Heptonstall’s Holly Page should have felt on top of the world after clinching success in the World Skyrunning Series at Limone sul Garde in Italy.
Instead, she was glad just to scramble home in the final race of the series after a horrendous time with cramp and illness.
Everything was going so well for the Calder Valley Fell Runners ace for a while.
She said: “With nothing to lose I set off hard from the start and for the first time ever, really enjoyed the first big climb and was up with the leaders.
“Then things started to fall apart, my ITB (a muscle in the thigh) cramped up completely so I hopped down the first descent.
“I was starting to feel dehydrated and dizzy but kept pushing on, holding onto fourth despite being sick and stopping for the toilet.
“Then, about 20km in, the world started spinning. I felt horrendous, my stomach was in pieces, and everything fell apart.
“There was nothing I could do other than watch people come past me and try and survive to the finish line, which I did, covered in my own sick. Delightful.”
A nightmare race still had a happy ending for Page. “Once I’d come round I found out I’d still managed to win the Skyrunning World Series. Wowsers!” she said.
The series started on April 30 in China and took in 10 extreme mountain races, over distances from 21km to 48km, in China, Spain, Italy, Greece, Andorra, Switzerland and the USA.
Sunday’s final race was over 29 km with more than 2,500 metres of climbing.
A runners five best results count and Page picked up the maximum 100 points in China, Spain and America.
She finished with 462 points to beat Lina El Kott Helander from Sweden (454) and Laura Orgue from Spain (45).
News from Halifax Harriers, Sowerby Bridge Snails, Northowram Pumas and Stainland Lions in a full page of athletics in Friday’s ‘Courier’