Wednesday, 6 July 2011

4 Races, 5 Days.

I've been fairly busy of late, with a fair amount of racing and not a lot in between. Sometimes you just hit a groove and it works for you.

Last Wednesday I headed out to get Neil and Pete's Roving Calender Box up Red Brook, adding in Mermaid's pool to the route, as well as a ride out and back from Kinder Resser.
Meraid's Pool from Redbrook (photo from serigrapher on Flickr)

That evening I headed out to the Hope Wakes Fell Race. I was missing a bit of poke after the earlier exertions but kept it nice and steady up to the top of Win Tit before crashing down to the village taking 4 runners, leaving 3 well behind, and closing in on Noel - unfortunately I didn't quite have the usual flat speed to overhaul him after passing under the railway line.

The next day was Pennine's 'Half Trans-Pennine Relay', run in teams of 4 from Ladybower back to the Royal. I ran Leg 2 from the bridge over the hope valley railway, over Lose Hill, round Back Tor, Hollins Cross and round Mam Tor. Rich set me off in 3rd/4th and by the time I exited Brockett Booth plantation I was leading the race, Dave Ward just behind keeping me honest. Rounding Mam Tor Andy, my 3rd leg, greeted me, and I managed to beat him back to the changeover by a good 100m - oops! Overall we finished 4th as a team - a good performance from all (Dan being the 4th member).

Sunday was the Cliffhanger Ultrasprint - the first mention of Orienteering in this here blog! A 2-race chasing sprint format, where the time from the first race determines your start time for the second, the addition of a specially constructed labyrinth and a lot of controls (30) in a short distance (2km), along with all the public to dodge, makes for a fantastic race in what would normally be a fairly bog-standard Millhouses Park. Add into the mix the presence of several of GB's premier Orienteers and it was a cracking event!
The Cliffhanger Maze.

I felt a bit slow in the prologue but finished 6th behind GG (ex world champ), Oli (multiple British champion and recently 7th at the world long distance mountain running champs), Duncan, Neil (of Calender Box fame) and Daverams, with Treb only 5 seconds behind me.
I had a much better run in the final, running better and picking better routes through the maze. A b ig wobble in the second maze section let Treb get ahead - for all of 3 paces before he made a mistake. I finished in 6th, closer to Dave than I started, but mispunches and an iffy control led to 3 ahead being DQ'd and me finishing 3rd, which was nice!
The Final map - start in the maze, out into the (now very busy) park, then back into the maze!

Eventual winner Graham 'GG' Gristwood.

In my 2 days at Cliffhanger (I helped with all the kids running the maze on the Saturday) I didn't get much time to wander around, but I did see a bit of the bouldering competition, as well as the Dyno world-record attempt, in which Skylar Larkin failed in his 5 allowed attempts (before nailing it on the 6th - but to be a WR you have to do it in 5). Made me think about getting back into trad climbing a bit.

Skylar Larkin atempting to set a new Dyno WR (after doing so at the last few Cliffhangers).

Anyway, the moths are going mental so I'd best go. Up later in the week - Hathersage Gala Race and the down-and-up relays!

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