Schoolboys refuse to let something like no shoes get in the way of orienteering victory

Two of Haslingden High School’s orienteering members were determined to finish a local competition despite losing their shoes while racing, so they hopped their way to the finish.

The school entered two Year 7 girls’ teams and two boys’ teams in the Rossendale School Sports Partnership organised event at Marl Pits. Alfie Fuller and Jacob Toddington, both 12, were delighted to post the fastest time over the course at Marl Pits in Rawtenstall. They finished in 12 minutes 5 seconds.

Although the school’s other Year 7 boys’ team of Robbie Mongan and Hayden Baker, both 12, were not the fastest on the day, they certainly will not be easily forgotten.

Robbie said: “We were running across the rugby pitch and my shoe decided to come off and it got stuck in mud. I picked it up but was not going to put it back on because it was covered in mud and so I hopped from there all the way to the finish.”


Hayden said: “I was still running then my shoe came off as I was going downhill so I picked it up but there was no time to put it back on and so I hopped my way to the finish too. They said we were not the slowest team to finish.”

Alfie, Robbie and Jacob had previously been on a PGL holiday from primary school in Blackpool and so had previous experience of doing an orienteering course. Robbie is also a Scout with 43rd Rossendale where he has had the chance to do orienteering.

Alfie said: “Some parts of the course were challenging, especially running through the mud, but the rocky paths were a lot easier. Jacob and I set off after Hayden and Robbie had got back and while we were waiting it was pouring down so we were already soaked before we started the course.”

Confident Jacob added: “It was a pretty easy course and not that long. I thought we would win.”