Spent much of yesterday helping out at the annual 10 mile road race organised by my club (Otley AC). OK, OK the club doesn't belong to me but you know what I mean.
This year was the 28th staging of the popular evening race which, strangely enough, seemed to enjoy much better weather when it was held in mid May. The course itself winds it's way through beautiful countryside to the north of Otley and is well known across northern England for the two rather large hills - see the course profile here. I don't believe this course was particularly designed to be difficult, it's just that it wasn't easy for the club at that time to find a suitable route locally for a road race without incorporating some hills. I now think it's quite rare for such a long standing race to have a course record which is over 50 minutes.
The course records are: 50:56 (Colin Moore - 1989) and 57:40 (Veronique Marot - 1989)
This year's winner was Matt John (Otley AC) who finished in just over 56 minutes.
Colin Best deserves much credit for organising the race this year (and last year too). Hopefully he can continue for many years to come and also hopefully I can be of more help than I was this year as the race has always been a bit special for me. I was race director from 2000 to 2008/9 but had to resign when the pressures of Running to London and trying to secure selection for the 2009 Commonwealth Championships began to take their toll.
I'm sure Colin would want to join me in saying 'thank you' to all the marshals and other helpers who make this race possible. I think that many people not involved in organising a race fail to appreciate the manpower needed to stage an event like this.