Just in from Mike Hayes below ... read it and weep (and please note the Cruiser and Middleweight categories are no more). Am thinking on whether the 40@40 League order should be determined by the 'Sherpa rankings' or not (i.e. on basis of additional weight carried, rather than total weight). Will make a call at the start in the morning, but erring towards this approach, to encourage the naturally heavyweight to carry significantly more weight too (by google's reckoning 14lb = 6.35kg).
A first opportunity too for some of us to raise a glass to Colin Henson - long time organiser of the DP BG weekend - in tha' Sportsman.
The Foxtrot is a D.P. training event run from the Sportsman Lodge Moor on Saturday October 1st at 11.00. The event is 3 miles long (as the crow flies) via 4 checkpoints described in more detail below. There are "Heavyweight" and "Sherpa" awards (see below) which anyone can compete-for either by being naturally stocky or by loading up their rucsac. Or, if people wish, they can run round the course without carrying any extra weight. The fastest person is expected to take 40 minutes (if they are very fit and very lucky). Most people will be out for well over an hour. Why so slow? Read on.
The 4 checkpoints
Each checkpoint has a card with a single letter on it. The 4 letters spell out a word. As you cross the finishing-line, say this word to prove that you have gone round the course.
Checkpoint 1. Alan Yates has built a knee-high stone cairn for his dog, Nan. It is 5 metres S of the wall. There is a card on top of the cairn. Note, 10 metres to the west there is a metre-high stone commemorating another dog that died in 1899.
Checkpoint 2. Wyming Brook Knoll is a surprising, substantial hillock between Wyming
Brook and the steep slopes to the south-east. In spite of its bulk, people who don't know
it will have great trouble finding it so here are some hints. Wyming Brook is in spate at
the moment so it is easiest to cross it at the "3 Bridges" WSW of the checkpoint. If you
do that, very gently contour through a tangle of rotten vegetation to a fallen tree by an old
wall; then, contouring through rough ground takes you to the knoll. Alternatively, go
down to Rivelin Dam and climb southwards through sticky marshes to the knoll.
The knoll is guarded by holly, brambles, ferns etc. I've put a black jacket and a yellow
plastic lid on branches of the tree at the knoll's high-point. The card is by the tree-foot.
Checkpoint 3. The card is at the foot of a tree just where the stepping stones reach the
north bank of the River Rivelin.
Checkpoint 4. The card is on a horizontal stick by the spring. You need to get close to see
it (and it is worth having a drink too, the water is pure).
A warning about the terrain
The first 1½ miles are a piece of cake. You'll jog the road and paths in 15 minutes (10
minutes if you are fast). The next 1½ miles are rather challenging. Even the fastest will
take another 30 minutes to get to the finish. And for many, it will take an hour. What? An
hour to do 1½ miles? Make no mistake. IT IS A JUNGLE OUT THERE. And the ground
crawls with things to trip you up. Consider taking a machete and shears. Enjoy.
Certificates of Achievement
Everyone who completes the course will become a proud owner of an "I Survived the
In addition there is a "Heavyweight Champion" Certificate for anyone who gets round
with a combined "rucsac+body" weight in excess of 200 pounds. And the fastest of these
Heavyweights will be anointed "Heavyweight Champion of the World" (fair enough as I
doubt whether even Mohamed Ali in his prime would get round faster than our winner).
Anyone who gets round the course with rucsac contents weighing more than 14 pounds
wins a "Sherpa Champion" award. This award is converted into a "Supreme Sherpa"
award if no sherpa carrying a weight heavier-than-you runs faster-than-you.
Heavyweights go off at 11.00
Remaining Sherpas go off at 11.05
Lightweight and unloaded Rabbits go off at 11.10
Rabbits should hope to overtake most of those in front of them. They can do this maybe
by running a bit faster. Or (come to think of it) when running-speeds are down to 1½ mph
maybe route-choice and scrambling-ability are far more relevant. Far more.
The weighing procedure
Everyone and their rucsac-contents will be weighed at the start. You can bring along your
own preferred rucsac-contents – or alternatively use bags of pre-weighed stuff that we
will bring along.