10MILA 2013

Slovenia’s first 10MILA

In the series”Mitt 10MILA” we read about Slovenia, for the first time starting in 10MILA with their own Slovenian team. So how did it go for Klemen and his friends from Slovenia?

– We came to Stockholm hoping to do our best, but we knew from the beginning that we don’t have the same experiences, quality or quantity to get a good result. Some of our best runners couldn’t join, and was replaced by veterans or other runners.

Slovenia’s team came to Sweden one week before the competition to try the terrain and learn about it. Some of the runners already had experienced Scandinavian terrain, but everybody learned a lot during the time.

– We have no experiences from big relays and mass starts. During the autumn and winter we have had night trainings in Ljubljana, but it’s hard to prepare for the kind of challenge that 10MILA is for us.

Slovenians have joined big orienteering events before, mainly WOCs. Klemen describes how 10MILA surprised them with being bigger, having a better arena and better infrastructure and production.

Slovenia’s women made a decent relay, writes Klemen.

– The first runner in the womens relay made a big mistake, but the rest ran good. Our best runners in the men’s relay didn’t do their best races. I thought that we would be able to run in about 6:00/km, but instead the most of us ran in 7:20/km-tempo and up. We made far too many mistakes.

The first leg runner in the men’s relay, according to Klemen their best runner, made a big mistake on the first leg. The long night runner unfortunately missed his start with 20 minutes. Klemen thinks it’s consequences of the inexperience in the Slovenian team.

– Our last runner forgot if he punched the right control in the phi-loop, so he ran it twice. We all learned a lot during the night and the morning. Some of our runners that started late found that they navigated better or were faster than their competitors. Many of them led groups of runners in the forest. Some of the competitors from other clubs congratulated our runners for the good job, which was unexpected for us.

Not many of our runners were happy with their races, but all of us has fulfilled our part of the team and hopefully learnt something, writes Klemen. He and his friends from Slovenia are looking for possibilities to join 10MILA 2014.

– All our runners that were on 10MILA are in some way involved in developing orienteering in Slovenia. This experience gave us motivation to work more and get better. In the future, we’re dreaming of having top runners. If we can work with developing our talents in Slovenia… anything can happen!


My experience of 10MILA 1981 – and 32 more 10MILA – Conny Forsberg

Then – 10-mila 1981

I was 15 years old and finally I was going to run 10-mila. I wasn’t old, but I still got to run with the seniors, which felt great. Just like the years before when I was in the audience I started my day by collecting fir branches, to make my “bed” soft and dry. I remember that procedure as fun and important for everyone’s well-being. We didn’t know it when we collected it, but it turned up later that it was extra important this year. Lightning of fires and cooking was the elder’s tasks.

The juniors in my club were kissing junior girls from other clubs, OK Skog and Marx was sleeping in the tents next to each other and had political banners. I felt like a part of the adult world.

I was entrusted the 9th leg. It felt great when I heard it in our clubhouse a week earlier, but when my father woke me up in the night it felt like a nightmare. It was cold, dark and I was extremely nervous. I had run a couple of night courses before, many of them with company. There were no night cups during the winter these times. We trained on lighted trails or biking trails during the dark season.

Anyway I started my 9th leg. Still in total darkness, but I was accompanied by two other teams. I started in place 110, which was great for us in Västerås IK. I felt nervous.

In the beginning I felt confident having company, but soon I realized that they had another forking. I was unwilling to run alone, so I followed the other runners a little bit longer then necessary, even though I knew I should run right to get to my control. At last I stopped myself and found my control without any trouble.

When I look at the map now, I don’t have any other memories from the rest of the race. I can see on what I’ve pained that it went quite well. The next memory is from the end of the course. I can really remember the feeling that I actually made it. I can hear my club mates cheering for me. That kind of cheering that contains a positive surprise because you have ran faster than anyone expected.

I advanced to 90th place and I only lost a few minutes on the leaders. That made me feel good. I also remember that my father promised me 100 Swedish crowns if I ran 10 more 10-mila. He probably hoped that I should keep running orienteering. I’m not sure the money is the reason I’m still running, but this year I’ll run my 33rd 10-mila in a row.

Now – 10-mila 2013

I’m sitting beside Lasse Gerhardsson, 10-mila chief. He tells me about the arena, GPS-tracking, Night Trail Run, 10-mila Korten, foodcourt and lots of other finesses that are going to attract people to come to the competition. I am impressed by all the ideas and all the innovation; I like the development but…. I still wonder what’s making me look forward to my 33rd 10-mila? Is it the new arenas that keep my interest alive?

The more I think of it, I realize that it’s not really the competition specifically, more the time before the competition that is most important. It’s the chat in the changing rooms during the winter, the 10-mila trainings and the pepping of the juniors. It’s all things that happen before the competition. Last year, my club Långhundra IF had a team in the men’s relay for the first time in 15 years. It was great and inspired us a lot. This year we maybe come to start with two teams.

I hope that Lasse’s and others developments of the competition make great results. I hope that Trail Run catches sponsors and that the arena catches the audience. I prefer a great story rather than Facebook updates, so I look forward hearing a whispering forest speaker.

See you in the night

Conny Forsberg, Långhundra IF

Connys map. Click on the picture to view a larger version

Connys map. Click on the picture to view a larger version

My experiences of 10MILA 1981 and 2005 – Stefan Gustafsson


1981 was my first 10MILA running for Skarpnäcks OL. Before that I had run two times for Fredrikshofs IF.

The competition 1981 started for me as functionary work a weekend before the competition. I remember the building of the enormous toilet area. There were no portable toilets; instead we dug a long and deep ditch. On top of the ditch we built benches, roof and walls, and split the area into one part for the women and one for the men. After the competition we tore down the benches, the roof and the walls. Then we filled the ditch with soil. Done.

Well, the competition. I ran the third leg which was 13,7 kilometers. I can’t remember much more than the weather and the passage of a ditch, which has been described earlier here on the blog…

2005 I did more functionary work. This time I worked as assistant traffic manager. We had many meetings before the competition and planned for example the busses driving between the arena and the showers. I also built over 100 military tents one weekend. During the competition I spent most time controlling the busses to and from the shower.

I tried to sleep a little in the evening before my 6th leg. As a functionary I had access to the accommodation which was in a building quite far away from the competition area. It was hard to follow the relay from there, so I was back at the competition center too early. I didn’t want to miss my start but now I had to wait in the cold. At last we saw our runner. Precisely after him came the runner from our first team. So Skarpnäcks OL team 1 and 2 changed over almost the same time to leg 6. I saw my team mate in the forest even though the forking. In the end he ran faster than me and he was a few minutes ahead of me to change over to the next leg.

After my race I could rest a few hours and then we had to start dismantle it all again. We took down signs and packed the military tents. It was a little bit messy for a moment; some Finnish teams found stoves that they used in their tents, and when we tried to take the stoves out the flames spread in the dry grass. Luckily enough we had the fire-extinguishers near.

Now we’ll see if I’ll be running my third 10MILA in Kungsängen, and my 27th in total.

Stefan Gustafsson

Club: Skarpnäcks OL

My experience of 10MILA 1981 – Per-Anders Bergman

1981 I ran for my first club OK Milan. We were an ordinary small city club, and 10MILA was our big goal every year. We had two teams starting and the ambition for our first team was maybe 50th-75th place. I won our selection race a couple of weeks earlier so I was chosen to run in our first team. I was only 13,5 years old and I’d run leg 5 which was 11 kilometers and in the night.


I was very nervous and it didn’t get better when I realized that we were in the lead after two legs when Roffe Pettersson made a great race. I was changed over to in 50th place. We ran on fields a lot in the beginning of the course and the tempo was high. We ran around the shooting ranges south of Tranbygge before it was time to pass west of all the tents. At that time I had lost 5 minutes on the leader, who I think was Lasse Forsberg from OK Ravinen. Shortly after that my energy was gone. The last kilometers were tough, I still can’t understand that I managed to find all the controls and make it to the changeover. Once I got there it was crowded of photographers, because I changed over to my dad which was something special. I was so tired I couldn’t follow the striped way out, I crept under the board with maps. I was helped to the shower and I fell asleep the second I came back to the tent. Someone asked me if I wanted to get up and cheer for the winners, but I didn’t want to. My next memory is when I’m waking up and they’re telling me that our tent is going to be dismantled and that we were going home. I guess I wasn’t discouraged even though all this, because I have ran almost every 10mila since that. Probably I’m running this year too.

Name: Per-Anders Bergman

Club 1981: OK Milan

Current club: OK Tyr

My experience of 10MILA 1981 – Stefan Kollberg

1981 Stefan was 20 years old and a first year senior. The year before he had won a medal in the Swedish junior championships in orienteering. He ran for OK Torfinn which was a club with many good runners.

– In my club we had both WOC runners and national team runners. We won relays like 7manna and Hälsingekavlen, but we were not among the very best teams in great relays like 10MILA and Jukola. We surely knew that our chances to be among the best in 10mila 1981 weren’t great, but of course we had great expectations.

Stefan had been sick before the competition; he had a cold and a sore throat the days before. He’s not sure he had started if it would have been an individual competition. In fact, he would have ran the long night leg, but now he was assigned the shortest 10,6 kilometer leg. Stefan can’t remember if it was the 8th or the 9th leg.

– At the first control I was in a group of runners, but at my second control I ran away from them because they couldn’t read the map… I made a few mistake so I think they catched up with me later. I remember it was very difficult and that my headlight was bad.

Even though Stefan had been sick he gained 9 places, from 44th to 35th. The team finished in 21st place.

-I’m not happy with my effort, but I guess it’s okay considering that I ran past a few teams and that I had been sick.

Like many others, Stefan describes the competition centre like ”terrible”. Everything floated and it was mud everywhere.

This year Stefan doesn’t run 10mila, he is a coach in Eksjö SOK.

Stefan's map, click to view a larger version

Stefan’s map, click to view a larger version

Name: Stefan Kollberg

Club 1981: OK Torfinn

Current club: Eksjö SOK

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