Ten Buckley Runners braved the challenging conditions to take part in Ras y Aran on Saturday 18th March. The race takes in a 10 mile out and back route from the village of LLanuwllyn at the bottom end of Bala Lake, all the way to just below the summit of Aran Fawddwy and then back, In total around 3000ft of climb.
With a field of around 80 runners, The race got underway at 1pm. There were winds of 45 to 60 mph on the 5 mile climb up towards the summit, with the wind cleverly angled so it offered no running advantages at all either up or down, just battering everyone from the side.
There was a good turnout of Buckley runners who are becoming one of the better represented clubs on the hills now. Great to see Karl Williams, Tim Hargreaves, Tom Barr, Hayley Evans, Dawn Urquhart, John Morris, Paul Donoghue, Steve Toogood, Andy Pritchard and Simon Roberts.
Conditions were really cold, with a few casualties along the way. Difficult but sensible decisions had to be made with Dawn turning back early to get back out of the increasingly cold conditions. Those who know Paul Donoghue won’t be surprised, but special mention to him for staying with and supporting dawn to get her off the mountain safely and quickly. Some great performances, with some of the newer runners to fell running doing a proper winter fell race in the foulest of conditions. I think I saw Tim still smiling, though it could have been a grimace.
John had to have some special care and attention to warm him up (which he seemed to enjoy a bit too much !) with runners, race organisers and paramedics showing the best of what fell running is all about. John warmed up just in time to go up and collect his category age prize, and hopefully the beers will have warmed him up even more. Other category prizes in the v40, 50 and team prize, with Hayley 4th lady overall, and Tom 7th position overall.