The Denholme Doddle caters for both walkers and runners with the proceeds going to charity. Those taking part can opt for a 17, 21 or 27-mile distance – these are conservative figures as we all recorded around a mile more than the numbers advertised. It’s a hilly one, taking in parts of the Yorkshireman and Heptonstall 15 routes, with several demanding V-shaped descents and climbs. There is a lot of moorland running but the trails are not too technical. However, as the miles build up energy levels decline and it becomes increasingly challenging.
The conditions were good for running, cloudy with a cool breeze and dry underfoot. Three QRC runners took part. The ever-improving Pauline Naylor took on the 21-mile course (1083 metres ascent) and finished in a brilliant time of 4 hours 50. Those opting for the 27-mile run have to cope with the psychology of reaching the 21-mile checkpoint back in Denholme and close to the run HQ. Instead of finishing though, you must plough on and negotiate the six-mile Harden loop, including the tricky trail in Goitstock Wood and the climb back to race end.
Simon Brady and Carl Heron ran the longer route (1268 metres ascent). It was Carl’s 4th Doddle and Simon’s first and the first time he has exceeded marathon distance. Regulars on Sunday off-road training runs, they ran most of the course together. Both took turns to blow-up in the last few miles. Simon recovered quickly and could have pushed on to the end alone but in the end the two crossed the finish line together in 5 hours 06 and, in lieu of any results, in joint 2nd place overall.
Well done to all.
Thanks to Carl for the write up