Turf Blog 30-05-24

Turf Zone – HalfGlad

Managed to better my Eager ferret time recently, chopping a humongous 8 seconds of my previous best to give me 7:45 minutes. I’m at the stage where unless I hold the Region Lord bonus, I’m unlikely to make any significant difference to my times and that seems a distance wish but will not stop me trying. I might be able to make some small gains but I just don’t have the leg power for anything more.

The best time recorded time globally for an Eager Ferret is by turfer Recycling in Sweden with a time of 4:35 minutes over a distance of 1.92 km (1.19 miles) with an average speed of 25.12 km/h (15.61 mph). Note this includes the Region Lord 50 second time bonus.

The best recorded here in Scotland is by kjtindall at Loanhead with a time of exactly 6.00 minutes, over 2.48 km (1.54 miles) and an average speed of 24.83 km/h (15.43 mph). This also includes the Region Lord 50 second time bonus.

Compare these to my own best time of 7:45 minutes over the same 2.48 km (1.54 miles) distance in Loanhead but with an average speed of 19.22 km/h (11.94 mph). This is without the benefit of the Region Lord 50 second time bonus. Guess I’m just too slow!

The challenge of trying to better your Eager Ferret time is not the only aspect to this part of the Turf game. One idea that came to mind is to try for sub-10 second Eager Ferret’s using different sets of 10 zones, just for the fun of it. As well as various attempts at Loanhead, I’ve also managed two here in Bonnyrigg. It can be good fun trying to find suitable sets of 10 zones and while you may not get any medals or even better your time, there is some fun and satisfaction to be had all the same.

There’s an interesting possibility in Edinburgh, let’s call it the Royal Mile Ferret Run. Perhaps that name might stick in Turf circles one day? The run starts at zone HillGate on Edinburgh Castle esplanade then runs down the Royal Mile taking zones RoyalMile, TheNewsSteps, StGiles, HunterSquare, JohnKnoxZone, SibbaldWalk, ThePoet, VeteranZone and ends at Royal Mile Zone at Holyrood, a distance approximately 2.10 km and downhill all the way. I post this as a challenge, akin to the unsanctioned alley cat races in the bike messenger world. Go on, I dare you!

So, the Royal Mile Ferret Run, take all 10 zones in 10 minutes or under. As Jeremy Clarkson often said, how hard can it be? Well, this challenge has a few interesting obstacles to overcome. The first is that it’s located in the busy tourist district of Edinburgh, which means any attempt during the day is probably out of the question. Therefore, you may have to visit in the wee small hours, otherwise known as silly o’clock, when is should be relatively quiet and with minimal traffic. Add to that three sets of traffic lights to deal with, two pedestrian crossings, two roundabouts and enough cobbles to give a cobble enthusiast a wet dream. Might also be some issues accessing the esplanade at certain times of the year, or even at night, as well. Makes things more interesting, yes/no?

Of course, 10 zones in 10 minutes on the Royal Mile might actually be mission impossible but that should not stop anyone trying. It would be an achievement to gain any of the other medals in the series on the Royal Mile, either walking, running, kick scooting or cycling.

  • Eager Squirrel, 10 zones within 30 minutes.
  • Eager Beaver, 10 zones within 20 minutes.
  • Eager Weasel, 10 zones within 15 minutes.
  • Eager Ferret, 10 zones within 10 minutes.

Now, another thought has occurred, one prompted by some chat on Turf WhatsApp. Instead of simply taking any 10 ordinary zones what about only taking zones with attributes, for example, holy zones, bridge zones, or zones with any attribute? Might be fun to try and see how many bridge zones you can take in 10 minutes or less. Musselburgh and the Roseburn area of Edinburgh look like good possibilities. More daft ideas soon.

Copyright ©2024 Gary Buckham. All rights reserved.

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