Always the bridesmaids...

Yesterday Alasdair Bruce and I raced our second Open 5 together. Last time was Bakewell and we finished 4th, but that was part of a very knackering weekend, so we hoped to do better this time!

Before that, on saturday the APEX team (Al, JC, Lucy and I) set off for some paddling on Windermere, in the boats we will be using in the race... double sit-ons. Not the fastest, but no worries, they are un-capsize-able... Definately.

Anyway, we had a good half day's paddle, Lucy and I learnt a lot and are off to Rother Valley to start our practice tomorrow! After the kayaking, Lucy went off to stay in a lovely house in Ulverston and left the three of us to our tents. Low Wray was a nice site though, we had a good pub dinner and in the nearby Co-Op I found a 50p Christmas Pudding, which was a winner for breakfast!

Anyway, the Open 5... Somewhere during the lead-up to the race our preperation went slightly amiss and we did not spend as much time looking at the map as we should have. Consequently, during our run Al was spending some time planning. During this time I should have been keeping up-to-date with where we were on the ground and making sure we didn't do anything silly like run past checkpoints... Didn't lose us much time, but as we will see in a minute not ideal!

So at the end of the run we had got all the controls but two in about two hours. Onto the bikes, Al having planned most of it while running. The bike went a bit better, I was able to keep up a bit better than in Bakewell (initially at least), but into the last half hour Al was stronger than me again. Towards the end we were faced with a decision - to finish early leaving three bike checkpoints, or to get a final 20 pointer and be a bit late. Late penalties are two points per minute for the first ten minutes, then 5 points per minute after that, so if we got in before 5:10 we would "break even".

Tense moments... what happened? We went for it, thinking we'd be in by maybe 5:06 or something. However it took a bit longer than expected, I thought we had still just about made it, but after finishing and getting our results we were gutted to see 5:10:13... meaning we gained 20 points but lost 25, finishing with 525.

The results...
Hope / Wrigley - 550
JC / Kev - 533
Lawrance / Mason - 529
Us - 525

So we were close but not quite... 4th again! One day we will make the podium.
Well done to Dan who won male solo and overall with 560, George, Caz, Jo and Lucy, JC and Kev on second place in our category, and Julia and Dave (3rd mixed pairs).


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