Had been planning on doing the British champs race in Lakes at weekend but didn’t seem to be too many going down from the club, so decided to head up to Ben Rinnes. One of my favourite races and also had to return the trophy after unexpectingly winning in 2014. Last year was very hot which is quite normal for this race and managed to fair a bit better than the competition in the Speyside heat. Weather forecast suggested this was not going to be a factor this year! No big names on the start line this year so I found myself at the front heading up the first hill. An unusual position for me these days, so took the first climb fairly steady knowing there were 4 more climbs ahead. Quite happy when a couple of runners came past on first descent and gave me an opportunity to check out the opposition on the next climb! Went up the Ben Rinnes climb pretty hard and managed to get to the top with a reasonable lead. With this being an out and back, it was good to see all the other runners and check out how you are doing. Also an opportunity to give some encouragement to other runners and get a few cheers back. Pushed up the 2 climbs on the way back and took it a bit easier on the descents which were a bit sloppy with the recent rain. Checked behind a few times and pleased to get back to games field with a gap so I could enjoy the run round the field before the finish. Think everyone gets pretty good support from the big crowd on the way round to the finish. A few people including Hilary arrived when the pipe band were doing one of their laps, so had the added challenge of negotiating their way through the pipers!
Anyway, a great event and I particularly enjoyed the venison burger at the end of which was another attraction of this event\race. Weather ended up being cool/dry throughout so pretty good conditions this year. There were 78 finishers and a good turnout from the club. Adam Rudd, who runs with us during the week, joined the club on Friday and had a great run to finish 11th just ahead of Adrian Davis in 12th. John Ryan also made top 20 in 16th, Anthony Hemming was 30th with Andy Spenceley in 37th. Captain Helen also took part and was 8th female, with Heather Young 10th and Hilary Spenceley 11th. Results here