I have given up racing midweek as a general rule but entered the ABC because it was part of the Leeds race series and I am in pole position in the age group. I had actually forgotten I had entered and was in serious tapering mode for the Chester triathlon on Sunday, this race being a qualifier for next year’s world championships. Hey ho I decided a tough 10k trail race would be just the thing to get me sharpened up! The weather was sultry and another thing I had forgotten was how challenging this route can be. A congested start leads downhill which I got the benefit of by starting close to the front. I had come to beat the Leeds race rival although he was not there I was unaware of that till the results came in. At about 1k the route climbs up for about a kilometre which was hard work but I felt quite sprightly. The course goes up and down some quite steep and stony paths and in some places you are literally walking single file up steep and narrow footpaths. All very pleasant but not my idea of a race. Between 6 and 7 there is a very steep incline and I was beginning to feel quite heavy legged in the heat. I started to take note of people overtaking me and my age group winner got the better of me on that rise. At the top there is a nice descent back towards the finish field and I was able to get moving smoothly again down the hill. The finish is a long loop round the playing field and you can see the finish but there is still the best part of 1k to go. The grass was sapping the remains of my energy and I could see regular rivals hunting me down. I always manage to raise the pace again in the last half k so stayed ahead. I finished ahead of some-one who had beaten me by several minutes at the Ripon 10 recently so all things considered not a disaster and progress slowly being made. Another bag of points for the Leeds race series which is what I went for.
The race was won by Joe Baker of Pudsey and Bramley in 33.52, first lady in 27th place Alice Leake of Leeds City. Fellow Otliensians wre lee Gumbrell 93rd in 45,37, Howard Jeffrey 116th in 46.37, Stephen Small in 226th in 52.37, Ged Peacock 297th in 56.54, Geraldine Nichols in 363rd in 61.18 and Laurel Frear 420th in 70.24. Stephen and Ged will bump up a place in the age group because they recorded me finishing twice.