Tuesday, 25 October 2011

Passing Clouds Fell Race

A good race for me on Sunday. I like this route as it has some little technical parts which suits me.
I have done 73mins ish before and wanted to dive under that. I think I did just under.
I came in 2nd place after John Brown. John and Jack Ross went wrong slightly at the start and John managed to overtake me as I was leading the race. I couldnt match him but pulled back a little on the technical parts.
The weather stayed fine and it was fairly warm. The boggy sections was not to bad and the run over the Roaches and onto Hen Cloud was excellent. This is one of my favourite places to run down here.
A bit of film footage of the race.

Saturday, 22 October 2011

What do you remember

I wasasked last week what I remember most about my BG day. Lots of things really.
But I have been on a fair few attempts, recces and I just always remember the food.
Particulary Rice Pudding.

So to the local lad David who is thinking of joining a fell running club and looking at doing a BG one day. Just remember like Billy says. Its a long walk. But made much better with Rice Pudding.
Possibly the most eaten food on the Bob Graham. Unlike Bob who had boiled eggs.
Good luck to all those who are having a go next year.

This could be the answer

This week as the temp has dropped I can already feel pain and cold in my hands. For people like me that suffer in the cold months it can be really painfull. The previous two years have been horrible and at times I have been unable to even open the door after a run or do simple things like open my bumbag or even use my phone. So next week Im ordering a pair of these. Ive been told they are better than a lot of the others on the market.
Just thought I would post that for anyone else who has the same problem.
My current glove collection will be one pair bigger.

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Dark Nights

Have arrived and I hate the first few weeks. Training in them becomes very hard for me. Ive known about his for many years. Not just training but other things as well. Its something to do with the dark I know that.
I suspect many others struggle with that getting out the front door feeling. Seasonal Disorder Ive been told. I have various theories on it but when it strikes it can be quite difficult.
For the last few days I have found running and cycling just a going through the motion thing.
Nothing more than that really.
Tough week so far.

Monday, 17 October 2011

FRA Relays Kettlewell

The village of Kettlewell was the venue for this years Relays and Pennine had four teams turning out. An Open, Ladies, Vets and a Vet 50 team.
Full results can be found on the FRA site.
Now I have turned 40 I was picked for the Vet team and was allocated Leg 4. Just a simple run up to Great Whernside summit via Hag Dyke scout camp. Easy really. No it was hard.
There was roughly 190 teams competing which means your going to come across some of the real class fellrunners.
I managed about 43minutes on my leg which gave 21st place on the day. Could I have pushed harder. Not really. Not sure what position I was in the Vets on the leg as I have not got around to that yet. Maybe 3rd or 4th, who knows.
We came 6th Vets team which was pretty good and id manage to overall a couple of teams which is always nice.
Hopefully I can continue to be a part of the relays for years to come.

The passing of a legend

The sport of fellruning has lost one of its true greats.
Bill Smith was a legend in our sport.

I only met him twice. Once whilst racing the Summit race when he was marshaling and gave me a shout of encouragement and I thanked him and introduced myself in the pub afterwards and realised who he actually was. The other time was just a simple hello at another race.
There isn't much more to be said than whats already been said about him so I will simply say
Rest In Peace Bill.

Thursday, 13 October 2011


A brave runner told me this week that injury had occurred. As runners we despair if we cannot run.
I must run, I must run we tell ourselves. The runner in our heads demands that we carry on regardless.
But when injury strikes, particularly if its a bad one that requires rest and rehabilitation we must stop.
Then we worry that our fitness will leave our bodies faster than a rocket. Its true we may lose fitness but to be honest this will return very quickly.
There is a runner I know who has ten weeks off a year and comes back better each time he starts back training.

Use the time out as a reflection on the big picture. Most runners will get an injury at some time in their careers. I cracked some ribs a good while back but came back stronger. I did too much one winter and had horrendous knee problems.
Both times after 1 day of not running I was panicking that I may never run again.

Let me reassure that this rarely happens.
Most runners I know when they are back have said the time off did me good.

Keep the faith, rest, try a bit of cross training, swimming, biking, even a pub quiz or two.
And before long you will be back clocking up the miles

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Langdale Fell Race

The Langdale Race started a bit slow for me. I struggled on the first climb up to Stickle Tarn. This happens to me in some races whereby I just find it difficult on the first climb. I know from experience it will pass though and I will get faster s the race goes on.
The run behind Pavey Ark towards Thunacar Knott went a bit better and by the time I was crossing the very boggy Martcrag Moor I was getting into my stride.
All seemed fine by the time I got to checkpoint 3 at Esk Hause but 5 minutes later I slipped badly on a slab of rock and cracked my head on it. Blood started pouring out and from this point on I would be in get round mode.
A couple of the usual lads checked me to see how I was but I waved them on. I latched onto the last two lads in the group and managed to bring myself around a bit as we trudged over Ore Gap and up to Bowfell Top.
On the run over to Long Top to checkpoint 5 I felt a bit better and the rain was washing the blood off my face which felt good. A jump down the Bad Step and then it was just a matter of Blisco Summit to reach and the long run back down to The Old Dungeon Ghyll.
An hour in First Aid to get patched up and someone told me I was 11th.
Just happy to be safe really.
I will be back to try for a top ten next year.

It was a nasty day and the race saw a few fallers on the route. I was lucky really

Sunday, 2 October 2011

Leg 4 Ian Hodgson Relay

Well the annual Ian Hodgson Relay had finally come round. I have lost count now of how many recces I had done. First one way then try a different line here or there just to make sure I had it right in my head. I did but then it got switched around to run clockwise instead of anticlockwise. Try running in the opposite direction and see how different it can be, and that's just on a clear day.
I was down to run the Leg with Ultra Fast Adam Perry. Adam is fast and I knew we would be a strong pairing
Our other six runners had given us a good position in the Mixed Team race. The problem being Bingley had two very quick runners on there Leg 4. Ian Holmes and Andy Peace no less. This would be tough and I knew it even before the relay had started in the morning. So it was up to Hartsop hall for the start. Claire and Steph flew in rapid and to be fair we only just was ready for them.
The run up was tough. I prefer steep and Adam prefers slightly less steep so he pulled me along the first part and I pulled him up to Hart Crag. I knew the Bingley lads would overtake us at some point and that we may have a chance to catch them on the descent from St Sunday Crag. A quick dib in at Hart Crag in thick mist and Adam led the way across Fairfield to Cofa Pike. He picked a dream line down the scree and then we cut around and dropped nicely into Deepdale Hause. We headed up the path to St Sunday Crag and topped out but found no dibbing point. Quickly realising that we had not topped out we ran a bit further to the actual summit which again was in thick mist. Adam after doing a recce the night before took us off the summit and down the grassy slope which picked up the main path which takes you to the final checkpoint at the gate on Thornhow End.
As we came back into clear weather I could make out the Bingley lads in the distance. We hammered it and started to gain time. I knew it would be close and Adam did as well. By the time we neared the gate to dib in I had seen Ian Holmes just nip through the gate. I dibbed in and we floored it down the steps gaining on the two in front very quickly. They only had about 20 mtrs on us going onto the road section at the end and as we sprinted through the field and into the finish funnel we were 7 seconds behind them.
What a finish.
Thats fellracing at its most thrilling. 4hrs 21minutes ish of racing and it came down to a second or two.
It wouldn't have been possible for Adam and me to even have that chance of going for the win without our other team mates
Leg 1 Lucy and Edie
Leg 2 Muir and Paul
Leg 3 Steph and Claire
So a big big thanks to them.
2nd place in the mixed was a great achievement.

St Sunday Crag from Fairfield Plateau

Thornhow End Checkpoint