Sunday, July 17, 2011

Mission Accomplished

Two races. Two PBs - and two thoroughly shafted legs. On the up side my groin seems fine at the moment so I reckon that problem is behind me now, although I won't feel fully happy until I've a few more problem free running weeks in the bag.

Conditions for this years Fan-y-Big race were more harsh than last year. The visibility was better this time round but the wind was much stronger. Add my sore quads in to the mix and I didn't feel confident of bettering my time from last year. My quads were down right painful but in for a penny - I'd paid my entry...

So onto the race. I set out towards the front but didn't feel strong - leg power was definitely lacking. With a couple of miles out the way I reckon I was top thirty - and was fully prepared to take that. Then, as the steady climb progressed I gained a few places here and there. By the top I was inside the top twenty and from there on in things were settled.

I lost a place along the top ridge but with Matt R just ahead I dug in. He was insight and just ahead for most of the race but it wasn't until the steeper bits of the descent that I was able to make any inroads. As we hit the road he was about twenty metres ahead and I knew I had a chance. I gave it all I had and by the time we hit the village, with 500m to go, we were level. By then I'd given everything and fully expected Matt to step it up one last time but the attack didn't come - and I was glad because as we turned the corner into the last 200m of road I was fully f&^%ed. If he'd anything left at that point there was no way I could have countered. Fortunately for me he didn't and I crossed the line in a repeat of yesterday's 14th place. Matt and I are pretty closely matched these days as to be so close together for pretty much the entirety of a ten mile race - I better watch out in the Black Mountains Race...

From the way my legs felt before the start I am well pleased by today's run. I was 14th from a field close to 100 and set a new PB by over two minutes, finishing in 1 hour 30 minutes and 13 seconds on the 10 mile route with 2,200 feet of ascent.

Away from the race I feel a little melancholy on account of certain things but it will lift. As to the next race, I'm not sure I will recover in time for Tuesday night's Leisure Centre League road race over in Caerleon but I'll run regardless - my word is my bond - and I've given my word.