Year 12 student Tommy Heap has recently been selected for the third year running to be part of the Great Britain Orienteering Talent Squad.
Tommy has orienteered with his family since he was eight years old and his most recent achievement was to win the Southern Night Orienteering Championships in the U18 age class held on Broadstone Warren. Running in the dark, armed with a map that you pick up on the start line, a thumb compass and a headtorch, Tommy covered a distance of over 11k with 300m of climb.
Tommy, who is in Chapman House, competes every weekend either at local club races with Southdowns Orienteers or further afield at events across the UK and parts of Europe where the sport thrives. He has won two gold, three silver and four bronze medals in British Championship events and has represented his club, his region and England on several occasions.
This year Tommy is hoping to be selected to run for GB in one of the three major European and World competitions. There are four selection races in the spring which he is currently training for.
Orienteering requires both physical and mental skill. Being able to run hard and at the same time be able to keep your focus and make good decisions when your brain is lacking oxygen is not easy. The principal is the same whether it is through gnarly forests in Scotland, sand dunes in Wales, craggy hillsides in the Lake District, the multi levelled Barbican in London, Wimbledon Common, the Ashdown Forest, university campuses, army barracks or even Worth School itself.
Since starting at Worth in September Tommy has joined the school cross country club and been able to incorporate some of his training into the school day. He is grateful for the support of the school and feels in a good place to try to achieve his goals.
Many congratulations to Tommy on his latest achievement.
Orienteering is offered as part of our activities, clubs and societies provision.