This year I turned forty and during 2013 searched high and low to find a landmark race that I could enter to mark this milestone in my life. For a while I assumed this would be a Half Ironman but just as I was about to hit the enter button Monster Racing launched a new event called The Intrepid Duathlon and I knew my search was over.
Men and Women Wanted: For hazardous journey, small rewards, bitter cold, long hours of agony, possible danger, unscathed return doubtful, honour and recognition in case of success…
With two half marathons out and back along the North Norfolk Coastal Path and the minor matter of cycling the full length of Peddars Way and back in between, it was going to be no small feat. Something in the race really drew me towards it though. Maybe it was the fact it was in Norfolk, my home county? Maybe it was the fact there was no swimming involved? Maybe it was because I have memories from school of sponsored walks and cross country runs along The Peddars Way? Most likely it was a combination of all of these! Regardless, within hours I had entered and the clock had started ticking.
So fast forward 10 months and here we are as I begin my final build into the race. Do I feel ready? Not really! My focus on running in the early part of the year and subsequent lack of cycling means I have been playing catchup over the last few weeks.
However it was with real sadness that I learnt this week that the race has had to be cancelled due to lack of entries. It turns out there aren’t as many people as mad as me out there after all! I know The Monster Team are gutted to have to pull the plug, as it’s a race they really believed in but despite their best efforts they could not drum up enough interest. It’s such a shame as its a brilliant idea and hopefully it will get off the ground in 2015.
So I sit here writing this, suddenly without a landmark event for my fortieth birthday. Every cloud has a silver lining though and maybe this is an opportunity for me to do another ultra in 2014 and maybe even bag some UTMB points along the way?
So as one door closes another opens and the search for a UK based ultra this autumn begins. The hunt is on!
I will obviously keep you posted on developments and all suggestions for races are welcomed in the comments below