Report by Laura Fletcher
Race Date: Sunday 17th March 2019
5.45am Sunday morning alarm goes off, pre race bagel & coffee consumed and a quick jog down to hlc to meet Vikki, Michelle & Nancy for our journey to the Notts 20, a new 20 mile race. Snow, hail, sun and repeat is the weather on our journey to Nottingham.
As we question how to get into the carpark its apparent this new race has overlooked parking and we ditch the car in the middle of a carpark along with others as we’re only 15 mins away from race start! After a quick toilet stop and a jog round the lake we’re at the start line and meet up with fellow Striders Zoe, Nicole & Catherine. A quick photo and we’re off!
The race starts at a watersports centre so a half lap round the lake and we’re off out of the park, then suddenly come to a standstill as we have to wade through a few big puddles. The race continues along with a few more puddles to hop over and a head wind that, no matter which way we turn, is in our faces.
We run with the 3.30 pacer for a while who assures us there is only 3 hills on what we were told was a flat course! Vikki and Michelle have zoomed off into the distance, me and Zoe push on with Catherine just behind us, closely followed by Nicole and Nancy sticking to the 3.30 pacer as planned, we continue to battle the wind and hills (more than 3).
By mile 10 you pass back close to the start line and as we do the lead runners head into the finish. We carry on round a housing estate and then are directed onto a very muddy stretch and it quite clearly becomes out and back as you pass the faster runners. This continues for A LONG TIME! Catherine turns angry that the turn around point is still not in sight and runs off quite determined to just get finished! As we finally turn at mile 17 across a bridge I see Vikki looking strong and on her way back. I start to lose the strength to carry on and keep pushing to try and catch Catherine up (she’s still angry running!) I give Zoe a wave who is pushing on just behind us. By mile 19 we have just past the last few back runners and I honestly felt like telling them not to bother and turn around now! A quick turn and before you know it the finish line is in sight. A little turn around the carpark and some final encouraging words from Keith Bell I cross the line. Broken, cold and fed up. It then starts to hail!
We all finish quite close together, eat some chocolate tray bake I brought with me and head back home to warm up!
As races go for a first time event it’s ok. I doubt I would return but if you need a good last 20 mile run before a marathon I would recommend it. I think the weather was just unkind to us on the day. Carpark issues need addressing for next year too!
Link to full results here.