The weekend we’ve been waiting for. The one where all the snow was meant to fall, there was meant to be ice crust across the slabs and Bleaklow was meant to be gloriously wintery. Yes, it is Trigger weekend, with a load of runners taking on the challenge of running from Marsden to Edale. “You can’t call yourself a fellrunner til you’ve done the Trigger”, as John Hewitt said – which prompted a good number of GDHers to sign up.
What was good was that there were a fair few people out on support all down the route, including Jules, dressed in his “hallucination level clown” costume, which may or may not have thrown a fair few people off. I stood at the junction of the Pennine way and Wildboar clough, and although there were no navigational errors by the Trigger-ers, there were a number of Spine racers who needed gentle reminders that No, the Pennine Way does not go down there- you need to keep heading West for at least another few Kilometres….. (this includes at least 4 of the front runners).
So… how did they do? I can only really tell you what I saw, and what I have heard…
Chris Webb had a decent run out, with some excellent early pacing, coming past me in about 4th place. There must have been some kind of kerfuffle, or he got massively put off by the sight of Jules at Higher shelf… or more likely ended up somewhat obsessed by Rowan – whom I believe Jasmin had taken to the trig point. As it was, he ended up in 7th after a hard time over Kinder. Matt Huxford was next past me, and was gunning for a top 10 place til he cocked up the nav (Matt? never…) and then took an easy line to the Sabre wreck rather than the “racing” line, eventually coming in a superb 11th. Jamie Helmer was out there, great to see him back on the fells again. He seems to have lost his characteristic rapier like racing edge, being pipped, right at the very death by Kasia – who stalked him down through the entire race and sprinted past him in time honoured fashion. Matt Crompton and Zoe were tag-teaming their way across the hills, with Zoe modelling a new balaclava type hijab, and Matt wolfing down any food in his path – no matter who it belonged to. Ian “ironman” Oates was drafting them, as only real triathletes know how to do (ie. make it look like you aren’t drafting even though you are), battered the race into submission, and was seen sinking his first pint of “iron restorative” (guiness) within 10 mins of finishing. Steve Pepper made his gruelling way south to Edale with protestations that a) a running diet of Parkrun does not adequately prepare you for a race of this length and b) it is entirely John Hewitts fault that he even considered running the race. The people behind him basically followed the sound of his mumbling and moaning the entire way to Edale, with the dynamic duo of Cheryl Stitt and Jude Stansfield catching up with him on Kinder, just in time to see him add a further amusement to proceedings as he attempted to put on a waterproof. Cheryl and Jude had a delightful day out, despite feeling somewhat subdued having been going hard in the Gym on friday night. Not your normal race recommendation, it has to be said, unless you want cramping calf muscles for the entire second half of the route.
Thanks must also go out to those supporting on the hill, Malc, Jules, Lucy W, Cat C, Emma, Tom, Alice Swift and whoever else was out there that I’ve missed out. Good going everyone. No results yet that I can see, but I’ll stick up a link when I do.
Some of us were out doing somewhat less miles, though at a slightly harder pace on the Saturday. It was the 3rd(?) MACCL fixture of the season… maybe the 4th? Who knows, theyre all pretty similar – over in Woodbank park. Home to “the hill”, and other such horrors – like “traffic” and “people”.
In the Juniors – Adam Crompton was there, flying the flag – coming in 44th in the Under 11s, a mere 3 seconds behind the guy in front. The ladies got out there early and acquitted themselves magnificently. Ezme Brack came in a great 6th in her Category, despite warming up by sprinting to the starting line and changing her shoes as the countdown was going on. Emma Rettig was first GDH lady home in 109th, with Jane Mellor in 157th – and 11th V50. Jo Brack was 173rd – and impressive V-bunching, was 12th V50. Charmayne Brierley, using her excellent last 100m dash tactic was 184th, and in an even more impressive display of bunching, was 13th V50. Sarah Leah was 259th and seemed to skim around the entire course, being totally unsullied by mud by the end! The ladies were 33rd team and 25th Vets team.
The Blokes kind of got there in a bit of a slap-dash way, not actually knowing who was going to turn up. It wasn’t really til we hit the start line that Chris Jackson appeared as if from no-where. (Im making that up…but it sounds good). A fast start gave way to a fast first lap, a fast second lap, and… um, a fast 3rd lap. As you might expect. Tim Budd was 58th, with Chris coming back from injury and beginning to find his form in 178th. David Chrystie-Lowe was 239th – and 4th V60, with some impressively bloodied knees from a very close encounter with a downhill section, and Andy Burnett cruised around to come in 379th in the most enjoyable race he has done this year. We didn’t have enough blokes to make a team – though we made up for it in style and magnificence.
Consolidated results are here.
Technically, I don’t know if Harshan Gill is still a member of GDH, but most of us know him, so what the hell. He is doing it *again*. I saw him pass Torside in good spirits on Sunday afternoon, looking very comfortable – basically enjoying being on the road up north again. He apparently has a Glossopdale buff to wear when it all gets a bit gnarly up north so if you’re dot watching, give Harshan a shout.
Wuthering Heights Winter Wander
Jayne Moreton was out and about doing her long distance-y type stuff, and was pootling around a mere 26.2 miler this weekend. In the cold. What were YOU doing? No, kidding. So she had a fabulous time at the Winter Wander. She highly recommends it as a race for the Champs next year – but then, she would because she loves running long distances in the cold…. Maybe Trigger next time Jayne? So 27 miles around – well, I guess it was around Withins up from Haworth, and everyone had to read a Bronte book as they ran around. Jayne managed to finish the run AND a book in 5:45:40 (though I am unsure whether this was a chipped time, or merely roasted), but you’ve got to appreciate the effort. It takes me WEEKS to get through that kind of prose.
Petzl Rivington Night Run
Luke Holme was down at Rivington this weekend for the Petzl night run. I’ve just seen it on Strava, so now you know about as much about it as I do. It looks like a 10km event, run (somewhat unsurprisingly) in the dark. I don’t know if you get penalised for not wearing a petzl headtorch, but from the looks of the picture Ive seen, Luke was (shock horror) potentially using an Alpkit or Black Diamond torch. Contraversial! Well, apparently he finished. Either he finished, or someone else has nicked his Garmin and uploaded the run for him. Either way, it looks like he enjoyed himself.
No new PBs at Glossop Park run this week, but there were a load of people out, which is always nice to see. Here is a consolidated report.
It’s the AGM this week on Wednesday. At the Oakwood. 7:30pm. (upstairs)… apparently its cold in the back room, so bring a coat.
The Mile challenge down the trail is hotting up, with a load of people having done it now. Get down and run it before the end of January to record a time.
Jules has created a somewhat imaginative Nav challenge on Bleaklow – the details are on the Facebook page. Get out and do it while it is still there.
I’m not here next week, so if you want a weekly report, volunteer to do it.