Italian site for Trail-Orienteering


Organizzatore: Unione Lombarda
Luogo evento: MILANO (MI) | Parco Forlanini
Data evento: 20/11/2010
Tracciatore: GIOVANNINI Marco
23/11/2010 15:28:57
On a trail-O competition 6:04 in the morning. The alarm sounds. Outside it's dark, it’s raining. I push my feets out of bed and in the order I curse the tracker, the race director, my team, the Federation and the time we decide to candidate ourselves to organize the final stage of Italian Cup. Don’t worry! I'm not talking about last Saturday morning. The incident dates back to about a year ago ... Yes, we are candidates for the organization of our first Italian Cup, after a couple of years we spend in competing. Indeed. The original idea was different: to organize two competitions. The first one on Saturday and the second one on Sunday. "You will understand ..." I thought, "Who could be happy to come in November to Milan for a single race? Maybe ... if there were two races, the event would be more interesting” The first trouble is to fix the date with the local Committee: not before the International Meeting in Venice, so there are just two weekends. In one there will be the closing cerimony of the season, but it was not sure of whether the party would have been, November 21 or 28. In the meanwhile, our request is dropped into the darkness: no one shows up, no confirmation or denial. Until a winter evening. It’s about 22 p.m. and I'm already sleeping: the next morning the alarm clock is pointing to 6.04 a.m., I cannot remember if I have to catch a train or a plane for a business trip. The phone rings and I wake up: it is Dario (President of the team) "I just received an email (email! ...) by the Federation: they give us one competition but we must to confirm by tonight at midnight when and if we will do it ...". This was my first F**K U! The first time I said "We quit". The first contact with the time scheduling of our Federation: days and days without an answer and then I have to answer in two hours, during the night? I really want to drop everything and get back to sleep, and instead I commit myself in a kind of marathon phone with PLab (race director) and Marco (course setter) to decide what to do. In two hours, we decided that the race will be at Forlanini Park, with Marco as course setter and me as controller. The hypothesis to double at Monte Stella falls, but in some private e-mail I will discover soon that our request to manage a double race, according to someone, was a attempt to gain 150 € by FISO dedicated to organizers... The telephone marathon ends after midnight. I comeback to bed and I cannot sleep: those who know me very well, know that I’m neither patient nor a good person ... if I lived in Dodge City I should really be the fastest with my Colt, given my tendency to solve problems with a fight in the main street. The next morning, when the alarm sounds at 6:04 a.m., I curse in the order .... ah! That's what I have written before. The recurring thought that day was only one: "I was stuck once ... but it will be the last. " NEVER AGAIN! Never again. I thought many times this year. I thought when, after the phone call at night, at least for a couple of other weeks I have had no news "But we will have the date or there isn’t any competition?". I thought when Marco began, 12 months in advance, to come out on the park to see the situation that competitors would have had in the same week the following year. I thought and thought during the season of orienteering trail-O, when I compared some races really well managed and others obviously (and admittedly by the same organization) prepared in a very short time or in the days immediately preceding the competition (and while Marco - who is neither course setter nor cartographer - continued to spend days on days at the Park, PLab - which is not a race director – studies rules and participates at training courses, me - not a prepred controller - tries to help and support them). Never again. A year passes. The times are shortened. The courses we have seen, reviewed, evaluated under all possible conditions ... one day I say to Marco that on a control point (the 11st) there are two trees in the map and it seems they should be used to look at the control giving the wrong answer than we expected. Marco runs to verify and... everything it’s okay, because now I’m confused too much between answer A, B, Z, and so on. Never again. Time passes and we have no information on the approval of the map and from the race director defined by Federation. We try to seek out and stepping up the time, and once again we realize that exists a difference between our planning and the work of others, especially when the results are not what we expected: the approval of the map begins with a small failure , which obliges me to an extra telephone marathon (and even in this case it’s night) for an explanation, verification, suggestions, corrections. Even Roberto, race director for the Federation, began working and started to send good suggestions and corrections, but now we are almost in the run-in: as soon as we thought we had finished, we must instead reopen many files or even start some things over again ... each e-mail is a trouble, every phone call increases the adrenaline. E-mails between me and Marco and PLab start to be less diplomatic: we start thinking "If this race is not to be done, let us now and it's over here." Never again. If God wants, corrections become more rare, the course that has often been consolidated, is now established. Everything seems to be going right ... NEVER AGAIN! Here comes the entry of a competitor who starts questioning and claiming before the race is even held! The last week it’s a hard job for Bibi, and Marco and PLab: prints, prints, prints and more. At a certain moment everything goes wrong, nobody understand what file is the latest, if the scale is right or wrong... the map begins to become a hostile object. But time also works for me: whatever had happened, he would arrive Saturday night and I have toasted the end of everything we had before. Thursday night I loaded the car, crammed like a truck: I don’t want to do anything related to orienteering on Friday evening. I went to bed early, and I bet the alarm. At 6:04 in the morning. To remember when everything started. I got up Saturday. Darkness and rain. I arrived at the Park at 6.45, I put two control points on the way to the competition center, then the OpenA and Beginners course. Then it’s time to verify the Elite course, to comeback one more time and one more time to other control points with the judges of the time controls. Never again, I repeated like a mantra many times. Never again. All I was wondering about Saturday, something for which I paid my own pocket, it was that at the end of it was recognized to Marco Giovannini, course setter, the work during those 12 months: Marco is not a cartographer, and not a map drawer, but it has become, as well as PLab is not a race director, but I has committed to do it at his best, Bibi and me we are not controllers and we try to think any kind of control of the process that leads to a race, even stupids or unlikely (the "to do list" of judges of the time controls is long a page and half!). And I think Mary can now be eligible to become a serious competitor after the time she spent for this competition ... I saw Marco's eyes after the race, after the competitors are gone home, and they complimented the ourse. I saw his face even at the darkness, at 6.00 (but in the evening) and in the park was impossible to see the control points when we were around to collect them. I saw his face and am so glad. But now ... What can I do to save my "never again"? Stefano Galletti

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