The World Master & Mountain Running Championships have now left town but what a week it was.
A big thank you to the 53 runners who took part in the Siabod Summit race on what turned out to be a wonderfully sunny afternoon, albeit very cold for the Marshalls on or near the summit so a special thank you must go to Georg & Simona for being at the summit to record the results as well as Maggie & Alwyn Oliver for steering people on & off the summit plateau! Thanks too to Mike Blake, John Rowell, Brenda, Mike Lees, John & Anne for Marshalling lower down & of course ‘Auntie’ Marion & Dorina at registration.
The race itself was won by Andrew Peace of Bingley in a more than quick 32:34 more than 2 minutes ahead of Jez Brown. Glossopdale’s Caitlin Rice soared to victory in the women’s in a very impressive 36:15 coming in 4th overall nearly 2 minutes ahead of her nearest rival, Angela Leck.
First Eryri male was Paul Jenkinson, 5th overall, in 37:02 & first Eryri Woman was Tammy Lewis Jones in 42:51 who also won her O.40 age category. Thanks to the other Eryri runners taking part, Ed Harmer, Emily Wood, Ali Thomas, Donald Williams & the seemingly ever present everywhere, Ellie Salisbury.
The event was rounded off with Gaby’s Goulash, Prize Giving in the evening sun & an enthralling presentation by Chris Lloyd of OVMRO.
Saturday soon followed where I entered the Open race of the World Mountain Running Championships & was very glad I did. It was great to feel ‘I was there’ & with Dorina coming along for support, there was even new kit to be bought, a pair of Inov8 Roclites, a snip at £70 from Pete Bland’s stand.
We arrived in time to see the winners of the Male Senior’s race come over the line at blistering speed, the winning time for the 13K course was a mind-numbing 49 minutes! The Ugandan, Italian & GB teams peppered the top ten with 3 runners each, I think the Italians won the team prize despite the race winner being from Uganda, full results can be seen at www.wmrcwales.org.
Back to my ‘also ran race’. We set of later than planned to let the A.5 car jam subside in lovely sunny conditions. The 3 loop circuit may not have been to everyone’s liking but it was both a full physical & mental test although a little more technicality on the descent would have been nice & probably kinder on my knee.
That dreaded hill soon had me thinking, really 3 times, why, why, why am I doing this, well one reason turned out to be the many people lining the route or Marshalling & calls of well done Paul, great to hear you all. Dorina was one of these, as she waited near the bottom of the hill for my second ascent I retorted, that’s it I’m going to have to walk up it from here, what a good call that was. As I Settled into a fast walk my heart rate recovered (a little) & I was able to keep up with a woman just in front of me who managed to keep running despite some seriously strained gasping breaths. The best thing was knowing that I could do exactly the same on the 3rd ascent, the race was by no means over but completion was now certain.
On the following descent I even gained a place & looked half like a descender. From here on I was in splendid isolation feeling very pleased with my strength & stamina to come home in 1:17:00 in 25th place out of 49 male starters, only a mere 28 minutes slower than a certain Ugandan, how…?
Dorina welcomed me with her smile & a much needed drink before it was time to talk to & congratulate other runners who’d taken part. Here a special mention to Ali Keats who had just made it 3 out of 3 in her O.55 age category over the past week but even she was glad that the women only had to do that dreaded hill twice, well done Ali.
Walking back to the car, ouchh my knee hurts, this continued through Sunday so I did the only logical thing on Monday & went out for a run on, well I had my new Roclites to try out didn’t I. 18 miles & 855 metres of ascent later around the wonderful Coed y Brenin Goldrush & Long Sarn Helen routes I returned home with a smile on my face, what grip, Kean look out, knee, what knee? A good step towards the Snowdon Marathon, is my relative idleness (in training at least) behind me?