So today she who makes a lovely cup of tea had decided to come and support. The only day that the sunny Tour became the somewhat damp and wet tour...... never mind I told her I should take about 35 minutes and as this was the last one there would be tea and cakes in the village hall after the race. I think the mention of tea might have swung it as we set off for Strathmiglo for a challenging 7K trail race. This was going to be undulating as many of the Tour races normally are.
Our numbers were up again though as Neill 'I've got to go to work' Porterfield had rejoined us. He arrived with Mr. Jumpy in tow although no amount of spray and ointment seemed to get Alan to his bounding old self. A steely determination had taken its place. He was going to beat his closet rivals and that was that. Had he forgotten that the Tour of Fife is just a bit of fun and that as long as you get through the five days you are a winner? I think he had and his determination was kind of infectious. I started looking for my closest rival and then happily noted she hadn't turned up. That was me having to worry about beating anyone out of the window. Instead I could just relax and concentrate on getting through the race in one piece.
The warm up today consisted out of a walk to the start. A brisk one mile which was mostly uphill. Coach Dave had forgotten to mention this to his support team who with her broken toe was not altogether looking forward to walking a mile up the hill the shout encouragement to the tired Tourists. Still she made it up there and together with she who makes a lovely cup of tea did a pretty good job of making all the right noises as we plodded past! The course was challenging especially as the legs were less than willing. A short flat start soon turned into a steepish climb up to an undulating forest road. After a good while we descended onto a lower path only to be taken back up to the forest road. With the final half mile being mostly a downhill to the finish. A great course which apparently will be used later in the year for the Scottish Trail Running Championships.
Did Alan beat his rivals I hear you say? Of course he did! A great performance by the CAAC Captain! Of course the CoB legend had already a been out for a couple of runs before the race. Whereas us mere mortals would be by this time totally wiped out it just seems to make the CoB stronger. A solid performance saw him consolidate his second place overall. Brilliant running! Neill put in a strong performance and has promised to run a 5K tomorrow just to make up for the fact he missed the one yesterday. Not sure that is a good idea before the Tuesday track session. Especially as we have planned some extras for him! Coach Dave put in another determined performance and on the way back to the hall with cakes I am sure he mentioned that he will feel the training benefit from all this racing. Keith you missed a few good races there, but then an orcadian strip the willow will have made up for the few races you missed.
The Tour is a brilliant experience. If you haven't done it. Go on sign up for it next year. If you have done it before please come back! Gillian we miss your cakes; Nick we miss your beer; Mr President we miss your description of the uphill time trial and your amazing navigational skills; Ali There is need for some proper Strava Art in Fife and Dean we miss your completely inappropriate commentary!