Happy new year! Err, okay so the first Long Distance Strider update of 2015 is a little overdue… But my questionable Excel expertise has finally paid off and so here we are with the current LDS standings, up to (but not including) the first Trunce. The next update will be at the beginning of May.
In the men’s race Paul Stuart has taken an early lead over last year’s champion, though now he has painted an Andy Buck-shaped target on his back. Paul has 8 races to Andy’s 7 so there is still plenty of time for Andy to make up that ground. In the pack, Phil is just behind, with the London Marathon to bump up his mileage in a few weeks. Globe trotting Richard Pegg is also a very frequent racer so cannot be discounted, despite being over 45 miles back from the leader. And I’m sure David Perkins would want me to tell you that he would have been winning if his injury hadn’t ruled him out for the first couple of months.
In the ladies competition, Sian Evans, currently in outstanding form going into the London Marathon, is out in front with nearly 15 miles between her and Helen Davis, in second. Sian is more of a road specialist while Helen prefers the fells, so it will be interesting to see how that pans out as we get towards peak fell racing season in the summer. Carol Beattie is another serial racer and she is only 10 miles behind Helen. in fourth and fifth, respectively, Heather Wallis and Jennifer Rich are neck and neck but there are a lot of miles between them and the leaders.