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Trig and Coach / comedian Whittle grinding away...
Faster Pasta

UMUK - Day 3 - 56 Mile Run

After running for 40 plus miles, soaking wet, Trig needed to change his jacket and socks because they were soaked through, whilst eating a bowl of pasta ready for the next stage. Trig took his trainers off and Matt got the towel and started drying his feet which is a really nice thing of him to do and just shows how close they are as brothers.

Trig was obviously battered by now after three days of insane endurance, highs and lows. It had rained pretty much all day and there he was on the final stretch.

Mathew was drying his feet and then pulls the towel off his foot, grabs his little toe and starts singing "This little piggy went to market, this little piggy went to....." If you could of seen Trig's face it was one of the funniest things I've seen for a long time, he's just looking at Mathew like what the actual fuck are you doing??.

By now we are all in absolute hysterics and Trig was off once again shaking his head from side to side laughing at Mathew as he headed on for the final stretch of the race.

This little piggy went to....

Now Mark and I were in my van with Lemmy and Matt in their's. Due to this Trig would finish the last 15 miles on his own. Suprisingly, after the change of clothes and Matt's nursery rhymes he looked fresh as a daisy again and was smiling every time we passed him.

I'm unsure what was going on his head but it must be one hell of a buzz to know that you are on the home straight. After three days of relentless, brutal hills, never ending roads, changing weather conditions as well as all the calmaties of the second day's cycle. This was an ultra endurance event which pulled no punches, again I have to applaud the race organisers for the routes they were both beautiful and brutal in almost equal measures.

We decided that Matt and Lemmy would carry on following Trig for the remaining miles and I'd head back to the hotel with a drenched Mark and catch up with Annie-mal and Mia who were waiting at the finish line.

On our way back to the hotel we passed Matt D who was a good distance ahead of Trig and under 10 miles from the finish. He was at the side of the road with his support crew, covered in blood from the waist down. It was covering his legs all the way down to his ankles.

We quickly stopped to ask his crew if he was ok, and they confirmed he was fine but the blood was due to chaffing. This can give you some sort of idea of how extreme this type of event is, we've all had a chaff or two in life but this was extreme, ultra chaffing. As I moved off I could see Matt getting ready to start running again and finish the last few miles.

When I got back to the hotel the small crowd of families and supporters were all waiting for the athletes to arrive. Matt D was not far off and would shortly be followed by Trig.

This is one thing I've come to realise at these events. Most of these endurance athletes are very humble people, they aren't out there doing it for the likes on social media and to tell it to the world. There are no big crowds or grand parades. It's a very personal thing and the vibes on these races is obviously competitive but also very friendly and supportive.

I think only someone who has done this type of thing can truly know the dark places that you go to when you want to give up and just after you've reached the top of one brutal hill, you can see the next one in the distance.

Like I said at the start, I've known both Trig and Mathew for many years and to see them both go from doing very little exercise to what they are doing now is both staggering and inspiring.Both Trig and Matt are very humble guys and even though Matt has reached a high level of fame from Dirty Sanchez and his other projects they both do these endurance events for their own personal reasons and to challenge themsleves, not anyone else.

I can't help but admire them both for that and the commitment to training and preparing for these events is again, just mind blowing.

The winner of UMUK 2018, Matt Dykes bloodied and battered.

Just over half an hour later we could see Matt Dykes coming down the final stretch of road into the hotel and over the finish line. It has to be said Matt is an incredible athlete and his performance on the second day's cycle was nothing short of phenominal. To see Matt cross the finish line with blood pouring down his legs with his family and crew waiting was amazing. I obviously wanted my best mate to win but full credit to Matt Dykes he was incredible.

I phoned Matt shortly afterwards to see how far Trig was from the finish. He said he was less than 5 miles away. Myself, Mark, Annie and Mia waited anxiously.

Shortly after, Matt and Lemmy arrived in the van and we could see Trig coming down the final hill toward the finish. I'm going to be honest here, it was an emotional feeling to see him run down that last few hundred metres. In the past three days we'd all been together through the highs and the lows, of which there had been many.

After quick clean up and change, Matt D came over and hugged it out with Trig. In that moment, only those two guys knew what pain and torture they had gone through and they were both great athletes and men through out.

This would mark the end of an epic trip to North Wales. Everytime I go there I fall a little bit more in love with the place. I'd had a couple of days before the event to relax and get out on my bike. Got the shit beaten out of me on Dragon's Back, learned some lessons and saw some beautiful sights.

Then UMUK, what an event. It's always good to see the Pritchard family and over the years we've had some great times. Having not seen them for ages leading upto the event made it made it even more meaningful and a pleasure to support Trig to achieve his goal.

It was just a great experience to see one of my best mates achieve such a huge goal right in front of my eyes and to be a part of that was something special. We all gathered around and congratulated Trig who was presented with his medal by the event organisers. Props again to the UMUK team, this was a proper medal, they certainly didn't cut any corners when choosing the medal it was a beauty.

Finally, once again I'd like to say a huge thanks to Darren, Ben and Claire for being so friendly, helpful and welcoming throughout the event. Our crew may be perhaps a little unorthodox at times but there's no doubting both Adam and Matt's dedication, skill and performances in endurance racing. The event was very well organised and structured throughout and it was a great pleasure to follow the courses through this stunning part of North Wales.

The final thing I have to say is Adam is a teacher and had work the next morning. What a guy.

Not all heroes wear capes. Matt Dykes and Adam Pritchard first and second place finishers at UMUK 2018.

The Freesoul Project 2019 - Made in Wales