Run. Bike. Run.
Before and after the event you think ‘What could be simpler than that’?
But during the race it was a very different story; lots of fighting for position, some great runners, some great bikers, and a really tough, fast course.
Run. Starts slow, suddenly fast, holding on up the gradual drag of castle hill: the racepace duo were really going out hard. I tried to hold the time gap without killing myself too much early on.
Bike. What a relief to get on the bike. To my surprise a fast rider was with me straight away. We had a quick chat and it was clear we both knew we’d have to ride fast to catch the leading two. Riding together we pushed on up the blue grade singletrack. It turns out David raced elite level enduro and it certainly showed on the downhills! We eventually caught the leaders and we were a group of three for a while. David and I managed to get away on a steep climb and put a few minutes into the following riders. The third placed, racepace rider unfortunatly punctured, but I have to admit we were releived as we felt there was a good chance he might catch us on the second run.
Run. Still together out of transition we ran up the old trainline track. I tried to put in an effort, feeling pretty good but David was strong enough to hold on, and they he made me pay up the last long hill, getting a good advantage before coming back to the finish at the castle. Atleast the last few minutes of the run I could relax a little as I was getting those almost forgotten sparks of pain in my quads as we ran down the last hill.
It’s got to be one of toughest races I’ve done- probably because of the quality of both the runners and the bikers.
Thank you so much to Ian, and all the volunteers at high terrain events for an awesome race as usual.
Now for a long lie down