My second and final race in July required a bit of an early start and a long drive, for what was a actually a very short and small race, however knowing how much fun we had at Pukka Races last offering, and knowing we were going to be getting one of the coolest finishers medals I’ve seen yet, we decided to sign up – and It turns out, it was totally worth the trip!
Only Fools Ride Horses was an un-timed 4 mile run in Colchester over a cross country equestrian course, with, as you may be able to tell from the name, an Only Fools and Horses theme. The website made it clear in the description that it was going to be a race with very little mud, but that it was going to be FUN!
We arrived in plenty of time, and the registration process was smooth, leaving us with plenty of time to “prepare” for the race. We took our race preparation extremely seriously, there were photos, then some more photos which were getting increasingly silly, there was a serious discussion about how we were going to tackle the race, most of which came down to us agreeing not to take it seriously, and to try and get the best photos we could. This lead to an even more important discussion about what poses we were going to do whenever we saw a photographer – and the phrase “Poses over position” was born (Quote Vince James)
In between all the photographs we were enjoying the tunes from the DJ tent, we did quite a lot of dancing prior to the warm up – which was probably a mistake, I was exhausted before we even set off!
After the warm up we got to the front – not to give us a competitive edge, but to make sure we were in the pictures, and then we were off!
This would be a fantastic race for someone who wants to try out an OCR for the first time, there were no scary or particularly difficult obstacles, so this race would be accessible to everyone. That being said, it shouldn’t be underestimated, and was still a challenging course. We set off over a field and down a hill – which is always worrying as you know you will have to climb back up one at some point.
At the sight of the photographer at the bottom of the hill we jumped into our agreed lunge pose – although we think he may have missed us – and then ran on. As we went through the race we naturally split into smaller groups, and I ran this race with Dominic, Chris and Vince. Despite agreeing to take it easy, we didn’t slouch and found a good pace.
The race consisted of running the cross country route, which was interspersed with horse jumps to clamber over. This was a unique and fun twist on a race. There were also some “Delboy surprises” one of which involved getting whacked with inflatables by two guys dressed up as Batman and Robin as you ran past, and another was getting squirted with water pistols, which was actually very welcome as the day was hot and humid. I also liked the touch of having a few areas with loudspeakers playing Only Fools and Horses clips.
More usual obstacles to navigate were a cargo net crawl, a sandbag carry up a hill then back down, and a slip and slide, which is always a favourite. Again at the slide we planned our poses and gave it a good go on the way down, then stopped at the bottom for another attempt at the lunge shot.
A final run and a few more horse jumps brought you back towards the start line, where the 35ft of monkey bars were waiting for us – and a 5 burpee penalty if you fell off. All three boys swung across these with ease – and I managed about a third before falling off and doing my burpees like a good girl. We re-grouped at the end of the monkey bars, grabbed hands, and sprinted to the finish line together.
Normally this is where I would wrap up and sign off, but I’m adding another section to this one…
The After Race Shenanigans
Once we had watched the others finish, we went into photo overdrive, there were group shots, selfies, and group selfies. We got ourselves changed into our new, bright yellow, pukka races finishers tees and had ourselves a well earned drink (we had the foresight to stick a large bottle in the car) then we went for the customary after race burger.
Instead of heading home at this point, we went back to the monkey bars. I had remembered a work competition to read in an unusual place, so after being able to convince someone to lend me their kindle, and with a little help from my friends, I was back up on the bars having a casual read!
Obviously we couldn’t stop there, so we spent a bit more time “monkeying around”
I enjoyed this race so much, there really was a great atmosphere and I got to spend the day with some lovely people. I will leave you with one last picture – us all just hanging around.