Wednesday, 9 May 2012
Running with dinosaurs
So, the next two races on the agenda will be on hot soil. Ancient lands of ancient creatures, isolated completely from what's become my new 'norm'. Two long runs along, around, over and hopefully not into volcanoes. Neither of these two races were initially part of the 2012 plan, but both were quickly integrated into the scheme once put on the table. First up, it's the TransVulcania this weekend, followed by the Volcano Trail later next month. True, having just moved to France (June last year), the aim of the game this year was, and still is, mainly, to focus on my new 'local' territory, la France. Having hardly raced here before the logic was to stay en France, explore the country's wide open spaces and incredible network of footpaths, and... to win as much cheese, wine, saucisson and honey as possible in this, the land of gigantic race-winning hampers. The idea was also, I have to admit, to focus on 40-50km races as a maximum, however I seem to have deviated from that slightly... Not sure why, it's just the way things are going in this world... Quite early on it became apparent that the TransVulcania was going to be pretty hot competition and I'm going there really because I'm quite interested to see how I fair against some of the best Americans, Spaniards and the rest of that well-publicised list of ultra stars. I've had a packed calendar already this year, with seven races under the belt and a fair few pretty long ones in that list. The competition has been good, but it's not often that you get the gathering that's taking place this weekend on the island of La Palma. It would be a shame not to be a part of the action, even if it is a bit of a long one, off French soil, and dangerously may not even have a hamper of terrines and pâtés offered as recovery rewards... Oh the thought... I guess there may be chorizo and cerveza to compensate?... So, after the Canaries excursion, I'll be gearing up for another far-off land and another very long race, this time on the island of Guadeloupe. A race that appears to be a real mix of terrain. Jungle, beaches, road, volcanoes and waterfall climbing??.. Again, should be a lot of fun. Time to board for Madrid.