York Urban Race, May 31st

I didn’t have enough brownie points banked to merit a detour through Perthshire on the way home from holiday in Argyll  last weekend, so missed the SOC races at Rannoch. Instead, opted for a day trip to York for the Nopesport Urban League race in York on the Monday, along with a good entry of about 250. Catching an early morning train from Berwick, I was joined by Douglas Henderson at Newcastle. We Borderers miss out on rail travel – I was impressed to arrive in York bang on time and just a short distance from the assembly in the town centre. Douglas, as defending champion in the M55+ class and knows what he’s talking about, had advised an early start, before the streets got  too busy – even then it was like Melrose High Street on Sevens day. Route choice might be quite different if you could anticipate the lanes choked with slow moving families.

The map covered all the old centre of York, plus a school and university campus, giving some interesting control sites in back alleys amongst the dustbins – possibly more secure from vandalism than on busy streets. I managed to flow reasonably well round the B course, after making a three dimesnional error at control 2  – being at the right  spot but at the wrong level. Douglas should have been 4th, but for an electronic foul-up at control 11 and I was quite happy with 8th=.

So that’s the technical training over for the WMOC Sprint races in August, though I suspect the town centre of  Neuchatel will be a bit less flat (Switzerland!) than York.

Sorry to miss the SOC as the terrain and courses looked great – and also to miss cheering John and Kirstin onto the  podium. Well done both!