Event Manager’s Report
This was a big year for the Peak District Challenge: We saw two new event records set, and the largest field for several years. Congratulations on your successes, and I really hope you enjoyed the experience. The event was organised by a large team of volunteers and mountain leaders, who worked overnight and from the small hours to support you; If you would be willing to return the favour in future years, we’d love to have you.
Thank you to everyone who has already been in touch with kind words, it really makes the effort worthwhile. The friendliness of the checkpoint crews was regularly mentioned, as was the sheer beauty of the route, and the final climbs (which the longer three challenges now feature) as the finale of their respective routes(!). If you feel similarly, we’d be so grateful if you’d write a public review. It’s one of the main ways new entrants hear about us, so please consider a sentence or two on Facebook Reviews, FindARace, or RaceCheck. If you have any negatives or points of feedback for us, please get in touch – we’re here to help.
Joe Tabachnik came along on Friday afternoon to volunteer setting up the hall. After a few hours putting up signage, filling the water containers and building the finish line, he still had the energy to set a new record the next morning on the 50km Bronze distance. He was closely followed by Nick Jones, who had to settle for second at this distance, but retains his record from 2020 on the Silver distance.
Kevin Walker kept the checkpoint crews on their toes throughout the night, maintaining a blistering pace and cutting 16 minutes off the event record at the 100km Gold Ultra distance, finishing in 12:33:01. Sally Fawcett’s second place at this distance also deserves mention, completing in 13:47:31.
Darren Barnet held the Copper 25km title from 2021, but missed out on a new course record by just six seconds. His record time of 2:27:19 from last year stands. Chris Simmons took second place on Copper, and toyed with the idea of attempting the Back Before Dark 10k later in the day. In the end, sanity prevailed, and the first completion of that 35km compound option remains up for grabs.
On the Back Before Dark 10k, just three runners achieved the stated target to be back before meterological sunset: James Bradbury shaved just over a minute off the record at this distance, finishing in 55:32. Tom Ball and Tom Gartrell were the only others to join the limited elite.
The Peak District Challenge Silver distance was won in 11:54:47 by Tony Doy. Rania’s team (who have volunteered crewing a checkpoint for several years), took on the silver challenge this year. They completed in a respectable time, and were chased in to the hall by another past member of checkpoint crew Dina, who completed the Bronze challenge.
We’ve been fortunate to have had three good weather years in a row now. While the cold night left frost by dawn, conditions were dry throughout, and warm sunshine by Saturday afternoon. Those entrants who were raising sponsorship estimate they’ve raised just under £10,000 for charity at the time of writing.
We certainly hope to see you back in future years; Our current list of ideas for 2023 includes giving you more savoury food earlier in the course, and looking in to “daytime” options to take on the longer distances. If you have other requests, please let me know.
Thanks to our generous Supporters
Balmy Fox – From surfers to sailors, walkers to runners, skiers to climbers Balmy Fox has created a full range of skincare products. Balmy Fox prize bundles will be available to win at the Peak District Challenge www.balmyfox.co.uk
The Banff Mountain Film Festival – The best new films from the worlds most prestigious film festival. Providing tickets to one of the UK showings. www.banff-uk.com
Wilderness Development– Providers of outdoor skills, development and training courses throughout the Peak District, they will be supplying outdoor adventure experiences as prizes for the Back Before Dark event. www.wilderness-development.com
Made to Move Sheffield – Made to Move provide a new standard of care; to enable you to not only learn about the reasons why you are limited in your ability to exercise pain-free, but also provide you with the ongoing support and guidance to rehabilitate a new or existing injury and improve your current performance. https://made2move.co.uk/
Damian Hall – Damian Hall’s new book, We Can’t Run Away From This, explores how running is affected and affects our climate and ecological emergency and what runners, brands and events can do to lessen their carbon footprint. https://bit.ly/3AhUAJ4
GoOutdoors Hathersage Branch Located just a few hundred meters from event HQ, Go Outdoors is a great spot to pick up any last minute event supplies, and to pop in for a browse on Sunday morning after your efforts. Thank you for donating a prize to be awarded at PDC22.
Decathlon Sheffield Branch have donated Prizes were awarded to our finishers. Make sure to tag your photos on Instagram @peakdistrictchallenge and @decathlonsheffield www.decathlon.co.uk
Swizzels – We are delighted to be partnering with Swizzels sweets who are based in the Peak District. They provided some tasty treats for all the entrants in their goody bags. Whether you’re first or last, everyone gets a little treat from Swizzels. https://swizzels.com/
Clif Bar have great environmental and ethical credentials. Clif work with suppliers and third-party certifiers to source ingredients. For example, 100% of their cocoa ingredients are either certified organic or sourced from Rainforest Alliance Certified™ farms. www.clifbar.co.uk
A Hathersage institution, Outside shop and cafe has all the gear and equipment you might want for your adventures, and is a great place to browse for art with a coffee in the famous upstairs cafe. www.outside.co.uk
Alpkit’s store is a few hundred meters from event HQ, and as well as being a great place to shop for any last-minute event supplies, is a cool place to relax on their sofas with a coffee! Perfect for Sunday after your challenge. www.alpkit.co.uk
We’re delighted to be able to include Compeed Blister Plasters in your goody bags this year.
Hopefully you won’t need them – but we are grateful to Compeed for supporting the Peak District Challenge with blister plasters – just in case! www.compeed.co.uk
We’re delighted to be offering Tenzing energy drink at Castleton and Baslow checkpoints. Tenzing have superb ethical credentials, from their carbon-negative business, to their rainforest-alliance certified ingredients, to their tree-planting programme. Visit teamtenzing.com
And you? We’d like to hear from new Event Partners for 2023 and onwards. Please get in touch