The Nokian Tyres World Orienteering Championships in the Czech Republic kicked off today with the Sprint Qualification race. It appears that the favourites and top ranked athletes have prepared well with all going through to the final this afternoon.
Qualifying Heat winners among the men were the European Champion from earlier this year Emil Svensk (SWE) in the A heat, Max Peter Bejmer (SWE) in the B heat and European Championships silver medallist Yannick Michiels (BEL) in The C heat. Among the women European Champion Tove Alexandersson was top of the results list in the A heat, with host nation runners Adela Indrakova and Tereza Janosikova (CZE) atop the lists in heats B and C respectively.
Reigning World Champions in Sprint from 2018 Daniel Hubmann (SUI) finished in 6th place in his qualifying heat, and Maja Alm (DEN) finished 3rd in her heat. So both are still strong contenders to fight for the gold medal this afternoon.
There were few surprises with most of the established runners from major orienteering nations going through to the final. A couple of notable performances were in the womens class Eef van Dongen (NED) who finished 3rd in the Womens heat A and Elif Gokce Avci (TUR) who finished 12th in Womens heat C to qualify for this afternoons final. Among the men Pau Llorens Caellas finished 8th in Mens C. There was a tied 15th and final qualifying place in the Mens B heat with Wouter Hus (BEL) and Riccardo Scalet (ITA) both taking a place in the final.
Full results can be found on the IOF Eventor
The Sprint Final will start at 14:30 CEST this afternoon with the competitions from the same arena as this mornings races in Terezin.
The Final can be followed via the IOF Live page