EleanorParticipant29 September 2013 at 20:58Post count: 252
Well, that was one of the hardest and daftest events I have ever done. 600 riders set off with unsuitable bikes to climb Ingleborough, Whernside and Pen y Ghent. The race starts with a full on road race for 8k or so; then a climb up Ingleborough which involves (see below) carrying your bike over your shoulder on the most tussocky steep grassy hillside you have ever seen. (The climb was made nicer by the fact that Nick Butterworth had come out to support us and had got to the top to give us both encouragement – it was wonderful to see him!) Once at the top you couldn’t ride down the first bit because the wind was so strong that it blew you off your bike. Or it blew me off anyway, causing me to crash, knock my knee and my head and pull my gear cable loose. I somehow managed to descend, by which time I was at the back of the race. At the junction at Ingleton the marshals had already abandoned their post (and who could blame them!) but a nice Canadian chap and I went the wrong way and ended up in Ingleton (yes, I know it’s the riders’ responsibility to know the route but I was stressed!). We popped into a climbing shop to explain we were doing the Three Peaks but were lost, and how did we get to Whernside? How they laughed. So that lost us twenty minutes or so. Eventually I got to the start of the Whernside climb just a minute before the time cut off. My Canadian friend decided to drop out; and by now I was Lanterne Rouge, which I suppose carries some sort of kudos, but I felt pretty sorry for myself slogging up another fell, up steep stone steps, with my bike on my shoulder, one girl ten minutes ahead of me and otherwise no-one in sight! But the marshals en route were fantastic, as were all the walkers who shouted encouragement, and I eventually got to the top in reasonable spirits. Once again because of the wind, I had to crouch just to stay upright, and whilst the descent would be fun on an MTB it was really hairy on a cyclo cross bike, with raised drainage gullies every 10 metres, so I had to keep getting off and then getting on again. Finally I got down to Ribblehead where our lovely daughter who had come to support us, fed me a quick jam sandwich and I set off like the clappers along the road to Horton in Ribblesdale, only to miss the cut off for the climb to Pen y Ghent by ten minutes – which prompted mixed emotions, partly relief that it was all over, and partly frustration that I hadn’t done better. So – I came 558th but was technically counted as DNF. There were 544 finishers out of 582 starters.
Anyway in the meantime Kev did really well, covering the course in 4.42.24 (despite spending 15 minutes trying to fix a puncture on the last descent) and coming in 321st out of 544 – the full results aren’t out yet so we don’t know how he did in his age category.
The winner (for the tenth time) was Rob Jebb, in a ridiculously fast time of 3.05.14 – how on earth he does it, I don’t know, but I’m impressed.
Would I recommend this event to anyone? Absolutely not. Unless you have a screw loose! Kevan is already working out what training he needs to do to do even better next year…Andy WoodParticipant29 September 2013 at 21:55Post count: 1066
I read loads about this event, sounds crazy! Sorry to hear about your problems, glad you’re ok though! Move on to the next race, looking forward to a strong Underhill performance at our cyclocross!AdyJappKeymaster29 September 2013 at 22:02Post count: 824
Great report El. Sounds brilliant (!)JimWParticipant30 September 2013 at 10:58Post count: 328
Well in El, you have every right to feel proud of the achievement, not mmany others in the club would even attempt this..
and a cracking ride Kev, well done on you efforts.NickBParticipant30 September 2013 at 21:37Post count: 232
Well done both – we reckon Kev was well up in his age category and first three peaks virgin! Quite an achievement. I snapped you both on the way up IngleboroughAdyJappKeymaster1 October 2013 at 05:31Post count: 824
Great images Nick.
Both Kev and El look like they are in a world of pain!Alan KempParticipant1 October 2013 at 16:40Post count: 91
Fantastic right up El .A great big WELL DONE for a great show of guts and character by you and Kev in this event which I have not done but have been following since the very early `60s .
A friend of mine has done it many times since then ( Dave Norton one of the people who helped in the formation of WVCC . I think he was 3rd once ).
Your choice of race food was good El but when it is bread with jam on it is called a BUTTY !
I am sure you will be back there next year !! Well done again.
alannofearParticipant2 October 2013 at 17:31Post count: 604
Nice one El and Kev it takes some bottle just to enter that race never mind start and get round most of the course! I recon next year you should take a polystyrene bike and carry it over your shoulder the whole way round. I bet you could run it quicker than dragging a bike around with you, especially with your running background. It’s no coincidence that Rob Jebb has won it so many times as he’s a top fell runner!!DaneParticipant4 October 2013 at 12:07Post count: 50
Brilliant Report El,
What an amazing race and challenge. This is on my list for next year as I’ve just got a cross bike and am loving the mud.
Well done, the guts and determination that you showed just to finish is admirable.
Hopefully see you soon at a cross race 😀EleanorParticipant7 October 2013 at 06:38Post count: 252
Thanks everyone. Kev is already working out what he can do to go faster next year, and I’ve worked out that if I don’t get lost in Ingleton next year I should miss the cut off….so yet another example of saying “never again” then chancing our minds! Nick, Titch, Matthew, Tim and Dane, and a few more…hopefully you’ll be joining us!
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