Tony Winbush has put this report together of a "little run" he and a friend partnered up for, a couple of weeks ago.
Do have a look at the link that he sugests it is awsome.
The 2011 Transalpine Run – “The Highway to Hell”
4 countries – 8 days – 274 km – 15436 m climbing – 320 teams from 25 nations
Click here for some inspiring video of the full 8 day race.
Despite the AC/DC soundtrack that blasts out on the start line each day this race seemed more like a “Stairway to Heaven” – eight days of eating, sleeping and mountain running across the earthly paradise of the European Alps!
I have compiled a brief report below. Unfortunately there was no over 60 or 120+ category as we were the only team in that category but we still managed a top 5 place in the senior master (100+) category as well as beating two thirds of the rest of the field. We got presented with expensive Suunto watches. We weren’t entirely sure why, perhaps they took pity on us for being the oldest team!!
One of the great features of this route is the cameras stationed around the course each day to produce some inspiring video footage which is then presented in the evening (see link above).
Following on from previous GB successes a small contingent of a dozen GB teams made their mark on the 7th Transalpine run. There were outstanding performances from Scotland with Claire Gordon & Fiona Maxwell taking first place in the women’s categories in 34-40-28 while Jethro Lennox & Joe Symonds came second in the men’s with 26-54-18 close behind Spaniards David Lopez & Miguel Cabellero in 26-37-51. Ben Abdelnoor & Mark Palmer were 8th in 31-33-38 while Yorkshire runners David Jelley & Martin Gabriel of Ripon Runners and Rod Sutcliffe & Tony Wimbush of CVFR/Idle AC made 4th and 5th respectively in the Senior Masters category. Unfortunately there was no 120+ or v60 category. 320 teams started and 245 finished the epic 274 kilometre route which involved ascending 15436 metres of alpine terrain as it made its way from Obersdorf in Germany through Austria and Switzerland to finish in Latsch in Italy. Stage details are shown below.
The entry fee plus “camp” fee is about £700. Almost like a military operation cum travelling circus the run takes over the seven stage towns to provide all food, stage baggage transfer (for which you are given a spacious Salomon holdall) plus sleeping space on a sports hall floor (for which a sleeping bag and mat is required), prize giving, stage briefing and finally a ‘pictures of the day’ presentation to close each night. To get everyone psyched up at the early morning starts AC/DC’s “Highway to Hell” blasts out prior to the countdown to each stage! Full details and loads more videos at www.transalpine-run.com
The 2011 Western Route Stages
September 3 Obersdorf (GER) to Hirschegg (AUT) 27.2 km/1806 m
September 4 Hirschegg (AUT) to Schruns (AUT) 53.2 km/2481 m
September 5 Schruns (AUT) to Galtur (AUT) 43.1 km/2672 m
September 6 Galtur (AUT) to Scuol (CH) 39.9 km/2339 m
September 7 Scuol (CH) – uphill run 6.2 km/ 936 m
September 8 Scuol (CH) to Mals (ITA) 37.0 km/1332 m
September 9 Mals to Schlanders (ITA) 36.9 km/2063 m
September 10 Schlanders (ITA) to Latsch (ITA) 30.2 km/1807 m
Not all of us win races, so to most the “race within a race” is just as important.
And so it is for the Idle teams who now regularly compete in the Lakeside Gummers How Fell Race.
The overall standard this year was high and although Donna, Lawrence & Leon were the first home for Idle, triumphant for the second year running in the “race within a race” (gutted), The competition was too strong for them to match last years commendable overall third place position.
Phil Goode, myself & Phil Routh had a better row across this year & because you can’t set off back until your last man is down you would think the sensible option would be to only go as fast as your slowest team mate (or Phil Routh as we like to know him) take it easy, enjoy the view. But again the ”race in a race” mentality kicks in, & in no one more so than ultra competitive P. Goode, who put his head down & went, getting to the top & back down in great style. First for his team, first for Idle.
Dave, Tony & Martin on getting down only had the row back to contend with. But the Windermere Ferry had them in its sights & that sinking feeling was soon replaced by an altogether warmer (and smellier) feeling as the propeller came inches from their boat. Luckily the boat came to no harm.
Back next year?Definitely
CALDER VALLY RELAY
Cancelled because off the extreme winter conditions we experienced late last & early this year the Calder Valley Relay was rescheduled, unfortunately having to push to one side another shorter fell race “mytholmroyd” that Halifax Harriers successfully organise. This date too was in danger due to extreme weather conditions, as the warmest April on record gave way to widespread moorland fires. However the rain came just in time allowing Idle AC to for the first time to take part on a beautiful day in this great off rd relay.
The team had to change considerably but we finally stitched one together and it all went to plan.
Dave Lewis & Tony Winbush overshot the finish slightly (Tony probably wanted to do another 30 miles)
Martin Burnside & Tony Brayshaw set off and took in the delightful views from Studly Pike summit en route.
Clair McConnell & Julie P Heys extended their foray into fell running by stepping up to the mark & taking on leg 4 (I think they want to thank Steve for this)
Phil Routh & Trevor, old hands at this relay thing now, teamed up again to run leg 5.
And Phil Goode was (at short notice) evenly partnered up with Chris Stubs who ran a great leg to get us round in 67th place overall.Although this may not sound too impressive in the overall standings, I think for a small club with such a range of “ athletes” it is a result. And judging by the positive response I have had off everyone who ran (including the girls) then its definitely worthwhile. Results at www.halifaxharriers.co.uk
WEST YORKS WINTER LEAGUE PRESENTATION NIGHT
Friday 6th May was the WYWL presentation night.
While these nights (as important as they are) can be a bit (shall we say) dull, a few of us still felt obliged to show our faces. And as it turned out all had a good night.Davina, who has been involved in one way or another since its formation, was there to offer her support, and writes.
Success in the West Yorkshire Winter League!!!!!
What is the West Yorkshire Winter League?
- It’s the main league, consisting of 5 events, in which Idle AC members are encouraged to run!
Whilst the League does offer individual trophy positions, its primary objective is team competition. The five team scores are added together to decide the following team trophies:
1st Combined Team, 2nd Combined Team, 3rd Combined Team.
1st Male Team.
1st Female team.
1st Vets Team (combination of male/females).
There is also the most improved club trophy
Whilst Idle AC didn’t collect any Team trophies this season we had three individual trophy winners at the presentation Night, hosted by Baildon Runners on Friday 6th May. As a club we celebrate their success.
Congratulations go to Rachel Phillips, Julie Parker-Heys & Tim Whitcombe:
Rachel Phillips – 2nd F35
Julie Parker – Heys – 2nd F40
Tim Whitcombe – 3rd M50.
In addition the League has two very special trophies, which are presented to the most improved male and female runner who has completed all 5 events. The most improved male runner receives the Dave Turpin Memorial Trophy and the most improved female runner receives the Paul Dowson Memorial Trophy. Through these trophies we remember two well known league competitors who both died suddenly, indeed within days of each other, during the 1999 -2000 season.
Well done to Rachel Phillips who was presented with the Paul Dowson Trophy - her name is added to those of Kay Gambles, Claire McConnell and Julie Parker-Heys!
DAVE LEWIS INVESTIGATES
THE 3 PEAKS FELL RACE 2011
(The marathon with mountains)
You come away from the 3 Peaks fell race with very little. Of course, you have the memories, the sense of great achievement - or dragging despair, depending how your race went. And the aching limbs... But there's no medal - nothing to physically show for all the blood, sweat and tears. There is a t-shirt and this year even that had a rather odd design to it: blue background with a big black scribble on the front. But after a while it began to make sense - the scribble had 3 Peaks.
But the more I thought about that t-shirt, the more I began to realise that to describe this as a 3 Peaks race is wrong. There are 4 Peaks.
Like the 3 Peaks, the fourth has both a gentle, inviting side and a darker alter ego. On the wrong days, the fourth peak can be unforgiving and hostile. The fourth peak is the mind.
To get around the 25-mile route, you need to conquer all 4 Peaks.
If I wanted proof of that, I needed to look no further than Laurence Doddy. I bumped into him shortly before the race started. Bumped into him might not be the right phrase. What caught my attention was his rasping, lung-scratching cough. He said he was on antibiotics. He caught the shocked look on my face. “Perhaps I shouldn't be running this race… ” he said.
But he did run it, and did so in style. Laurence completed the race in under four hours. I know for certain it wasn't his lungs that got him around that course. It was his mind.
The repository for fell running knowledge at Idle AC lies with Tony Wimbush. His view is that the 3 Peaks race doesn't start until you reach Ribblehead, about half way into the 25 mile route. From Ribblehead onwards, the course lays traps for body and mind – exhaustion begins to drag at your legs, negative thoughts begin to intrude. At the same time, stretching out in front is the whale-like flank of Whernside: it's a mile of steeply upward fell. Parts so steep that I found myself on all fours. And once on top, your legs have to quickly change rhythm. You go from contracting your leg muscles to gain height, to extending them to get speed and pace on the descent. It's like crashing through the gear box of an old car, nothing wants to work.
Then.... you do it all again, this time on Ingleborough before the run back to the start at Horton. Despite the difficulties, I was faster than last year but I failed to get under five hour mark.
Idle AC had seven runners in the race, a good turnout for a small club.
Shaun Lennon had a fantastic run, getting round in 4 hours 21 minutes. He must now have his sights on a sub 4-hour effort next year.
Leon Winder and Peter Hilliard made the transition from tarmac to fell look easy. Leon was just 7 minutes behind Shaun and Peter clocked in at 4 hours 39 minutes. Peter had adopted a bit of a roadie’s disdain for fell matters. He hadn’t recce’d the course and ran it in road shoes!
Tim put in a solid performance to get round in under five hours (4 hours 53 mins). He credited his success to a pair of knee-length socks which helped prevent cramp which in the past has caused him problems on the climb up Whernside and forced him to drop out of the race.
But cramp caught up with Phil Routh who was timed out at the Hill Inn checkpoint about 18 miles into the course. Two weeks earlier, Phil had completed his 900+ mile bike ride from Land’s End to John O’Groats. Cycling 100 miles a day – day after day, had taken its toll. By the time he got to the top of Whernside, his legs had had enough and downed tools. He couldn’t move fast enough to get to the checkpoint within the cut off time. He was heartbroken.
But there is next year.
The first 3 Peaks race was run in 1954 with a handful of runners setting out from a pub. There was no set route – they just had to navigate to the summit of the 3 Peaks. The winner that year was Fred Bagley. He was back for this year's race, this time for the less arduous task of presenting the prizes. He described everyone who'd taken part over the years as members of an exclusive club. If you think of it as the 4 Peaks, it becomes even more exclusive.
Though without marshals we would'nt have a race
The Runners and Riders
Although I flagged up this item some time last year, I feel it’s worth highlighting again.
If you don’t know, it’s a rout that was established over 20 years ago and has been resurrected in its current “challenge” form by legendary Idle AC member Tony Wimbush.
Having run it a few times in 2010 I know it to be a great rout of mixed terrain & excellent training ground for fell races. The benefit of it having a challenge element as apposed to just a training run is that you tend to push yourself that little bit harder than you would otherwise do. And once you know the course its easy to get round on your own so you have a quality race rout with no time restrictions, do it when and as many times as you want.
It has its own web page (as above) and you can add your completions & times on its own link on the FRA forum accessed through the web page.
Although we have some excellent running in and around Idle, to train for the fells you really need more challenging terrain, something that this rout offers with an element of friendly competition.
Tony has offered to take a training run round the course soon and like a lot of his routs it has a shorter cut off, this time back on the canal so there’s no chance of getting lost.If you fancy having a go (and I strongly recommend it) keep an eye on the web site where it will be posted. In the meantime have a look at his website for inspiration.
For a small club there has been a lot going on in 2010.
Besides all the usual fell & road races that we compete in as individuals or with mate’s there were lots of big events to be involved in & lots organized on a club level. Some on normal club nights like the Ilkley run or large groups on bike rides, piss ups or recce’s. But most take some organising & more people stepping up & getting involved means we “as a club” did loads.
A good result in the 2009 / 2010 West York’s Winter League with Individual winners at the presentation night as well as winning Most Improved Club.
We passed on the option of putting on a race as we had enough on our plates but put on a good club event this year so proving that with shared responsibility we can match the bigger clubs.
We had six Idle runners at the Three Peaks Fell Race, which must be the hardest local race of the year, five of us 1st timers. And I think we will have more this year flying the flag.
We entered three local long distance relays. Two up on last year (although one was put on hold because of the snow) a great success again and I would encourage more Idle runners to take part in 2011 if we do them again. They can be a pain logistically but are well worth the effort on the day.
There was the Gummers How weekend in the Lakes. A must for some of us from now on, the race & the bike ride up turning into a regular event for the summer.
Twelve Idle runner / rowers taking part and lots of family & friends spectating made this a great day with an Idle boat coming third in the team event. Not sure who they were now but that’s not important, the event was going to close because of lack of interest so support like this is.
We had runners at the at the two big London & Edinburgh marathons also the Great North half. Lots more at smaller but non-less worthy events. Some overseas and Anna managed a staggering Ten Marathons in Ten days!
The Idle trail race was again made a great local event with most turning out on the day to help make it a great success. He might run every day but the great Ron Hill again made sure one of those days was at our race.
Again with team work the Christmas do gets better & better. The club was all trimmed up, great food, plenty to drink, presentations, the London draw & lots more in fancy dress this year. The elves turned up again the next day & sorted the lot. Team Work!
Idle now has a new, updated, longer more diverse handicap event. Over three events Fell, Trail & Road. The more people take part the better it will become.
We still have regular Tuesday night sessions but now interspersed with fitness & “bleep” tests. The sessions are posted on a newly set up “Idle forum”. It’s so easy to use even I can use it. Turn up if you want or don’t if you can’t but we have the choice.
We have a member who regularly organises runs, which include runners from other clubs. Admittedly on the longer side & off road but he can on some work in cut offs to accommodate slower or recovering runners. On well thought out paths & tracks that link into great runs. Runs that may turn into low-key local club events or challenges but with Idles name in front. Watch this space & join in.
With all this and lots more I haven’t mentioned here it’s hard to say why the numbers are sometimes down on some training nights. Perhaps because of the cold spell, holidays, family commitments, Phil Rouths sense of humour. Who knows? But a lot of people as you can see put in a lot of effort & the training nights are still there so turn out when you can.
HAPPY NEW YEAR