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2018 - Raid Corsica
Cobbie's Selected Race Results

Raid du Massif Central - 6 days, 562 miles, 16,300m ascent, 46 hrs Report


Aug - Dee Mile, 2000m OW swim. 29:12; 60/301. Report

July - Raid Pyrenean Report

May - Chester Tri West Coast of Scotland Cycling trip ... 300 miles in 3 days. Report


Sep - Scilly Swim Challenge, 11 miles of swimming in 5 stages Report


June - Dee Mile, 2000m OW swim. 29:33; 25/275 Very Happy Very Happy


March - Gin Pit Marathon; 3:59:26. 14/39


Became a dad Cool

Oct 2011 - Feb 2012

Travelling the world Cool
Nepal - Annapurna Circuit and Chitwan
S. E. Asia and trekking in New Zealand
South America
Trekking the 'Circuito del Dientes de Navarino'; Chilean Tierra del Fuego


Sep - AXTri - Report

June - Chester to John O'Groats cycle ride with the Tri Club; 637 miles in 9 days

2010 Races

Sep - Ö TILL Ö; 14:19; Report

2009 Races

Nov - Pembrokeshire Coast Challenge; 78.6 miles. Day 1 - 5th in 4:39. Very Happy Day 2 - Retired with ITB injury after 15 miles Sad

Oct 4th - Sandstone Trail 'A' Race; 17 miles, 1750ft 2:19:15; 29/156

Aug 8th - Norseman 14:57; 81=/230 Report No1 & Report No2 Smile

June 28th - A Day in the Lakes HIM 5:55:18; 68/309 Report

June 17th - Dee Mile, 2000m OW swim. 29:12; 13/100 Report Very Happy

May 31st - Pontcysyllte Aqueduct Cyclosportif 107 miles, 3000+m ascent; 7:20:26

March 28th Cheshire Cat Cyclosportif 105 miles; 7:04 Report

March 21st - Chester Tri Runners vs Kayaks; Llangollen Canal 32.4 miles; 5:22 Report

2008 Races
The year I was a fat bast@rd Rolling Eyes

Atlantic Coast Challenge 78miles; About 18 hrs Report

Norseman 17:05 Report

Etape du Dales 110 miles; 8:40ish with puncture

2007 Races

Nov 17th - Penmaenmawr Fell Race (11 miles, 1500ft); 1:35:23; 50/220

Bala Olympic Tri 2:14:00; 217/773 (AG 61/203) Smile Report

Hathersage Hilly - 1:22:34; 19/169 and AG 4/43 Smile ; Report

July 11th - Dee Mile, 2000m OW swim. 23:16; 15/76 Smile

Jan 29th - Tough Guy 1:25:02; 59/3800ish finishers Very Happy Very Happy AG 5th Vet Shocked Very Happy ; Report

Jan 22nd - 4 Villages Half Marathon 86:52; 152/1570


Nov 18th - Penmaenmawr Fell Race (11 miles, 1500ft); 1:31:42; 24/237; Report Very Happy Very Happy

Oct 8th - Pentland Skyline (16.2 miles, 6,200ft); 3:30:54; 79/150; Report. Blisters Crying or Very sad

Oct 1st - Sandstone Trail “A” Race (17 miles, 1750ft) 2:15:14; 14/135 3rd V40; Report Very Happy Very Happy

Sept 24th – South Shropshire Sprint 1:23; 28/234

July 23rd - TLD Bike Relay 5:52:38; Report

June 7th - Dee Mile, 2000m OW swim. 28:47; 24/97 Smile

June 4th - Bala Middle 4:47:39 Crying or Very sad

May 7th - Fred Whitton Challenge 112 miles, 4,150m of ascent, 8:18:52; Report

March 19th - Edale Skyline Fell Race 21.3 miles, 4,620ft; 3:48:25, 100/260

Jan 29th - Tough Guy 92:55; 52/3283 finishers Very Happy Very Happy AG 6/521; Report

Jan 22nd - 4 Villages Half Marathon 85:43; 152/1655 Very Happy


Oct 30th - Snowdonia Marathon 3:54:50; 265/961

Oct 2nd - Sandstone Trail “A” Race (16.8 miles, 1750ft) 2:17:41; 29/111 Very Happy

Sep 18th - Bala Olympic Tri 2:20:31; 83/433 (AG 17/100) Very Happy

Sep 10th - Helvellyn Tri 4:17:38; 43/331
Report Very Happy Very Happy

July 24th - The Longest Day 11:00:25; 40/150

June 5th - Bala Middle 4:39:54; 92/318 (AG 25/87)
Very Happy

Mar 15th - Wuthering Hike [31 miles 4400 ft] 5:35 Smile

Jan 29th - Tough Guy 93:49; 161/3,500 Very Happy

Jan 22nd - 4 Villages half marathon 90:39; 256/1504

Survival of the Shawangunks - 5:29:45 35/120 Very Happy
Wolverhampton Oly 2:19:50 Very Happy

The year of illness and poor motivation Crying or Very sad
Powerman UK 3:47

HIM Llanberis 5:09:40 Very Happy Very Happy

HIM Llanberis 5:38 Cool Cool
All about Cobbie

Joined: 02 Aug 2005
Location: Chester
Occupation: Consultant
Interests: Red wine and cakes

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A Day in the Lakes Half Ironman - Race Report
Tue Jun 30, 2009 10:05 am Cobbie
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Well, where do you start with a race like this? For me it was very much a stepping stone towards Norseman but I knew from my recce that it was a cracking course and was keen to do well. Despite being my favoured distance, this was to be my first HIM in 3 years, a change in career and minor obsession with Norseman being responsible and something which will be rectified in 2010.

Despite doing a recce, I was also somewhat uncertain what to expect in terms of finishing time or splits. All my training has been aimed at getting myself back in shape (after being somewhat over-bellied last year Rolling Eyes ) and Norseman specific. So, I didn’t expect to have much top end speed on the bike especially and went back to the 80-85% of FTP rule of thumb for the bike. I was pretty sure this would leave me undercooking it somewhat but would hopefully leave me heading out for a strong run.

Saturday before the race was great fun, meeting up with old friends and new faces, a good pub meal and for once a decent night’s sleep. I felt surprisingly calm getting my kit ready, despite it being obvious that the weather forecast of morning rain was well off the mark. Even at 8am all the signs were there for a sweltering day.

My Dee Mile swim 10 days ago had given me hope of a sub 30 min swim and I got a good start, catching a fast set of feet soon after the start. As we turned towards the far buoy though, he moved well over to the right – I couldn’t sight the buoy and there was a wide line of swimmers ahead. I kept slightly to the right of centre but should have stuck with my draft who was bang on line once I did finally see the buoy ahead - he was too fast for me to catch now. We’d had a smooth swim out and at the far turn we were suddenly into much choppier conditions, time to concentrate of keeping my stroke long and nobody else very close by. I could see a group a little way ahead but wasn’t sure whether I could bridge the gap so kept to a steady effort. One guy did slowly catch me and after the final turn I slowed enough to draft him, then jumped off his feet to catch a swimmer in front which allowed him to draft me in to the finish – fair enough really.
I exited the water knowing that I could have gone round again at the same pace so perhaps should have pushed harder – still 30:37 was fine with me given that I expended very little energy. Only 170 timing chips recorded a swim split so not able to post a position with any certainty.

Was some great support at the swim exit, lots of cheers and I had a speedy T1, ditching my plan of wearing a cycling jersey as I was already hot.

Heading through Pooley Bridge and round Ullswater I stuck to my power target on the flat. A few came past me here including Ben (theNoor) who is obviously a more accomplished swimmer than I realised, looking strong. Soon enough I got to the start of the Kirkstone, aiming to keep below threshold and seated which I managed easily enough. Quite a few were drafting around here, including a Stirling Tri guy who was pulled. I was overtaken by a fair few and quickly realised that my fear of not pushing hard enough was right, I was well within my limits – still, decided to stick to the plan and so span up as much as possible. Dave (Spike) came past near the top, going like a train, very impressive.
Having only been down the Kirkstone once this way I was a little careful but there are only a couple of tight bends and it was early enough for there to be little traffic so could afford to pull wide rather than brake a couple of times. Then the turn to Ings and I was ready for the series of short, sharp climbs before the long slightly downhill stretch towards Kendall. The rolling climb up to Shap Fell was the most scenic part of the route for me but I did lose concentration a little and didn’t push hard enough. The TriTalk massive at the top were cheering loudly, great support given that the field was very stretched out by now and I was pretty much alone for long periods.
All along the middle section I was overtaken by an occasional cyclist. I was finding it hard to keep to my power target, as always mentally more than physically. At the turn right in Askham, I heard a familiar squeaking noise, yes Tony’s (Toyota Crown) yellow softride still needs oiling Rolling Eyes . For some reason, this was what I needed and for the last 10 miles I kept pace, finally raising my effort enough to keep momentum going over the undulating terrain. Into T2 in just under 3:08 – had been hoping for a 3hr split but realistically I would only have taken a few mins off with more consistent effort, maybe 3:05 so no complaints given my strategy, and was feeling pretty good apart from slightly tight quads.

Tony and I left T2 together and I followed him up the road – slight worry with lots of tourist traffic at the right turn – then onto the uphill trail with him pulling ahead a little and then walking for a bit, me more consistent tempo effort. I was passing people here but already could feel the heat sapping my strength. At one point I thought it was drizzling slightly but amazingly it was tiny water droplets condensing in mid-air, 100% humidity and quite pretty little sparkles of light. I was having some slight cramping in my quads; nothing to worry about as the pain was quite manageable. As it levelled off at the turn towards Howtown however, I started running properly and my left hamstring twanged – OW OW OW. I stopped and stretched and thankfully that was enough, though the last I saw of Tony. I passed one guy in some distress, sounds of vomiting came from behind me a few seconds later; I briefly thought ‘poor guy’ but there was no time for sympathy. The ground was very hard and rocky and my full attention was needed to prevent a trip and to follow the most efficient route as the path dropped down towards Fusedale.

There was somebody taking photos here so I grinned, he said I was the first with a smile, I expect it was my last for quite a while. Even so, I was overtaking people regularly and running steadily.

As we got into the bracken, the oxygen seemed to disappear and I had a low moment. I walked a few paces but a Sitling Tri guy was amazingly supportive and really geed me up. I briefly wondered if this was the same guy who I’d been pleased to see being caught drafting and felt a little guilty, though I’m not sure why. Into Howtown we took a direct route to the concrete road and the very welcome water station. It was here that the full force of the sun seemed to hit me and after drinking two cups I felt much slower as I hit the climb up Fusedale. Low down, most of the people I overtook previously came past as I really suffered in the heat. I wasn’t at all dehydrated, just seemed like temperature and humidity combined had pushed my body temperature above the point where I could run. As we got higher, there was a slight cooling and I started to recover a little, slowly catching people again. Looking up there was just a long line of suffering ahead, everybody working hard in their own little world of pain. At the top there was some very fine drizzle which just cooled me just enough to get me running properly over some marshy ground and say hello to the marshal. I started to feel pretty good on the descent, retaking the people who had passed me at the bottom of Fusedale and was bombing down, though it again required real concentration with a narrow path; steep drop to the left and rocky and uneven underfoot. On my February recce, all this was open and I could plan my route; now the bracken had grown, obscuring the difficulties and the ground was hard with none of the give you expect – each few steps had to be calculated in a split second; how ambitious should I be, where can I put my feet, should I go airborne or slow for a larger step. A Teeside Tri bloke was faster than me but was happy to stay behind when I offered to move aside. I had a fall near the bottom, trusting to a sloping rock when I shouldn’t have and falling into the bracken below the path. Mr Teeside stopped and helped me back up, wonderfully sporting of him and he headed off in front now as I ran off a stiff left hip on the remainder of the descent [I sought him out at the finish to say thanks].
The litre of GO in my camelback had been and gone by now so I was looking forward to getting back to the aid station, just the final bit of off-road to negotiate and I could feel myself slowing though still running fairly freely. Another two cups of water and a short descent to the lakeside where it all got unbearably hot and humid again. In a matter of minutes my positive attitude had gone and I was struggling to run at any pace, tiredness now contributing. I was frustratingly alert from a red bull before the start, sometimes it’s possible to head off mentally to another place but not this time for me – I was aware of every agonising moment. Every once in a while there was a hint of a breeze and I would find myself able to run normally but it never lasted long and I walked up a couple of the inclines. Bainsy caught me walking with a mile to go – “OI COBBIE, this isn’t Zombie Hill”…well it might as well have been given how I felt! It was good to pass a few words and see a smiling face but I wasn’t able to get myself to do anything more than an ironman shuffle until I saw the campsite and knew the finish was close, got passed by probably 20 people in the final couple of miles. I was so relieved it was over when I crossed the line, more great support from a good sized crowd and the cow bells which had moved from Shap Fell to the finish line.
A 2:14 run was a long way down on my expectations but given the heat I’m not complaining – I was just glad to have got round in one piece, already with thoughts of improving my time in (most likely) more usual Lakeland weather next year. Now it was time to go and sit in the lake for 5 minutes and feel a little less parboiled.

5:55:18 was my slowest HIM time but good enough for my realistic target of top 25% (86th of 330 finishers; 17 of those ahead of me were teams, so 69th individual from roughly 300 starters). Had I only managed to run normally for the last 3 miles I would have been comfortably in the top 20%. With only 3 individuals breaking 5 hours, this was a tough course on a brutal day – each and every finisher deserves credit for making it to the end.

Afterwards there was time to chat with the other Chester Tri finishers and then cheer in the last few tritalkers, all of whom were in good spirits. Then a very entertaining bbq and drinks to finish off the day.
Back next year? – absolutely Very Happy

Only have one photo just now, though I hope a few others will soon make an appearance - thanks to Steve for his second team photo in 10 days:

From left to right: me, Iain, Steve, Simon
Almost back to being an athlete in 2016 Shocked

Tue Jun 30, 2009 10:39 am Dirty Davey
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A softride? I've not seen one of those in years. Sounds like a tough race, well done for hitting your target. And if only a couple of poepel broke 5 hours, it's never going to be a quick course.
Tue Jun 30, 2009 11:03 am TonyP
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Nice to meet you Peter and dare I say I may see you there next year. Wink
Tue Jun 30, 2009 11:16 am Slacko
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Great report Pete, your run sounded remarkably similar to mine (except for the bits where you ran fast!).

It was fantastic to finally meet you and say thanks in person for all the valuable advice you've given me through this forum. Smile
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Tue Jun 30, 2009 11:38 am Poet
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Awesome Cool
Tue Jun 30, 2009 11:41 am Badger
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Thanks for all your kind words at the campsite, Pete - really bucked me up. For all that and my run was only 13 minutes slower than you - look out behind!! Very Happy

I agree that running both over the rocks and through the bracken became a case of planning your steps carefully - I've also got the grass stains from the descent of Fusedale on my shirt to prove it. But your recce had given me the mental licence just to bomb the thing, and no one went by me; in fact only one person overtook me on the whole of the up and down of Fusedale and I reeled in scores just by being persistent.

Excellent report and best of luck for Norseman - perfect training race for it.

B Cool
Focus on easy, because if that's all you get, that ain't so bad. - Caballo Blanco
We do not inherit the earth from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children. - Native American proverb

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