Wardle is a village just North of Rochdale, and is accessed by a main road which soon narrows to a village high street and then finally just a track.
Having attended the Skipton Beer Festival the previous evening a 2 pm race start was just what was required. 213 of us headed up the cobbled track out of the village and towards the moors and the large Watergrove reservoir. A pleasant sunny afternoon,plenty of snow still lying around in the gullies though. I did remember from 2006 a long descent towards the end of the race, managed to overhaul a few runners on this. What I didn’t remember however was the sting in the tail, a half mile uphill section on a track just before the finish!
I was a good few minutes down on my 2006 time ,then again I am 7 years older so I wasn’t going to beat myself up about it too much.
A great selection of cakes and buns after the race ( I will admit to having had one BEFORE the race too!) and a bagful of points for the Abbey fell grand prix ( I’m gonna need ’em for later in the year ! ) made the trip worthwhile.