Banchory heading right way for World Championships

Banchory Academy won the team title at the 2015 World Schools' Championships in Turkey '“ and the pupils again produced the stand-out results at this year's selection event staged at Faskally Wood in Pitlochry.

Left to right: Jura MacMillan, Eilidh and Kirsty Campbell.

Alistair Chapman and Luke Graham finished first and second in the senior boys’ category and twins Eilidh and Kirsty Campbell raced to the top two spots in the girls’ category.

Peter Molloy (Stewart’s Melville College) won the junior boys’ title and Megan Keith (Millburn Academy) triumphed in the girls’ section.

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Scotland will pick school and select teams and the top five in each category from the selection event should be selected for the World Schools.

But there is a hiccup due to a late change in the venue and date. Originally, the Championships were scheduled for Italy in June – but they have now been switched to Palermo in 
Sicily from 22-28 April.

“The new dates are a week before the start of the Highers so, understandably, not everyone will be able to go,” said Blair Young, chairman of Scottish Schools’ Orienteering. “But we have made arrangements for the youngsters to be able to study a couple of hours a day.”

Jonathan Musgrave, a world championship medallist, is one of the driving forces behind the sport in the area that covers Banchory and Aboyne Academies. Both schools featured strongly in the results.

The Mar Orienteering Club is very strong and runs a hugely successful programme in the local primary schools.

Alistair Chapman’s older brother, Jake, missed the Scottish Schools’ selection event, but he had a good reason. He was in Stromstad in Sweden as a member of a GB Junior squad. The trip included a training camp – and spectating at the World Senior Championships.

Jake won the middle distance title at last year’s World Schools’ Championships in Antalya, Turkey. And he is certain to join Alistair in the team for Sicily.