The fall of Mann, Keith takes over

Jim Mann retires from Britain’s most brutal race, to leave Eoin Keith in the lead; Carol Morgan remains first women despite “big lows”

Episode 5 • Montane​ Spine Race TV 2018

⚠️ Episode 5 • Montane Spine Race TV. *Best viewed in HD*

Posted by Montane Spine Race on Tuesday, 16 January 2018

Today’s highlights can be viewed above or are available here

Alston, Cumbria, United Kingdom, Tuesday, 16 January, 2018: It was a dramatic day at the 2018 MONTANE® Spine® Race, with the retirement of race-leader Jim Mann (GBR).

Mann left check point three, Middleton in Teesdale, early on Tuesday morning,18 minutes behind Eoin Keith (IRL). Both runners were several hours ahead of Keith’s course record of 95 hours and 17 minutes. Mann seemed remarkably fresh, compared to a clearly weary Keith.

The two raced to Dufton, then up Cross Fell, the highest point on the course, where Mann was forced to wear goggles and balaclava to cope with a snow blizzard and strong winds. “It was a complete white out,” he said.

Both paused in an unofficial aid station in Greg’s Hut, with Keith leaving first. But at Alston, check point four, 276km into the 420km race, Mann retired.

“I had a bit of a sore quad from a fall on the first day, but its been manageable,” he said. “But I went into another hole today and wrenched it. I can’t even go over stiles now. I don’t think it’s serious, but it hurts like hell.”

Mann’s retirement leaves Keith in the lead, 285km into the race, with two-time Spine® Race-winner and four-time finisher Pavel Paloncý (CZE) in second, about 5km/one hour behind. Third-placed Tom Hollins, the 2017 race winner, is currently sleeping at Alston.

Current champion and course-record holder Carol Morgan (IRL) still leads the woman’s race approaching Dufton, but she’s had difficulties. “I feel like I’ve got another 5,000 miles to go still, but I’ll get there. I’ve had some big downs, but I feel good at the moment. I feel strong,” she said near High Force.

Sarah Williams (GBR) is second lady, about 30km behind Morgan, with Daphné Derouch (FRA) catching up with her at the Middleton in Teesdale checkpoint (CP 3).

After a day of strong winds and snow showers in the Pennines, the weather forecast for Wednesday is for clearer conditions with temperatures around 1˚C.

The 2018 MONTANE® Spine® Race continues through the night…

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