|The buzz on Sat morning|
Mick C was sadly retiring after battling a painful shin injury for hours. It was great to meet up with so many friends and to have time to chat. One day I will find a way to learn the names of all the male runners that greet me.
|Ridiculously bright new shoes, but comfy|
I had failed to pad my big toe and the lack of toe nail was making it sore so while my feet were fairly dry I dived into the van at CP1, thankfully Bob was marshalling there, and taped it up.
Jon and others showing concern made me cry so I decided the best thing was to just get going again having taken some pain killers. By Osmotherley things were better although my haste had made me set off without refilling my water bottle. I spotted Dave K and friend refuelling at the shop.
I hooked up with a great guy for the next few miles to Live Moor. Around here the weather deteriorated and we were heading for higher ground. I like this next section as it is so varied. Yes it goes up and down a great deal and I did curse the slippery slabs and steps but I enjoyed it. It was wet and windy but could have been much worse.
Somewhere on this section Martin D and his friend joined me and having company was good. We chatted a bit and Martin showed me a cheeky way down to Clay Bank. We stayed together for a few more miles a reeled in a couple of other runners. The section from Blowith Crossing to Kildale seemed to take an age and I pushed ahead a bit wanting it to be over. The track and then road into Kildale made my foot spasm again so I arrived at the CP looking worse for wear. Helen was just leaving as I went in so she was not too far ahead. I hoped that stopping for food and massaging my foot things would improve. Andy made me tea and the marshalls were lovely. My foot hurt more when I stopped so I ran on; and again I failed to fill up my water. By Captain Cook's monument I felt better and caught up with Katie.
The next section including the out and back over Rosebury Topping went well and I ran with two lads, Jamie and Tom, for much of the way to the Fox and Hounds. It was good to run with confidence and I feel I now know the way fairly reliably. I was even able to stop a group of us going astray in Guisborough Woods. I also had to refill my water here from a very peaty stream- well I convinced myself that the colour was just peat. At the pub I caught Helen and as she stopped for a toilet break that was the last I saw of her. The lads and I ran on to Saltburn together and this year I managed to go the correct way in the woods before the hotel. I was surprised to find Bob here. He had left White Horse, been to Kildale, tried Sandsend but couldn't get through the height barrier and so had come back. I refreshed a bit and had some more painkillers for my foot. I also spotted my finish bag! which John V kindly took to the finish for me. The weather had now improved and I ran much of the next section alone. I think it made it tougher being alone and knowing it would get dark.
|A beautiful sunset|
His support did make me try to run more, although the pace was dire. Jason overtook me as we arrived at Filey. Only 2 more miles but all uphill. The path up the ravine was a good excuse to walk a bit but by the campsite lane even my tired legs could smell the finish and made an effort. Luckily there was a decent gap in the traffic on the main road and I jogged up the incline and into the school. Job done in 27 hours 29 mins. I had certainly not beaten last years time but I think having the dark later was harder and the conditions of rain on the first half and narrow muddy paths in the dark did make it tougher. I was happy. First lady home, mainly because Shelli had kindly done the 160. I suddenly I felt cold so after yet another cup of tea and both Bob and Jon offering me crumpet (yes, really - didn't they understand how tired I was) I disappeared for a shower. A brief kip in the van and I was ready to return to the hall and socialise.
Lorriaie stuck to her plan of slow and steady to gain second lady. John K finished and one look at his blisters made me grateful that my feet were in such good shape. I had more to eat and then Lorraine and I had an early prize-giving so that we could leave.
It would have been nice to see the others complete but for some it would be many hours yet. We had an appointment with many Munros. We were both tired from lack of sleep so after several stops and coffees we pulled into a lay bye near the border and fell into bed. I love the van. I slept solidly until about 7 the next morning and awoke wondering how the others had got on. It would be some days before I would know.