Thursday, 5 August 2010

I know how the fox feels - Cracken Edge

Generally in fell races I aim to overtake the person in front. This is very good for my mental state during the race as I feel more like the 'predator'.

Last night at Cracken Edge, I was definitely the prey.

The night started well. I turned up early so sat in my car for a while and listened to the radio about a man who had won a £1000 bet from his local bookies about whether he could lose 5 stone in 6 months. Here's the story:

I was then chatting to fellow Pennine runner, Joe, who continued this theme by explaining to me how he's lost 8 stone by only eating on Thursdays and how this should make him faster. To be fair to Joe, I might have forgotten the actual details, but it was something like this.

Joe's slimming plan is partly driven by a competitive desire to beat me in fell races, and partly by the desire to stay ahead of Steve (another Pennine runner). Steve is going well and is getting better over the season. One of Steve's aims is to beat Joe in fell races.

Once the race started, it became apparent that there was no-one for me to chase down, as the gap was too big between me and the guy in front (Jonny, my old Fat Boy team-mate). However, whenever I glanced behind me, I saw the pack of panting, salivating beasts that included Joe and Steve.

With no obvious holes to hide in, I decided the only sensible option was to stay ahead of them. Thankfully, Joe swapped places with me with about a mile to go, so I could enjoy the feeling of biding my time before striking and regaining the lead. In the end I finished 1 second ahead of Joe, who was 10 seconds ahead of Steve.

With this fierce level of competition, I'll have to start putting more training in. Joe and Steve, if you're reading this, I'd like to recommend the new super training food: bacon, ham, mushroom, tomato and mashed potato pancakes, covered in cheese.


  1. Noel, Joe is a fast runner for sure and Ive had a few battles with him. Steve has got much better. Its hard when your being chased haha. Good run by you three. Would have been there but Cracken Edge is simply to near Borrowdale for me. Thats why I had Bradwell. I was mighty impressed with Stefs performance.
    Well done

  2. So Steve wants to beat Joe, who wants to beat Steve but also you, and you want to beat both of them and also anybody else you come across.

    As an aside, Steph puts on an amazing performance at Bradwell and Daz's kick at the foot of the descent in the same race was a thing of beauty, literally just taking off.

    Are they feeding you all on raw meat at Pennine or what?!

  3. ...only on a thursday Simon!!

    Noel - sorry to have missed you, Yiannis and I were making our way there until we got caught in traffic mayhem following an accident so not to be :-(

  4. Cheers everyone. Yes, I probably should have included a bit on Mrs Noel's performance at Bradwell. Nice one on finishing 9th Daz.

    Raw meat. Maybe that would slow Joe down ;)

    Shame you missed it Emma - I hope you managed to get a run in somewhere instead.

  5. Thank god for that!
    When you said I know how the fox feels. I thought you had bitten a child or been mauled by a pack off hounds. =)