Canberra orienteer Blair Trewin races 139,000 kilometres to historic 300th race
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Canberra orienteer Blair Trewin races 139,000 kilometres to historic 300th race

Blair Trewin's orienteering career has taken him around the world almost four times, so it's fitting a 139,000 kilometre journey will return to Canberra for his 300th race.

Trewin will compete at two national orienteering league events in the capital on Saturday and Sunday, continuing an almost 40-year career in the sport.

Blair Trewin

Blair TrewinCredit:Paul Rovere

Trewin estimates he has raced 139,000 kilometres - almost four times the distance of the earth's circumference - since his first orienteering event as a seven-year-old. He has competed in Europe, South America and through the rocky hillsides of Central Asia.

But it all started in Canberra when his parents entered him in an event and he will become the first person to compete in 300 national league races when he returns this weekend.

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"I started out in Canberra and the first 15 years or so of my orienteering career were there," said Trewin, who now competes for the Victoria Nuggets.

"I first got involved in orienteering when I was seven, my parents got me into it and I very soon discovered that I really enjoyed it.

"I discovered very quickly that I liked it both the running side and the technical side of the challenge of navigation. I guess that comes from quite a nerdy background."

Trewin's long and gruelling career has given him great success, his best result finishing second at the Asia-Pacific championships in Kazakhstan in 2004.

"It was very interesting and superb terrain for orienteering, it was in the higher parts of Kazakhstan with open forests that posed challenging navigation," Trewin said.

"It's certainly not getting any easier [on the body] now that I am getting a little older, injuries are more frequent then they were when I began my career and I am getting a little slower.

"I have always loved orienteering and I will continue doing it for as long as the body can keep with it."

Meanwhile, Canberra Cockatoos star Jo Allison will be looking to extend her lead at the top of the individual league table.

Allison is 20 points ahead of her nearest competitor and is chasing a fifth title after winning her first in 1995.

Allison overcame a knee-injury in 2006 to contribute to a 4th place relay finish at the world orienteering championships in Denmark and said the sport was taking it's toll on her body.

"I'm still enjoy competing even though I am a little past my peak... I am not the fittest I have been but I still enjoy the technical challenge quite a lot," Allison said.

The national orienteering league two day event will begin this saturday near Gibraltar Hill, just south east of Bungendore on a course that is 19km for the senior men and 12.5km for the senior women.

The event for sunday will change to a short distance matched pairs event that will be held in bush and erosion gullies adjacent to the Glenloch interchange.

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