Pushing the limits

ByAdrienne Olszewska

Pushing the limits

After a quiet week it’s been a full on weekend for Clayton-le-Moors Harriers. A resounding win for Danny Collinge at the Bury 10K, BOFRA racing success and long distance endurance achievements from our feisty juniors, fund running, trail running, fell running, mountain marathoning and road racing. It’s certainly been a busy couple of days.


In Pendle’s Shadow

3 seniors and an incredible 7 juniors took on the challenge of “In Pendle’s Shadow” a tough 18 mile route over and around Pendle Hill. The morning was sunny and clear with a promise of a good day to come. Spirits were high and off we trotted at 8.30 keen to get going. The route starts at Barley Village Hall and heads up the Ogden Valley to the reservoirs before heading up the first climb to the summit of Pendle Hill. We bumped into Garry Wilkinson on the way up who stopped for a quick chat before we yomped up to the trig. Sue Allen and Cassie Smedley soon disappeared into the distance as the 7 juniors, myself and Deborah Stevenson of Trawden AC, made steady progress over Pendle.


The Magnificent Seven. Natasha Olszewska, Lucy Stevenson, Keira Stevenson, Aaron Lundie, Bronia Olszewska, Adam Stevenson and Rachel Stevenson

A lovely twisty descent towards Downham followed which was enjoyed by all despite Rachel getting sucked into a patch of bog, face planting and then losing her shoes! Fortunately, the shoes were retrieved and we were off again heading for the first checkpoint and cake! Sadly there was no cake yet, but we stocked up on drinks, regrouped and set off again. This section crosses fields and contours around to checkpoint 2 on Barley Lane where we were delighted to have scones and jam butties!

A section of farm tracks followed, where I managed to fall flat on my face in a farm yard whilst consulting the route description, before we headed up Rimington Moor towards Wheathead Height. This was a tricky section full of tussocks and gullies. A slight navigational error put us on the wrong side of a wall so it temporarily became an obstacle course as we decided to scale the wall rather than go back on ourselves. Another enjoyable descent followed towards checkpoint 3 and the turnoff for the shorter route. Spirits were still high so we decided to carry on. Aaron kept us all amused with his astonishing ability to fall over throughout this section!

Aaron Lundie leading the way towards Water Meetings in Barrowford

Aaron Lundie leading the way towards Water Meetings in Barrowford

We headed to Water Meetings at Barrowford and then after checkpoint 4, another climb to Noggarth Road. The final section of the route is a dogleg to Sabden Fold so the checkpoints are more frequent to ensure that competitors don’t cut the corner and head straight back to Barley. Fuelled by tons of jelly babies our youngsters were still in high spirits as we passed the mast at Higher Spen and dropped down past the Rigg of England and another climb to Guide Lane. A drop down to Sabden Fold and then the last big climb loomed ahead up alongside Cock Clough Plantation (with the mysterious abandoned caravan) to Driver Height.

The penultimate checkpoint. Stocking up on cake before the final climb over to Newchurch-in-Pendle.

The penultimate checkpoint. Stocking up on cake before the final climb over to Newchurch-in-Pendle.

This was the final section at last. Having got a bit carried away eating blackberries we had overshot the turn off at Sabden Fold and had to double back but we tramped up the last steep climb with no complaints and headed over to Fell Wood. This was a section the juniors know well. It’s very tempting to drop down to Barley but there is one final, somewhat hidden, checkpoint in the Church at Newchurch-in-Pendle to keep you en-route. Once we checked in, it was downhill all the way. We knew it was only a mile or two to go and the pace picked up on the descent to Whitehough and the final stretch to Barley. The gentle trot turned into a canter and then a full out gallop as we got nearer to the finish.

Name Age Finish Time
Sue Allen Senior 5:25
Cassandra Smedley Senior 6:10
Natasha Olszewska 13 7:15
Aaron Lundie 14 7:15
Keira Stevenson 12 7:15
Adam Stevenson 13 7:15
Adrienne Olszewska Senior 7:15
Bronia Olszewska 12 7:17
Lucy Stevenson 15 7:20
Rachel Stevenson 10 7:20

An outstanding performance from our amazing junior runners who completed this tough course with 3000ft of ascent, still managing to run at the end and with such positive attitudes all the way round. They were complimented at every checkpoint by the marshals and lots of the other competitors were amazed by how well they did. A credit to the club and possible endurance runners of the future!

Sue Allen was our first Clayton finisher in 5 hours and 25 minutes. Cassie Smedley took on the challenge of a long distance event with Vicky McKay and was pleased with her 6 hours and 10 minutes.

Merrick Hill

Two club members took part in the Merrick Hill race which is the fourth and final race fo the FRA British Championships. This is a 7.7 mile race with a climb to the summit at 750m from sea level. Richard Bellaries was our first finisher in 135th place with Wendy Dodds following in 137th. There were 196 finishers.

Pos Name Category Time
135 Richard Bellaries M60+ 02:04:41
137 Wendy Dodds F55+ 02:05:54

Full Results

OMM Lite – North Yorkshire Moors

Report from Colin Woolford

I had first seen this advertised a few years ago when the OMM (Original Mountain Marathon) brand was acquired by new owners and thought it was a great idea.  A non- mountainous Mountain Marathon with a more social, less ”tough” demeanour aimed at introducing people to multi day/navigation based events.  Being a fan of Mountain Marathons and having done an OMM or two and others I never really imagined running a ‘Lite’, until Ralph Baines of this parish won this event in 2015 and praised it and then an accomplished running mate of mine – who doesn’t run “off road” said he fancied it and would I consider running with him.  Of course I would!  Any excuse for a few days on the hills…

The format for the event is much the same as a usual OMM or other Mountain Marathon, teams in pairs locate controls/checkpoints across an area, which they won’t be fully aware of until they are handed a map at registration or as they cross the start line.  What makes the OMM Lite event different is there is a limit of 150 teams and the format is a score format: either Short (5 hours day one, 4 hours day two) or Long score (7 hours day one, 5 hours day two).  Score formats leave you to decide how hard and fast you go at the course choosing to find only a few controls for fun or trying to find them all! A Mountain bike orienteering event is run in parallel to this and both events takes place on NON open access land meaning paths, roads and rights of way must be used to travel between controls, collecting points. Highest total in the time allowed wins. Penalties are accrued (points deducted) if you are late back.

Graeme, an Edinburgh based ultra-runner and way better runner than I am, and I hatched a plan also involving wives and children as the other key feature of the OMM Lite is you don’t carry overnight kit around, you arrive back at an already set up tent at fixed campsite for the weekend, with catering, a bar and friends and family were welcome!  So, with plans afoot for the kids and girls going to explore Pickering Castle whilst Graeme and I trotted around the Cropton area of the North York Moors for 7 hours our challenge began.

Colin (R) and Graham at the end of Day 1. Photo courtesy of OMM

Colin (R) and Graham at the end of Day 1. Photo courtesy of OMM

For various reasons, it’s fair to say running hasn’t been high on my agenda the last month or few and (fortunately for me) it turned out Graeme hadn’t been putting the training in either so when we met on the Friday night, apologies and excuses were the order of the day and we set off on Saturday morning with a plan to start slow, finish in one piece, remain slow but not finish last.  Clear and bright with a crisp cold wind was the order of the day, conditions drying under foot, wearing trail shoes rather than fell we both thought perhaps we could have got away with road shoes given the nature of the well made paths around Cropton and Dalby area!

Day one’s ‘area’ headed East over to Dalby Forest and we spent a large amount of time running on forest tracks and through mixed farm/woodland.  We were collecting controls at regular 20 -30 minute intervals and running well, no navigation errors and everything where we expected it to be.  The last hour or so of the day was a little disappointing course wise as it appeared that whatever checkpoint you hit last before heading to the finish, it would be followed by anything between a 2 and 3km stretch on tarmac, competing with the traffic!  That aside we finished day one in 15th position from 29 starting teams having run approximately 38km in 6hrs 45mins finding 370pts.

Day two and forecast was for a warmer day and less wind and with five hours to run on the west side of Cropton and up on to the Moors proper we set off keen to chase down the two teams ahead of us who were only 10 points in front.  The mantra was “don’t be back late” we set off faster than we thought we would be capable of and feeling better every time we saw another team walking we were optimistic at improving our finishing position… Well, it was certainly hotter on the Sunday and with less wind, in fact barely a breeze we enjoyed the stunning scenery through an autumnal haze with plenty of conversation and banter with other teams as we passed them or they passed us.  A slight nav error in the last 90 minutes of the day put us off our plan by about 20 minutes and cost us 10 point control we would have to miss (and 2 penalties for being 2 minutes late back) we finished in what would be looking like 14th place!  We took 5 hrs and 2 minutes to travel just under 29km finding 250pts (-2). Chuffed to bits to have had a stronger day 2 than envisaged and improved a position we were then gutted to end up back in 15th as a later arrival even after penalties pipped us by 6 points to 14th.  27 teams finished the event from the 29 that started.

Day 2 - stunning conditions on the way to Ana Cross on Spaunton Moor. Photo courtesy of OMM

Day 2 – stunning conditions on the way to Ana Cross on Spaunton Moor. Photo courtesy of OMM

A well run event, much fun had by all (wives and 3 & 5 year old boys included!). I would recommend anyone thinking of embarking on a multi-day run/ nav/mountain marathon adventure for the first time would do well to think about starting with an OMM Lite.

Full Results

Scafell Pike

Geoff Gough was our sole representative in this 4.5 mile Lakeland fell race with 2999ft of ascent to the summit of Scafell Pike and back. He finished in 24th place overall and 2nd M55 in a field of 127 runners.

Geoff Gough at the Scafell Pike Fell Race. Photo by Paul Birdsall

Geoff Gough at the Scafell Pike Fell Race. Photo by Paul Birdsall

Full Results

Three Shires

Five Clayton Harriers took part in this classic Lakeland fell race organised by Ambleside AC. This 12.4 mile race has 4003ft of ascent and takes in Wetherlam, Swirl How, The Three Shires Stone, Pike O’ Blisco and Lingmoor. The Three Shires Stone marks  the location where the three historic counties of Lancashire, Cumberland and Westmorland once met.

Ricky Lightfoot swept to victory in this years race, taking off on the first climb up Wetherlam and never really being challenged by the chasing group. Victoria Wilkinson won the ladies race. Dave Bagot was the first Clayton finisher in 21st place with an time of 2:21:48. Mark Nutter and Ralph Baines were 98th and 99th. Ivan Whigham was 114th and Andrew Firth was 141st. There were 211 finishers.

Pos Name Cat Time
21 David Bagot M 2.21.48
98 Mark Nutter M50 2.54.36
99 Ralph Baines M40 2.54.46
114 Ivan Whigham M50 3.00.55
141 Andrew Firth M50 3.13.45

Full Results


Burnley Leisure 10K

9 Clayton Harriers took to the trails around Padiham and Hapton for this low key, local 10Kk trail race.

Padiham 10K Team Clayton

L-R Donna Airey, Matt Duckworth, Ian Hargreaves, Mick Hughes. Photo by Adrienne Olszewska

The route starts at Padiham Leisure centre and loops around the allotments before heading up to the top of the Padiham Greenway. From there runners loop around Mollywood lane and the canal before heading down through Hapton and along the River Calder back to the Leisure Centre.

Padiham 10K - Team Clayton

Robert Morrison and Colin White. Photo by Adrienne Olszewska

Matthew Duckworth was our first Clayton finisher taking 6th place overall with a time of 40:19. Stanley Grewal was 13th and first junior male in the race in 42:44. Donna Airey was our sole lady runner and was 1st F35.

Pos Name Cat Cat Pos Time
6 Matthew Duckworth M 4 00:40:19
13 Stanley Grewal MU18 1 00:42:44
16 John Wilcock M50 3 00:43:26
23 Robert Morrison M40 5 00:45:32
31 Stuart Proctor M 12 00:46:50
33 Donna Airey F35 1 00:47:13
38 Mick Hughes M40 6 00:48:17
40 Colin White M 14 00:48:36
46 Brian Wildman M50 9 00:50:25
49 Ian Hargreaves M50 10 00:50:48
64 Ron Chappell M65 2 00:59:17

Burnley and Pendle Fund Run

No official results but quite a few seniors and juniors took part in this fund raiser for Pendleside Hospice. Jonathan Pye was the winner. Aaron Lundie deserves a special mention as he ran this race on the back of the 19 mile ‘In Pendle’s Shadow’ challenge the day before. Nick Hennessey was our first Clayton junior finisher and Summer Hargreaves was the first Clayton girl. Michelle Abbot was our first lady finisher.

Awesome Aaron Lundie racing to the finish after a 19 mile event the day before! Photo by David Belshaw

Awesome Aaron Lundie racing to the finish after a 19 mile event the day before! Photo by David Belshaw

Well done to the following members spotted on the photos. Jonathan Pye, Nick Hennessey, Lennon Jackson, Matthew Jackson, Michelle Abbott, Luke Guest, Summer Hargreaves, Aaron Lundie, Hayley Copeman, Candice Heys, Avril Duckworth, Jack McGuire, Christine Leatheley, Jessica McBride.

Apologies to any club members I may have missed.

Bury 10K

Bury 10K - Team Clayton

L-R Chris Lawrence, Jon Cleaver, Jordan McDonald, Danny Collinge and Reece Lawrence.

Another win for Danny Collinge at the Bury 10k in 32:59 giving him a comfortable one and a half minute lead over the second place runner (Ben Coop of Bury AC). Jordan McDonald also enjoyed an excellent result finishing in 7th place with a time of 35:50. Jon Cleaver made the top 20 with his 15th place finish and time of 37:47. Reece Lawrence was 69th in 41:50 and his dad, Chris was 487th in 54:24.

Donna Scott was our sole female runner and finished in 396th place with a time of 50:46.

Pos Name Cat Time
1 Danny Collinge M 00:32:59
7 Jordan Mcdonald M 00:35:50
15 Jonathan Cleaver M 00:37:47
69 Reece Lawrence M 00:41:50
396 Donna Scott F50 00:50:46
487 Chris Lawrence M50 00:54:24

Full Results

Cumberland Ale 10

Report from Dave Motley

I was up in the Lakes this weekend visiting family and my little brother mentioned a local 10miler to him, the Cumberland Ale 10. Well I’ve done every type of race going but never a 10miler, so a PB was on the cards. The race starts/finishes at the brewery and after registering, warming up it was off to the start line. I always find it a strange experience lining up with others with no pre conception of their ability and I suppose not knowing anybody’s reputation can work to your advantage. 11am and off we go and I quickly found myself running with the leader and the pair of us were quickly forming a gap from the chasing pack, after a mile however it was clear to me I was treading water and couldn’t keep up with him so I decided to start running my own race, I later found out he ran 72min @ The Great North Run the week before. The next 9miles were an undulating blur of running in no man’s land which again was a funny experience, thoughts of the chasing pack spurring me on. I finished the race in 2nd place in a time of 65mins, my first road podium. I took home beer, £15voucher and a handmade wooden bowl, Is it time to retire from the day job and become a professional athlete?

Embsay (BOFRA)

Senior Race

Four senior runners took part with Tim Edward finishing first for the club in 9th place overall and 1st V50. Alan Life, Richard Briscoe and John Rusius completed our quartet of seniors in the race.

Pos Name Cat Time
9 Tim Edward MV50 21:45
25 Alan Life MV50 23:58
50 Richard Briscoe M 26:26
67 John Rusius MV60 29:01

Junior Races – Report from Alan Dorrington

As the BOFRA Championship draws to a close, four Clayton Juniors travelled to Embsay for the penultimate race of the season. Jenson Bentham, Christopher Brown and Ella Dorrington ran in the U12 race, over a mostly grassy and rolling course with a final steep climb to the turn point. In the Girls race there was a fierce battle on that final climb to the turn between the top 3 girls with Ella up there in the mix. A headlong chase and a small tumble on the return saw Ella coming in 3rd Girl and 12th overall, with Christopher and Jenson battling hard to the end to finish 21st and 22nd respectively.14322443_1122607614482262_5288200601979789625_n

Briony Holt ran in the U17 race which covered the full adult race distance, making for a long tough race. Her run to take 2nd Girl and 6th overall wasn’t perhaps up to her own high standards, but follows on the back of her previous 8 BOFRA wins from 8 races to take the U17G Championship, a great achievement for the season.

With her podium place, Ella clinched second overall in the U12G Championship, joining Dexta Thompson, also 2nd in the U12B Championship.

U17 Race

Briony Holt was our sole runner in the U17 race finishing in 6th place overall and 2nd girl.

Pos Name Cat Time
6 Briony Holt Girl 25:52

U12 Race

Ella Dorrington was our first finisher in 12th place overall and 3rd girl. Chris Brown and Jenson Bentham were 21st and 22nd respectively

Pos Name Cat Time
12 Ella Dorrington Girl 10:03
21 Chris Brown Boy 10:29
22 Jenson Bentham Boy 10:30

Full Results

Harrogate Haverah Trail Race

The Harrogate Haverah Trail Race comprises approximately 10 miles of trails and bridleways in the scenic Yorkshire setting of Haverah Park and within easy reach of the famous spa town of Harrogate. The course follows a circular route from Beckwithshaw that takes you down Pot Bank and into Haverah Park, then around Beaver’s Dyke and John O’Gaunts reservoirs, including the castle remains.

Breton Holdsworth and Jean Knightley took part in this trail race. Breton finished in 5th place with atime of 01:07:18 and Jean Knightley was 1st FV55 and 132nd overall in 01:32:14.

Breton and Rosie

Breton Holdsworth at the Harrogate Haverah Trail Race.

Pos  Name Cat  Time
5 Breton Holdsworth MV40 01:07:18
132 Jean Knightley FV55 01:35:14

Full Results

Lancaster Castle Half Marathon

The race starts on the famous Giant Axe site just a short walk from the the Historic Lancaster Castel and actually finishes inside the Castle itself. the race follows a rural route taking in the Luneside countryside and is relatively flat but throws in a tough final 1/4 mile to the finish.

Daniel Isherwood was our sole representative in this half marathon event. He had a great run and finished in 11th place with a time of 01:28:26.

Pos Name Cat Time
11 Daniel Isherwood M 01:28:26

Full Results

Parkrun roundup

Avenham junior parkrun – A total of 95 runners took part.

Pos  parkrunner  Time  Age Cat  Note 
1 Dexta THOMPSON 7:48 JM10 First Timer!
20 Felix THOMPSON 9:55 JM10 First Timer!
25 Kady THOMPSON 10:41 JW10 First Timer!

Burnley parkrun – A total of 308 runners took part.

Pos  parkrunner  Time  Age Cat  Note 
2 Chris SNELL 18:22 VM35-39
3 Jonathan PYE 18:33 SM25-29
7 Kevin DAVIES 19:37 VM50-54
11 Gareth BERRY 20:01 VM40-44
13 Nicholas HENNESSEY 20:06 JM11-14
17 Nick ROSCOE 20:13 VM45-49
30 Simon WILSHAW 21:16 JM15-17
38 Gordon BARRETT 21:53 VM50-54
40 Adam STEPHENSON 21:59 SM30-34
42 Colin WHITE 22:20 VM40-44
48 Lennon JACKSON 22:42 JM11-14
58 Sophie ASHWORTH 23:08 JW11-14
64 Michelle ABBOTT 23:17 VW35-39 New PB!
65 Nina KEWIN 23:18 VW35-39 New PB!
76 Carl CAREY 23:54 VM45-49
84 Lisa JOHNSON 24:38 VW40-44 New PB!
90 Toby BIRTWISTLE 25:02 JM10
94 John WILCOCK 25:19 VM50-54
95 Bethany WHEATCROFT 25:23 JW11-14
96 Reece Adam LAWRENCE 25:29 JM15-17
108 Bianca BENNETT 25:52 SW25-29
116 Chris LAWRENCE 26:08 VM50-54
138 Annabel WILCOCK 27:20 JW15-17
144 Hayley COPEMAN 27:36 VW45-49
150 Robert HIRST 27:59 VM65-69
185 Donna SCOTT 29:51 VW50-54
221 Judith CAREY 31:19 VW35-39
265 Valerie LAWSON 34:18 VW70-74

Dewsbury parkrun – A total of 107 runners took part.

Pos  parkrunner  Time  Age Cat  Note 
89 Robin PRICE 33:06 VM70-74

Humber Bridge parkrun – A total of 117 runners took part

Pos  parkrunner  Time  Age Cat  Note 
62 Eileen JONES 30:14 VW60-64 First Timer!

Lytham Hall parkrun – A total of 196 runners took part.

Pos  parkrunner  Time  Age Cat  Note 
163 Philip NAYLOR 34:36 VM35-39 New PB!

Marple parkrun – A total of 140 runners took part

Pos  parkrunner  Time  Age Cat  Note 
121 Ron HILL 31:30 VM75-79

Pendle parkrun – A total of 74 runners took part.

Pos  parkrunner  Time  Age Cat  Note 
8 John HARTLEY 20:45 VM55-59

Skipton parkrun – A total of 189 runners took part.

Pos  parkrunner  Time  Age Cat  Note 
108 Yvonne WICKHAM 27:40 VW50-54

Witton parkrun – A total of 109 runners took part.

Pos  parkrunner  Time  Age Cat  Note 
35 Simon STANSFIELD 26:29 VM40-44

Wythenshawe parkrun – A total of 280 runners took part.

Pos  parkrunner  Time  Age Cat  Note 
84 Katy THOMPSON 24:47 VW60-64 First Timer!


About the author

Adrienne Olszewska