Hexhamshire Hobble Fell Race, 1st Dec 2019

Sunday 1 December 2019

Richard sends his report from the hills.

A good turnout of Claremonters for this annual winter 10-mile fell race around the moors above Allendale. This year the run was anti-clockwise (it alternates yearly) so the steep ascent up the road was first up before hitting the moor. The route then rises to the first checkpoint around 8km after which a bit more climbing and then a fast descent to checkpoint 2 at about 12km. Thereafter it’s a mixture of mainly bridleway and tarmac back to the finish Allendale with one big tarmac climb around 14km. Total distance around 17km. A great introduction to fell running `and today superb visibility, although the downside was a fair few icy patches both on the bridleways and across the moor. Indeed today if you found a boggy puddle it was proper cold!

First timers running in the Sky Blue were Kris Axon and Maria Duenas joined by David L, Francesco, Sarah B and myself with Nina confined to the house due to illness. We were greeted by a blue sky sunny and blooming freezing morning with temperatures around -5c. We all thought Kris would be pretty fast on the course setting off in vest and shorts compared to the normal attire of long sleeves and leggings of varying length. I had confirmation of his pace on the course when he was fully changed and cheering us on as part of the last downhill. Kris, take a bow. A fantastic 2nd place overall in a time of 1.08.16. Following behind and reasonably closely grouped for most of the run were Francesco and David (1.35.01), Maria, a great first run (and 11th woman) in 1.35.40, Sarah (1.36.31) and Richard (1.38.12). 

As usual tea and cakes in the school hall quickly follow the finish. Kris picked up the prize as second overall, Sarah for second in her category, and Maria a spot prize. A splendid way to spend a cold Sunday morning!