International Award for Kiwi Rogainer

Mike Sheridan joins Order of the Geoduck

Mike Sheridan has been honoured with an award by the International Rogaine Federation, for development of the sport.

Sheridan’s club Orienteering Hutt Valley introduced rogaining to New Zealand with a 4hr event in 1991. The initial aim was to gradually build up towards 24hrs, but the runaway success of 3-hour afterwork rogaines led to expanding downwards! Sheridan has coordinated 3hr rogaines all around Wellington, including training sessions for competitors and course planners, and the “shoestring” rogaines have spread to other parts of the country. Sheridan also works on "classic" rogaines, masterminding Tararua24, the 2006 New Zealand Championship.

The IRF award takes the form of a replica geoduck, a saltwater clam found on the Pacific coast of North America. Only one has been awarded per year in the past, but this year Alan Mansfield, chief organiser of the world champs in Australia, also received one. Michael Wood was the recipient in 2004.

The award was announced at the recent world championship in Australia, but Sheridan was sleeping at the time and it was later overlooked. The trophy was brought back top NZ by other kiwis and physically awarded at the Guy Fawkes rogaine, where Mike was in the second-placed 12-hour team.

More about the geoduck

US rogaine pioneer Bob Reddick instituted the "Order of the Geoduck" for services to the development of rogaining, and it has been awarded annually for many years. "Geoduck" (pronounced gooey-duck) is a clam found only on the Pacific coast of North America (Reddick comes from Seattle) and is a two-shelled thing with a long feeding tube. No its not a fictional creature, you can look up "Panopea Abrupta" on the web. Mature specimens weigh around 1kg, and they are highly regarded in Chinese cuisine. They live for over a hundred years. Recipients of the award get a replica geoduck on a plaque.

This page was written by by and installed on 13 Dec 06.