Report from Graham Lake:
Living in Yorkshire for as long as I have you come to expect sun, heat and stable weather to greet you when you pull your inov-8s on. No such luck on Sunday! It was very wet, very windy and rather chilly; who’d have thought it?!
This race was the epitome of ‘low-key’, starting on a trading estate with a mumbled ‘go then’ and a hooter from the RO to set us off. It’s not the epitome of a fell race though, with a mile on flat but very muddy towpath, followed by x-country style fields and gate-hopping, before a very steep climb through some woods (hopefully you’ve all seen the photo of Antonio using his ingenuity to get up this). You’re then back on some incredibly boggy and cow-trodden fields, where I lost some time on a couple of chaps, one of which was like a gazelle over the gates. Getting on to the moor ‘proper’ was a relief from the bog of eternal stench.
On my CIRF course I’d been advised that the hands-on-knees way of getting up steep terrain may not be the best, and keeping a springy, upright style may be better, so I tried this out and to my surprise, reeled in the two lads who’d got away earlier who were walking up with aforementioned style. This race were trying out a wrist-band style chip-timing system this year, so there was a bit of a delay while the guy in front of me tried to get his to register, then we were off down the moor for some fast running. I managed to overtake the two in front and put some good distance between us, taking advantage of the hills. Skiing back down through the woods was fun, and I was soon chasing down the next runner, although when we got on the tow-path he had a great turn of speed and I couldn’t close the gap.
I finished in 7th place in 1.01.33 (although my watch says 40s quicker) with the winner being Joe Baxter of P&B in 54.22.
Ladies winner was Rachel Pilling also P&B in 1.05.47
Antonio finished in 2.28.54.