It wasn’t planned but February has become the month of running events for me. Coincidentally it is also the month of my birthday (47 if anyone is counting)…This was totally unplanned but once I figured out that there were two races already booked then it just fell into place and I should just roll with it! And yes, I am counting the Wilmot Wander 32 miler the last weekend in January as part of the celebrations 🙂
Today was the Dukeries 10, a race that a friend of mine booked me in for because I missed her birthday run back in October due to fracturing the metatarsal. This course will also be part of the Robin Hood 100 that she will be running in September–in addition to this she has also taken on the challenge of raising funds for Heart Link in honour of two of her young patients that were born with congenital heart defects. Please read more about Nicole’s Just Giving page here and help out if you are able.
Back to the Dukeries 10, don’t let the name fool you, this race clocks in at 10.8 miles rather than 10! I’m wondering how many got caught out on that if they weren’t following the Hobo Pace facebook page. That bit of information out of the way, this was a top-notch event. It’s a trail race but the organiser and volunteers made sure it was very well marked both with road race style arrow and mile marker signs, red tape indicating you were still on route and marshals at every possible place that you might possibly even have the tiniest inkling of going wrong. They were all very friendly marshals as well, amongst the best out of all the races I’ve done both here and in the states.
I didn’t partake of the aid station mid-way through but I’ve been reading reports that it was quite well stocked with a variety of snacks and drinks. Afterwards there were biscuits and hot tea available as well as the usual water. However the best bit is that you get a Hobo Pace vest and PERSONALISED medal. Yes, personalised. How cool is that??? I’ve been racing long enough that medals aren’t a deciding factor but this one even impressed me.
The course itself was interesting, it was mostly trail with the tarmac kept to a minimum (just the way I like it!) and undulating enough to keep your legs guessing. There were a fair few muddy sections but if you go off-road in England this time of year that’s just something you have to pull your big girl pants on and deal with. Overall very runnable…even the knee-deep water 1.5 miles in could be run through–not quickly but it was doable, which is what Nicole and I did 😀 Apologies to those within splashing distance.
I thoroughly enjoyed this event, through mile 7 I settled into a comfortably hard pace which allowed me to do a bit of sight-seeing but once I saw the mile marker there for some bizarre reason I decided I needed to push the pace. Don’t ask me why, I just decided I should, never mind that I have very little speed in my legs at the moment. Even with that I still enjoyed it, just a little less than I was!
Apparently the pink jacket and pink socks I was wearing helped one guy keep pace with me most of the way around, he zoomed by me at less than 800 metres to go 🙂 The one thing about the race I wasn’t happy about was my choice of footwear. Because my Asics trail shoes were still wet from the day before and are nearing the end of their running life I opted for the Adidas Kanadia 7s I reviewed here. Not a good choice, despite wearing them on shorter runs they haven’t gotten any more comfortable and I ended up with a blood blister on the 2nd toe of my left foot today.
Thought I would include the heart-rate data from the Epson Runsense SF-810 I’m currently testing (more on that later in the week). It was quite erratic unlike my previous runs but today was cold and I didn’t have it strapped to my wrist quite as tight as usual so that affected the readings. Apparently I spent the entire race in zones 4 and 5 and a negligible amount in 2 and 3.
All in all, a very good day out and I would definitely do the Dukeries 10 and other Hobo Pace races again–perhaps the upcoming 30 or 40 😉