Daily Archives: 3rd March 2013

Glaisdale Rigg, North York Moors, Sunday, March 3, 2013

BM / 8.5m / 1844 '

Phil Owen

Jan, Will, Tynedale harrier Steph and myself car shared down to this Esk Valley fell race. Not one I’ve done before as it’s a bit further down the moors than usual but very glad I did. It didn’t start well with Will’s sat nav bringing us to a closed road (subsided road) about a third of a mile a mile away from the start meaning a short dash before the race while will found an alternate route.

Like all good fell races the race starts at a pub in this case the Arncliffe Arms. It then takes some of the steepest roads I’ve ever run (well fast walked) up and out of the village before heading onto the moors.

From then on we seemed to continue climbing with only the odd descent for about 6 miles. The previous day’s stomach issues during XC seemed to have abated but I have to say I was still struggling a fair bit and felt like I had legs of lead. It wasn’t till probably the last climb I finally got things together and felt like I was running ok. Near the top of the last climb I caught NFR runner Andy whom I seem to meet at a lot of races before moving on to the best bit, 2 miles of downhill clarty mud fest (I’m guessing the distance).

Fair flew down the track barely keeping myself upright and managed to pass a half a dozen runner (like I do when a race is over!). I was hoping the clarty track came out at the pub finish as I couldn’t keep that pace up much longer but these always have a sting in the tail and it came out at a small bridge over a stream with the finish a short sharp steep muddy uphill climb away.

Great race taking in a part of the moors I’ve never seen before and a nice pint of black sheep in the pub after.

Results

Pos Name Club Cat Pos Time
1 Jayson Cavill Pickering RC M 0:58:28
39 Carol Morgan Nidd Valley F 1 1:13:06
66 Mike Bennett MV55 3 1:20:50
106 Phil Owen MV45 14 1:34:10
125 Jan Young FV60 1 1:46:04

132 finishers.

Haweswater Half Marathon, Lake District, Sunday, March 3, 2013

Claire Readey

Buoyed up by a good race the week before, I seized the opportunity to rekindle my long mile addiction with a last minute entry to the Haweswater Half. A quick check through previous race reports suggested a hilly course – so I resolved to take it steady.

The drive to Haweswater was quick and painless, parking in a field, number collection straightforward and queue for the portaloos long. Race started in a country lane by a man with a loudspeaker and a sense of humour – always a bonus. It’s not a chipped race, and with no discernible start line (not when you start as far back as I do, at least) pressing “Go” on the Garmin at the right time was largely pot luck.

Alan, Heading for the hills ...
photo courtesy and © Andrew Thrippleton

The route winds past the finish line and car park, dropping down through twisting, leafy country lanes before opening out alongside the reservoir. The scenery is stunning: breathtaking, snow-capped mountains overlooking a large expanse of still, blue water. The conditions were perfect – overcast, cool and wind-free.

I caught up with Alan, struggling with injury, on a long, steady climb between miles 5 and 6. It’s an out-and-back course, so just after reaching the summit the faster runners were on their way back. It was fascinating, and helpfully distracting, to observe the course leaders at the top of the long ascent from the halfway mark – running at a pace I can’t fathom and with effort and determination etched hard on their faces. I was impressed to see one of the front-runners shout encouragement to us despite his climb. A high-five from Alister at the bottom of the hill and a chat with Bill, taking a well-earned break at the water station, and before I knew it I was on my way back home.

I steeled myself for the long climb up and attacked the incline determined to maintain a steady pace. The hill was soon behind me, and the next incline didn’t feel as bad as I’d expected, I kept a constant effort and gradually put people behind me. I picked up the pace around mile 11, fairly confident the hills were over, then worried I’d pushed too soon – seeing the red finish banner in the distance simultaneously encouraging and yet so far away.

My strong finish was largely down to pride – I caught up and passed a runner who’d been met by his faster clubmates, bringing him home with rousing, manly encouragement. I was determined not to be overtaken by his sprint finish, so made sure mine was faster than his.

All in all another great race – well run, scenic and challenging. Emma D also had a strong run – knocking 15 minutes off the time she expected – and Bill regretted his decision to forgo the nipple tape. Cup not as nice as Snake Lane, but did come with free mug of tea if you could face the queue. Well worth doing again.

Results

Pos Name Club Cat Pos Time
1 James Buis Border Harriers M 1 01:13:03
44 Rebecca Sheffield Unattached F 1 01:27:42
261 Alister Robson M40 51 01:48:44
314 Claire Readey F 31 01:54:23
380 Brian Ford M45 48 02:00:10
418 Alan Smith M65 4 02:04:58
458 Emma Detchon F 57 02:15:59
470 Sue Jennings F45 29 02:21:02

484 finishers

Regent’s Park 10K, London, Sunday, March 3, 2013

Danny Lim

I highly recommend this London 10K which takes place on the first Sunday of each month. The setting is Regent’s Park which I think is central London’s prettiest park. In the spring/summer, the floral beds are really pretty and the fountains are magnificent. It makes for a really scenic route – though you’re better off admiring the flowers post-race!

The course is flat and run on tarmac paths, so its got PB potential. And the £11 entry fee makes it good value for central London. I turned up today, not knowing a single face. But the marshalls and crowds (albeit sparse) were fantastic and cheering us on all the way. The race director was fantastic, making witty remarks with his mega-phone as we crossed the finish line. For some reason, he reminded me a little of our Alister Robson. I was very happy managing to shave 20 seconds off my previous PB.

Silverstone Half Marathon, Sunday, March 3, 2013

Kathryn Sygrove

I ran this race because I wanted to do something different and it was quite near the in-laws. It is flagged up every year by the London Marathon, whether they accept you or not, and at first I thought who would ever want to do that? But I fancied a different setting on the Silverstone race tracks, it was billed as pretty flat (though we did run on several circuits which entailed running over bridges over other circuits) and it just beckoned me, so I entered.

The training had culminated in an 11.5 miler and I was happy enough, but got a fluey bug the week before and wasn’t certain whether to run or not. Feeling a bit brighter on the day, I decided to give it a go, and lined up at the start on the International circuit ready to go. There were several Runners’ World pacers so I aligned myself with the 1:45 guy, in the hope I could keep up. A smooth pace wouldn’t hurt after illness, would it? It was cold and windy, then warm and sunny, then cold and windy, so a funny weather to start with. I had seen the race layout which seemed to meander all over the place, off the International circuit, along here, over and under there, back on your self, a twist and over a bridge onto another circuit, along and round, back up, and back onto the first two miles, but in reverse. Yeah, confusing and boxed in in places. And less than flat at times.

So off I went with Joe Mackie, pacer, who valiantly managed the throngs around him, never put off by comments or jostling of any sort. I was quite happy until four miles, then started to feel over-hot and worn out, so I gradually fell back. There wasn’t much scenery as you would expect other then the backs of other runners, but some places became familiar. I passed Malcs and the kids at 3 miles, who roared me on, but felt like lead between 5-7 when I saw them again, as the kids ran over a bridge with me, waving and yelling that I was doing brilliantly. I really wanted to stop then and just join them. I remembered Malcs telling me on the walk there from the carpark (took about 20 mins) that that was part of the course, and getting over half-way was a big bonus at that point.

Miles 8-9 were probably the worst. Realising you have little strength and being overtaken as you plod wearily on isn’t great for your morale, but I knew I had no more to give, so had no choice. 10 miles was the psychological “homeward bound” point, and there were mile markers with times since the starting gun, so I just sang in my head till the next mile and the next, trying to encourage injured runners and those who had stopped or were flagging by then.

At 10 miles, I saw the family again, and as we entered the home straight, charity groups roared and thwonked their plastic batons together, which really lifted me. On the way back to the start, I thought, so I tested the pace, but still had no extra gears to notch up into, so plodded on up an incline, yelling encouragement at a wheelchair lady athlete who looked exhausted getting up that straight. I saw a few people collapsed, and it always reminds you that you have limitations, but wasn’t stopping at 11.5 miles for anything. The end seemed to take a while to get there, there was no sprint finish, just a continuation of steady pace. Again, seeing the family just before I crossed the line was great, and my daughter was waving frantically at me. If you saw the race photos you would see there is no delight at crossing the line, just a look of utter relief that it was over! To be honest, I don’t know how I got round as I did, it was slow for me, but could have been a lot slower, given how I was feeling.

Would I recommend it? Well, it was a one off, a flattish tarmac surface always bodes well for PBs when fully fit, but it was a weird course. I thought we would go round the same circuit 3 and a half times, not dart about all over the place. There was nil scenery other than other tracks, and I did not feel the excitement of being on the race course that I thought I might. So, I probably won’t do it again, but many others seemed to enjoy it and do well, a PB for Eian Thomas of 1:38 so I heard, and the pacers were brilliant. No, I will let this one lie, with happy reminders of the kids chasing me around, waving and yelling, and of the brilliant steel ska band which we boogied to before and after.