11/11/23 – Dava Way 50km (it was actually 51km) ultra. New race for me and only signed up a couple of weeks ago after being talked into it by two of the crew. The race is a point to point from Grantown-on-Spey to Forres. As soon as we all finished work on Friday we headed up. Quick stop at Aviemore for dinner (can’t beat a pint and some macaroni cheese for final carb loading) then onto Burghead where we’d managed to find a last minute lovely Air B&B. Getting there at 2130hrs meant quick kit check then early night with alarm set for 0445!!!

Up early, porridge made, then back to Forres for the 0540hrs bus to the start. Quick snooze on the bus then into the sport centre to register, eat porridge and have a cuppa. We debated many times what layers to wear

Eventually I opted for light leggings, long sleeve top and gloves. Definitely right choice. 0730hrs race started and we headed off for a lap of the woods and river round Grantown then through the town, past the beautiful poppy memorial and then up onto the Dava Way. By 13km in my legs decided to hate me so I put the tunes on as a distraction. I sang in my head so not to make anyone suffer with the awful singing. By CP1 I’d woken up a bit, they had coke but no cups so I opted for 50/50 mix of coke/water in one of my soft flasks. It was a game changer. The sun was starting to come up and views opening up. Just after CP2 we reached the summit with the bag pipes being played. The route continued though beautiful autumnal trails with lots of gates. At CP3 it was allegedly 5km to the finish, the longest 5km ever (because it wasn’t). The even added in a cheeky wee hill up to the tower and down before a final run through leaf covered path then final sprint to the orange carpet and finish. Done in 4hrs 51min. Very happy with that and to do it in sub 5hrs. I was 9th female and took home the trophy for 2nd FV40.

Change of clothes, cuppa tea and then time to cheer on Susanne, Robin, Theo and Gordon as they all finished. Great catch up chat after words and then the stuff drive home with a very important refuel stop at McDonalds Perth. Now home and getting to sit down and write this. Walking tomorrow will be interesting but luckily getting to spend it at a swim competition (as supportive parent) so nothing too energetic.