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Winter BG: Take two

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After last year's attempt, it seemed inevitable that I would have another go at a winter BG. I'd rectify all the mistakes I made last year: I'd take a spare torch rather than just more batteries, I'd do some recceing to make sure I knew the way, and I'd wait for the weather to be good. Yeah?


Well at least I did the spare torch one.

The weather looked a bit grim, and I definitely hadn't recced other than supporting the Dark Peak attempt in the summer, but this time I wouldn't be alone... I'd recruited the ridiculously young and ridiculously speedy Tom Saville to join me.

After lots of thinking, planning, shopping, and having taken a couple of days off work, we debated calling it off any doing something else, but on Thursday morning we finally decided to go and have a look. We'd call it a recce and see how far we got... Besides, we had far too much food not to go.

We were to be generously accomodated by Tom Partington and arrived just in time to dump …

Not a review of the year

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Apparently last year I wrote a long rambling "review of the year" type thing... I'm a bit disappointed in myself for doing that, so massive soz to any of you who may have read it. I feel I should close the year with some sort of blog though, so I am going to write something. It's called "Lots of hills and no hills at all", and it's about two bits of running I did recently.

Before I start, I would like to point out a couple of blogs vastly more worthy of your time. The first is Runners against Rubbish, a wonderful little charity aiming to... OK it's me again. But the posts are shorter.

The second is a genuine recommendation - Callum Rowlinson. I don't really know Callum, I beat him once and he has subsequently beaten me many more times, but his blog is great. It's mostly about dogs and slightly about running (which he mostly does fast). I enjoy it a lot: https://callumrowlinson.wordpress.com/


So, lots of hills and no hills at all...

Lots of Hi…

Do not argue with coach!

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Peakrunners Dark Peaks 30
Before I start... This is an awesome race! It wasn't really very well attended this year, but I'd urge anyone who wants to have a go at a well-organised, good value, tough, enjoyable and beautiful race to get over to the Peakrunners website and enter.

I wasn’t going to do the Dark Peaks 30 this year. In the week leading up to the race I had a cold and very twangy Achilles’, but it had always been there in the back of my mind. Despite telling lots of people I wasn’t going to do it, I couldn’t quite put it out of my mind, and on Thursday before the race I finally decided to go for it. If I didn’t race I’d sit at home and whinge about how I should’ve raced and would end up going for a long run anyway, so it seemed the best option. After all it is one of the finest long run routes in the Peak. I asked Dave Riley of Peakrunners if he would accept a late entry and he kindly did, so that was that.

2018 was the third edition of the race, and I’ve done both of…

The Long Tour of Bradwell 2018

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I think I have written before about how I don't have a "killer instinct" when it comes to racing. If the guy in front has a good gap I'll most likely finish second. Of course, if he has overdone it in the early stages and slows down I might pass him (assuming I haven't done the same!), but times when I have lurked behind someone then chased them down to overtake are in the minority.

Alex Hinchcliffe and I were recently talking about people whose results contain a disproportionate number of wins by short margins, i.e. close or sprint finishes. This seems to be the sign of a real racer, someone who simply cannot accept losing and is able to dig deeper in the final stages to make sure they win. Sadly this is not me, so if I want to win races perhaps my best chance is to get away and hide out of sight at the front.



This is sort of what happened at this year's Long Tour of Bradwell. I have had mixed results at this race in the past (getting lost twice and winning …

100km review - Scott Supertrac Ultra RC

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The Supertrac Ultra RC is the newest shoe from Scott. I'm a very lucky boy and was allowed a pair to try for a month before they go on sale (from 18th July you can get a pair from Accelerate). I promised to write a full review after 100km... I've actually run closer to 200 in them, so it's time I got typing!


A few highlights from one month with the Supertrac Ultra RC

16th June: Discovery
Oooh lovely new shoes. At this stage they were very secret and had to be camouflaged. I didn't actually run in them, but they score highly on looking pretty.


17th June: First Run
Not really long enough to fully test them, but straight out of the box they felt really comfortable, with good grip on dry rock and plenty of cushioning. And they do look nice.


22nd June: First proper long run

A very hot evening, beautiful weather. Bob Graham leg 1 supporting Kirk Hardwick as part of the Dark Peak machine. The shoes were great, comfy on the road and trail up out of Keswick, plenty of grip for th…

The Three Peaks Yacht Race 2018

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Last year's 3PYR was a memorable one: Particular parts that have stayed with me in the intervening months are:
The time spent on sandbanks, and one particular sandbank which we shared (in close proximity!) with two other boats in the middle of the nightThe slow progress and eventual triumph of our passage through the Menai StraitsCompleting Ben Nevis with a sailor rather than a runnerNot really winning any trophies!
Those who are familiar with this race will know that 1, 2 and 3 are very regular occurrences, but point 4 is very rare...
Well, this year everything changed: We didn't hit even one sandbank, we didn't go through the Menai Straits, we didn't go to the top of Ben Nevis, and we won loads of trophies (this pleases the skipper)! As last year I will try to tell the story primarily with photos, and I apologise if I have ordered things incorrectly as I tend to do this after multi-day events...

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Barmouth to Caernarfon.


I a…