> 2013 race reports
20/04/13 Anniversary Waltz - from Mark Clarkson

Anniversary Waltz 2013 (11.5mile)

photo: Andy Russell

This was my first trip over for this early season race, accompanied by work colleague (and potential future member of NFR) John. We were graced by some excellent Lakes weather ideal for running. This was John’s first ever fell race. Some choice words of wisdom prior to the start from the ever knowledgeable Dexter sent us on our way. Something about going off too fast and suffering later from undeveloped ‘Lakeland legs’ (note to self, take it easy at the start!).

The first section of this race is fast, and having told myself to go easy (following Dexter’s advice) I found myself running at more like 10k pace! As I approached the first steep climb to Robinson, I recalled Phil Green’s report from a previous year about being ready for it after the very fast start. I was more than happy with my placing, a quick glance around and I spotted Dexter and Green fairly close behind. On the approach to Robinson, I found myself not too far behind Steve Birkinshaw (thought to self – “must be doing alright here”). A good descent off Robinson and I picked up a couple of places. I began to feel the early pace on the way up to the second and third checkpoints. Resulting to a fast paced walk, where others were able to grind a slow run. Dexter’s words about Lakeland legs not being in full flow this early in the season sprung to mind.

The drop off Dale Head soon got the adrenaline rushing again and High Spy was in sight. My aim from before the run had been to arrive at High Spy CP still able to run and ‘crack on’ over Maiden Moor to Catbells. As it turned out, the legs were fairly decent by here and I had some good running. The final ‘sting’ in the tail up to Catbells was painful, but short. Unfortunately a near ankle snapping mis-placement of a right foot (whilst debating the best line) nearly ended the race soon after the Catbells CP. Luckily I was able to just keep going and while I did not finish as strongly as I would have liked, I was very pleased to finish in 33rd in under 2hrs at 1hr 58.44.

Andrew Higgins was first NFR back in 12th 1hr 51.35. Dexter, Francis Shillitoe and Phil Green followed soon after me. Francis also pleased with his new pb for the race and well inside his target time. Steve Birkinshaw had obviously shown his superior ability over the second half of the race and finished 6th!
Work colleague and virgin fell runner John came in around the 2hr 43 mark. Very good for his first ever race. Hopefully more to come.
A very runnable lakes race, will certainly be back for more next year.

Mark Clarkson

results on Anniversary Waltz site

a few more photos from Andy Russell

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