BOK Galoppen & ASO League - Brierley, Forest of Dean - 3rd December 2017
Working within the BOK team is an extremely satisfying experience. So little to worry about and do on the day other than listen to so many generous comments.
I happened to chance upon the Ruardean Hill Sports Club when out looking for a start location close to a suitable parking area. By chance, I stopped and spoke with Chris Rawlings from the club who immediately agreed to BOK not only parking in the grounds but the use of the club as well. As it happened, we were blessed with fine weather on the day but even so and I am sure you will agree the facilities provided by the club were outstanding.
Once offered the club facilities, starting and finishing on the East side of the map became a major driver. Particularly as the East part is little used in recent years. However, brambles and undergrowth mainly to the South prevented both start and finish being close to the car parking. Hence, the longish walk to the start. The downside of using the East part is recent updates to the map had passed it by. It soon became apparent that I could not manage all the required updates myself. Thankfully, Mike Forrest stepped in for which I am extremely grateful.
From a course setting perspective, starting and finishing in the East provided a major challenge. I aimed to avoid the steep slopes of Brierley on all but Brown whilst keeping all courses away from the worst of the undergrowth. I accept this resulted in a number of courses appearing more like a middle distance. The alternative was to incur large amounts of gratuitous climb to gain distance. From comments received, I believe my decision not to go for the latter was welcome by most. I did over estimate the impact of climb on junior runners particularly those on Green. Having test run this course myself I correctly predicted a senior winning time of 45 mins plus. I also predicted a couple of fast juniors might come close to 35 mins. I therefore congratulate the three runners who broke this barrier particularly Jack Forrest who took under 30 mins.
Finally, a big thank you to: my controller Paul Taunton whose attention to detail is truly commendable; Carolyn Dent and her team who willingly stayed behind to help collect controls allowing me remarkably to be clear of the area by 4pm.
Light grey hooded top found. Please contact the organiser, Alice Bedwell, on 01633 615586 to get it back.