|One of the very few signs for the race|
Despite the RRR not being the kind of race which I would normally do, I somehow proceeded to enter the race after I found out that it is listed as one of the qualifying races for the legendary Western States Endurance Run (WSER) in
|The Start and Finish Point : Event Centre, Dearne Valley College|
At sharp, we started the race when the day was still dark and cold. I have already made up my mind regarding the strategy which I will adopt at the race. My main priority and foremost target was just to complete the race in order to obtain the qualification for the lottery of the WSER.
|Starting off at 07:00 sharp|
|Ken, Duncan and myself|
Very soon into the race, my fear of the route not being marked the ‘European’ way was confirmed. I began to worry because I knew then that if I was not able to keep up with Duncan and Ken, I would surely be lost and stranded. For almost all the first half of race (40km), the 3 of us were running together in a very fast pace (13km/h) despite the slippery terrain caused by the mud from previous days’/weeks’ worth of rain. The route was very pleasant with a mix of rural/urban scenery. The sun, by now, has emerged and it was simply glorious!! We were crossing canals, streams, parks, old industrial areas, and neighborhoods, passing by streets lined with gorgeous orangey-red trees.
|Beautiful cricket ground at Treeton|
|Autumn colours greeted the runners at Harthill|
|The written directions/map for the route|
|Me approaching CP3|
|Chris and me approaching CP4|
|A demotivated me leaving CP4 with Chris|
|Me & Chris approaching CP5|
I soldiered on after the checkpoint and soon found myself to be in the company of 3 fast runners who had caught up with Chris and myself. I decided to follow one of them (Ben Paviour), almost until the end of the race. Even though I was able to keep up with the other 2 who had gone ahead of us, I could not find the motivation in me to do so. At that point, being in the 8th or 6th position did not make any difference to me.
|Me & Ben approaching CP 6|
|Ben and me approaching the last checkpoint, CP7|
|Crossing a very muddy patch|
|Me at the Finish Line|
|The very muddy me at the end of the race|
I admire my fellow runners whom I had the privilege to run with (Duncan Harris, Ken Stutor, Ian Symington, Kevin Hoult, Chris Davies & Ben Paviour), for their ability to run so effortlessly without having to slow down to seek for the right directions. Please accept my apologies, guys, if I had caused you any annoyance by tagging too close behind you.
All the photographs in this Entry are taken by Hannisze and the whole selection of photos she has taken at this race can be viewed at her Photography Facebook Page at https://www.facebook.com/RunAndRaces.