Up at 7am this morning to head through to Alloa in time for the Gartmorn 6. Had heard Edel Mooney of Lothian Runners talking about this one a few years ago and always intended to go and check it out. The weather was not very promising first thing. Arthur's Seat was covered in snow again and the wind was howling all night. The streets were full of slush when we went out to the car and pretty soon it started sleeting. My single windscreen wiper struggled valiantly to clear me a view as tossers in 4 by 4's kicked up a ton of stoor overtaking on the motorway at 85 in poor visibility. It was really quite anxiety provoking. Also I don't know what Peter put in my screenwash but it seems to be greasy!
Anyway we arrived there in plenty of time and got changed and found the start without problems. My funny heel is refusing to wear certain shoes but is quite happy once in the shoes it chooses. It was sore in Swoops or Walshes which would have been my first choice, - and then also in my Grizzlies so it was a relief when I tried on my new Pegasus Trail shoes and it was fine. I hope it is not planning to stay too long as this could get inconvenient.
I had some highish hopes for this race as I have had a good turn of speed (for me) at times recently. I thought I might be close to 10k pb form. My legs felt a bit slow however, not really kicking, and I got disappointingly out-sprinted right at the very end. Its a cracking course though, probably best trail race ever. I love running in the trees anyway and then there were these great planks over streams to cross, that had mesh on them to give a very good grip but no side rails. It added a real excitement. A brief glimpse of the reservoir brought back flashbacks of Draycote Water (Oh no please don't make me run round 7 times!) but that part was soon over and had a thin line of trees for protection from the wind and then we were back into the woods again. Hey I never mentioned the mud. There was thick, black, slick, slippy mud all through the woods and all that winter cross-countrying seemed to stand me in good stead as I started to gain on others the minute I got on the muddy bits. Where I was not so good was on the windy road, somehow I couldn't get moving.
Have put up some exciting pictures of muddy legs specially for gIANt Parlin. See if you can tell which is me and which is Peter.