Who is Who
Joaquim Sousa

Joaquim Sousa, M35, POR

You have been only in Austria 2006, but you got the best Portuguese classification in a WMOC: 18th and you won the unofficial Sprint race. Could you remember the atmosphere at Wiener Neustadt?
The ambience was very good, both in a sportive way and in a personal way. Also the fact that I was with a nice group of people helps me a lot. The qualifying races went well, with only small errors. In Final it went worse, because I got completely lost and, as I wasn´t in good shape, I've finished really tired. The atmosphere around the races was always very appellative, and the maps were very good too.

Until last summer, you have run, as Elite, 14 races in WOC. Do you remember your best and worst race?
One of my worst races was in Scotland. I was very young (in international races) and I didn't understand much about orienteering in those types of terrain. Sometimes I was completely lost and, at the end, when I saw the errors that I've committed, I saw that they were beginner errors. With more tranquility I could have been near to qualify. All the other races were of medium and good quality. But the race that I enjoyed the most was the Sprint in the last World Championship in Ukraine.

Highlights of you career?
The victory in TPL - Latinum Certamen (Latin Countries Cup) in 1999 was, for sure, the most unforgettable victory at federation and national level. At personal level it was just another victory. Only later, after the recognition of the federation and the club, I realize the meaning of that victory. About the Iberian titles, the title of 2000 was kind of a personal revenge, because it was conquered in a time when FPO didn't support the national team for financial problems, and I couldn't defend my TPL title in Belgium. This title was for the FPO to see that even without their support the athletes never give up working in behalf of the orienteering. Among National, I've to mention my first title in 1996; other special title was National Champs Relay 2004 [teammates were 2 juniors].

Your best score in athletics?
I've only started running during the military service (1991). The only highlight result was 15.42 in the 5000m in 1999. The races I do are only to keep my shape.

Do you feel that, with Albano João (M45) as your coach, you are improving?
The trainings are superb and, since I've been working with Albano, results can be seen by everybody. This season couldn't have started better, with victories in Sintra and Alcochete and the Iberian title in Malaga. But an injury in June has made my trainings difficult and is jeopardizing my participation in the WMOC. But for now we should think only in the national championships and in the WOC qualifies.

What do you expect from WMOC 2008?
After what I experienced in Austria, I believe that a position in the top 10 would be spectacular. But, of course, a podium position would be a dream, which isn't impossible to achieve if I'm lucky in the competition.

Portugal will have, for the first time, a WMOC with an official Sprint race...
I believe it would be good for orienteering visibility. Unhappily, Mário Duarte and Santos Sousa, who are very good sprinters (also very good in long distance), couldn't participate because they are involved in organization. A competent organization is good to promote orienteering, but good results from the national athletes would stay in history forever.

What is your date of birth and where do you live?
I was born in August, 26th, 1970. I live in Galegos Santa Maria, Barcelos.

What is your job? And your hobbies?
I do drive tests for Optimus. I enjoy playing soccer, even though I'm forbidden by my coach (so I don't play anymore). I watch soccer games on TV (Benfica, Man Utd and Barcelona). Lately I read a lot.

How did you discover orienteering?
As 80% of the "old" Portuguese orienteers, I've learned in the army, in 1991, and it was Luís Sérgio that taught me everything I know. In my first year as athlete, I represented the National Team in the Iberian Championship in 1993, in Entre-os-Rios.

Best races where you have been?
To be honest, 70% of the races I've been (in Portugal) were of excellent quality, and it wouldn't be fair to mention just 1 or 2 when there are a lot of them that made me feel proud of being an athlete and to participate in such events.

Do you remember your best (perfect) race?
I can remember at least 3 long distance races (+ 13km), for example 5-day of France (Bordeaux), in which I've run under 5 min/km. There was a time when I did 90% of my races without mistakes.

What do you think about the quality of Portuguese races?
I believe we are getting better and better. However, the existence of a Race Evaluation Commission is leading some organizers to look after other type of concerns, such as bathrooms, for example, and not only the competition itself and the maps, courses and terrains.

Would you give any suggestions to our guests?
First of all, enjoy the orienteering and the great event that Portugal will offer, with friendly atmosphere, good terrains, good weather and good organization. Second, taste our gastronomy, because there's no other like the Portuguese one. And third, visit as many places as you could, because Portugal has many beautiful monuments and landscapes.

(Interview by Manuel Dias. Questions and answers by e-mail. Received on 2008, Jan 10th. Translation to English by Susana Pedro and Paulo Pereiros.)

[2008-06-20] Carlos Monteiro, WMOC Event Director

[2008-06-20] Dieter Wolf, M55, SUI

[2008-06-19] Timo Teinila, WMOC speaker

[2008-06-19] Jorge Simões, WMOC Event Director assistant

[2008-06-18] Blair Trewin, M35, AUS

[2008-06-18] Mariett Matias, WMOC Media responsible

[2008-06-17] David May, WMOC Senior Event Advisor

[2008-06-16] Gottfried Tobler, M60, AUT

[2008-06-16] Tuulikki Salmenkylä, W45, FIN

[2008-06-16] Arvo Majoinen, M80, FIN

[2008-06-14] Fernando Costa, WMOC Marketing responsible

[2008-06-13] Sarah Dunn, W40, GBR

[2008-06-12] Santos Sousa, WMOC planner

[2008-06-11] Sigurd Daehli, M55, NOR

[2008-06-10] Alexandre Reis, WMOC mapper and planner

[2008-06-09] Nick Duca, M40, CAN

[2008-06-07] Tiago Aires, WMOC mapper and planner

[2008-06-06] Irina Stepanova, W55, RUS

[2008-06-05] Luís Sérgio, WMOC mapper

[2008-06-04] Ari Kattainen, M50, FIN

[2008-06-03] Rui Antunes, WMOC Mapping coordinator

[2008-06-02] Jon Musgrave, M45, GBR

[2008-05-31] Jacinto Eleutério, WMOC Course coordinator

[2008-05-30] Rune Carlsson, M70, SWE

[2008-05-29] Åke Jacobson, IOF President

[2008-05-29] Augusto Almeida, POF President

[2008-05-28] Jurate Uleviciene, W55, LIT

[2008-05-26] Vladimir Ioffe, M70, ISR

[2008-05-23] José Fernandes, M45, POR

[2008-05-21] Ezio Paris, M55, ITA

[2008-05-19] Gabriella Györffy, W40, HUN

[2008-05-16] Alberto Minguez, M40, ESP

[2008-05-14] Tomas Zdrahal, M55, CZE

[2008-05-12] Paulo Becker, M45, BRA

[2008-05-09] Ingrid Roll, W70, NOR

[2008-05-07] Jerzy Parzewski, M55, POL

[2008-05-05] Hugh Moore, M60, AUS

[2008-05-02] Martin Checkley, M55, GBR

[2008-04-30] Etienne Bousser, M60, FRA

[2008-04-28] Andreas Grote, M40, SUI

[2008-04-24] Liudmila Labutina, W65, RUS

[2008-04-22] Freddy Sillien, M60, BEL

[2008-04-17] Tomislav Kaniski, M35, CRO

[2008-04-14] Eero Tuuteri, M85, FIN

[2008-04-10] Lena Nordahl, W80, SWE

[2008-04-07] Albano João, M45, POR

[2008-04-03] Tom A. Karlsen, M55, NOR

[2008-03-31] Kayoko Sakai, W55, JPN

[2008-03-27] Finn Arildsen, M45, DEN

[2008-03-24] Anne Nurmi, W45, FIN

[2008-03-20] Peo Bengtsson, M75, SWE

[2008-03-17] Alida Abola, W50, LAT

[2008-03-13] Matti Railimo, M60, FIN

[2008-03-10] Cornelia Eckardt, W35, GER

[2008-03-06] Joaquim Sousa, M35, POR

[2008-03-03] Birgitta Olsson, W75, SWE

[2008-02-20] J. Salmenkylä, M75, FIN

[2008-02-18] Torid Kvaal, W65, NOR

[2008-02-15] Mykola Bozhko, M55, UKR

[2008-02-13] Pavlina Brautigam, W45, USA

[2008-02-11] Ferran Santoyo, M35, ESP

[2008-02-08] Sole Nieminen, W80, FIN

[2008-02-06] Stefano Galletti, M40, ITA

[2008-02-04] Gillian Ingham, W50, NZL

[2008-02-01] Jörgen Mårtensson, M45, SWE

[2008-01-30] Tom Hiltebrand, M50, SUI

[2008-01-28] Baiba Ozola, W40, LAT

[2008-01-25] Eddie Harwood, M55, GBR

[2008-01-23] Marje Viirmann, W45, EST

[2008-01-21] Alexander Afonyushkin, M40, RUS

[2008-01-18] Paulina Majova, W55, SVK

[2008-01-16] Björn Linnersjö, M65, SWE

[2008-01-15] Lillian Røss, W85, NOR

[2008-01-10] Tapio Peippo, M55, FIN

[2008-01-07] Elizabeth Brown, W90, GBR

[2008-01-04] Erkki Luntamo, M90, FIN

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