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NEWSLETTER - 10th May 2001


The week before last the course planner, controller and I spent a very successful week in Scotland.  We were fortunate to be able to visit all the estates being used for LAMM2001.  We have now tagged each control site on every course.  I have spent a great deal of time discussing all aspects of the Foot & Mouth problems with the estate factors and stalkers.  Everyone without exception has been extremely pleasant, positive and helpful.  The really great news is that ALL the estates will be pleased to welcome the event to their land on 16th/17th June providing there is no outbreak of the disease in a sensitive location such as the Scottish Highlands.  We have agreed strict disinfecting precautions for the event itself with the estates and these will be described in the final event details that you will receive in early June.  We are very grateful to the estates for the support and trust they are placing in the event organisation. 


There are still plenty of places left in the event although entries have started to come in thick and fast in the last few days.  Of the 500 slots, about 410 are now taken.  If you haven’t already committed to the event or you know friends who are still sitting on the fence suffering from the F&M Blues, IT IS NOW TIME TO ENTER the connoisseurs mountain marathon.  We promise you that this will be another classic Highland location.  Please think positively but also bear it in mind that it will not cost you a penny in entry fees or coach transport costs if, heaven forbid, we are forced to cancel the event at the very last minute.  Remember – this will only happen if there is an unexpected outbreak of the disease in a sensitive location such as the Scottish Highlands. 


This is just a gentle reminder about the nature of the event and what we would expect of the competitors.  Each year I try to craft the LAMM so that it provides everyone with a sense of anticipation and for some a sense of excitement and adventure.  We don’t reveal the location until 36 hours before the event.  We go to extraordinary lengths to ensure that the location and other details remain confidential and this makes the event far more difficult and time-consuming to organise.  This year, a few people have got to know more than is good for them and where possible we have spoken with them about it.  If by some mischance you do get to know about the event location, PLEASE mention it to NOONE because I guarantee that if you do, you will without doubt succeed in spoiling it for everyone (including – or should I say, especially me).  Anyone found to have passed on this information to ANYONE else will have their entry fee returned and be barred from future events.  We can always sniff out the culprit as the list of people I have told is very short!


If you come from south of the border you may still not be aware that most of the higher ground on the Scottish mountains is now accessible for walking and running.  Scottish outdoors tourism is taking a terrible battering, mainly it appears because people don’t believe that the Highlands are open for business.  The places we stayed at on the recce are very bitter that so little effort appears to have been made by the ‘Powers that Be’ to publicise these things.  Bed nights as low as 10% of the average numbers were not unusual for March and April.  There is a lot of information on how to find places to go at the Mountaineering Council of Scotland website  There is still one Bank Holiday and plenty of weekends left before LAMM2001.  For those of you who can spare the time there are no excuses for not being fit enough to compete in the LAMM.  Get yourselves up to the Scottish Highlands – they are open.


We realise that if you live to the south of a line from Glasgow – Edinburgh, Foot & Mouth means that opportunities to train on the hills have been very limited.  Mark Hawker, our planner, has worked hard to create courses that will have significantly less climbing than usual, but the distances will be about the same.  We suggest that you enter the course you would normally run and not assume that you won’t be able to cope.  We want to prevent the shorter courses being unnecessarily crowded.  Remember that you can change course up or down at registration.  If you don’t believe me, see the stats. Below:

                Distance (Km)                  Height (m)  
           Day 1    Day 2 Total        Day 1   Day 2  Total
E           29.4    21.6    51.0        1050    1290    2340
A           26.6    17.8    44.4        1050    1020    2070
B           22.8    16.7    39.4          930      760    1690
C           20.4    14.9    35.4          860     720    1580
D           16.7    14.5    31.2          800      450   1250
Novice   15.1    14.1    29.2          720     400   1120

LAMM 2000 (for comparison)
                Distance (Km)                  Height (m)  
           Day 1    Day 2 Total        Day 1   Day 2  Total
E           30.1    23.0    53.1        2140    1290    3430
A           25.7    19.0    44.7        1730    1240    2980
B           23.2    16.5    39.7        1280    1260    2540
C           20.5    15.4    35.9        1210    1210    2420
D           18.0    13.1    31.1        1170    1020    2190
Novice   14.5    15.0    29.5        1060     800    1860
Distances are straight Line between Controls and heights climbed are the minimum by a reasonable route.  Mark feels that some of this year’s terrain is going to be slower under foot than last year, so any increase in speed due to the reduction in height will be partially compensated for by the rougher terrain.


We realise that for those of you who have or will be soon booking flights to Glasgow or Inverness, there is a minute element

of risk here and we are sorry that we will not be able to accept responsibility for money spent on unused flights.  It is very unlikely that you will be able to make an insurance claim for your flight if the event is cancelled and cheap, no frills air tickets often come with little or no flexibility whatsoever.  However, you should check the flexibility issue with any potential carrier as we are aware that in the current F&M situation some airlines are taking a sympathetic view. 

With Easyjet there is the option to change flight dates and names for £10 per leg and although their timetables are only available six months in advance, another change in six months time would provide you with flights to LAMM 2002.  Competitors have told me that British Airways have in one case provided vouchers for use on alternative flights and in another ‘inflexible’ case they provided a refund less a £30 administration charge.


Our planner, Mark Hawker, controlled the LAMM last year.  Our controller, Chris Hall, planned LAMM1999 and LAMM2000.  They are doing a great job again this year and I’m sure you will ‘enjoy’ the fruits of their labour.  Mark at least would like to compete again next year, so if a potential planner feels they may have a couple of weeks to spare in the first half of next year, I would be interested to hear from you.  Mark and Chris have plenty of historical data and spreadsheets that they would be only too happy to pass on.


We still have a pair of custom orienteering spectacles (strength +3.00), which come with a hinged attachment and blue/clear plastic headband.  Any takers?


Visit for details of this exciting 4 day team or solo multi-sport event which has been re-scheduled to 27th August.


Some of you have been experiencing problems trying to join the LISTBOT email mailing list.  In some cases this has been because you have been typing in incorrect email addresses.  The procedure is that you supply an email address and a password.  The list manager then sends an email to your address to test that it is a valid email address.  When you receive this email you must reply to it correctly to confirm that you really do want to join the list.  It would appear that due to the amount of traffic, your application to join the list sometimes gets lost.  If you still have a problem after a few tries, send me an email and I’ll subscribe for you with the password “competitor”.  You can visit and logon with your email address and password at any time to see previous bulletins or to unsubscribe from the list.

That’s all for now.  Next bulletin will probably be the Final Details in early June.  It only remains to say that I look forward to seeing all of you in mid-June at a location 2 – 3 hours drive hours north of Glasgow/Edinburgh!

All the best





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Route planning above Loch Duich
The clouds over mid camp
Racing together - the spirit of the event