|Another PB for Peter|
Sunday saw the inaugural running, in aid of the Soldiers' Benevolent Fund, of this 10k run around Dishforth airfield.
Peter Bonner represented Grantham Running Club, with other Grantham runners being sensible enough not to get up so early after the clock change.
Travelling to the event was helped by a co-operative A1, which was fortunate because on arrival at the airfield it became apparent that an email had been missed, necessitating a drive around the roads to the other side and an access via an emergency gate from the A168. The directions and signage are likely to be reviewed for next year, judging by the two ambulances and a police car seen during the race, and the two smashed cars still at the scene when participants left.
Upon arrival, the race village was small but well organised, with several army tents making number collection easy, though the changing area which consisted of a 3 sided tent, open area facing towards all and sundry, might risk putting people on a Register. Toilets consisted of portaloos and were relatively few – a larger race would definitely have struggled.
The event started at the right time (1 minute late, but after the toilet queue had declined). The course was extremely well-planned, with the start and finish in the same place and consisting of two laps. The route was on flat and wide tarmac and was completely traffic-free, being all within the base. Both laps coincided for most of the first two kilometres, with the first lap following the perimeter road and the second lap taking a slightly shorter inside route via the runway. This meant that, although the faster runners finished whilst some were still on their first lap, the two groups were separated on opposite sides of a barrier and there was no risk of confusion. The course was led by, and tailed by, a support vehicle.
The weather, for once, was perfect, sunny, with relatively light winds and not too warm, and no trace of the previous week's snow. The bling afterwards consisted of a medal, a canvas shopping bag and various charity items including a pack of cards and a pin badge.
On this fast course, Peter was very pleased to complete a new personal best of 40:43, finishing 38th out of 338. Next year, he recommends it for anyone who is willing to go to bed early on Saturday and who isn't doing a Spring marathon.