Friday, 4 September 2015

The Bishop Downhill

Second in the trio of downhill trashes with Caerketton to come on Wednesday 9th of September.

The hill looks like it would be better placed in Colorado than in Kinross-shire and it is an 1140 meter walk to the start line.

This is the steepest of the three downhillers in the series. To the top right of the picture, runners start on top of a hillock with a further three hillettes to be navigated, over 600m distance, before the final 550m  run to the base of the hill -  with a drop of 220m. (Picture the top of Cademuir at the first flat hill fort section – looking down to the road on the Bonnington side..and maybe a bit more...) 

Runners duck down the calm side of the starting hill, sheltering from the strong winds. Soon we are called up in number-order and are set off in 15 second bursts. My start is fairly quick and I catch a runner on the second hilllette. I am gaining on the second runner by the third. There are shorter routes than those I negotiated between the final two – but that is only useful in hindsight!

 It’s a bit of a yomp to the flag that marks the start of the serious steepness. I run past this and am redirected by another runner. I cut through the rocky section at the top of the hill (letting one of the Gilmore brothers pass) and suddenly my legs refuse to obey my commands. My quads stiffen and all I can do is work down the hill on my heels – grunting as I go. There is a cramp that seems to block the muscle's movement. I try verbally abusing them – to no avail. I am only able to run in bursts with breaks to let the cramping subside and then off again and then a few seconds break and so on. Not sure what was going on (could have been the tough session the night before) but disappointed as I was fully charged up to enjoy the ride back down. 

Iain Gilmore came first in 4.19.

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