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Bradbourne Fell Race
Sunday 29th August 2010
Alex Downie

Bradbourne Fell Race 29.8.10
Approx 5.5 miles Alex Downie 48:24, 75th........Fiona Downie 51:15 88th...... 108 finishers.
This was a fun, friendly race, organised by the redoubtable David Denton (www.runningwithdavid.com) , whom some of you will remember from the 4-races-in-4-days Tour of the Derwent Valley. An amazing person in many ways, the 70-year-old Mr. Denton owns a house in Kerala, southern India, which he rents out to runners, co-ordinates many races with the proceeds going to charity, and is the possessor of an outstanding memory for faces and names. He even remembered Fiona and I from Tour of the Derwent Valley 2 years ago!
Usually this 2-lap course splashes through the stream twice, but this year, perhaps in honour of the C+C presence, we had that particular pleasure 3 times. So off we went in a crowded little loop, down a steep grassy bank and into the water straight away, shortly to encounter a bank steep enough to have us all walking. Next, we found ourselves queueing to heave ourselves over a wibbly-wobbly gate, and passing through a field of puzzled –looking cows – well, they were puzzled on the first lap, but rather more concerned and possessive of their field on our second lap, and seemed to be massing for a charge to repel this strange invasion.......There were countless stiles, of many different styles, and 2 bridges, one with a very large, low branch and a marshall intoning “Mind the branch.Mind the branch.' The other bridge had suffered rather badly from rot, but sadly didn't have a marshall saying “Mind the gaps, mind the gaps.”
The highlight of the race, apart from the second 2 river-crossings of course, probably has to be the downhill-racer stretch of very scenic valley, where if you kept your feet, you could really generate some momentum.
We didn’t finish very high up the field, (it was obviously of very high quality), but the point of the exercise was to go out and have fun and the race certainly provided that. Less welcome was the horrendous downpour that unleashed itself just after we’d finished. Pity the poor, bedraggled-looking bunch of under-8’s, who were just starting their race.....Alex D

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