Thursday, 3 September 2015

The Long Tour of Bradwell

This race now seems a rather distant memory. It was warm and sunny which we hoped was good preparation for the summer.having slept in the van we were there bright and early to erect display boards and flags.

I had persuaded Bob to do the full tour as prep for his GRP but I felt under no pressure as Nicky and Mary are much faster than me. I just needed to complete to keep the Grand Slam alive. I started more conservatively than often and enjoyed the first few miles.

 I lost time on the slippery rocks in Cave Dale but made it up again climbing out of Castleton. David and Andy were still  around me.

As we headed up onto the moor everyone was starting to feel the heat. I love the CP on Druids Stone and managed to navigate David and I too it quite well.

David then shot off back down to the Edale valley faster than me but I was ahead of Andy (for a short while). Determined to eat and drink today I had my head down and missed the turn after the railway bridge. Luckily I only went about a km and on flat tarmac before I realised my error and retraced my steps.

I was furious to find I had been overtaken by about 10 people, including Andy, and so stomped up Lose Hill like someone possessed. The next section passed quickly and I was soon running down the old rail track and over the bridge at Bamford Mill.

The clough and 'escalator' were closed to us again but perhaps the new route is better as it keeps us off the tarmac for longer. My tired legs struggled to run along Stanage Edge despite an audience of climbers, walkers and tourists. I arrived at top Burbage fairly washed out. A dodgy stomach all morning had worried me as UU warned Preston of nasty bugs in our water. Please no, I need to be fit this month. Peter was sat at the CP even an even worse state and we ran/jogged together down the big valley track. I recovered a bit in the woods and pulled ahead before catching Andy, again, in the fields en route to the Hathersage CP. The section to Abney seemed to take an age but at least there was some shade in the woods. My time was leaking away badly and by the top of the lane I knew it would be a PW. A few tapes left from a fell race confused me and wasted a little more time. I finished in a disappointing 7hrs 18 (a PW by about 50 mins) but then found that almost everyone except Nigel A had also suffered.

 To only be half an hour or so behind Nicky was perhaps not so bad and I did manage 1st FV50 (until next year when Nicky moves up an age I think). A long recovery sat in the field eating, drinking, prize giving, distributing RF neckwear rewards and chatting rounded off the day nicely. I was at our committee meeting when Bob finished so missed this sadly. He too had ended up with a longer day than anticipated.

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