Report by: Sarah Storey
Race Date: Saturday, 28 October 2023
Well what can I say after a dreadful run at York I wasn’t expecting anything from this run.
The afternoon didn’t set off well I set the sat nav to the destination and of I went driving along the A15 following directions I thought that the turn off looked familiar but the sat nav told me different and who am I to argue with technology (now anybody who knows me knows I really don’t know my left from my right so I’m rubbish at directions) but driving underneath the actual bridge I’m supposed to be running across I knew something was wrong so I took the next turn off and somehow through sheer luck I found my way to the desired location with plenty of time to spare.
The weather forecast wasn’t set to be that good and running across the Humber Bridge from 6pm to midnight in the cold and wet with no music (as it’s a definite no no, it’s an instant disqualification if you wear headphones) l knew was going to be a long night.
I actually managed to attend the brief this time around and saw quite a few familiar faces of people who I’ve got to know over the last few years.
6pm arrived and off we set and much to my surprise the weather was actually really pleasant and the evening looked set to be quite enjoyable.
Anybody who’s never read one of my bridge reports the rules are very simple you start at the bottom of the bridge in the farmers market carpark and run up to bridge you run across to the Barton on Humber side down a ramp and round the cone then you make your way back to other side to where you started and round the cone again and then you check in to get your lap recorded the lap distance is 4 miles and you have to complete one lap every 3 hours so you only need to do a minimum of 8 miles to get your medal and shirt !!!!
Sounds simple right but 6 hours of your own company with nothing but the lights on the bridge and the passing cars beeping as they drive past can be quite lonely but in all honesty I find it lovely and you’d be surprised at the actual elevation you accumulate from crossing forwards and backwards.
I caught up with a few familiar faces and chatted whilst running and walking at the same time and time seemed to pass along quite easily.
The weather was also playing nice we had a few quick showers but they passed as soon as they came that was until about 10pm when then weather decided to change and then along came the wind and rain and unfortunately you are open to every element that Mother Nature throws at you as there’s no cover and no escape and the winds blow bigger down the Humber estuary. I had just set off on my 6th lap when the weather took a turn for the worse so by the time I made it back it was just gone 11pm and we were told that we could call it a night and pack up your belongings and head off home if you so wanted as the race always finishes at 11:59pm so if you are not back at that time you only qualify for half the distance and you only get a 2 mile lap recorded for that final last push
Now you’re probably thinking 4 miles in 59 minutes is easy but when you’ve been running on a metal bridge for 5 hours it amazing how tiring it becomes on your legs.
I finished the event with 24 miles in a time of 5 hours.
I am returning in December for the Christmas event and I will have completed the grand slam which has been one of my goals since I first set foot in the bridge in 2018.
It’s a well run event with a great atmosphere and amazing people there’s no ego’s there as the only person you are competing against is yourself.
I still don’t know where the title Hell On The Humber comes from as it’s one of my favourite events.
Link to full results here.