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24.07.2021 - The decisive stage

The stage made everything clear depending on the weather, on the athletic or personal ambitions. For running the orienteering courses in the area of the Schwellisee, one had to or could decide in advance: one either had to go full effort again or enjoy the beautiful Arosa-days as a cool-down. Whatever it may be, the goal is to gladly remember the SOW 2021 after the final award ceremony.

For this purpose, the heavy infrastructure was transported and set-up one last time under pleasant conditions. Again, many of the total 370 helpers ensured that the starts and finish ran smoothly, or they worked diligently in the background. The medical team hoped for little work and the course-setters were in the terrain long before the starts to offer all runners of the 50 categories both challenging and fairly marked courses. The courses should correspond to the terrain description in the programme book and on top of everything should encourage the desire for orienteering as a popular sport in the best sense.

Speaking with Yvonne Altmann, the mayor of Arosa, paid unreserved respect to the entire SOW-community. The orienteering family made an extremely positive impression in Arosa, not least because of their disciplined pandemic behaviour or the happy faces in town. However, she also gladly accepted the compliment for a bus driver who, in the rainy weather of the first stage, spontaneously transported a soaking wet school cup student up to the Ochsenbühl instead of insisting on his well-deserved break at the Untersee. In times when positive and negative have acquired a completely new meaningfulness, the driver’s action showed that Arosa does not leave even its late guests “out in the rain”. Thus, he set a likeable sign far away from advertising campaigns.

In good visibility from the Arosa Weisshorn, the Vorab glacier in the border area between the cantons Glarus and Grisons can be seen. In Flims Laax a little further down from that glacier the next SOW will be held after the World Orienteering Championships in two years. How popular this event has become was proved by two comments overheard on chairlifts. A retired German couple intents to participate in the Swiss O Week 2023 despite conceivable age-related complaints. Another runner from the junior squad said coolly, that then he would really “step on the pedal”.

There really only remains the greeting; “goodbye Arosa – hello Flims Laax”!

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