In memorium | Robin Ambler
By Christo Peters - Wed 3 May 2023 9:52pm
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We asked North west if we could reprint the tribute article on Robin Ambler from last year. 

Robin Ambler, Long-time North west Orienteering Club member passed away in late September last year. Robin’s daughter Kirsten Blake and grandson Blake are NW club members and Robin’s wife Gay is also well known to the club. Dave Middleton encouraged Robin to join North west in 1987, and commented that Robin was always a very willing helper and had coordinated many club events.

Gay Ambler has also written more about Robin:
“Rob’s Dad Norm Ambler, had been a very good Cross Country in the 1940’s. He had done some running with Ralph King, and without Ralph, we would not have our great sport in New Zealand. Rob was in his mid 30’s when he decided to run a Marathon. His first marathon was the inaugural Wang Marathon in Sydney in June 1983. It was the first sport event to use the Sydney Harbour Bridge. His time was 3.28.45
After living 15 years in Australia we decided to come back home in 1984. Robin ran a Marathon in Hamilton. On the way down the accelerator cable broke. A good samaritan somehow wired it up for us.  Rob drove the car back to Whangaraoa pulling that wire all that way after finishing the marathon. 
After a couple of years Dave Middleton talked Rob into having a go at Orienteering. They had been friends since High School and the bond never severed. They had a great competition between them at the events. Through the years we made great friends with many of orienteers right through the country and Australia. Our North West Club was full of people that had the passion for the sport and we had full days putting up events and pulling them down again at the end. 


I think the last event we went to was in 2021, and Rob was disappointed that he didn’t do a good time.
Rob and I went to The World Masters Orienteering event at Arhus, Denmark in July 1999. We went with the Middletons. Quite a few New Zealanders went to this event.  When we arrived at the event the terrible two (Dave and Rob) went off to do a recky to find out where the toilets were etc.  Unbeknownst to Glen (Dave’s wife) and me they had found a beer tent.  So because I could not find a good photo of Rob orienteering I thought this photo below would be appropriate, because it was taken at an orienteering event.  As soon as they finished their runs and got changed, they disappeared. After a while I said to Glen I would go and see if they were OK. As you can see they were quite fine, and if you look at Dave’s hands you will see he is drinking from two glasses! They were doing their thing for the planet too – standing right next to the rubbish bin to drop their glasses in.

Our daughter Kirsten and her son Seven are orienteering whenever they can, so the Ambler spirit of competing burns on.
Gay Ambler

We have set-up a tribute page on the ONZ Website to many orienteers who have passed on and would like to add more photos and more information. So if you have more to contribute do send more into us to load onto the page.
 ONZ Memorium  page 

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