As should you.
So to Aldershot, again. Avid readers of the blog, may recall that the Grim Challenge, 8ish* miles around the tank training ground in Aldershot was our
gateway drug first every off road race. From which we swiftly graduated to the full madness of Tough Guy and the like.
That was back in 2007 and since then at least two Gaffneys (Gaffneyi?) have taken part in every Grim race, which means we’ve ran around that tank track nine times, twice in the dark. Actually to be accurate, Fiona has ran around the tank track nine times. Sean missed one day and one night due to being on tour. I missed one day race with a knackered knee and will be missing the next one with another knackered knee**.
Anyway, I digress.
On a not so chilly afternoon in October, we rolled into the car parking area to complete a couple of 3.5 mile loops of the tank track, in the dark, while wearing head torches. It was pretty mild as we made final preparations, i.e. put numbers on and possibly have a quick cigarette***, pre-race photo and then a quick wander to the start line to join the, well not many other people. The Grim Black out seems to be shrinking in size. I assume this is due to using three different names and the change of month since it first started. This was actually the second Grim night race in 2013 following the Grim Night Terror in January.
Fiona was in training for the Malaga marathon and really should’ve been running a lot further, so she headed to the front to get a decent time, leaving the rest of us at the back to plod round the two 3.5 mile loops.
There’s not a huge amount more to report really, we got lapped by the winner as we completed the first loop and took some time out at the water station. The newest member of the team, Loz, wrenched his back as he slipped entering the first water hazard and decided to speed march the course instead. At his insistence Sean and I ran ahead , only to be caught by him not far from the finish. That was a tad embarrassing but did relieve the guilt of leaving him behind in the first place.
As ever, a well organised event and a great finishers t-shirt and definitely a race we’d recommend to anyone who wants to try out something other than road events.
Next up is the report for Survival of the fittest London 10 and 5km. Unfortunately I didn’t run either due to stupid knee but Sean has promised to do the write-ups. As Sean has been promising to write a blog post for the last 18 months, I wouldn’t hold your breath dear reader. Though I do have a plan to withhold the Baileys at Christmas unless he puts podgy finger laboriously to keyboard before then.
*Apparently the Grim Eight sounds so much better than the Grim Nearly Nine
**Different knee, totally different injury Bupa if you’re reading this
***Smoking is neither big nor clever but it is amusing to see the looks fellow competitors give you