The day after running the Mick Ligema 5 mile race at Leinthall Starkes, Gary and Huw turned out again for this short summer fell race. The Croft ‘team’ was completed by Tim, back from running 105km over the Spanish Pyrenees, Jo and Steph K on their fell running debuts and me, nearing my last outing over the fells. Maybe not the strongest Croft contingent but we packed well, albeit near the back of the field! After half a mile round a grass field and then a short stretch under trees on a stony track we veered left to start the climb, with Gary leading the Crofties, closely followed by Jo and then me and Tim, who was possibly wondering why he’d committed himself to running up hills again so soon after his Spanish adventure. Steph and Huw were just behind, keen to embark on the tough bit of the race. As I caught up with Jo, dust from her (unsuitably flat) shoes was blowing in my face. There didn’t appear to have been any rain here, just a really strong breeze. A little further up I came level with Gary, and then the mighty Tim sailed past, obviously mastering his earlier fatigue. At the top we turned with the wind across us, threatening to blow us off the track. The descent was relatively easy, over dusty soil with small rocky outcrops every now and again. at the bottom we turned onto the stony track that led back to the grassy field and the finish – for me, a long mile being chased by faster runners.
Tim finished in 85th (32.42), I was 92nd (33.24), with Jo 97th (34.18), Gary 98th (34.37), Steph was 105th and 1st F55 (36.27) and Huw 108th (38.36). Steph seemed very happy with the experience, and that was before she knew she had won her category.