Compass Point – March 2021
By Christo Peters - Wed 31 Mar 2021 7:31pm
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Compass Point - Orienteering New Zeland's Member Newsletter

Member news & views | March 2021


  • New Zealand-based athletes will not attend WOC/JWOC in 2021
  • ONZ Knockout Sprint in Auckland

Sports people 

  • IOF Interview with Tim Robertson – first Kiwi to medal at WOC


  • Wellington to Host 2021 Junior Camp
  • NZOC 2021
  • NZMTBO 2021

ONZ Updates  

  • What is your national council up to at the moment?
  • Date for the 2021 AGM 
  • ONZ Annual Awards to be held during national
  • A reminder to return trophies asap


Note from the GM

Everything is full-steam ahead at the moment – we are counting down the days until Nationals, we are about to release our 2021-2025 Strategic Plan, and the ONZ Annual Prizegiving will of course take place during nationals.

In this issue we cover the Council decision to send NZ-based teams to WOC or JWOC in 2021, look at the new sprint relay format being run directly after nationals, our AGM goes online for the second year in a row, and Wellington announce that they will host this year’s Junior Camp.

I look forward to seeing many of you at nationals over Easter.

Ngā Mihi

Christo Peters   |   ONZ General Manager
027 714 0915


View from the chair

Well there is plenty to be excited about in NZ orienteering at the moment. Whilst much of the world is still embroiled in the disruption generated by Covid, here in NZ we are looking forwards to a whole calendar of events for 2021, which whilst we can’t be certain won’t be disrupted in some way, is nonetheless looking much more promising than where we were a year ago.

And high on my list of events to be excited about is of course the NZ Foot Orienteering Champs being hosted by NWOC over Easter. I know Annemarie Hogenbirk and the rest of the North West organising team have been flat out planning and preparing what sounds like a fantastic few days of orienteering; top maps, tough courses (I’m told!), and the chance to socialise in a fantastic Woodhill setting.

The other big event I’m excited about is the NZ MTBO Champs being held in Central Otago later in April. This is one of my favorite areas to ride and orienteer in, amazing maps, complex trails, and all happening in the big sky landscape that we so love about Central Otago – not to mention the Pinot inducing soils! Joe Sheriff is the main organiser there, helped by MTBO enthusiasts from PAPO and Dunedin, and this promises to be a really great few days, capped off by the South Island foot orienteering champs the following weekend, also in Alexandra and hosted by Dunedin Orienteering. With these and other events happening, It’s going to be a great 2021!

On the ONZ front there are lots of things happening as well. A new strategic plan for 2021-25 has been developed and approved by Council (check it out here) and follows an intensive period of work, including gathering feedback from clubs and members which was invaluable for providing great insights that strengthened the plan – big thanks to those people who gave feedback. This plan signals a shift in focus in a number of areas that we hope will strengthen the sport and ensure we stay relevant and responsive to the different drivers and influences impacting us. This includes broadening how achievement is looked at (beyond athletic achievement), a stronger focus on environment, diversity, and Kaupapa Maori considerations, adapting to the emergence of commercial interests, and dealing with volunteer challenges. I encourage all of you to read the plan, and we look forward to reporting on progress going forwards.

Lastly, the ONZ AGM is happening virtually again this year on Thursday 15th April 2021 largely because of wanting to simplify the organisation around the NZ Champs when it is usually held, but also because last years proved so successful! I look forward to seeing many of you there, or at one of the national championship events which I will be at. As always any of the Council members or I will be happy to talk with you, so grab one of us or get in touch anytime, details below.

Happy running

Peter Swanson   |  Elected Chair of ONZ Council
027 302 4863


NZ-based athletes will not attend WOC or JWOC in 2021

ONZ - NZ-based athletes will not attend WOC or JWOC in 2021

At the ONZ Council Meeting on Thursday 18th March, a decision was made that New Zealand would not send New Zealand-based athletes to either JWOC or WOC in 2021. Although this is unfortunate, the likelihood of this decision and the reasons behind it were signaled at the end of last month in both Compass Point and on the ONZ website –

Athletes were given until the 28th February to inform the Selection Panel of their interest in trialing for either WOC or JWOC.  Athletes who have expressed an interest in trialing have already been contacted by Alistair Cory-Wright, head of the Selection Panel. 

ONZ Knockout Sprint – 6 April 2021 in Auckland

The new knock-out sprint discipline was scheduled to make its first appearance at WOC in Denmark in 2020. With Covid having delayed that until 2022 it gives New Zealand athletes extra time to become familiar with the intricacies of this format and more experience of the head-to-head racing that is involved. As those who took part in, or even simply just watched, the KO sprint held in New Plymouth in January last year will testify, it is an exciting event which demands new techniques and tactics. Not least of these involves the ability to choose the correct option when the “map choice” technique of splitting is used.

Following on from the event last January, Easter this year presented the opportunity to run enough KO sprints ahead of what will undoubtedly be a third, held as part of WOC trials early next year. ONZ is extremely grateful to Auckland Orienteering Club for agreeing to help put on this event and, particularly, to Alison Comer who responded positively to the initial suggestion and has done a huge amount in terms of on-the-ground organization  Read more

Sports People
Tim WOC Medal

IOF Interview with Tim Robertson – the only New Zealander to medal at WOC

IOF World Cup Event Director Per Forsberg interviews Tim Robertson on all things orienteering and the influence of Covid. To hear the interview click here.

Junior Camp

Wellington to host 2021 Junior Camp

We are excited to announce that Wellington Orienteering Club will host this year’s Junior Camp. Wellington President Paul Teesdale-Spittle confirmed the news this week. ONZ will now work with Wellington’s Junior Camp Liaison Jane Harding to start to confirm the venue and other key details. Once the key details have been confirmed, ONZ will be able to formally provide parents with more information.

For those penciling in dates – we expect the camp to be held sometime between Sunday 11th and Monday 19th December. Please remember that the camp is running under new rules that came into force last year. Read on…

NZOC 2021 2-5 April 2021

The North West Orienteering Club team has preparations for this year’s New Zealand Orienteering Championships (NZOC2021) well underway, for an exciting Easter Weekend of orienteering and renewing friendships in under two weeks from now!

Entries have closed, camping information will be emailed out shortly, clubs will be asked for input on their relay teams, and we are working hard on the start lists and Bulletin 2.

If you have any questions, please check the event website first, but if you can not find the answer, please do not hesitate to contact us via

Safe travels, and we’re looking forward to a great weekend of orienteering and socialising!

NZ MTBO Champs

Inspired by adventure racing?
Want to get some navigation practice on a bike? Have a go on some of this year’s best MTB maps. Get your entry in by this Sunday 28 March to be in the draw to win one of the two free mapboards.

Warm-up Rogaine

Saturday 17th April – Warm up event | Ben Nevis Station

NZ MTBO Champs

(and not just for champs – all welcome)

Sunday 18th April – Long distance champs | Naseby

  • what: Some hills and a bigger challenge to tackle
  • where: 90km north east of Alexandra

Monday 19th April – Middle distance Champs | Chatto Creek

  • what: Rolling terrain with lots of route finding surprises
  • where: 18km north east of Alexandra

Monday 19th April Evening – Social event & prizegiving

  • Relax and socialise with fellow competitors

Tuesday 20th April – Sprint distance champs | Alexandra

  • what: A shorter distance but in tight testing terrain from 10am
  • where: 10 mins drive from central Alexandra

Follow-up Activities

Wednesday 21st – Friday 23rd April | Around Alexandra
  • Post event training and fun navigation activities in and around Alexandra

For more information and to enter:

#mtborienteering #MTB #MTBO #nzmtbo #mtbnavigation

#mountainbikeO #OrienteeringNZ

ONZ Updates

What is your national Council up to?

The March ONZ Council meeting was another busy one.  Council signed off the final version of the ONZ rules that will be used at this year’s NZOC.  Three policy updates that were circulated in the February Compass Point were also signed off following the closure of the membership feedback window.

The ONZ 2021-2025 Strategic Plan final version was signed off and will be released at Nationals next week. As mentioned earlier in this newsletter, Council voted to not send NZ-based teams to WOC or JWOC in 2020.  Other information that was discussed included investigation into investment options for ONZ’s funds that currently sit in saving accounts. A decision on this is likely to be made at the April meeting.

All approved ONZ minutes can be accessed here

AGM - We are going online again

Following discussions with 2021 Nationals hosts NWOC, ONZ will be holding this year’s AGM online. We are asking all attendees to RSVP here.

We ask that clubs submit any remits or items for discussion to the General Manager by Monday 5th April.

The agenda and annual report will both be circulated to clubs and will appear on the ONZ website on Thursday 8th April. Zoom meeting invites will be sent out to all those who register above.

ONZ Annual Awards

Thank you to all the clubs who submitted applications for this year’s ONZ Awards. We invited clubs to nominate for three award categories and received 23 nominations from 7 clubs.  Accompanying these nominations was a total of ten pages of supporting information making Council’s job choosing eventual winners extremely difficult.  

This year’s prizegiving will be held at the completion of the Middle Distance Event at this year’s nationals on Sunday 4th April.  A friendly reminder for all those who won awards, to please ensure they are brought to the Event Centre before prizegiving

A reminder to all those that are in possession of either Nationals or ONZ Annual Award trophies – these need to be returned at this year’s nationals.  We ask that all trophies be returned to the event centre on the first day of nationals.  If you have any questions relating to trophies, please contact our GM.

How can we help?   Me pēhea mātou e āwhina ai?

If you have a particular topic you are looking for on orienteering? Try browsing the search function on the ONZ website or search for an area under news and views in the main menu at the top of the page  – you may find what you need. If you have an enquiry about the sport, do get in touch via any of our media below or fill in our contact form here

Happy orienteering!   Editorial deadline:

We love to read about all kinds of navigation events from every corner of NZ. We are keen for news and updates from places we cannot get to. So do share your passion with photos, events, links, and info about your club. Send something in by the 20th day of the month so it can be published at the end of the month

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