Andrew Halliday reports: The recent bank holiday week was spent “Up North” … or “back home” as I call it. Meticulous planning (and a bit of lady luck) meant that two 10k races spanned the bank holiday.
Sunday 29 May 2011 saw the running of the Melmerby 10k, part of the Yorkshire Dales Race Series.
Having recovered from a calf strain to make the Masters Relay Race at Sutton Park, the investment in 2XU calf guards is paying dividends and meant I could race the week after at Melmerby.
The Melmerby 10k is a undulating course run mostly on country lanes (all on road though). This was a windy and rainy day and I found the second half of the race tough going into the wind. The first 5km is relatively flat, but there are a few climbs in the second 5k which, combined with the wind, slowed me down somewhat. A 6th place finish in 34m 30s was the best I could do. Still, I love running in Yorkshire whatever the course or conditions.
The next race in the Yorkshire Dales Race Series was another 10k at Kirkby Malzeard on Saturday 4 June 2011. Having had three good training runs in the week with no adverse effect on the left calf, I felt strong going into the race … and this is a race you need to be mentally and physically strong in!
The Kirkby Malzeard 10k is another all road race, but is much tougher than Melmerby. It is up and down with nothing else in between except the last km which is flat. Again it is mostly around country lanes. The weather was good to run in – about 12 degrees (not so good for spectators) and the country lanes seemed to provide shelter from what appeared on the outside to be a windy day. I finished 4th in 34m 28s, which was quicker than Melmerby on a tougher course, showing that the extra training I am now doing in paying off. I just couldn’t catch the 3rd place person, but gave it a good go running the flat last km in 3m 08s.
All in all, a great couple of races Up North and hopefully will be back there for the Wetherby 10k which, if conditions are right, is a PB course and one to try and slam down the hammer from the gun.