World Masters at Bludenz, Austria
22nd September

A report by John Blair-Fish

We travelled via various route to Bludenz either arriving at Zurich airport or Friedrichshafen. I met up with Jamie Thin at Zurich lunchtime Friday travelling on the ever-increasingly-priced direct flight from Edinburgh while Jamie came with London City. It was sunny, clear and warm when we arrived and remained so for the weekend. There was a lot of shade on the course which meant most of us did not suffer too much in the heat.
Jamie and I did a recee of the course on the Saturday and the mountain behind learning from another Austrian vet 45 that the real, every-year race went up another 200 metres to the hut where we had lunch. We also learn about a lot of other races we really must go back and do.
Predictably the course did not suit many of us with a loop round the town centre, followed by a gradual climb through the old and new town, passed the campsite, then a 2km steeper section through the woods, then a long gradual climb up a road and gravel track. I think it got steeper on the upper hairpins as I found it easier to pass people and there was a slight downhill finish. Of course the steep climb in the woods was the best bit for me. Ewan Patterson from Moray road runners led my race out of the town and finally finished 5th. I nearly caught Jacky Winn from Cumberland Fell Runners at the end and passed Phyllis Lemoncello near the finish who had was 8th in Lady vet 60s starting 20 minutes behind me. Keith Varney who finished 8th in the Vet 50s thought the competition was higher last year but to me it seems tougher.
Keith Varney's race was won by Nigel Gates whom I've run against since 1979. Another running acquaintance of many years, Toni Garbonov was four places behind me. Last year he pipped me at the finish. He had his 26 year-old daughter with him who I remember as a baby when we trained in Zinal in 1981.
Berbel Burns greeted me at the restaurant at the finish with her old school friend whom she and Keith were staying with and insisted I must have enjoyed the race. Keith did OK in 13th position in Vet 65 despite a tandem ride with Berbel from Milan and a 7 hour mountain scramble on his pre-race rest day.
The highlight of the day was of course Tracey Brindley winning the Lady 35s by a large margin.

Home | Go Back
© Carnethy.com 2014