Posted by: Bruce Duncan | June 28, 2010

Open 12 and Nokia Coast to Coast

This weekend I raced in the  Open Adventure 12 hour event .  I wasn’t sure if I was going to take part, as I was feeling very tired after the Deloitte RAB, and I was without a partner too.  On the train back north from London I got a call from James Thurlow telling me another person was looking for a team mate, so Julia and myself hooked up and decided to race together.

We started in glorious weather on Saturday on the far north western edge of the Yorkshire Dales, and made our way over 2 days back to West Burton, by running, mountain biking, canyoning, diving, abseiling and swimming.

The weather was fantastic, and it could have been a super fast race, but Julia was not on top form, and suffered from a lot of cramp, and then sickness, probably from the extreme heat we were racing in.  I wasn’t feeling brilliant either, so was glad of the slower pace.  This was my first race for a long time after illness, so going at a steady pace was probably good for me.

We enjoyed the run and the amazing views, before having a much needed cold splash in the canyon section, a lovely secretive wee gill.  The mountain bike stage was great fun too, lovely riding, great climbs and even more fun descents, I just wished I had my full sus bike to really play on.  We finished up day 1 with a dive into the pool used by Kevin Costner to have a bath in in Robin Hood, Prince of Thieves!  It was another very welcome cold dip after a hot day.  We were early for the finish, so we played around in the water a bit, before crossing the line and chilling out cheering everyone else in.

After a social evening with all the racers, made more so by the fact that I forgot our stove (thanks Helen and Ant for letting us borrow theirs!), and a cheeky beer in the pub! We slept well and got up early for day 2.

The start was on top of the cliffs above the pool we had dived into the previous evening.  It was a great wee abseil, but sadly took a little longer than planned to get everyone off the top, so there was a lot of queing.

After the abseil we ran over the hills to Semmer Water, where a 600m swim greeted us.  The water was a lovely temp, about 21ºC according to Aussie Patrick, and made the swim very pleasant.  I swam with the rucsac for a bit, but was way behind ex swimmer Julia, so we swapped over, and she kept up with me even with the pack!! Oh well.

It was back onto the bike after that, and we enjoyed some more great riding, being very social to anyone we past, helping Pyro with 1 of his 3 punctures, before finally finishing with plenty of time to spare! Another fun day out riding and nicely chilled at the end.

The main race was very close, with Ant Emmet and Helen Jackson winning outright, beating John Houlihan and Tom Gibbs, who were racing under our new team name, adidas TERREX, by about 15mins due to punctures!  Needless to say there was a bit of gloating.

So a top weekend, thank you James and Dave for organising a great race, in stunning scenery and with great weather.

What this weekend has made me realise however is that I need to get training hard for the Nokia Coast to Coast, which isn’t too far away now, less than 3 months infact, so its time for me to step everything up a notch or 2, more running, especially my flat speed as this will be needed for the first section.  Plenty of kayaking, but this should happen when I move to Kendal next week, and can paddle on Windermere with Ant a lot more often.
The event is part of the Nokia Outdoor Series, check them out to see if there is something that catches your fancy. And if you are looking for some training tips, look at some of the videos I have done and many others by Keri Ann Payne, Dan Robinson and Richard Stannard.


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