Race 3 is upon us, my least favourite of them all it has to be said, this is the one that’ll sort the men from the boys, or in other words the ‘Hill runners from the Road Runners’, with myself being the latter, I wasn’t really looking forward to this one.
It was Kevin’s turn for the car so he turned up at the house again straight from his work and we headed up to Falkland arriving at the Community Centre around half 6 to get ourselves checked in with Doug. The bonus of Kevin using his car was that we could take another 3 folk up to Craigmead, step up Mel & Chris from Carnegie and wait for it… Kingdom FM DJ, Ali McLaren who is also taking part in the ‘Tour’ this week. I’ll look out the link to his podcasts, good listening when you’ve a free moment.
So of up to Craigmead car park we went, admiring the clear views of West Lomond and thinking that in less than an hour we’d be pounding our way up to it’s summit, oh great!! Didn’t bother with a warm up tonight as I had no plans on going off hard, I’d just use the run to the bottom of West Lomond as my warm up! After the customary briefing from Ron Morrison tonight (I reckon Jim’s voice was missed) and a head count we were set on our way.
It wasn’t cold but their was a bit of a crosswind on the way out, so much so that their was a bit of drafting going on again tonight “Eh Pete”, the 1st mile was a slow 7:11, partially due to it being up hill and the fact we new what was coming. We had been told we could take any route we wanted up to the summit but we had to follow the marshalled route down, so as we approached the base we spotted Fife’s Chris Russell head of on the steeper more direct route up, the thought had crossed my mind to follow him knowing that he knew the hill quite well, but something said to take the zigzag option, which paid dividends.
I remember my watch beeping at me, a 10:39 2nd mile, wonder why!! Anyway, I’d been looking back and new I had a decent lead over Pete B and Stevie K, but Iain T had disappeared. I crested the summit not far behind Chris in around 18:42 and shot of down the route we were directed to take, now this is the part I normally hate, I usually just ‘pussy foot’ down, but this time it was decent path so I just ‘pussy footed’ a bit quicker than normal, but not quick enough to stop Pete B, flying past me shortly there after followed by Stevie K.
We rounded the corner back to the base of the climb and some flatter ground and I managed to reel Stevie back in, Pete was disappearing into the distance at this point. Went through the 3rd mile in 6:32, pace was going the right direction at least, then Stevie picked up again and I was struggling, more from watching where I was putting my feet than anything else but I knew I had clear air behind so it was a case of head down and keep going. Managed a 5:36 4th mile before I hit the grassy area back down to the finish area with the last .4 of a mile covered in 2:16. Overall a 32:16 so very happy with that.
I stayed at the finish to watch the rest of the field finishing and was surprised to see Iain T come in over a minute down on me, turns out he had headed of up the hill behind Chris and paid the price, at least it’s narrowed the gap between us time wise. Kevin came storming over the hill and through the finish shortly after, he’d had a flyer too, easy seen who got the hill running ‘genes’ in the family then. After a few pictures in the car park we headed back down to Falkland to drop our co-tourists off before heading back home.
Going into the rest day on Wednesday I’m sitting 13th overall, still not sure if the rest day is a good idea or not as the legs are a lot stiffer today as I type this up, but at least we’re on the beach tonight, sandcastles, swimming oh and a 4 mile run…. See you all at St.Andrews