In the women’s race, Emma Gould led for much of the race, but went astray in the clag descending Commedagh allowing Jasmin Paris of Carnethy, in her first major race since the birth of her daughter, to take a commanding lead and win by almost four minutes over Caitlin Rice of Ribble Valley Harriers, with Bronwen Jenkinson of Eryri coming in a few minutes later to take third and first FU23. For the Keswick ladies, recceing and careful navigation certainly paid off for Jenn Mattinson and Kerry Cornforth, coming 22nd and 21st respectively, with Kerry also taking 4th FV40, ahead of local rivals Ambleside AC ladies Astrid Gibbs, Jane Reedy and Hazel Robinson. Further down the field, Rachel Findlay-Robinson unfortunately couldn’t match her brother’s navigating prowess and took a minor detour on the way to Slievenaglogh, but she and Zoe Webber managed to defeat the clag on the now infamous descent of Commedagh to come 40th and 42nd, sneaking past Vic Haworth who, after a strong run along the Mourne Wall, found herself astray on the descent of Commedagh. After successfully relocating off the telephone mast, she was soon back on track and finished in 46th place.
Special mentions should also go to our own Steve Halsall and Ali Richards of Helm Hill. Ali fell on an early descent and later required three stitches in her knee, but not only continued with a smile and good craic but managed to outsprint Zoe and Rachel in the closing stages! Steve had a similar experience involving a fall and a considerable amount of blood, but still battled through to complete the race. Speedy recovery to both!
And in what was surely the most important competition of the weekend, the ladies certainly took the win – we outnumbered the men 3:1 in staying in the pub until closing time!