Lantern Pike, Saturday 19 September 2009
The vacuum cleaner tumbled downstairs and hit me on the head on Saturday. Not the best pre-race preparation, but luckily the wall bore the brunt of the damage. So we headed off to Hayfield for the Lantern Pike fell race anyway.
It is possible that the bang on the head did have some effect on my judgement. After a good start, I found myself holding the position of 3rd lady for the first mile or so – and this wasn’t one of those evening races where only three ladies run. Bizarrely, and this may be where the vacuum cleaner injury comes in, I actually thought that I might be able to hold that position for the next four miles. Ha, ha, ha. I’d slipped to eighth (out of ~68) by the finish.
There are three good things about the Lantern Pike fell race. First: it is held in conjunction with Hayfield show, which has loads and loads of things going on (jousters, climbing wall, sheepdog trials, bird of prey display, hog roast...) Second: Very little of the route is repeated, and there are no tedious laps. Third: It has a sneaky uphill finish (which often means I can get revenge on runners who stormed past me on the downhills). The downside is the high proportion of tarmac. This includes a steep downhill section which is just a darn nuisance in studs.
It is possible that the race officials were also hit on the head with a flying household appliance earlier in the day. If not, then I can’t quite understand how I managed to end up as first lady in the results – about 30 seconds ahead of the genuine first lady home (Sandra Lewis of Altrincham). Luckily Tom noticed this error before the prize-giving, wisely observing: “You definitely weren’t only seven minutes after me. I had to wait longer than that!!” Officials were informed and results re-jigged whilst we disappeared off to the Farmers’ Market tent for a home-made lemon ice-cream (me) and a grouse, bacon, portobello mushroom and whisky pie (Tom). Prizes for genuinely speedy runners (Tom, again) and veterans included bottles of beer and boxes of locally-grown vegetables.
Holmfirth results: 2 Tom Brunt (35:27), 97 Paula Gould (46:12), 120 Rob Halstead (48:28), 171 Rebecca Halstead (53:24), 210 Jim Sommerville (57:03).