After last years race I decided to go back and give it another go. The weather was much better than previous with plenty of sun and a slight freezing breeze but the mud was just as deep and the river just as cold.
After about 1.5 miles (and missing a gate which lead us through a big patch of nettles) five of us pulled away with Dave Aucott from Dark Peak doing most of the work for the first 4 miles. We all stayed fairly close together until the turning point where I pulled some ground back on the climb and then got a nice little gap on the run off the hill and down the road. I decided to take it easy on the remaining climbs after last year and make sure I had enough to finish. By the water crossing on the way back no one was in sight and it was just a matter of holding onto it. With about 2 miles to go and just fields to run over I started feeling heavy and had to a walk through parts of the field that were deep with mud when I glanced behind to see I was being chased down by Stephen Pyke of Staffordshire Moorlands. I just about crossed the line on two feet in first place and a time of 2.08.16 with Stephen only 16 secs behind. This was a massive improvement on last years result when I finished 86th in a time of 2.52. No other Horwich member ran.