Monday, May 23, 2011


I had only planned 1 race for this weekend, but then my wife said she wanted to run the half in Darling. Now I'm not going to go to a race and just stand around if I can run...

Let me put it this way, I was always going to run a couple of km on Saturday, so why not do them in a race...

Lucky for me there was a 10km to go with the half, so I lined up for the shorter race and left Dawn to run the HALF. They set off 15min before us and run mostly flat bar one mean hill at the end... The 10km is anything but flat with over 200m of climb in it, but the 1st 2km are mostly down hill and I was "back" in 5th place (3rd 40+) and had a bit of work to do... Now my legs were a bit shattered after Wednesdays run up the mountain and the hill session on Thursday (yes I'm hill mad) but come that first hill I ran down the 2 other old men... With the youngsters out front and the rest of the field falling off the pace the race of on. I pushed the pace onthe flat at the top of the hill bur couldn't really get ahead before the next down hill. Keith took off and I followed only to be past by the other guy. At the bottem of that hill after a 3:15 km I was 20sec behind... Did I tell you I love hills!!!! I caught them both on the next hill opening a big gap on the one guy, but Keith didn't want to die...

4:59 up then another 3:15 and a 3:16 again Keith sped off and left me, but the other guy was still behind. Lucky for me the down hill ended and with another climb to the finish I tried to catch Keith, but the hill wasn't long enough.

I finished 4th and 2nd 40+ in a time of 38:06 not bad for a 10km race with 200m climb.

For most people that would have been enough, but I had a mountain race to run. I didn't drink too much Saturday night and was up early to get to the race. The Helderberg Mountain Challenge

At the start-line I looked up and saw the mountain ahead, yes we were heading to the top... My type of race!!!
I'm not going to write a km for km race report, but I will tell you a bit about how things went: It was a strong field on the start line, and Bernard the Zimbo took off leaving us behind. Now there were a couple of km on the gravel roads to start with and as he pulled away so did I... it seemed as the strong field wasn't all in shape! With Bernard out front and me chasing hard the gravel turned to single track and I could no longer see Bernard (he had decided to go a different way!!!) I was now in front with a mountain to climb...

That isn't me, but that is the way we went up, and at the top we turned left and when up some more... This last stretch was boulder hopping and great fun. It was really windy up there, and there was a view, but I had to watch my feet as I still had to get down, and Ake was chasing hard.
Yes I had the trophy for the king of the Mountain, but there were more prises on the line. I thought I was decending OK, but to be honest I was a little slow racing down the side on the cliffs!!! Ake was now on my tail, but the really bad stuff was behind us and it was running time again. What a race... Mr. Garmin had us running at sub 3min/km at times as we went at each other. I only really got the upper hand as we started to take a couple of those hairpin bends, you know the ones that are so steep you can't walk them...

The last 500m was on a single track and board walk into the gardens, and i past a runner from the 10km race and with him between us was able to keep a 5 sec gap...

1st and yes I was in the Prises!!!!

Tog bag

Trail Shoes

and those big cheques

I do love big cheques, I think I'm going to hang them in the garage...

I couldn't hang around after the race I still had Cross Country to get too:

That is me working hard on the BMX track that made up the last km of the laps we were running. I'm pleased I'm 40+ and only have to run 8km CC (7.6km as per Mr. Garmin) as the 12km of the men is just to far. Yes I was slow, but CC is a team sport and I was needed so I just ran, and if I must say so my self I did a good job running 14:52 and 15:03 for the 2 laps. Even splits is a good sign for any race and it also means I could be fit in-time for my marathon.


  1. Holy shit! It just kept getting better and better as I read! Congratulations!!! I hear you on spectating a race vs jumping in..I'd do the same!

  2. do you really love hills? I love them on my way down, yes downhill is good by me!.
    I like that you can measure your ability in doing a race by how much you drank the night before. Ha! some people claim they run better after they drink. I figure it takes me a mile per glass of wine, so if it's a 5K...there is nothing left to spare, better not drink the night before.
    Great time for a hilly course