This magnificent cut glass bowl is the reincarnation of Eric’s last bike. His family sold the bike and used the proceeds to buy the trophy. They have generously donated it to the club, to be awarded annually in Eric’s memory to the club member who achieves the best overall performance in a club event.
That’s the best overall performance, which may not necessarily be the winning time – we’ve come up with a weighted formula that is designed to give an equal chance to both genders, and to all age categories, (in keeping with Eric’s championing of advance age athleticism and of women runners). Eric grew up in sight of Kinder, and fought hard for our right to roam freely there and across all the Peak District moors.
We’ve tried to come up with a reasonably objective formula for quantifying who has achieved the best time, allowing for their age and gender. To do this, we took the six English Championship races for 2018, (two short, two medium, two long), and assessed the winning time in each category as a proportion of the overall winning time. As an example, at Wasdale the V60 winner finished in 5hrs 17mins 27secs, which was 155% of the winning time of 3hrs 40mins 53secs. We have then averaged these proportions across all six races, to give the following formulas for each competing gender/age category.
Below are the currently used percentages (as of 2021):
- MU23: winning time +6%
- MV40: winning time +7%
- MV50: winning time +15%
- MV60: winning time +33%
- MV70: winning time +53%
- WU21: winning time +32%
- W Senior: winning time +17%
- WV40: winning time +26%
- WV50: winning time +39%
- WV60: winning time +56%
The winner of the Eric Mitchell trophy will have the honour of nominating a club race next year in which they can choose to defend their victory.