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Thread: Cross Country 2023-24

  1. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by Witton Park View Post
    1500 Men on a start line 150m wide, funnelled down to 10 metres wide after 250m is typically what you are faced with - so get a good start if you want to be competitive or you'll be running for up to a minute then shuffling for another minute
    I got caught by this last time at Parliament Hill.

    They didn't have numbered pens like usual, so the start was a free for all, and i started further towards the back than i should have been. Spent well over a mile at nowhere near full pace trying to work through.

    That said, the cautious start didn't affect me overly as it was my best performance in a national by a long way. Although it undoubtedly cost me time.

  2. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travs View Post
    I got caught by this last time at Parliament Hill.

    They didn't have numbered pens like usual, so the start was a free for all, and i started further towards the back than i should have been. Spent well over a mile at nowhere near full pace trying to work through.

    That said, the cautious start didn't affect me overly as it was my best performance in a national by a long way. Although it undoubtedly cost me time.
    I was at Alton Towers the first time it was there with only 3 of us in the pen.
    Tom C a 30-31 minute 10k guy, Adi who was about 37 for 10k and me who was usually a minute behind Adi.

    I just went for it with Tom. I told him just before the gun that he'd better shift as I'd be in his slipstream.

    After lap 1 I could keep picking Adi out a few hundred metres behind me. He just couldn't claw back the lost time at the start.
    I gave him regular waves as we passed around the various hairpins

    I also won my side-bet with Danbert and particularly enjoyed high-fiving him as a spectator about 100m from the finish line on my way back to the club tent.
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  3. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by Witton Park View Post
    1500 Men on a start line 150m wide, funnelled down to 10 metres wide after 250m is typically what you are faced with - so get a good start if you want to be competitive or you'll be running for up to a minute then shuffling for another minute
    Thanks WP.

    I'll have to sharpen my elbows!
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  4. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by Witton Park View Post
    1500 Men on a start line 150m wide, funnelled down to 10 metres wide after 250m is typically what you are faced with - so get a good start if you want to be competitive or you'll be running for up to a minute then shuffling for another minute
    Only 1500? I'm sure that when I did the Nationals at Parliament Hill one year in the 1980's, there were around 2000. After about half a mile, when it was still very crowded, I felt a momentary sharp pain in one foot. It was only after the finish, when I took my shoes off, that I noticed a little spike hole through the shoe and into the top of my foot.
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  5. #45
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    There's usually 2500-3000 on the start list, of which about 1750-2000 actually start.

    In recent years there's been start pens which will accommodate perhaps 40 people.... a team like ours would perhaps only share it with one other team, but smaller teams would have several teams in their pen. And people would arrange themselves accordingly. This system works fairly well, although you perhaps need to look at the course and aim for the outside of the first corner if you don't want to be slowed.

    However last time at Parliament Hill everyone was just left to their own devices, which as can be imagined was absolute carnage with many people starting way too forward for their ability. I was fairly late into the start area and was only about 3 rows from the back... although the benefit was i spent the entire race going through the field.

  6. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travs View Post
    However last time at Parliament Hill everyone was just left to their own devices, which as can be imagined was absolute carnage with many people starting way too forward for their ability.
    I usually start Fell Races a bit too near the front for my ability especially if I know there is a stile or other bottleneck shortly after the start.

    I shan't be doing that at the Nationals as I don't fancy being trampled under a stampede of spikes!
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  7. #47
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    Yeah if you go down in the middle of the start line charge at the Nationals you're probably not getting back up!

  8. #48
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    Regional champs today then.

    They all look interesting.

    Without knowing exactly who's running, my predictions...

    Midlands: Omar Ahmed
    Team: Bold prediction for Birchfield Harriers or BRAT to break the Bristol/Notts dominance.

    North: Callum Johnson
    Team: Leeds

    South: James Kingston
    Team: Highgate

  9. #49
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    Well i was pretty good with the predictions! Bang on for the northerns and southerns.

    In my Midlands, i got BRAT to take the team prize, but Omar Ahmed was edged into 2nd by Tom Evans.

    We had a somewhat depleted team.... despite strong numbers as always, half our usual scoring six was missing, which worryingly meant i could be needing a good run to make up the six.

    It was the toughest course of the season so far, plenty of very muddy sections, a decent tough hill and a decent amount of rough stuff. In fact it was my only race this winter where i've slipped above 4:00/km pace (actual pace 4:07/km today)

    A good guide is usually that your position in the Birmingham League Div1is roughly equal to where you'll finish in the Midlands.... i must've had a good day as based on that i could have expected to be around 150th, however i came home 116th today.

    Far from fighting for 6th counter in the team, i was actually in a pitched battle for 4th counter... i knew i had to take my clubmate on the hill to have a chance, however i could only get within 5 seconds, and i knew he has track pedigree, and he beat me by about 30 seconds in the end with a very strong last km.

    5th counter then, in a team which finished 8th. Considering our team strength i expect the club will be pretty pleased with that, i wasn't expecting any team i'm a scoring part of to be in the top 10.

    1st BRAT
    2nd Bristol & West
    3rd Notts AC

    On to the final league fixture at Northampton in a fortnight.
    Last edited by Travs; 27-01-2024 at 08:02 PM.

  10. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travs View Post
    A good guide is usually that your position in the Birmingham League Div1is roughly equal to where you'll finish in the Midlands.... i must've had a good day as based on that i could have expected to be around 150th, however i came home 116th today.
    Well done TRavs.

    When I started XC in 2003 I worked out a way to analyse my progression.

    Time of winner/time of me = X
    Then I used to weight the race based on quality of winner. So a National or Cross Challenge might be a 110 down to a local league around 90 and my race rating would be adjusted accordingly.

    So If winner of a Red Rose was 32min and I was 46min and my weighting 90 it would be (32/46)*90 = 69.6

    If by some chance an elite turned up to a local league race finishing 90s ahead of the 2nd place, I'd adjust to say a 105.
    The rating was really based on quality of runner who won.

    The reason was that finishing position was dependent on turnout and quality of turnout.

    I used to keep a spreadsheet and also logged a few of my mates just in front or just behind me and eventually it led to a format for our club championships which I operated for getting on a decade.
    Richard Taylor
    "William Tell could take an apple off your head. Taylor could take out a processed pea."
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