52nd - really good race! Top 10%ish. I usually aim to beat the first woman so was disappointed when I saw I was half an hour down on her today...until I googled Victoria Wilkinson and saw she was junior world mountain running champion in the past. She was 3rd, only 4mins off winning outright.
Spend a lot of time yday prepping a map and then never looked at it since the field was so packed,but it helped it know how far along the course I was. Lost a lot of places deliberately walking up the first hill, which was pretty runnable, but thought I'd save some energy. Took most back on the lovely 4k descent from 1-2; terrain was slightly muddy grass on a shallow gradient which is basically what I'm best at.
Energy bar climbing from 3-4 after about an hour, even though I didn't fancy it at all,I knew I'd be thanking myself later on. Tim Harvey caught me at this point - I was surprised he'd been behind me at all, but I think he'd started much further back.I expected to not see him again.
Even the steep descents weren't too bad, especially after the lakes. They tended to have a sufficient grass/mud ratio so you could still do them reasonably fast, still lost time through general fear, but not too much. Caught Tim again 7k later going down into 7; very pleased with that. Ate another energy bar walking up to 8 and was constantly starting to pass people now. The climb up from 9 definitely saved the most brutal until last, I'd say it was a 1.3Bl* climb. Again passed a couple of people though; I don't walk uphill that fast so I think purple just hasn't been eating enough throughout and were now bonking. But I felt alright.
Another easy descent all on grass and then a mile or so on track run-in where I passed a load more people with some sub 4min k pace - although it was downhill.
Pretty pleased with performance which like last week went well in the 2nd half,I think getting used to all the long distance stuff has definitely paid off.also nothing feels majorly injured which is always nice after an AL. My knee is a bit sore but I have no long races planned for ages now so should recover ok.
*SI unit of steepness = 1 Blorenge