As it was a nice summer evening I opted for a trip to Pinchinthorpe for the third of the Tees Forest Trail races this week instead of a session at the Track. I've been busy all week getting ready for the Half Marathon so a race on my doorstep was a welcome break from Half Marathon preparations. I should say at this point that I am not running on Sunday but will be busy most of the day as Course Manager.
After a delayed start due to technical issues the race got underway with a group of three of us establishing an early lead up the hills into the woods. Mike Jeffries, Dan Middlemas and I were the early leaders and this stayed the same for almost a mile until Mike put in a good effort on the small descent and managed to stretch this advantage for the next mile or so to break clear. This left Dan and I fighting it out for second place. I thought I had done enough in the woods to break clear but realised on the downhill at Hutton Village that Dan's fell running experience would mean that his descent was skillful enough to overtake me (note at this point I am not a natural fell runner!). Once back on the flat though it was time for me to use my speed on the flat to get back alongside Dan and push him to the finish. I soon gained an advantage again over Dan and without any major descent I knew that if I continued to work hard I would be home and dry.
So I finished 2nd overall behind Mike Jeffries of Billingham Marsh House with Dan Middlemas of Loftus and Whitby 3rd. The course was slightly shorter than a 5km but near enough. Enjoyed a good chat with Mike and Dan as we retraced the course again...this time at a much more leisurely and enjoyable pace!
Not yet seen the results or any photos yet but I will post them up here as soon as I get them but here is a link to the site http://www.teestrailraces.org/
Im not sure when my next race is yet but think it is likely to be a 3000m track race or the next Coast Road 5km. Both of these will be "B" races as I build up towards the Great North 10km and the Sunderland 5km.
Cant help but be inspired by Mo Farah's stellar performance in the US! If you have not seen the race then check it out!