Orienteering World Cup events in Czechia #1 (1984)

16. 2. 2023

After 5 years the Orienteering World Cup will be held in Czechia again. At the same time, this year will mark exactly 40 years since the first unofficial World Cup was organised. In cooperation with O-News.cz, we will take a look at the history of these races in Czechia. During the winter and spring of 2023 we will offer a look behind the scenes of all these international events.

Look into history

The Orienteering World Cup has been held since 1986. Before that, there were two years (1983 and 1984) that were unofficial. One of the races (in 1984) was organized by Czechoslovakia in Dolánky near Turnov. Two years later, when the races were already official, the Orienteering World Cup returned to the Czech Paradise again, this time to Branžež. Since 1986, the World Cup has been held every two years. The change was brought in 2004, since when the World Cup races have been organized every year. In 1988, one round of the Orienteering World Cup was held again on the in Czechoslovakia, but this time in Silica, Slovakia. The World cup has returned to Czech territory in 1994 close to Jičín to Prachovské skály.

OWC 1984 Logo

Outside of the sandstones

Then we waited for another 8 years for the next round of the Orienteering World Cup. The races had a event center in Brno and were ran for example around Špilberk castle. The World Championship in Olomouc held in 2008 was also included in the Orienteering World Cup. In 2011, the double race of the World Cup was located in Liberec. Not only those who remember will remember the good shape in which Dana Šafka Brožková ran here. She won the opening race on a middle distance and took silver on Sunday’s long distance with a mass start. The last World Cup in Czechia took place on the first weekend of October 2018 in Prague and north of Bohemia. Each of us will certainly remember the triumph of Vojtěch Král in KO sprint premiere or Miloš Nykodým winning the middle distance.

Unofficial World Cup round 1984

As already mentioned in the introduction, in 1984 it was still an unofficial year of the World Cup, albeit for the second year in a row. This year there were a total of 6 series of races held by Hungary, Switzerland, France, Denmark, Czechoslovakia and Sweden. In Czechoslovakia, the World Cup took place in Dolánky, on the Klokočí map in a beautiful rocky terrain. It was organized by the orienteering club from Jičín (the chairman of the organizing committee was Jaroslav Havlík) and at the same time it was the 1st stage of the popular 5-day race OB – Jičín, where almost 3,500 participants started (you can see the winners in individual categories on the website of Sportcentrum Jičín). The spectator scenery of these races was excellent. Participants of multi-day races started in the same area on the same day after the end of the OWC.

Part of the men’s race on the Klokočí map. A great map was prepared by Josef Borůvka.

Ada Kuchařová made the Czechoslovak fans happy. She gave no chance to her pursuers and won the race. She completed the 8.1 km track in 63 minutes. “I made a few small mistakes, but it didn’t cost me many minutes. I’ve already won twice here at the five-day event, so I believed in myself today,” said the happy winner behind the finish line. The third Jana Hlaváčová (later Galíková) accompanied her to the podium, while Sweden’s Karin Rabe also wedged herself in among the Czechs. Eva Bártová (9th place) made it to the top ten after chasing a big mistake on the first control. In the men’s category, the Swede Morten Berglia won, the best of the Czechs was the fifth Jaroslav Kačmarčík. “I made only one big mistake. Then I tried to run it back, but physically it was difficult and than came a mistake for 4 minutes at least.” Jiří Hlaváč finished in seventh place, the next place behind him belonged to Jozef Polák. Luděk Pavelek also made it into the TOP 10.

An interesting feature was the huge camp in Dolánky, where, in addition to the Jičín five-day competitors, Czechoslovak representatives also slept in tents, in the picture below you can see Eva Bártová on the left.

In the next part of our series, we will look at the OWC 1986, which took place in the sandstones of Valečov.

The article was created in cooperation with our media partner O-News.cz.