21 May 2006
Middle distance UK Cup and World Ranking Event at Rowney Warren today, and second place for me, 12 seconds behind Neil Northrop. Well done to Neil for a great run, but I am a little bit disappointed with the result. I had a good run, and looking at the splits, I made one route choice mistake, and 3 small wobbles. Both Neil and myself, as well as Nick Barrable and Rob Baker were all running about the same speed, and it looks like Neil was the cleanest round today.
The results also make the UK Cup standings very interesting. With 6 races to count, I have 3 victories and 2 second places. Neil has 4 victories, a 2nd place and a 5th place. There are only 2 races left in the series, and I am only running one of those races - next Saturday at the Scottish Championships. If Neil wins either, he has the title. I need to win next weekend and hope that Neil does not get a win to retain my title.
The race itself was very enjoyable. 6.8km in 35mins which shows how runnable the area is. There was little technical challenge other than route choice, but the planner set a good course with lots of changes of direction and enough to keep us interested the whole way round. The critical legs were, I think -
7 - I chose to go round rather than straight and lost 20 seconds to Neil
22 - Where Nick Barrable (leading at the time) lost 45 secs hunting on the spur
26 and 27 - Where 2 little wobbles (5-10secs each) cost me the chance to win the race
I felt good and was running strongly all the way round. If anything I was overconfident and took no chances, choosing to rely on the mistakes of others or superior fitness. This obviously proved to be a mistake as I was running no faster than the others and actually made more mistakes. A good lesson learnt today - I still have to push these races if I want to win - but again well done to Neil who deserves the reputation he is building at the moment. Hopefully he can do it in the important races and get into the GB team later this year.