Up at 0430 to get to Stratford was a pain, although I got there a bit early and opted to go out with a group at 0830 rather than 0900. It meant I couldn’t win a prize, but it would mean getting away half an hour early, and since it was Good Friday, I thought that could be pretty handy.
There’d been groups leaving at 0800 and 0815 already, and the out and back course meant I was always seeing people, and there wasn’t much danger of going off course. A lot of it was the same as the December Double route, and it was all either pretty well signed, or massive long stretches of canal.
The only really tough bit was from about 15km to 25km, the stretch before (and then after) the turnaround. It was just really muddy and slippy – too much for my Boost ATRs, and it was all I could do to stay upright for most of that stretch.
I was aiming for around 4 hour pace to keep things sensible and try to keep to a pace that will be sustainable(ish) for the Foxton 24 in a few weeks, although the mud put a little bit on that in the end. Ran with a guy Alex for the final stretch ( he was running Compton the next day) which was cool, and plodded over the line in 4:10 or thereabouts. Only saw two anglers the whole time too (I think the rain helped), and I definitely walked past them. 100%.
Then it was the bit I’d been looking forward to – the food! After the December Double it had been great, and it was nearly as good this time around. I scoffed half a quiche and a shed load of chips and caught up with Richard, Steve, Tracy and Nick which was cool, and then it was off for the drive home – which was not cool. The satnav diverted me away from the M6 for a big stretch which helped a bit but it was still a horrible drive. Fingers crossed the Round Reservoir race on Bank Holiday is a bit less painful to get to and from, but I’ll be surprised!