Now doesn't 'Retrospective' sound so much better than, "Oh bugger,
this was the day before we went on holiday and I completely forgot
to do a race report until Amanda reminded me"...? Yep, Retrospective...
sounds properly artistic and professional and all.
The ETL crew don't look like drowned rats at all, not in the
slightest. And everyone's emerged from the trees where they were
sheltering from the
rainsun. Remember, this was
before the Brexit vote, so in those days, we weren't able to have a
proper British summer, cold and wet, we were forced to endure the
cloudless blue skies of a Mediterranean June. Yes, it doesn't look
like that, but that just goes to show how low the Europhiles will
sink, covering the land with fake clouds and rain!
The spectators are taken in by the deception!
But the runners? Well, they're runners. And they're running.
That's about all there is to it.
Amanda shows she's happy.
Pat's concentrating too hard.
The back markers cross in front of Polesden Lacey House as I chase
after them down to one of the bridges they'll run under.
They come down the estate road under the first bridge, while I'm
standing on the second.
At least we can be sure Pat doesn't need her roots done!
And Amanda's still happy!
The race leader appears in the woods, just before the route runs
under another bridge.
This bridge, in fact, but I'm standing in the mud below rather than
the parapet above.
The bridge is followed by a bit of a climb, but the mud is nothing
to how it was a couple of years ago!
Across the meadow, you can't really make out faces at this distance
but the bright orange of Pat's shorts should be a clue.
And although you can't tell without zooming in on the original
picture, she actually looks like she's smiling!
As Amanda comes through the meadow, note the red and yellow shapes
to the left. That's a couple of St John Ambulance paramedics going
to find somebody who's been injured on the course. We don't believe
it's anything too serious, but it's very easy to trip and
twist an ankle on the rougher tracks. Amanda's never needed medical
attention, but her battles with some ETL courses could best be
described as a score-draw.
As a diversion from the trails, the route goes through this Greek
portico thingy (I'm sure it's got a proper name). It's bloody
slippery! I noticed that just walking across it.
Back on the final approach. Unlike some races, where you virtually
reach the finish line and then are made to run around a field
because the organisers couldn't get the distance right without it,
in this one you're almost on the finish before you can even see it.
But if you've done the race before, you know that it's just
past that next tree!
Well they're both smiling now. Amanda who hates the cold and wet,
and Pat who hates rough trails and hills. Allegedly.
I know: they're happy because they both know their roots don't need
I believe normal chronological service will resume in two weeks for
the Badger, but I reserve the right to dress up any flimsy excuses
in whatever way I can.