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MetrO League 2020 - Club Captain's blog. . .

Venues and Dates

Round Date Venue Organising Club
ML1 27 March Castle Hill Big Foot
ML2 26 April Western Sydney Regional Park Western and Hills
ML3 24 May Manly Dam Bennelong
ML4 21 June Lansdowne Uringa
ML2 26 July Manly Vale Bennelong
ML3 16 August Smiths Creek (new map) SHOO
ML4 13 September Scheyville Garingal
ML5 18 October Lansdowne Uringa

Metro League 5 - Lansdowne

Our Metro League season for 2020 finally wrapped up at Lansdowne on October 18. The rain held off, and WHO runners were champing at the bit to make an impression after a disrupted season. Lansdowne has been a Metro League venue a number of times, and is known for its great diversity of features within a relatively small area. Divisions 3 and 4 were where our best chances lay to take out the honours for the whole season, but unfortunately in both cases we didn’t quite get there despite some good results. Let’s run through the divisions. 

The Div 1 WHO Evers were already out of contention for the crown so were fighting for pride with Bennelong. Unfortunately Bennelong got the better of us with 35 points against our 20. James McQuillan was again our best coming in 6th overall with a time of 58.12, but a special mention should also go to our other Div 1 runners all of whom have put in good consistent performances all season in what is a tough field. A shout out to Selwyn and Niamh in particular who really stepped up to the plate this year taking on Div 1. Looking at the individual point scores for the season, James was also well ahead in the WHO rankings with 42 points, which was also the third highest for the division overall. 

The Div 3 WHO Rays were probably our best chance of taking out the crown, but frustratingly we drew against Garingal 27-27 allowing SHOO-IKO to be crowned Div 3 champions for the season. However we finished up second for the year which is a good result. A great run from Lee Coady saw him bring up the fastest time in the Division at 43.11. The field for top individual point score for the season was quite competitive in Div 3, but Belinda Kinneally took the honours with 27 points overall. 

The Div 4 WHO Doos just beat Knox on the day 28-27, but this wasn’t enough to beat Garingal’s perfect record for the season, so WHO finished up 2nd in the division overall which is a great result. Paul Sweeney again pulled out the fastest time coming 4th overall with 42.55. Paul Sweeney was also our leading individual point scorer for the season with 43 points after some great consistent performances. 

Our Div 5 team, the WHO Rahs, wasn’t able to replicate the success of previous seasons this year, finishing 4th on the table after being defeated by Garingal 30-24. Even so there were some great performances, notably Anthony Saunders who came in 3rd overall with 41.50. Saffron Sweeney was our leading individual point scorer with 33 points for the season. 

The Div 6 WHO Hahs were playing for pride and succeeded in doing so just beating Big Foot 18-17. Savanna Sweeney was the standout with a time of 48.30, 6th overall. Underlining the impact the Sweeney family has had on Metro League this season, Savanna was our leading point scorer for the season with 27 points. 

A big thank you to everyone who took part in Metro League this year. We’ll definitely be back in 2021, and I’ll be reaching out to club members to gauge interest and plan our teams in the new year. Bring on 2021!


12 October 2020

Round 5 - Metro League 2020 at Lansdowne -final

Hi everyone

Another Metro League season will draw to a close with the final round to take place at Lansdowne on Sunday 18th October.

As usual you must enter via Eventor. COVID protocols remain place - including:

  • arrive - run - leave
  • bring your own water and hand sanitiser
  • maintain social distancing
  • do not come to the event if you are sick

We will be back to allocated start times for this round - I will email you with your start times when all entries are in. As usual there will be earlier times slots for vulnerable competitors.

There will be no briefing on the day - please make sure you read the event information and COVID participant information on Eventor.

So get your entries in, it should be a great event!


Josh Braidwood
Club Captain

26 September 2020

Round 4 - Metro League 2020 at Scheyville National Park - wrap-up

We had a great WHO turnout for Metro League Round 4 at Scheyville on 13th September.  The weather was perfect, and the courses generally lent themselves to faster times. This historic area contains open fields, runnable forest areas, scattered ruins and mobs of kangaroos to keep it interesting. Not too many hills to contend with either.

In terms of results, WHO had successes taking out Bennelong in both Div 3 and Div 4 - great work teams. Div 1 and Div 6 were both semi-finals, and unfortunately we didn’t win either so we are now definitely out of contention for those two divisions. We are well positioned in both Div 3 and Div 4, coming second on the table in both cases. Div 5 will be looking for a win next round to stay in contention. Overall head-to-head results were:

  • Div 1 WHO Evers lost to Big Foot 18 - 37 in semi final
  • Div 3 WHO Rays beat Bennelong 33 - 22
  • Div 4 WHO Doos beat Bennelong 30 - 25
  • Div 5 WHO Rahs lost to Bennelong 22 - 33
  • Div 6 WHO Hahs lost to Garingal 25 - 30 in semi final

James McQuillan was again our fastest in Div 1 coming in 6th overall, with Selwyn Sweeney also putting in a good time to come in 17th on what was a particularly long course. Lee Coady had a great run in Div 3 coming in 1st overall with a super fast time of 32.50, a great achievement. Paul Sweeney continues to show he’s a force to be reckoned with also coming in 1st overall in Div 4 - again a cracking time of 31.34. Keeping it in the family, Saffron Sweeney was our fastest in Div 5 coming in 5th overall. And great to see Rachel Merton at Metro League, bringing in our second fastest performance in Div 5. Lachlan Coady triumphed in Div 6 coming in 1st overall, in less than half an hour - that’s even faster than dad. In my brief survey of the WHO archives this is the first time I’m aware of that WHO runners have taken out 1st place in three different divisions - happy for the club historians to correct me if I’m wrong here. And particularly notable given that two of the first place-getters were from the same family. Finally a special mention to Justine de Remy de Courcelles who finished the Div 6 course in less than an hour on her first outing on a moderate course - fantastic achievement!

Next Metro is at Lansdowne on 18 October, hosted by Uringa. Put it in your diaries and see you there!


7 September 2020

Round 4 - Metro League 2020 at Scheyville National Park

Hi everyone,

Metro League action continues with Round 4 coming up on Sunday 13 September. We will be hosted by Garingal at Scheyville National Park.

You must pre-enter on Eventor for this event. Please read the Information Flyer and COVID-19 Safety Plan contained within the Event Information on Eventor if you are planning on entering. In order to be able to run this event and satisfy COVID requirements, some further changes have had to be made, including restrictions on who can enter (no competitors from outside metropolitan Sydney) and queuing starts instead of allocated start times. For those unfamiliar with queuing starts this simply means you arrive sometime during the start window (from 9.30am for vulnerable members, 10-11am for everyone else), report to me at the assembly area, then go straight to the start.

  • Existing COVID-19 protocols will continue to apply, including:
  • bring your own sanitiser
  • social distancing to be maintained at all times (except within families)
  • arrive, compete, leave

Additionally, you should read the Event Information on Eventor which contains important information about body protection and parking.

If you have never been to a Metro League event before and would like to give it a try but aren’t quite sure how it all works, please get in touch with me.

Get your entries in now! I will be allocating teams as usual but will not be allocating start times (as per above).

Josh Braidwood

23 August 2020

Round 3 - Metro League 2020 Ruse

Metro League was well and truly back into gear at Ruse on 16 July, in a socially distanced way of course. And let’s just say the weather was a lot kinder to us than our previous outing at Manly Vale with bright sunny skies. Most of the course was in a long tract of bushland around Smiths Creek with a good mix of tracks, boulders, watercourses and man made features to keep it interesting and challenging throughout. A number of us got caught out in what should have been the easier last leg of the course in street and parkland by not paying sufficient attention to the presence of an uncrossable fence on the map, so some precious minutes were lost. But overall it was a great outing for WHO. We picked up victories in both Div 3 and Div 4 this time around - well done team! Results in each division were as follows:

  • Div 1 WHO Evers lost to Bennelong 32-24
  • Div 3 WHO Rays beat SHOO IKO 28-26
  • Div 4 WHO Doos beat SHOO IKO 31-23
  • Div 5 WHO Rahs lost to SHOO IKO 35-20
  • Div 6 WHO Hahs lost to SHOO IKO 36-18

When we look at the league table, this leaves the WHO Evers and WHO Hahs languishing in last place with no wins to their name, while our other three teams have each chalked up two out of three wins, keeping them in contention. This sets us up for a fascinating lead up to the final.

As always there were some great individual performances and interesting results.

James McQuillan yet again cleared the hurdle as our fastest Div 1 runner with a time of 53.30 picking up 8 points, but the real talking point was the uncanny co-ordination shown between Dan Smith and Vivien de Remy de Courcelles to both clock in at exactly the same time of 67.02 (not to mention Niamh Cassar within 40 seconds of both of them). This sets up one of the great Div 1 rivalries and it will be fascinating to see who prevails by the end of the season.

We have the Valais sisters Martine and Aurelie to thank for bringing home victory in Div 3, picking up 14 points between them with times of 49.28 and 50.50 respectively. An injured Lee Coady was still able to pick up 10 points in Div 4 to help us to victory along with some other great team performances, no doubt soon we will see him amongst the Div 1 elite once again. Despite a fantastic run from Saffron Sweeney in Div 5 (time 48.43) to pick up 8 points, and a good performance from Matilda Saunders (time 53.56) we were still beaten by SHOO IKO on their home turf. And finally, to top off the massive contribution from the Sweeney family across the divisions (31 points in total - thanks Selwyn, Paul, Saffron, and Savanna) Savanna was our best in Div 6 with a time of 41.21.

Thanks to everyone who came out to Ruse, and look forward to seeing you at the next Metro League.


10 August 2020

It's never to late to start MetroLeague!  From Josh . . .

Hi everyone,

The Metro League season is now well and truly kicking into gear, with Metro 3 coming up next weekend on Sunday 16 August. This time we will be hosted by SHOO at Ruse in south western Sydney. The assembly area is at James Ruse Park, Oberon Road, Ruse.

You must pre-enter on Eventor for this event. Please read the Information Flyer and COVID-19 Safety Plan contained within the Event Information on Eventor if you are planning on entering. COVID-19 protocols will apply, including:

  • bring your own sanitiser
  • social distancing to be maintained at all times (except within families)
  • don’t arrive too early before your start time and leave straight after you have finished and downloaded
  • start times will be spread over an hour to avoid queuing at the start (10-11am)

Additionally, the event information recommends that body protection should be worn for this event.

If you have never been to a Metro League event before and would like to give it a try but aren’t quite sure how it all works, please get in touch with me.

Entries close this Friday 14 August, so get your entries in now! Once everyone’s entered I will contact everyone with their allocated start times.

Josh Braidwood

Round 2 - Metro League 2020 Manly Vale

Its seems like an eternity since Metro 1 at Castle Hill back in March, but Metro League season 2020 finally resumed at Manly Vale on July 26. And we were greeted with a downpour, making for muddy tracks and slow times. The southern side of Manly Dam is a nice patch of bushland with some tricky boulder patches to trap the unwary.

Unfortunately victory was elusive for WHO with the notable exception of our ever-dependable Div 5 team, the WHO Rahs who triumphed against Garingal 31-23. There were some good performances in Div 5, with Anthony Saunders our best taking out 9 points and coming 7th overall. That also means the WHO Rahs are our only team to remain unbeaten at this early stage of the comp. Well done team!

All of our other head-to-heads were also against Garingal, except we came off second best in the other divisions.  Even so, there were some good performances worth highlighting:

Div 1 - James McQuillan was our best taking out 8 points and coming 12th overall.
Div 3 - Belinda Kinneally earned the WHO Rays 7 points coming in 19th overall
Div 4 - Karen Langan topped the WHO Doos with 7 points coming in 14th overall

Thanks to everyone who came out in the pouring rain for a great day of orienteering. Round 3 will be on August 16 at Ruse, hosted by SHOO. Mark this in your diaries and get your entries in.

Josh Braidwood
Club Captain

Josh's update 15 July 2020

Hi everyone

It seems like an eternity since Metro League 1 at Castle Hill way back in March! Well finally Metro League is ready to resume, so it's time to dust off your running shoes.

Bennelong will be hosting the next Metro League on Sunday 26th July at Manly Vale. The assembly location is Manly Vale Public School at the corner of Sunshine and Gibbs Street in Manly Vale. Details can be found on Eventor.

Of course, although orienteering events have resumed, it is critical that we observe COVID-19 protocols when at these events.

Anyone who intends to enter this event (or any other orienteering event) should read the ONSW Covid-19 safety plan which can be found on the ONSW website - a copy of the current version is attached:

Some highlights to be aware of:

  • You must practice social distancing at all times at the event (1.5m)
  • There will be no results display at the event
  • You must bring your own water and snacks - there will be no water supplied
  • You must bring your own hand sanitiser / soap
  • If you are unwell DO NOT ATTEND THE EVENT

Please also keep in mind that guidelines may change at short notice. Please ensure you are at the event in sufficient time to hear the organisers briefing and that you observe all COVID-19 protocols that have been laid down for this event.

So - mark the date in your calendar and get your entries in (via Eventor). Please let me know if you are able to enter so that I can assemble teams for the event. And remember even if you are a beginner or have never entered Metro League before, we’d love you to come and have a go - there’s a suitable course for everybody.

Closer to the event I’ll advise team allocations and start times.

Drop me a line if you have any questions.

Josh Braidwood
Club Captain

Metro League 1 - Castle Hill

There was a big turnout from WHO for the opening of the Metro League season at Fred Caterson Reserve in Castle Hill on March 22

Although hosted by Big Foot this is WHO home territory and a map many club members will be familiar with. The weather was perfect, but a sense that this may be one of our last events for some time hung in the air - and so it proved to be. The absence of the usual score board left us in suspense to find out the actual scores, but in the end there were some notable performances from WHO.

In Division 1, WHO went down to hosts Big Foot 22-33. James McQuillan was our best picking up 9 points, and it was pleasing to see good results from Niamh and Vivien who found themselves promoted to Div 1 this year.

The tables were turned in Div 3, with WHO beating Big Foot 28-26. Belinda Kinneally was our best performer picking up 8 points for the team.

WHO took out the honours in Div 4 as well, beating an understrength UR-CC 27-22. Paul Sweeney romped home with a nicely earned 10 points.

Div 5 was a continuation of the WHO success story, where we overcame the odds to beat a full strength UR-CC 24-21. Will Kay topped the division and sent a clear signal to his competitors, picking up 10 points on the way to lead us to victory. A great performance from Metro League debutant Anthony Saunders as well who brought home 9 points to seal the deal.

Finally, our inaugural attempt at the new Div 6 saw us go down to Big Foot 20-29, but on the back of lower numbers in this team (in fact we originally weren't looking like we'd be able to field a team in Div 6 at all so this was actually a good result). Lachlan Coady did the team proud bringing home 8 points with a great time.

Normally this is the point I'd be telling everyone to get the next Metro League date in their diaries, but sadly it may be some time before we're back for more. But we will be, so watch this space!

Josh Braidwood

Hi WHO Club Members

As we approach the end of the summer orienteering season its time to turn our attention to one of the highlights of the Sydney orienteering calendar - Metro League!

For those of you who aren’t familiar with Metro League or are new to the club, its a fun way to get a taste of orienteering in the bush without having to venture too far from home. There are five competitive divisions ranging from moderate to hard levels of navigation difficulty. There are also easier courses to enter on the day for younger orienteers or those still building their confidence (and for that matter you can enter-on-the-day on one of the harder courses without needing to be in a team if you want to test it out). In other words, there is something for everyone and it is a great day out in some beautiful areas usually on the outskirts of Sydney. Its also a great way to get to know other club members in a relaxed atmosphere.

At each event, our team in each division goes head to head with another club’s team in the same division, with all runners contributing to the overall point score. Last year we fielded a team in 5 divisions, with our Division 5 team making the finals.

Make sure you mark the Metro League dates in your calendar (see above).

We’d love to be able to field a team in as many divisions as possible again this year, so please let me know if you’re interested in taking part. You don’t have to attend each event - even if you’re only able to get to a couple of events I’d love to hear from you. New members are most definitely welcome - and if you want to find out more I’m happy to answer any of your questions (and remember, you don’t have to be available for every round to be part of a team).

Please email me at to register your interest or if you have any questions.

Hear from you soon!

Josh Braidwood 
Club Captain

Archive: Metro League 2019