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Thread: Devil's Chair Dash

  1. #1
    Master Travs's Avatar
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    May 2015

    Devil's Chair Dash

    I made a first attempt at this race today, with very little knowledge of it, other than the stats at 3 miles and 800ft.

    It's a simple up and down. First section is along an undulating track, then turning more steeply up some more genuine Fell terrain, until hitting the ridge top for a final 3/4 of a mile on a slight incline, along horribly rocky and slippery terrain, to the summit turnaround.

    So, on the face of it, a simple out and back Fell Race. But coupled to this, it's also a decent sized local event, funrun, whatever you would like to call it. Largest amount of spectators I've ever seen on a Fell Race, especially at the summit, and I'd guess out of the approx 250-300 competitiors, only 100 max were 'Fell runners' and the majority of the rest seemed to be locals and families enjoying the challenge.

    This did bring a few additional challenges. One bloke on the start line decided he wanted to be right at the front, with 3 tiny children and a couple of dogs. I was immediately behind him so could see to be careful, but people behind me wouldn't have had a chance. When the start went up the dogs just veered sideways in front of everyone, lord knows what happened to the kids.

    And I seemed to hit the greatest concentration of slow moving ascenders, just as I hit the steepest and slippiest section of the descent, which, given their unpredictability, made for some interesting course-changes on my part, including one section where I actually ended up outside the 'funnel' created by the spectators as I tried to find the best ground, eventually ending up in some trees.

    But it was quite clear from the entry process and nature of the event that a Fell Race wasn't necessarily the main priority, so I think everyone was happy to make the best of it.

    As to the race... I ascended steadily but not as well as I could have... yesterday's hard effort at the Parkrun had taken a little out of my legs, and despite telling myself to put the hard effort in, my legs weren't responding, and I did walk sections I'd usually be running. Having said that, I reached the summit turnaround in about 20th, and only about 40 secs behind Athers of this forum, so I can't have been moving too badly.

    Despite descending probably as well as I have ever managed before, I still lost a few places going down, before picking one back up in the final few hundred yards, to finish 23rd. About 16mins to the top, and 10 and a half back down.

    Great event, it makes for a good fellracing course on its own merit, and the other aspects of the day, particularly the support, only add to the occasion.
    Last edited by Travs; 26-12-2018 at 05:26 PM.

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