Best of Orienteering

Poll: Orienteering Achievement of 2013 - Men

Note! This poll is closed for voting! You can still see the nominees below.

Welcome to the poll for the Orienteering Achievement of 2013 - Men, organized by World of O. The poll will be open from December 4th until December 11th.
Instructions: Tick off for your favourite, and submit your vote at the bottom of the page.
Note! You can recommend your favourite to your friends on Facebook by clicking the "Recommend" button below each nominated athlete.

» Runner profile Edgars Bertuks

    Vote for Edgars Bertuks

Edgars Bertuks
Nominated for
One "ordinary" performance after the other all of the spring and summer - but just in time for the World Championships in Finland the Latvian was up there again, winning an impressive bronze medal at the long distance.

In 2012 Bertuks came from "nowhere" and became the most successful male athlete at the World Championships in Switzerland with Gold on WOC middle distance and bronze on WOC long distance. In 2013 Bertuks was very far from his 2012-edition - in race after race the fast Latvian failed to deliver top performances. With this background, Bertuks was mentioned as a dark horse, but few believed that Bertuks could repeat what he did at the long distance in Switzerland in 2012. But after fighting evenly with the eventual Gold medalist Thierry Gueorgiou until nearly the end of the course, Bertuks repeated his 2012 performance on the long distance with another Bronze medal. A fantastic achievement - again coming from somewhere close to "nowhere".

» Runner profile Jani Lakanen

    Vote for Jani Lakanen

Jani Lakanen
Nominated for
Peaking the performance like no other! In his comeback at the elite level, Lakanen had been living and breathing for a single race for two years: The WOC long distance in Vuokatti. When the day came, Lakanen got out his full potential and won the silver medal - 7 years after his gold medal on the same distance in Denmark.

Those following Jani Lakanen's excellent blog could see how the 36 year old Finnish long distance specialist slowly crept closer and closer to the world elite - while the big day in Vuokatti approached fast. To the outside observer it could seem like the road was too long and the time to short - but Lakanen had an impressive belief in his big goal even when the results did not speak that clearly. In the end only Thierry Gueorgiou was faster - and Lakanen looked like the most happy man on the podium with his silver medal. Even though he didnt get the so much desired gold, he came into the finish like a real MENTAL winner. Like one of WorldofOs readers put it: - This is what I love to see - devotion, self-denials, sacrifice and loads of hard work ending up as a WOC silver medal!

» Runner profile Mårten Boström

    Vote for Mårten Boström

Mårten Boström
Nominated for
After being away from top orienteering for several years and not making it to the Team for WOC 2012, the Finnish sprint specialist decided to go max for WOC sprint on home ground - and he made it! He crushed the field in a surprisingly demanding WOC Sprint in Vuokatti - becoming the face of the WOC 2013 in Finland.

Mårten Boström achieved international medals in sprintorienteering at the European and Nordic championships in 2004-2005, but then decided to focus on qualifying for Beijing & London Olympics in the Marathon. He run 2.18, but did not qualify - and also failed to qualify for the World Championships in Orienteering in 2008-2012. Before the 2013 season he targetet one race - one day: The WOC sprint in Vuokatti. The big favourite this day was Swiss Matthias Kyburz - unbeaten in major sprint races all season. The outsider Boström had the flow - and took a very popular gold medal on the opening day of the World Championships. As he put it himself: - Fulfilling one of my long time dreams is amazing, but doing it on home ground with the wildest audience in orienteering's history makes it double the fun.

» Runner profile Leonid Novikov

    Vote for Leonid Novikov

Leonid Novikov
Nominated for
The biggest surprise of the World Championships in Finland - both for himself and for everybody else: Leonid Novikov's Gold medal at WOC middle. And topping it with another Gold medal at the relay the next day after a great relay race for the Russian team.

WOC Middle distance in Finland had one big favourite - Thierry Gueorgiou - and 10-12 outsiders. Valentin Novikov was among the outsiders - but his younger brother Leonid was not even mentioned among the "dark horses". On this day Leonid Novikov managed to not only be the little brother of Valentin: He did an impressive race and won the WOC gold medal. On the relay the next day Leonid again run with confidence - winning Gold along with his brother Valentin and Dmitry Tsvetkov. Leonid Novikov was actually too surprised to be really happy after the middle distance, but with relay gold everything was perfect: - I feel really great now - the best in my life. Yesterday I could not believe that it was true, but this was what I dreamed about.

» Runner profile Matthias Kyburz

    Vote for Matthias Kyburz

Matthias Kyburz
Nominated for
In excellent shape all season - winning four World Cup races between January and October, winning the overall World Cup and winning three gold medals at the World Games. It is not so easy to dominate in the mens class - but Kyburz has done it.

Winning the overall World Cup is a great achievement. Winning it for the second time in a row is not exactly easier. To win the overall World Cup you have to perform well in many races throughout the season - and with his second overall World Cup victory in two years Kyburz has shown an impressive stability over time. His extreme sprint abilities is the cornerstone in Kyburz's overall World Cup victories - except for the WOC sprint in Vuokatti Kyburz has been unbeatable in individual start sprint races in the World Cup. With the tight races you usually see in sprint, this is very impressive.

    Vote for Ukrainian WOC Relay team

Ukrainian WOC Relay team
Nominated for
A Bronze medal which tasted like Gold: Last leg runner Denys Sherbakov run the race of his life - turning the leading position out on the last leg given by his team mates Oleksandr Kratov and Pavlo Ushkvarok into a fantastic Bronze medal.

Oleksandr Kratov brought Ukraine into the lead after the second leg - sending young Denys Shcherbakov out 30 second ahead of Sweden and Russia. Kratov was happy with his race - but in the interviews he did not have much faith in last leg runner Denys Sherbakov. However, Sherbakov managed to run his own race - doing the performance of his life: " - I just thought about run, read map, run, read map, run, read map. Not look at other runners. I did not think about medals." After finishing the relay, he ran directly to the EMIT readout to get the race result confirmed - before allowing himself to really start celebrating.

» Runner profile Thierry Gueorgiou

    Vote for Thierry Gueorgiou

Thierry Gueorgiou
Nominated for
Topped his shape for the World Championships - winning Gold on the long distance, Silver on the middle distance and winning the last leg of the relay with 3 minutes.

After winning the World Championships long distance in France in 2011, it sounded like Thierry Gueorgiou had run his last long distance race in a World Championships. However, the French middle distance specialist wanted to show the world that he was truly the best orienteer - and to achieve that, he felt that he had to show that he could also win the WOC long distance in Nordic terrain. Gueorgiou prepared extremely well as always - and won the long distance gold medal ahead of Jani Lakanen after a strong race. Even if the middle distance gave "only" a silver medal for Gueorgiou, and the flying Frenchman's three minute win (!) of the last leg in the WOC relay did not bring France any medals, Gueorgiou's achievements at the World Championships in Vuokatti are truly some of the greatest orienteering achievements of the year.

» Runner profile Christopher Smithard

    Vote for Christopher Smithard

Christopher Smithard
Nominated for
With big margin the biggest surprise on the podium in a World Cup race in 2013. Less famous than all the other nominees - starting the season ranked around 200th place in the World Ranking with a 48th place in the World Cup as his top result.

Made the achievement of his life in the Nordic Tour opening race in Oslo - which was also a World Cup race. Smithard took the lead from an early start and held it for 45 minutes. In the end it was good enough for a podium place - finishing 4th. When asked about his feelings after the race, the answer was "- A bit shocked to be honest. I knew it was a good race technically, but I didn’t think I was running quickly enough for a result like that". Smithard won the British Championships sprint in 2012, but has struggled with injuries at times.

» Runner profile Vilius Aleliunas

    Vote for Vilius Aleliunas

Vilius Aleliunas
Nominated for
The big surprise at the World Games sprint - winning Bronze medal in a very strong start field.

"- Dreams remain dreams", Aleliunas wrote in his blog after finishing in 21st place at the World Championships long distance in Finland a few weeks before the World Games. "- My best achievement so far in 6 World Championships [counting all disciplines], but mentally I was expecting more. TOP 15 is within reach." In Colombia two weeks later the dreams came through - with a sweet Bronze medal. Aleliunas achievement at the World Games sprint showed yet again how strong will and hard work is the key, no matter if you don't have the training opportunities that your competitors have.

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