the woodland arena so we knew what to expect in the morning. Then it was time for the 5 a-side football and banner making competition. Conveniently the Paces campus happens to be situated adjacent to state of the art 3G floodlit pitches so Paul was able to organise a fabulous football tournament complete with prizes.

After an hour of frenetic competition, it was time to gather for a team meeting. After handing out dibbers, numbers and going over important final details, it was time to celebrate Dom’s birthday with large slices of chocolate cake. Then the juniors climbed into their O kit ready for a quick get up and it was time for lights out.

In next to no time, 4.15am arrived and the first of the alarms were ringing. It was a hive of activity as people grabbed their belongings and adjusted their headtorches. Jenny, Amanda & I headed off to the arena with the 1st and 2nd leg runners, while Paul remained in the hall to hustle later runners up to the start at the right time.

SYO Juniors 1st leg

The juniors quickly donned their facepaint and our 1st leg runners – Ryan, Max & Jamie - lined up ready for the mass start. The arena looked fabulous with fairy lights decorating the download tent and tea lights lining the run in. The minutes ticked down and suddenly it was 5am and the 21 first leg runners were off into the dark!

From the first moment Nick agreed to plan, he had a strong vision of what he wanted the 2018 Peter Palmers to be. In his mind it was absolutely vital that the relays were made as exciting as possible with live commentary, spectator run-throughs, radio controls and live results. He certainly achieved this with Pete, Jacky, controller Ranald and the rest of the team’s help and this really added to the wonderful atmosphere.

SYO Supporters

Within 10 minutes the first runners were through the radio control and excitingly included in that pack was Ryan running the first leg for SYO Killer bees. Thirty two minutes later WCOC 1 were back handing over to their 2nd leg runner and five minutes after that Ryan appeared handing over to Dom in 6th place having had a very good run. Dom then had a flyer gaining the fastest time on leg 2 and handing over to Sam C in 2nd place. Sam also delivered a fantastic run with the 2nd fastest time on the light green leg retaining SYO Killer Bees 2nd place. Next up was Imogen who also ran very well to clock the 2nd fastest orange time. She handed over to Alexandra and Freya, who were both 1st time Peter Palmer runners. Leg 5 is a yellow course and up to 3 runners can run at once. Unfortunately our 3rd yellow runner, Ciara, broke her finger badly just before the competition so couldn’t take part. Seventeen minutes later Freya was back to hand over to Euan on last leg. We were still in 2nd place overall but in first place on the Joan George (the competition for younger teams). As Euan appeared twice through the spectator run-through it was clear that WCOCs 2nd team were hot on our heels. Would Euan hold him off? Sadly it was not to be and they appeared in the finish run in together with WCOC 2 crossing the line just in front of Euan. However there is always a nervous wait at download, as it is vitally important to visit all the correct controls and unfortunately in this instance WCOC 2 had missed a control. SYO claimed 2nd place overall (behind WCOC 1) and first place in the Joan George competition.

Mini Mass Start

Meanwhile the competition continued. How were SYO’s other teams doing? In the main competition SYO Bumble Bees were now up to 8th, whilst the Worker Bees were in 19th place. Over in the Daybreak Competition (a new 4 leg relay starting at dawn) our Honey Bees and Carpenter Bees were in 2nd & 3rd places respectively. Sadly the Bumble Bees had a mispunch on last leg (interestingly at the same control as WCOC 2) but the Worker Bees pulled up to finish 16th. In the Daybreak the Honey Bees (Isobel, James, Oliver, Emil & Alfie) finished in a brilliant 2nd place with the Carpenter Bees (Joe, Josie, Carys, Claudine & Toby) in a fabulous 3rd position.

Waiting for incoming runners

Well done to all the juniors who took part, particularly those who were taking part in their first Peter Palmers. A special mention must go to Jamie & Max for stepping up alongside Ryan to run the very nerve wracking pitch black night leg; also to Matthew who ran a very good time on leg 2 and Alfie who managed the red leg in a good time with very little orienteering experience. The prize winners all received a good supply of chocolate which hopefully they shared amongst the whole team!

SYOs Daybreak prizewinners

So it just remains to re-iterate our huge thanks to Jacky, Nick, Pete, Ranald (from DVO) and the rest of the SYO helper team for a fabulous job done. Thank you also to Rob Lines for the photos. The 2019 Peter Palmers will take place in the South East on the 7th & 8th September, where we shall very much look forward to just competing!

SYOs Killer Bees

Podium Success at the British Sprints & Middles

Wednesday, 12 September 2018 15:12

IMG 7901a

The British Sprint & Middle Champs were held over the weekend of 1st / 2nd September in the south west. Many members travelled to compete with a large number achieving podium success over the weekend.

The Sprint Champs was held at Bath University on the Saturday with the qualifying heats held in the morning and the finals in the afternoon. SYO members performed exceptionally well producing 10 medallists. Congratulations to:

M10 - 1st Robbie, 2nd Joseph
M12 - 3rd Conrad
M14 - 3rd Euan
M50 - 1st Bill E, 3rd Martin
M70 - 1st Peter G
W10 - 1st Anna, 3rd Ella
W12 - 3rd Freya

Well done (and commiserations) to those that just missed out on a medal in 4th place - Max (M14), Colin B (M70) and Imogen (W14).

M W10 prize winners

Sunday saw the turn off the Middle Distance Championships at Stockhill in the Mendips. SYO members saw even more success here with 13 medallists. Well done to:

W10 - 1st Ella, 2nd Anna
W14 - 1st Imogen
W50 - 2nd Jenny P
W65 - 3rd Judy
M10 - 2nd Robbie, 3rd Oscar
M14 - 1st Euan, 2nd Max
M40 - 2nd Andy P
M50 - 1st Bill E, 3rd Martin
M70 - 2nd Peter G 

Again there were 4 club members who just missed out on a medal, finishing 4th - Pete T (M40), Pauline T (W45), Nick L (M55) and Freya (W12).




White Rose 2018

Friday, 31 August 2018 17:51

43361392715 08a4e8ff4b z 2

Over the August bank holiday weekend, a large contingent of SYO members travelled to North Yorkshire to take part in the annual White Rose competition. This year the 4 day event was held at Duncombe Park, which provided a stunning setting for the event campsite. As in previous years the races were all held within walking distance of the campsite, with the added bonus this year of the lovely town of Helmsley being within a stone’s throw.

The weekend began on the Friday night with a 30 minute night score around the parkland of the Duncombe Estate. A few keen SYOers took part and there was a well-deserved victory for Oli in the Vet’s class, a 2nd place for Chris L in the Senior class and a 3rd for Paul B in the Super Vet’s class.

43357443545 faf3528e2f z 2

Saturday saw the start of the main competition; the results of which are obtained by adding together the time taken on the Middle and Classic distance races. First up was the Middle Race through the wooded slopes of Duncombe Park. The latter part of the courses in particular offered a technically challenging control pick through World War 2 remnants. Later starters benefited from the elephant tracks trampled through the nettles and bracken by those first out in the forest. (In an orienteering first I was even offered a very tempting glass of red wine by 2 elderly gentlemen relaxing by the river, as I emerged from head high bracken. Not sure what that says about my general racing demeanour!)

29331436077 ff6fb194c8 z 2

Next on the itinerary was a wonderful sprint race in the late afternoon sun around Helmsley Castle. Hundreds of orienteers charging around the ramparts was a fabulous sight. Winning times were super quick and there were some excellent results by our members. It is particularly nice to see some of our newer members sweeping up the prizes. Well done to:

Young Junior Men – 1st Lawrence, 3rd Sam T
Young Junior Women – 2nd Anna
Junior Men – 1st Euan, 2nd Sam C
Junior Women – 2nd Isabelle H
Vet Men – 1st Andy P
Vet Women – 2nd Amanda
Super Vet Men – 3rd Steve
Ultra Vet Women – 1st Judy

Overnight there was a dramatic change in the weather and Sunday dawned with dark grey rainclouds overhead. Before long the rain was bucketing down and it didn’t stop all day. This didn’t deter most people though from heading out to the start of the Classic distance race. Like the previous day early starters were hampered by the summer vegetation, although the planner made the best of the ominous sounding “Windy Pits!” Running at the same time as the Classic race there was also the trail orienteering competition, although long start windows meant ‘keen beans’ could manage both competitions.

44214654352 d2f07d9bb6 z.jpg 2

Although the trail orienteering competition didn’t produce any SYO winners, there were plenty in the overall competition. Again, it was fantastic to see many of our new members and very young juniors collecting their White Rose mugs on the podium alongside our normal prize-winners. Congratulations to:

M10B – 1st Stanley, M14A – 1st Sam C, M16A – 1st Euan, M21L – 1st oli, M35L 3rd Matt, M40L 1st Andy, 3rd Pete T, M45S – 1st Tony, M65S – 1st Neil, W10B – 2nd Hannah, W10A – 1st Charlotte, W12A – 2nd Anna, W14A – 1st Freya, 3rd Alex, W16A – 2nd Isabelle, W21S – 2nd Rose, W40L – 3rd Jenny J, W40S – 1st Louise, W50S – 2nd Robyn, W65L – 1st Sheila, W70S – 1st Monika.

In the Water Trophy, which is presented to the family with the best results over the weekend, Pete, Euan & Freya Tryner picked up 2nd place. The podium places in the quiz were a clean sweep by DVO (perhaps we need to work together better as a club next year) and sadly there were no SYO winners in the photo O competition either.

44267174561 52427dbb74 z2

As the rain continued to fall some less hardy members headed for home but a fair few brave souls stayed a further day for the team competition. The Guillaume / Preston family got a well-deserved 3rd place in the ‘plus 1 women’ class and Paul B & Mo picked up a 3rd in the hotly contested ‘160+’ category. In the M/W12 minus class Alex J, Stanley, Will P and Hannah all collected mugs!

Many thanks to Steve Rush for the fabulous photos. Next year the White Rose will be based in Scarborough for a more ‘urban feel’ and will come at the end of the ‘Race the Castles’ week that will begin the previous weekend in Lincoln and South Yorkshire. Put the date in your diary!

2017/18 Schools Orienteering League Prizegiving

Wednesday, 08 August 2018 12:01


On Saturday 7th July the prizegiving for the 2017/18 schools league was held in lovely sunshine at the Cliffhanger outdoors festival on Devonshire Green. It was great to see such a fabulous turn out by the schools' league competitors. Medals were presented to the first 3 in each age class and everyone, who competed in 5 or more events, was awarded a certificate. Those juniors that had taken part in all 9 of the events were also specifically recognised and were awarded a prize. The first 3 year group teams in each age class were also awarded with prizes.

all 9

 SYO members featured heavily in the podium positions. Well done to:

G5 - 1st Ella, 2nd Beth
B4 - 1st Oscar, 2nd Rafferty
G5 - 1st Anna, 2nd Sofia
B5 - 1st = Robbie, 3rd = Caspar
G6 - 1st Freya, 2nd Ciara, 3rd Lotte
B6 - 1st James, 2nd Isaac, 3rd John
G7 - 1st Imogen, 2nd Millie
B7 - 1st Conrad, 2nd Jamie
G8 - 1st Josie, 3rd Carys
B8 - 1st Euan, 2nd Matthew, 3rd = Freddie & Dylan
G9 - 1st Naomi, 2nd Phoebe
B9 - 1st Will, 2nd Alfie
G10 - 1st Alex E, 2nd, Isobel, 3rd Hannah
B10 - 1st Jack, 2nd Sam
G11 - 1st Isabelle, 2nd Ailsa
B11 - 1st Dom
B12 - 1st Ryan

In the overall schools competition, Hunters Bar lifted the primary trophy with Nether Green in 2nd and Dobcroft 3rd; whilst in the secondary competition High Storrs won with Notre Dame 2nd and Tapton 3rd. 

Huge thanks to GBR team member Charlotte Ward for presenting the prizes. The 2018/19 Saturday Series kicks off in Endcliffe Park on September the 8th. 


SYO Juniors retain YBT Trophy

Thursday, 09 August 2018 19:19

YBT 2018

Sunday 1st July saw 10 teams from the best junior clubs in the country gather at Arrow Valley Country Park in Redditch for the final of the Yvette Baker Competition. SYO took a team of 56 runners (far more than any other club) by coach and a convoy of cars. Our aim - to retain the trophy for the 2nd year running!

Conditions were sweltering so we quickly set up a city of tents in the shade of some large trees and set to work with the facepainting and nail varnishing in our team colours. Then it was time for our first starters to make their way to the start and soon there was a steady stream of yellow and black heading out for their runs. Within no time at all our first finishers on the yellow course were back with some good times under their belts; followed by finishers on the orange and light green. It was a long wait though for finishers on green who had a greulling 6.4km, through grotty vegetation in 30 degrees heat! Eventually though all our runners had returned producing some excellent times across all the classes.

IMG 20180701 WA0009

While the results were being calculated vast quantities of ice-cream were consumed and the older juniors chilled out in the shade listening to music, while the younger ones enjoyed the playground and bouncy castle. Finally it was time for the prize giving. There was an anxious wait as BOK were announced in 3rd place on 856 points, WCOC in 2nd on 868 points and then yes SYO in 1st place on 889 points - a fabulous win! 

Well done to everyone who ran - everyone's results help to push down the scores of the other teams - but particular congratulations to our counters:

Charlotte C - yellow girls (100 points)
Freya - orange girls (100 points)
Euan - light green boys (100 points)
Conrad - orange boys (99 points)
Imogen - light green girls (99 points)
Robbie - yellow boys (98 points)
Anna - yellow girls (98 points)
Dylan - orange boys (98 points)
Isabelle Ho - green girls (97 points)
Jamie - light green boys (97 points)
Isabelle Ha - yellow girls (97 points)

Thank you to Jacky for captaining the team so superbly and to all the parents supporters. Next year the final is on 7th July in Hatfield Forest near Bishop's Stortford. Please put the date in your diary!

IMG 20180701 WA0008

Harvester Success for SYO

Tuesday, 03 July 2018 19:21

Harvester 2

The Harvester overnight relay was held over the weekend of 23rd/24th June in Tilgate Forest near Gatwick Airport. Twelve dedicated members formed 2 teams - 1 in the A class and 1 in the B class. The A team, comprised of Martin, Amanda, Charlie A, Aislinn, Pete T, Lesley and Nick, ran superbly to lift the handicapped trophy and finish 2nd overall; while in the B class the all junior team of Louise, Dom, Max, Sam and Euan also performed incredibly well to lift the Junior trophy and win the class overall. 



Yorkshire Schools Orienteering Championships 2018

Tuesday, 12 June 2018 20:20


SYO hosted the Yorkshire Schools Champs on Sunday 10th June at Sandall beat. The grassy assembly area, adjacent parking, nearby start & finish and SYO refreshment stall all made for a lovely event. Participants also enjoyed the fast sprint style courses through the runnable woodland. Well done to all the SYO juniors who gained a podium place.

Y4 Girls: 1st Ella, 2nd Alice, 3rd Molly
Y4 Boys: 2nd Rory, 3rd Will P
Y5 Girls: 1st Anna, 2nd Sofia, 3rd Margaux
Y5 Boys: 1st Robbie, 3rd Toby
Y6 Girls: 1st Freya, 2nd Ciara, 3rd Ruth
Y6 Boys: 1st James, 2nd Evan, 3rd John Joe
Y7 Boys: 1st Ben T
Y7 Girls: 1st Imogen
Y8 Girls: 2nd Alex C, 3rd Carys
Y8 Boys: 1st Euan, 2nd Matthew, 3rd Dylan
Y9 Boys: 1st Max, 2nd Sam C
Y10 Girls: 1st Isobel
Y10 Boys: 1st Sam D
Y11 Boys: 1st Dom

Hunters Bar Junior School won the primary prize, whilst the secondary competition was won by High Storrs. Many thanks to Amanda, Paul & Ian for putting on such a fabulous sunny event.

Medal success for SYO at BOC 2018!

Tuesday, 22 May 2018 15:50

27346968877 8664e4fdec z

photo credit - Deeside Camera Club

Over the weekend of 19th / 20th May many SYO members undertook the epic journey to Deeside to compete in the British Orienteering Championships. The British Long Championships were staged at Balmoral on the Saturday. Competitors were treated to a glorious sunny day in the stunning surroundings of Balmoral castle. The forest was beautiful - not a bramble in sight - and the courses superbly challenging.

28364590458 6377f1f63f z


The Scots proved tough to beat in many classes so this made Dave (M50), Amanda (W45) and Freya 's (W12) victories especially noteworthy! There were also well-deserved silvers for Robbie (M10), Euan (M14), Martin (M50), Laura (W35) and Jenny (W50) and bronzes for Ella (W10) and Peter G (M70). A special mention must go to Conrad, Imogen, Sam C and Judy who all finished 4th, just missing out on a podium place and also Will who was 2nd on M10B. Sadly the prize giving wasn't held until after the relays which meant some people missed out on their presentations.

41516239634 d4586017db z

Sunday saw the turn of the relays on Torphantrick in grey rather overcast conditions but at least it wasn't raining (much!). The terrain and courses were interesting though it was a rather hard to work out how well teams were doing due to the very uneven gaffles.  There were plenty of SYO successes to celebrate including 4 relay class wins. Well done to Robbie, Oscar and Conrad (1st mini relay), Andy P, Pete T & Nick (1st M40), Martin, Tim & Dave (1st M50) and Ryan, Alex E and Jamie (1st junior ad-hoc). There were silvers for the W40 team (Amanda, Pauline & Jenny P) and the M14s (Sam C, Max and Euan). Finishing 4th and just missing out on medals were the women's open team (Mary, Laura & Kim) and the W14s (Freya, Alex C & Imogen). Well done to everyone who took part. Next year, BOC will be held in Yorkshire over the weekend of 4-6th May so hopefully there will be a very large SYO contingent competing.

42191247892 abb1dde126 z



SYO sail through to the final of the Yvette Baker Trophy

Monday, 14 May 2018 12:35

debrief sm


Sunday 13th May saw 58 SYO juniors and their families travel to the Yorkshire and Humberside heat of the Yvette Baker Trophy. The heat was hosted by EPOC who chose a fabulous venue in Oakwood Country Park. Aside from their courses, all the juniors enjoyed the free maze O, glorious sunshine, the chance to socialise and of course the very popular ice-cream van.

yvette cup 2018 28210601598 o

SYO had juniors competing across all the courses and on yellow we had an amazing 30 runners! Well done to all the juniors that took part - you all play an important part in pushing down the scores of other runners. Congratulations to the scorers: 

Yellow Boys - John Joe (100) & Caspar (99)
Yellow Girls - Anna (100) & Charlotte (99)
Orange Girls - Freya (100) 
Orange Boys - Conrad (100) & James (99)
Light Green Girls - Imogen (100)
Light Green Boys - Max (100), Sam C (99)
Green Girls - Alex E (99)
Green Boys - Dom (100), Euan (99)

Thank you to EPOC for organising a fabulous heat, the parents for getting all the juniors there and Jacky for doing a super job as team captain. The final is on 1st July in Redditch. Jacky will be sending out the preliminary information shortly.....

40276165390 6146e84cc2 z