The forest part of WMOC started today north of Košice, Slovakia with the Forest Qualification races – for the best, to ensure they are in the A-finals in Middle and Long. Yesterday was a rest day, but a forest Model Event attracted many to explore typical terrain in a leisurely fashion.

Over 3,000 competitors have taken part in the qualification races today, from 43 nations. The oldest classes are W85 and M90, with 9 and 11 entrants respectively. Winners were both Swedish: in W85, Asta Sjöberg by 1.54 and in M90, the legendary orienteering missionary Peo Bengtsson by 3.44.

As usual, many well-known names from past world championships are taking part. One of these is Peo Bengtsson’s close colleague and Park World Tour organizer Jörgen Mårtensson, world champion at Long distance in 1991 and 1995, who was second-placed today in M60 heat 3.

Tomorrow is Middle Final day, with the races held on continental-style terrain rich in terrain details originating from landslides and erosion, in mainly deciduous forest.

Photo: Michal Krajčík / WMOC 2023