LuxNUL 5 – flatter and easy in Belair
The fifth event in the 2019-20 Luxembourg Night Urban League (“LuxNUL”) series, in Belair and Merl, saw some fast running, on a flatter and technically easier area than some of the earlier LuxNULs. The most interesting part of the course was in Merl Park, at the beginning of the courses in order to beat the 20.00 locking of the park gates. And the only real hill came at the end, climbing up from the “LuxLait” new development (Luxembourg’s answer to Dubai, as one runner described it).
The weather was dry (there was luck here – it came on to rain hard while the controls were being collected in), and not too cold. But the recent weeks of rain meant that a few runners got unusually muddy feet in Merl Park, which had become notably swampy in places.
On the long (“Deer”) course, Sasha Rybakov made it four wins out of four starts, easing round the 5.1km course in under the half hour mark. An impressive victory. Jonas Wolff again came in second, running as hard as he could but still six minutes down on Sasha, having faded on the climb to the last control. Roland Ludwig was third, narrowly ahead of a pack (of two). Staffan Vowles, Chris Scott, Ondra Kotecky and Rob Hembrow were all absent, so the field was rather thinner than the planner had hoped. This also meant that the overall standings are little changed since LuxNul 4.
The leading three on the medium (“Rabbit”) course were again close together, with Elisabet Wirtz taking her third win in the series, and thus confirming her position as the overall LuxNUL winner on the Rabbit course. This time Elisabet was some two minutes ahead of Elvire Pierlot in second, with Maggie Roach coming third, a mere seven seconds further back. It was also good to see Shane Enright in action, returning gently from a back injury. Shane won the evening’s “best dressed” competitor award with some ease, turning out in a jacket with an impressive acreage of reflective patches, and positively glowing in the dark.
As usual, the full results for the run have been compiled by Michael Hock, and are on the Helga website – see https://helga-o.com/webres/?lauf=3172
Cumulative placings to date for the overall LuxNUL rankings are also attached. Remember – the best three results are counting, out of the series of six runs.
Thanks to Jan Sliva and his family for hosting us, and not just for letting us use their maze of cellars, but inviting us all upstairs for some very relaxing and congenial food and drink afterwards. Thanks too to Maggie Roach, for collecting the controls in the park, and then doing most of the footwork as the planner drove a lap of the area, sometimes thwarted by the many one-way streets, to collect the rest of the controls.
Luxembourg OC looks forward to welcoming all members and friends to the final LuxNUL, run number 6, on Wednesday 25 March, probably starting from Clausen. (This is however still “to be confirmed” – the planner is waiting for a non-rainy day before checking out the bar and the area!) Usual start times, although by then the days should have grown long enough to make a torch unnecessary. And this time, plenty of hills to run up! Final details on this website, a little nearer the date.