It has to be said that the race calendar at this time of year is bursting at the seams and with The Outlaw (plus its add-ons) and Jensen Button's tri in Derby all on the same day it's understandable why our gathering this year was smaller than usual.
Nevertheless, the Peaklife intimacy meant a good morning was still had by all and even the weather turned in our favour on race day. Setting up the previous evening had proven to be a damp affair and the night-time rain on the bedroom window certainly put me in anticipation of a wet race. But with the sun doing it's best to break through it made life better for everyone.
Each year we do this event I become more acutely aware of the comical juxtaposition of two of the sides of Matlock Bath. Healthy athletes enjoying the open water and being amongst the scenic crags contrasts beautifully with the typical day visitor who stays within striking distance of the chip shops and tacky shops. One conversation with a competitor who had strayed uptown had him telling me of his astonishment at the amount of inappropriate not-very-taught flesh on display, complete with dodgy tattoos. His relief at returning to the sanctity of the Derwent Gardens was obvious.
Anyway, best not think too much about that. Keep up the sport folks!
The 5k swim reaffirmed my suspicions from last year that, at these Derwent temperatures, this is reserved for the hardcore swimmers. The post-race smiles and shivers confirmed this, so well done men for your efforts.
The aquathlon turned out to be a tricky one this year - lots to slip and trip on - but, again, the first aiders had a quiet morning. It was great to see the youngsters as always and I hope they thought it was good fun tackling a course which the BTF would never allow children to compete in. I'm all for encouraging an adventurous spirit as much as a competitive one.
Elsbeth - first yet again.
Thanks as always to the helpers and also to Mike Blair at Run Forest - the new running shop in Matlock (which sells fine coffee, by the way) - for his help with the prizes.
Relay runner Caitlin McCloy - great to see the little ones having a go.
Willersley Castle, again as always, were very kind in allowing us to run around their grounds. Please pay them a visit for some tea if you're passing.
The results are here and thanks once again for coming.
AQUAMAN DESIGN 5k SWIM