Due to Luke Buswell’s demotion and Tom Powell’s subsequent promotion to men’s race captain this left the role of press secretary unmanned. This has left some big boots to fill and that task has been landed on me, fortunately however we have similar sized feet.
This race report may be rather belated but should fill you in on all you need to know about our trip North of the border into that strange land of skirt wearing men, more commonly known as Scotland.
Due to Tom’s promotion it meant he was now too busy with his men’s race captain duties to be able to attend the Edinburgh weekend, that and the fact he didn’t want to buy dinner for Jack again once he got soundly beaten. However Luke Buswell having passed over his duties was now free enough to be able to attend. Other prominent figures were Lucy “tangerine trees and marmalade skies” Crookes (I thought I’d attempt to continue a Tom Powell tradition, see the West Yorkshire league race report for more details) Canadias own Bronwyn Hodgins and Colleen Wilson, Miss Gold Coast 2010, Jack Wood, Ashley Bailey, Finn and Dave.
After hearing stories from a previous year, I decided not to get in a car with Luke for the drive up. Three kerbs later, and some struggling to find full beam lights on a dark country road, my decision to get in Lucy’s car was not looking so wise. However we got there and back in one piece so I can’t complain. Despite a quick stop in a village in the middle of nowhere (it was the sort where horror stories get set) we arrived with plenty of time before the race (the race in fact being the next day). In Edinburgh we were made to feel extremely welcome by Coll, one of the Edinburgh team whose house we were staying at.
So now for the race part,
The course was a three(ish) mile loop with some hills, with one lap for the ladies and two for the men. The ladies were up first, they set off and were very quickly out of sight. This was all I saw of them for the entire race, so don’t have much to report on. Next thing we knew, we were being shouted at to clear the way as the first ladies were fast approaching. To our surprise and delight, Leeds Uni’s Lucy Crookes was in first place and was fighting hard to hold off the home crowd’s hero Rebecca Harding. After a quick injection of pace, Lucy had enough room to hold off the Harie and take the win. Very soon after Canadia’s Bronwyn Hodgins appeared proving that she’s just as fast racing as she is on the dance floor. This was quickly followed by our other favourite Canadian, Colleen Wilson to round off the top 10 in sub 20 minute times. Importantly this put our girls a good 20 places above the first of Alehouse. Miss Gold Coast herself had a good run and finished in the top 100 (100th to be precise).
Next up was the lads’ race. Unfortunately not being one of the fastest in the group it meant that I’m completely unaware of who has finished where until I cross the line myself, but my copy of the results tell me that Jack Wood was our fastest lad of the day in a time of 35:23, giving him 21st place. Next over the line was Alzheimers proving he still has what it takes, although he definitely won’t remember it by now, in a time 36:03. Len Foster, one of the Dossers was next closely followed by Luke Buswell. Finn crossed the line but could have been a tad faster had he not stopped to catch a megabus to Newcastle with some Swedish girls. While this lot were recovering, the slower members of the group carried on trudging round and with the very handsome Matthew Evans crossing the finish line in 42:49, followed by Ashley Bailey rounding off the day’s entertainment in 44:14.
Rob Johnson had appeared for the day in true Rob Johnson style, but didn’t take part as he is scared of heights and the course had a hill (I know this sounds made up but he actually said it (kind of)).
Runner of the day has to be Lucy Crookes with her respectable 1st place, and the ladies take the honours for being the best gender with their overall second place in the team competition, against some tough competition from the hosts. This works out well as well all know first the worst, second the best and thirds the one with the Harie chest (Haries coming 1st and 3rd in the team competition).
The evening entertainment consisted of the normal beer racing, and as we were North of the border, Haggis as well. Newcastle challenged us to a game of flip cup which we soundly beat them in. The beer racing fared well as our Dossers took the lead accompanied by Luke (I downed a pint in 6.4 seconds) Buswell. Unfortunately they were beaten in the final by an on form Alehouse. The ladies team looked to be in trouble after Colleen pulled out due to illness, but Rob Johnson stepped in to fill the gap with his girly drinking ways, needless to say we lost.
The less hungover and more energetic members of the group spent the Sunday morning eating slept on cakeTM (courtesy of Jack Wood) running up Arthurs seat and enjoying a spectacular view of the city and surrounds. Others who had only returned that morning chose to spend this time catching up on sleep.
The weekend eventually finished with a guided tour of Leeds provided by Lucy Crookes, with an interlude to be laughed at by a small child. Luckily navigation by sexy superstore signs got us back to the car hire and then safely home.
The weekend was a good laugh and I would highly recommend it to anyone who is around next year.
Your new press secretary (this is going straight to the top of my CV)