Jill Kisler

Jill Kisler

Just one of the four

Jill Kisler

Jill started her adventure race career on a Christmas present mountain bike and with an entry into the rearranged Sutton Bank open 5. Needless to say after learning to ride/skate on ice, that career was nearly very nearly over in less than 5 hours! Perseverance, a few more open 5’s and too many tumbles to count, she still is pretty ropey on a bike, but made it her mission in 2012 to complete the Swift and the Sting as part of Team Sardine, then the C2C in 2013.

The Itera was too much of a temptation, and due to the other sardines having different priorities this year, she has joined TeamFans to give it a go! Known as “the navigating tortoise” on the recent LAMM at the back of the field, she is built for endurance not speed! May be slow, but she will get there and ALWAYS with a smile on her face!

Lakes Training

The weekend in the lakes was a really mixed and enjoyable one. Steve was away doing some more bike skills training up in the north, Whinlatter, and Jill had been marshalling a check point in Wasdale on the Lakes 100 / Lakes 50 mile ultras. Heather joined Jill and myself for a trip around Coniston and most importantly another chance for us all to meet up and discuss plans and tactics of a couple of beers.

After all too short a time together the Team was dispersed again, Heather back down to North Wales and Steve to the second day of his bike skills course. Jill and I spend the some time at the finish of the 50/100 and like everyone else astonished at the winning times in all the event categories.

Then some paddling on Rydal Water, such  beautiful place it didn’t seem like training at all.

Rob and Steve at the finish

Water water every where

Haglofs Open5 Coniston

The weather lived up to expectations, wet, windy and cold. The plan was to run first, I’d tried several times to start on the bike in a hope to get more points early on then run thinking that I know running better than cycling. However each time I’ve maxed out on the bike stage and been totally wrecked on the run and hardly achieved anything. So run first, taking in as may of the high scoring controls in and around the base of The Old Man, missing out the one on the summit. By all accounts that was pretty horrendous, wind,  rain and very low visibility, it was bad enough lower down, standing still was inviting hypothermia.

It was wet, the ground was waterlogged and the wind made it even more difficult but the nav was OK and by the time the two hour mark saw us back at the transition ready for the cycle section. A decision to go for the far points first and then mop up on the way back, again underestimated the steepness and distance /  time required to hit the controls in the forest. A replan somewhere around CP9 cut short the ambitions and sent me back down to the main road after an entertaining (means muddy and fast) descent.

The mop-up back along the railway and main road was mostly un-eventful a couple of tricky nav decisions and then a long ride back along towards the lake and the high scoring CP near the finish. The final dash to the finish, avoiding the casual walkers and strolling families / prams and toddlers, but only just, was almost perfectly timed, just one second late!