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Countrystride #89: STEVE BIRKINSHAW – Smashing the 214 which we escape the autumn rains on Clough Head to meet fell-runner and Threlkeldonian Steve Birkinshaw, who in 2014 broke the record for the fastest run of all 214 'Wainwrights' – the ultimate British ultramarathon. His 6 day, 13 hour record – which smashed Joss Naylor's epic 1987 run by a staggering 12 hours – not only laid down new lines that enabled a new generation of records to tumble, but also had a profound effect on softly-spoken Steve, who has spoken candidly about the physical and emotional toll the run took. In a wide-ranging discussion, we learn about the tough schooldays that gifted Steve a love for the outdoors, we take a bird's eye view of his many career highlights – from the Bob Graham Round to the Lakeland 100; and we talk though the remarkable 320-mile, 36,000m ascent odyssey across the fells that ended with the eyes of the world following a near-broken runner onto the steps of Keswick Moot Hall.

The Moot Hall, Keswick, end point of Steve's record-breaking run.

In fine form... Steve with Mark.

Steve's run, as presented in Dave's 'The Lake District in 101 Maps & Infographics', available at


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