Last year this race was accompanied by 25 mph winds & pouring rain. Mercifully, this year conditions were not so harsh, though still a bit breezy & extremely muddy & slippery underfoot in places. 140 runners set off round the lake, then followed farm tracks leading to woodland paths that ascended & descended steeply. I couldn’t keep up with Jasper through this section as he scampered up and down the slopes like a wood elf from Lord of the Rings, but managed to get back to him on the long straight third mile, battling into the teeth of the wind.
We stayed this way through the next 4 miles, neither managing to gain more than half a dozen yards on the other. I reckoned that if I could stay with him, I could outsprint him at the end, but with 200 yards to go he powered ahead, finishing the 10k in 16th place in 48m 16sec. I was one place behind him (48.23), which was good enough to win the V50 prize.
Matt James (40.25) from Hereford Couriers came 2nd, and his girlfriend Becky Davies (48.36) was the first lady. The race was won by Andrew Fisher (39.32), a superfit triathlete.
Actually, there were two races going on at the same time. 18 of the starters opted for the 5K version, which left out a long loop & finished in the same place. The organiser Mark Leyland coped with this in his usual unflappable style.
There was a junior (5-16yo) 3K race before the main race, which was won at a canter by Wigmore school runner Oscar Hewitt (11.21), 1m 28 in front of the second-place finisher. With any luck, we’ll see him in the sky blue vest in the near future.