Who needs weather forecasts when you have Strava, where you can find far more interesting descriptions of just how hot it has been this week! It’s also that time of year where everyone has gone on holiday and you have to zoom out on Strava to find out where the hell they are! Here the report!
Bamford Carnival Fell Race
You can’t underestimate Paul Skuse’s enthusiasm for races. I think he’s described every race as his favourite since we started racing again, but to be fair, this does sound like a good one. Here’s Paul’s report:
Possibly my favourite race. Great route, great atmosphere, really well organized and plenty of examples of the best of fell running spirit when slower folk would throw themselves into harm’s way to allow you pass (My new phrase is ” Passing when possible” as sometimes there was just nowhere to manoeuvre. It didn’t stop folk trying to let you pass though if they thought they were holding you up. They would shimmy up trees or throw themselves into gorse patches whilst offering cheerful words of encouragement as you passed). A truly perfect evening to be out racing with friends and rivals. No idea about times or positions. It made me happy and that’s what midweek racing is all about. Highly recommended.
Wendy McMahon went to Wilmslow last weekend:
On Sunday 11th July, 5 of us made our way to Wilmslow for its summer 10k race. The organisation with social distancing worked out well and I felt safe throughout the event. I thought it was ideal weather conditions when I left the house, but when the sun popped out during stages, it was so hot! I’m not sure how many PBS there were, but I managed to finally get my sub 50! Well done to everyone that ran. I’m hoping more big races will follow.
Alderman’s English Champs
I have no idea what happened here other than I’ve heard rumours that that were some pretty fast racers out on the course. Chris Jackson and Nick Ham ran it and Luke Holme and Paul Skuse ran there to have a look.
Wasdale Fell Race
Robin Hoffman and Sarah Andrew sent in this report:
Myself and Sarah Andrew raced the Wasdale fell race last weekend (10th July) and here is our report.
Wasdale is a classic long and hilly lakes fell race that takes in some spectacular views and mountain tops on a high level loop around Wast Water. First run in 1972 and with a list of winners that includes some of the biggest names in fell running history it’s a race I’ve aspired to do since starting to run and learning about it 6 years ago. At 34km with 2750m of climbing the challenge is as much getting to the finish as how quickly you do it, something I failed to do on my first attempt at the last running of the race in 2019. Someone who definitely did finish that year was Chris Webb and I was expecting to see him again this year. In the end he didn’t start, possibly still recovering from his Cumbrian traverse effort the week before – perhaps he is human after all!
The forecast was for slow moving showers and the day of the race began with the sound of heavy rain on the tent, one of the best sounds in the world when you know you can stay in the tent, less appealing when you have to get up and go outside. Luckily by the start of the race at 11am it had stopped and there was only one brief shower for the rest of the day. In the end the conditions were still, warm and humid with enough UV to burn. First lesson of the day, always put suncream on skin that only sees the light of day when wearing a Glossopdale vest, even when the weather looks like you won’t need it. Said skin is now bright red and rapidly peeling. The second lesson of the day about sufficient rest before a race was learnt when going for a warm up run; my legs felt tired particularly when going uphill. Hmm, could be problematic over the next few hours!
Saying that my race started well and I was able to keep up with Sarah to the first checkpoint at the top of Whin Rigg and then down to and across the valley bottom, past Joss Naylor’s juice station, and to the start of the climb up Seatallen. Things started to unwind a bit here and by the top of Seatallan I was 3 minutes behind Sarah and going backwards. I shouldn’t be feeling this bad already!
Things continued to get worse and on the section from Seatallan to Pillar and on to Great Gable I was moving more slowly than on an easy paced recce a few weeks earlier. I spent most of my time thinking about how I was never going to do another long race and the most convenient spot to retire, but I kept going, just in case things got better, and anyway I’d only have to go as far as Great Gable before getting timed out so I may as well make it that far at least. The climb up Great Gable was excruciating and I was devastated to have made the cut off by 1 minute!
I had a bit of a sit down on the top, ate some food and decided there was nothing for it now but to carry on, all I had to do was get to the end – no more cut offs to make, I could go as slow as I liked. I really appreciated the lack of steep climbs on the next section up to Esk Hause and on to Scafell Pike. My legs felt better and I began to move at a faster pace, starting to pass runners instead of going backwards. By the top of Scafell Pike I was feeling good and was able to put in a decent descent with just a quick stop to stretch out some cramp on a particularly steep section. I even covered the final checkpoint to the finish faster than the race winner, shame it was only the last kilometre.
I was extremely happy, relieved and slightly surprised to have finished given how it was going at one point. It was a warm and humid day and from reading Facebook comments it seems a lot of people struggled, with slower than usual times and a higher number of retirements than usual – 23% of those who started didn’t finish, including one of the favourites Robb Jebb. I don’t think the heat/humidity was an issue for me in the end, having spent the last two months constantly wearing too many clothes as an attempt at heat training (I struggle running in the heat and this was a factor in my 2019 DNF). It definitely didn’t seem to be an issue for Sarah who had had time for a shower, leisurely lunch and a quick nap before I made it to the finish line, but she can tell you all about that herself…
…Wasdale was unfinished business, with me and Robin having DNF’d the last time it was run back in 2019. We had been looking forward to it for months but sod’s law meant I felt a bit off in the days leading up to the race and felt pretty rotten (nauseous and low energy) for much of the race, but particularly during the first couple of hours, where my main thought was that once I got past the place we pulled out last time I could then quit with some dignity having gone further this time! It wasn’t overly hot with plenty of cloud about so that wasn’t an issue but from the beginning my head wasn’t in it, and quite quickly it became less about racing and more about getting to the end. Between Seatallan and Pillar, once I had passed 2019’s drop out point and having steadily shoved banana soreen in, I felt a resurgence of enthusiasm and energy which got me through to Great Gable – final cut off point reached.
Between there and Scafell Pike was very slow going, with short bursts of running after each jelly baby as I ascended into the mist, but once Scafell Pike was ticked off the thought of downhill all the way was enough to get me through! The usual initial post race high was a little lacking this time, the main thought being how glad I was that it was over and that I didn’t want to do that again! But now that the dust has settled and the satisfaction of having got round has provided me with a nice pair of rose tinted spectacles… it’s definitely one I’ll be back to try again…
Although it didn’t go quite to plan on the day, we’re both extremely happy to have made it round, and as far as unfinished business goes, job done! Superb location and a great day out – highly recommend it!
Sarah Andrew 5.47
Robin Hoffmann 6.24
1st female, Jasmine Paris 4.35
1st male, Ricky Lightfoot 4.05
Loads of people out running the Glossop Skyline as part of the club champs! The longest route of the champs races at 30-miles, this is a toughie! And to get it done in this heat too! Epic running everyone! Here’s a report from Charmayne Brierly:
Shall we have a go at doing Glossop Skyline? 5:15am yesterday morning I was feeling quite apprehensive about attempting my first ever Ultra run. I hadn’t slept well and wondered if I could run 30 miles. There were 4 of us who had not done this distance before, myself, Jo, Wendy and we later found out Alan. Caity and Joss joined us for a short while and Sikobe planned to join us for 10 miles but ended up doing the whole distance. We made the decision to set off a little earlier than planned 7am to avoid the heat or at least get up those first few hills before it got too hot. How optimistic are we, it was hot from the start but we were lucky and really thankful for the shade up the knarr. We were off running, chatting, taking in the scenery and taking as many photos as possible (memories). When we got to Mottram, Sikobe surprised us with a feed station, salty potatoes, curry noodles, pop and water and boy were we ready for it. We continued on our journey and met a really friendly horse that made sure we all got over the style okay! When we reached Chunal we had our 2nd feed station stored in Wendy’s car, so much food and drink between us, it was wonderful. Onwards and upwards, it was too hot (29 degrees) but what a wonderful day and to think we had been worried when planning this, that it might rain! All was going really well until I ran out of water at the snake, no worries, not far now I thought, how wrong was I! Becky had not realised we ran past her house as part of the route and I got really excited, WATER Thankfully we were able to have an impromptu stop at Becky’s house, 5 run bottles of water later and off we went to finish the Glossop Skyline. During this we only had 1 person fall, thankfully nothing too serious just a few cuts, 1 person file their toe nails and several jump into the pool above Alport for a cool off. A big thank you goes out to Pete for the route, doing the recce’s and encouraging people to do this. Sikobe for providing a surprise feed station, Wendy for providing drinks, cups and snacks and Jo for helping to organise transport to and from the feed station. The whole group of runners for being so supportive, fantastic company and great photographers. Here are some comments from our Ultra Runner’s:- Jo – Glossop Skyline…too hot… too far…but an utterly grand day out in our beautiful countryside. Made possible by great support from a great bunch of lovely folk. Thank you x Alison – Amazing experience with Team Scorchio. 31 miles on the hottest day of the year. Great team effort – well planned and executed. Funny moment – The Lins Palmer manicure (filing a toe nail with a stone); most refreshing bit – the impromptu plunge pool; second best bit – finishing it! The best bit – doing it with a fab group of friends. Wendy – Echo everything that’s been said above. It was the 1st ultra for 4 of us & I can say I couldn’t have done it without you all. It took a lot of willpower to pass that brewery! And mine, jo & Charms worry when initially agreeing to do it, we was worried it would rain Alan- Amazing day out with stunning views and fanastic company. Before the actual day I was 50/50 whether I’d drop out at Harry Hut, but thanks to the camaraderie and determination of everyone involved to finish, I carried on, and was so pleased to finish my first ultra. Couldn’t have done it without all the support and food/drink stops! Such a different feeling to the end of a road marathon, in that I actually feel like I’d want to do it again someday! Ian – Achiness is temporary, memories are permanent. Done just about zero today, which feels great. Thanks for a great run – glad my fall didn’t make the top 3 best bits I now have a pair of bloody scabby knees from the 3rd recce & the run – Best comment I got from a friend was ‘How far..I don’t even drive that far?’ Thanks for the food & drink stops – now have peanuts, jelly babies, cheese & sundried tomato sandwiches to add to my next run! Sikobe – It was a game of three thirds. The first third saw us skirt round the skyline of Lees Hill where Pete’s treat threatened to overlap with the Stalyvegas canal loop. Departing the welcome water station in Mottram we hit the road section to Charlesworth which was relieved by sharing round a bag of salty potatoes. A weird trespass manoeuvre from Coombs to Cown led us to our half way picnic stop and on to Chunal. So glad I stashed a half litre of water here. Leading a purposeful climb up to Mill Hill I decided to leave the flags and took a lovely parallel Landy track for the next mile, with the rest of the crew realing me in by Snake. The highlight came with a lovely dip in the pool above Alport, what a revitalising lift that was as i ran out of drinking water. A couple of gels kept me going to Cock Hill but the onset of cramp on the way down slowed me to a painful hobble. What a relieve to neck 3 pints of courtesy Darren and Becky on Hope street. The rest from there seemed a doddle.
Swimrun – Monthly Mash-up at Manvers
Report in from Club Captain Immy Trinder:
This afternoon, a group of 12 Harriers arrived at Manvers Lake in Wath upon Deane (near Rotherham) with absolutely no idea what they were letting themselves in for! Clad in wetsuits, brightly coloured swim caps and goggles, we set off after a briefing to the “safety tree” to start the first run. A few minutes later, we were all relieved to be getting in the water, and made our way out to the first island, ran across (about 50 metres) and then we were back in the water again! This continued for the next hour or so, with different length runs and swims interspersed throughout the day. After a lot of persuasion, Kate Bowden succumbed to the idea of swimming in trainers and reported it to be surprisingly uninhibiting! The final swim had us all a bit freaked out, due to some very thick clingy weed in the lake. For the Potterheads among you, it reminded me of the scene in The Black Lake in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire – I was slightly concerned I would be attacked by a Grindylow.
Great fun was had by all, and we were extremely grateful to Team Manvers, who followed us around on paddleboards and kayaks to ensure that we were safe and knew where we were going. And it would be rude not to put a word in for the weather – it was glorious! Thanks to everyone who came along to support the event.
August Monthly Mashup – Mini Mountain Marathon
The next monthly mash-up from Captain Trinder:
August’s Mashup will be in the form of a score format, 2-day mountain marathon, taking place Saturday 21st – Sunday 22nd August. The great advantage with this one will be that you don’t have to carry your camping equipment – we will transport it for you to the campsite in Edale (although there will, of course, still be a mandatory kit list).
The full details and sign-up form for this event will be released over the next couple of days, but you may like to begin sounding out potential partners in the meantime!
That’s all folks! Enjoy your week!