Well it’s the one we’ve all been waiting for, the UK OCR Championships and for many the perfect way to finish off their 2016 season very nicely indeed. I woke up feeling pretty fresh and ready to give the race my all. Like many of us, I knew the terrain at Pippingford was going to be a challenge and boy was I right. Add the Judgement Day, Suffering, Reaper and Mud Monsters crew into the mix and you know you’re likely to be deep in the shit!
Upon arrival to Pippingford you could feel the excitement in the air and as usual the grounds and surrounding area was stunning, the temperature was ok, no rain and beautiful blue skies…..Happy Days.
Registration I’m happy to say was a piece of cake and led nicely onto the main area with an impressive array of some showcase obstacles, which was great for the competitors and spectators alike. I spent some time at the awesome Mud Monster rings, knowing full well if I was going to lose a band it may well be here, hence I spent a bit of time trying to take in competitors techniques.
Soon after I was off and was very quickly grasping for breath, however I composed myself and soon got into the swing, that was until I got to the monkey bars and for the first time ever stacked it 90% of the way through, not once oh no but twice! Goodbye band number one! Likewise at the next obstacle, today my upper body strength wasn’t with me, surprisingly though my running felt pretty good (maybe it was all the Chia seeds I has first thing, who knows!)
Expertly dealing with the cold
So with zero bands left very early on I weaved through what I thought was a great course, still giving the obstacles a punt, but to be honest I was ill-prepared for some of the challenging obstacles. On that note, here’s my pennies worth, it’s a championship race, it should be challenging. I personally think it should be one try for everyone from the outset. In no other sport that I’m aware of can you have several attempts, but hey that’s just my opinion.
So where was I, oh yes (sorry got distracted by Facebook), I loved the course, and coming from someone that struggles with such harsh terrain that’s saying something. I loved catching up with friends and meeting new people along the way and everyone was so encouraging. I was really starting to feel it at 13k and was very happy to see the finish line on this one and earn that beautiful bling and tech tee.
When it comes down to it, 0 bands, 1 band, 2 bands, Competer's, DNF and completer's. It doesn't really matter that much at the end of the day. The fact we were all out there representing the British OCR Scene is what really counts. For me coming in 15th for age category was an achievement and something I’m really proud of, a far cry from always coming third from last at a freezing cross country in my school days, only narrowly being Big Matt and Boney Simon.