This was the second year in a row, that myself and liane traveled to Rowardenan, for the famous Ben lomond hill race, with a category AM and distance of 12k to the cairn and back, makes for adrenaline fuelled buzz of excitement, if your into ankle breaking rough as hell terrain for fun.
As usual, liane kicks back and reads a book, while she waits for me to collapse over the line.
Back on the usual position for the start line, opposite the pub,with last years race being altered slightly with the council requesting a licence to start on the road, it's only been going for the past 40 years on the road side!!! Banter was flying getting ready for the race, with the teviotdale boys giving out plenty, Julia and the man and lots of usual faces turned up. The forecast was meant to be awful but actually turned out about 15 decrees, was sweating and hadn't even starting running yet. A quick start along the road and up through the woods, then the real work starts, constant climbing, and when you think your near the top, there's more. I usually judge how good I'm climbing if I can see old smithy (Alan smith of dee side). With Stuc a chroin and Dumyat still in the legs, was surprised how well the legs were working, and no Alan in sight!!! Ive got him this time, kept playing in my head. Lungs were absolutely on fire when I reached the cairn, back along the ridge and down the fast grassy decent before hitting the rocky path again, legs turned to jelly, the feeling you get when coming down Ben Nevis at speed. The old smithy caught me about half way down, and I couldn't keep up with the legendary descender, shouting out your a hard man to beat, I got the reply, there's still a long way to go!!! The path gets rougher and the ground wetter and he just opened up the gap. Had absolutely nothing left when I hit the road at the bottom and run back to the finish ( not the usual sprint finish this time)
A lot slower than last years 1:16 time, although felt as if I had went quicker, the different start maybe,or holding back a bit from a serious fall with the marathon coming up, maybe the massive blister on the heel with a small stone eating away at it.??? Who knows, I will be back again next year to find out. After the race I joined a few guys in the loch for more reminiscing, to cool down the burning legs. Great race with great company. Results below, Hector Haines won it easy with a 4 min margin.