Kentmere Fell Race 2014 & The Rest of the Weekend’s Action

ByChristopher Holdsworth

Kentmere Fell Race 2014 & The Rest of the Weekend’s Action

Kentmere Fell Race 2014                                             Competitor 88 – Peter Browning (V55)

‘The sweat poured off us in the high humidity, and the narrowness of the track through the ferns allowed no overtaking. I soon realised that immediately behind me was the redoubtable Wendy Dodds, covering my every move and ready to surge past as soon as the path widened..’

July 20th saw the fourth of the six counting English Championship fell races of the 2014 season. On line race entries opened months ago, and it was said that up to 600 runners had signed up for it, and in the pre race information we were encouraged to get to registration early to avoid the queues. In the event, only 364 names appeared on the results list, so what happened to the other 236 entrants at £10.00 a go who didn’t show up? You do the math as the Americans say.


Courtesy of Garry Wilkinson

Leaving Clayton-le-Moors at around 10am, the day was cloudy and breezy and not that warm. However things had changed once we reached the Kentmere valley: the sun was out and it was much warmer, although the darker clouds to the north east threatened something worse. Six Clayton-le-Moors men and three women had made the trip north. Three of the men had not yet reached the veterans category which was good, but all three girls were over 60. Where are the youngsters?


Courtesy of Garry Wilkinson 

Away we went on the 19.8km (how far?) route and as we climbed the Garburn track on our way to the fell, the heat was oppressive. After around fifteen minutes we headed up through the ferns towards the ridge and things got even hotter. The sweat poured off us in the high humidity, and the narrowness of the track through the ferns allowed no overtaking. I soon realised that immediately behind me was the redoubtable Wendy Dodds, covering my every move and ready to surge past as soon as the path widened. I congratulated her on her beating Ivan and Dobbo at the Wasdale Fell Race last week, and asked if she was still feeling a bit tired. “Yes a little” was her reply, giving me all the encouragement I needed.


Courtesy of Garry Wilkinson 

Eventually we gained the ridge and thankfully things cooled down a little. Usually I am good in hot conditions but this was really hard work. The race follows the ridge via Ill Bell up onto High Street, before turning back south towards Kentmere Pike. Ahead of me, the other five Clayton-le-Moors lads were pushing ahead, but above the weather was changing. The black clouds had moved in, and the rain began to fall. I slipped on the wet grass and banged my elbow which immediately began to swell alarmingly, but what can you do other than get on with it? The rain increased in intensity bringing welcome relief to the heat, and fortunately there was no lightning, although the rain seemed to get harder and harder. Down from Kentmere Pike, across the valley floor, and back to a very soggy finish field. 2 hours 17 minutes, a personal worst, but happy to finish. Nurse Joanne Motley examined my elbow and in so many words, told me not to be so soft – no fracture and the swelling going down.


Courtesy of Garry Wilkinson 

For the record, the results that mattered were as follows:

1) Tom Addison (Helm Hill)                       1.27.55

49) Spencer Riley                                     1.47.29

50) Dave Nuttall                                        1.47.53

62) Helen Berry (Holmfirth 1st lady)          1.50.20

86) Dave Motley                                       1.53.24

144) David Bagot                                      2.02.39

172) Lee Smith                                         2.05.56

173) Ryan Wilkinson                                2.06.04

244) Peter Browning                                2.17.05

254) Wendy Dodds (2nd LV60)                2.20.34

318) Linda Lord (1st LV65)                       2.38.29

321) Katy Thompson (4th LV60)              2.40.11

Thanks to Peter Browning for this weeks report! Full results can be found here.


The Rest of the Weekends Action

This weekend was most certainly for the fell runners – plenty of mountainous climbs, lengthy descents and stormy weather to traverse through. However! Our road contingent were still out in force as they took on the Blackpool Summer 10kJacob Watson, going by his pseudonym ‘Lesley‘, had an outstanding performance finishing in the top 10 for Clayton-le-Moors Harriers. He ran the course in 00:38:14, not bad for a V50!! Next across the finish was Terry O’Leary in 13th, managing a sub 40 time of 00:39:22, whilst Mick Hogan squeezed under the 20 counter, finishing 19th in 00:40:40. Road legend Stephen Biscomb continued his conquest for the Road Palladium, once again finishing as the 1st V60 in 00:43:09. Another dependable road runner, Martin Brady, finished the race in 00:45:35, whilst Lee Moore came through in 00:48:09. Well done chaps!!

Onto the other two of the three big fell races this weekend now. Firstly we head to the Yorkshire Dales, where four Clayton-le-Moors Harriers made the trip over to The Ingleborough Fell Race 2014. Ivan Whigham had an excellent race, finishing as the 1st MV50 in 01:03:53. The second Harrier through was Richard Briscoe, 42nd in 01:06:01Peter Dugdale came in just above the century mark in 103rd place, achieving a time of 01:19:15, whilst MV70 John T Francis brought the race to a finish in 01:45:00.

The other big fell race of the weekend was The 2014 Snowdon Mountain Race. The fell running regulars were all taking part, with Neil Hardiman the first Harrier back in 01:02:16 – 5th in his age category! Next across the finish was Mark Taylor, who managed to claw back over 50 positions to finish in 328th and 01:14:21. Our third Harrier and first lady across the finish was Barbara Savage, who once again had an excellent race and finished as the 1st F50-54! Our next two Harriers to finish were Paul Wale and Andrew Dugdale. The completed the fell race in 01:19:34 and 01:19:46 respectively. Rounding of an excellent day for Clayton-le-Moors Harriers we had Nichola Horsfall, who had a superb race as she finished as the 4th F55-59! Well done to all who ran.

Special mention goes out to junior runner Briony Holt who ran at the English Fell Running Championships in Kendal. She earned herself joint 1st place in the U12’s category. Well done Briony!! 

About the author

Christopher Holdsworth