Running Hard - The Story of a Rivalry - by Steve Chilton
For one brilliant season in 1983 the sport of fell running was dominated by the two huge talents of John Wild and Kenny Stuart.
Wild was an incomer to the sport from road running and track. Stuart was born to the fells, but an outcast because of his move from amateur to professional.
Together they destroyed the record book, only determining who was top by a few seconds in the last race of the season.
Running Hard is the story of that season, and an inside, intimate look at the two men by the author of Its a Hill, Get Over It and The Round.
An in-depth and inspirational account of the fierce rivalry between John Wild and Kenny Stuart, two of mountain running's finest-ever exponents. Steve Chilton explores the background, the characters and the head-to-head battle for the title of 1983 British Champion between these two ultra-hard men of the fells, and captures the unique spirit of running in its purest and most extreme form.
- Julian Goater, author of The Art of Running Faster
Running Hard is a funny, in depth insight into well-known and not so well known champions but, cleverly and importantly, also the characters behind these champions. It's these characters that bring the book alive and make you wish you were stood on the fells watching their battles in real life and then listening to their post-race banter afterwards.
- Nicky Spinks, double Bob Graham Round record holder
Recollections of races and post-race celebrations by such top fell runners as Jos Naylor, Billy Bland, Hugh Symonds, Jack Maitland and Malcolm Patterson are filled with insight and humour, and demonstrate the unique blend of intense rivalry and friendship that typifies fell running.
- Jeff Norman, Olympic marathoner and former Fell Runner of the Year
A fascinating book that paints a captivating picture of an exciting head to head race for the ultimate championship title. Steve's race reports are as edge-of-your-seat as a car-chase in a film; you'll be devouring the words and turning the pages fast. He brings to life a whole new world of fell-running history a mustread for every offroad runner.
- Claire Maxted, editor of Trail Running magazine
There is something primeval about hill running: a simple test of man versus mountain. The sport is a modern-day survival of the fittest and in the 1983 hill running season, two men literally seemed to be running for their lives.
- Jonny Muir, author of Isles at the Edge of the Sea
Kenny Stuart and John Wild are two of the greatest ever fell runners, with records that still stand today. This meticulously researched book is a compelling and fascinating account of their lives, and their rivalry and friendship.
- Steve Birkinshaw, fastest person to complete the 214 Wainwrights in one round
Two great athletes changed the face of fell running forever. Picture John Wild, road racing professional and international track and cross country champion, and Kenny Stuart, champion fell runner and winner of many classic mountain races, duelling over the toughest of terrains and weather conditions. Read of their courage, mental toughness and strategies in a modern, but almost Boys Own, battle and decide for yourself who is Wilson of the Wizard and who the Tough of the Track.
- Steve Jones, former holder of World Best time for marathon
Stuart and Wild were the Ovett and Coe of the fell running world. This is a fine account of their fierce, but friendly, rivalry.
- Books Cumbria
Steve Chilton is a committed runner and qualified athletics coach with considerable experience of fell running and a marathon personal best of 2-34-53. He is a long-time member of the Fell Runners Association (FRA).
In a long running career he has run in many of the classic fell races, as well as mountain marathons and has also completed the Cuillin Traverse. He works at Middlesex University where he is Lead Academic Developer.
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