With 760 metres of climb in the 8 Kilometre route this must be one of the hardest short races in the fell calendar. The fact that the only Croft representatives were GaryG and TomD probably reflects on their short memory span compared to other club members!
A bright sunny morning greeted us at Little Stretton but the cloud began to drift in as we approached start time and the original decision of ‘no emergency kit required’ changed to a recommendation of carrying a waterproof/windproof top. However it remained dry for the race and apart from being a bit windy, conditions were good.
The race started with a quick dash away from the campsite at Little Stretton before hands and knees up the first of four steep climbs. As usual Gary shot off from the gun but by the third hill the climbs were beginning to take their toll and Gary began to fade. By the final climb over Callow something very unusual happened – TomD overtook him! Although it was not to last and about 200 metres from the finish Gary went past in a cloud of dust and shower of stones.
Gary was again 1st mv70 finishing 48th overall in 1:30:09, TomD was one place behind in 1:30:15. The race was won by Jonny Malley a visitor from Ambleside in 56:37 and 1st lady was Charlotte Hayward-Prince in 1:15:02, there were 60 finishers.
A race not to be recommended for the faint hearted but ideal for those seeking to test themselves on a proper fell race.