Yes dear readers, it’s an action packed roundup once again! We’ve had Fell championships, road championships, marathons, half marathons, 10k and 5k racing, ultra-distance events, mountain marathons and cyclocross. You’ve been busy on the fells, the trails, the roads and in the parks. Run on for a long time Harriers!
Jim Smith Brownhouse 5K – Tuesday 13 September
Run during a huge thunderstorm, the results were unfortunately compromised by the weather conditions so there are quite a few gaps in the times for the runners. Three hardy Harriers were amongst 63 brave runners in this race. Robert Hirst was our first finisher in 45th place and around 27 minutes with Jack McGuire in 52nd and Ron Chappell in 53rd around the 31 minute mark. No times were available for our runners.
Equinox 24 Hour Relay
Report from Paul Shackleton
I competed in the Equinox 24 hour relay at Belvoir Castle near Leicester last weekend 17th/18thwith a bunch of Birmingham lads from different clubs under the name Cannon Hill Crusaders. In the main team event (teams of 8) we finished 2nd, beaten by 4 minutes by Stilton Striders. Completing 34 x10km laps (210 miles/21000 feet ascent). I ran 4 x10km laps. Average 43 minutes. The accompanying photo was taken around 7am. I’d ran about 30k at this point off no sleep and I’m surprised I look ok because I’m shattered!
High Peak 40 – Saturday 17 Sept
Congratulations to Martin Terry who finished in 6th place overall and 1st Vet50 in this 40 mile ultra with a time of 06:32:11. The route is a loop around the Peak District among the beautiful scenery of the gritstone and limestone hills and dales. It’s also one of the counting races in the RunFurther championship.
As we are all caught up it’s onto this week’s action…
THURSDAY 22 SEPTEMBER
RON HILL 78th BIRTHDAY 5K
Report from Mick Hughes
A bright crisp Thursday evening in the pleasant foothills of the Pennines between Bacup and Rochdale played host to this special tribute to our very own Ron Hill MBE. Organised by Andems Runners & Rochdale Harriers this birthday race for Ron (a mere 78 years young) was also to celebrate Ron’s 1st victory in the national cross country championships of 1966, 50 years ago where he completed 9 miles in Sheffield in a time of 46:21!
This 5k race started from the lane behind the Cock & Magpie pub. A hilly start heading up a stony trail to Cowm Resevoir followed by 2 laps of the reservoirs thin perimeter trail track (caution and good timing was needed when pushing forward and taking places here!), then a tight bend doubling back down the steep hill to the finish line. A good attendance and representative mixture of both young and mature runners from a number of clubs made the journey; Todmorden, Oldham & Royton, Halifax, Middleton, Bury, Gossopdale and Trawden as this was also part of their championship series.
Once up on the reservoir and flatter terrain, the pace settled at a fairly quick one in general and there was a good energy and enthusiasm about the short scenic route. Ron had been introduced before the start and received plenty of applause and the mood was set. Andrew Worster (Todmorden Harriers & AC) took first place with an impressive 16:54. 7 Clayton Harriers competed (including Ron) who still managed to run the race in 31:27; a true inspiration to us all. Ron was in demand post-race but me and fellow team mate Ian Hargreaves managed to grab a quick chat and picture with him. He thanked us for coming and said, “What a club Clayton is, eh”! To which I replied, we were honoured to be there. After all it’s not every night you get to race with and be in the company of a true running legend. Here are the times of our club runners;
Andrew Laycock 17:19 | Garry Wilkinson 19:17 | Mick Hughes 20:48
Stephen Biscomb 21:07 | Ian Hargreaves 23:21 | Robert Hirst 28:13 | Ron Hill 31:27
Awaiting Official Results
SATURDAY 24 SEPTEMBER
ENGLISH SCHOOLS FELL RUNNING CHAMPIONSHIP
Three Clayton Juniors took part in the English Schools Fell Running Championships. Christopher Brown and Ella Dorrington ran in the Year 7 race with Christopher having an excellent run finishing in 8th place overall and 7th boy, and Ella in 30th place and 6th girl. There were 93 finishers in this race so well done Chris and Ella! Briony Holt ran in the Year10/11 race and finished in 27th place overall and 3rd Girl.
Report from Andy Holt
The final race of Briony’s fell calendar was the English schools Fell race. Held at Sedbergh School this year following two years in the Calder Valley the route crosses the village to and runs up and around the Winder, a 450m peak that forms the entrance to the Howgills. Having run and walked these hills we knew the terrain would consist of steep, grassy tracks that make for fast fell running. The race is aimed at schools but unless your school has any interest in fell running, it’s up to the athlete/parents to enter.
We arrived in plenty of time only to find we’d left our running bag at home, so, following a mad dash back home driving like those people I dislike immensely Briony was prepared to race. The girls and boys run together, and there were approx 70 people in Briony’s race. Following a fall last year in this fixture Briony’s form has been slowly returning, but she was in the year group below her age, running against 4 out of the six England team qualifiers she would have been satisfied with a top five finish.
The route is essentially a mile up an inclined track, a mile along a track, another mile up a steep track to the summit then a hair-raising mile or so descent to the finish. Briony was second girl on passing me, looking comfortable and tucking behind the leader conserving her energy for the pull to the summit. The plan was stay in contention until the descent and hopefully Briony’s descending will see her to the finish. Unfortunately Briony blew up on the ascent, and dropped from 2nd to 4th. She easily made up the ground to secure third but had given the leader and girl in second too much distance. It was more satisfying hearing the lead girl smashed the record by 2 minutes, and despite Briony’s lack of form a third place finish was higher than she expected and she was pleased with how she ran today.
Ella Dorrington was superb, we think finishing in 5th/6th in her respective race was very good for her first time, considering the competition and standard of running. Chris Brown was another good result finishing 7th in his group.
RAB MOUNTAIN MARATHON
Report by Colin Woolford
The third and final Mountain Marathon of the year for me, and definitely my favourite – the Rab Mountain Marathon. The Rab being its tenth year and this my fifth time of starting off the back of last weekend’s OMM Lite I wanted to have a good one.
The Rab has changed owners recently and is slowly changing format to a more traditional ‘OMM’ style with multiple classes to enter across a spectrum of ‘linear’ courses where you follow a fixed route navigating point to point, fastest time wins through to the classic ‘score’ format where you have a set amount of time to find as many checkpoints as you can, highest score wins. Traditionally the Rab has put on a Long Score and a Short Score. The long being 7 hours on the Saturday, 6 hours on the Sunday the Short being 6 & 5 hours respectively. This was my entry as a male solo in the Short Score.
The event moves around the North West usually held within a few hours of Manchester and this year was to be the Cumbrian part of the Yorkshire Dales – the event centre being Outhgill. This suggested that the event would take place over some steep sided open moorland with Mallerstang Edge to the East and Great Boar Fell to the West, both areas I have not visited before.
Friday night at the Rab is a social affair where there is a meal for those who require one, a small bar and a showcase of “adventure” films, usually with a running theme. I arrived a little late for all that so got my head down early for the Saturday start, which we were informed would be a 3km walk away! At least I wouldn’t need to warm up… A big part of the Mountain Marathon experience that I really enjoy is the anticipation of getting the map when you cross the start line and being handed a piece of paper which reveals which checkpoints (controls) are worth what value. The clock has already started and you have to mark the map up and come up with a plan to best use the available time – six hours for me – to collect as many points as you can. My Saturday plan would take me down the western edge of the course looping further north before heading due south to the overnight camp at the bottom end of the valley – near the Moorcock pub, which we were reliably told had put on extra staff to cope with any Rab’ers requiring refreshment on Saturday night.
The weather was dry on Saturday, cloudy but bright and a constant wind made the course a pleasure. Underfoot it was drying out, and the peat hag moorland was a doddle to run through. The final section from the route I had planned was tough going and took longer than anticipated it wasn’t tussocks, or bog but a very strange soft grass that seemed to swallow your feet as you tried to run through it leaving you taking exaggerated steps to cross it – all 3km’s of it! I reined in my plan to get an extra 25 points from the east side of the course and focussed on heading for the more runnable (Pennine) bridleway to get off this terrain and get back in time. Which I managed with seven minutes to spare and a points total of 295. I was very pleased! My overnight ranking was 70th from 150 starters, top 50% – a good result for me…Onto Day two.
Day two – I knew it would be wet. All forecasts had heralded rain on Saturday night into Sunday and not really stopping until later that day. Saturday night the rain came around 8pm so sadly the usually ‘social’ Rab overnight camp quietened down early and most were zipping up tents early. I am afraid I was too knackered to seek shelter in the pub! The rain fortunately stopped around 6.00am and stayed off whilst the campsite packed itself away and competitors started their day two. 5 hours and the need to get back up the valley to the farm based event centre and finish line. Not wanting to repeat the same route in reverse, I decided to explore the Eastern side of the valley and devised a plan I thought would net me around 180 points – with a few options depending on how I was going. In short I started poorly and got worse! The first control and 2km’s were fine, steady and stiff I know I take a while to warm up on day two of these things, but this time I was just pooped. Knackered. Achingly tired. The first big climb of the day up Grisedale Pike to find a series of 10 point controls and a big 20 then 30 pointer left me feeling drained and no amount of energy drink or food seemed to be pepping me up. Even my trusty Haribo jelly babies weren’t giving me the lift they usually do, so despite my nav being spot on, and the weather not raining as much as it had threatened I knew my legs weren’t going to carry me where I wanted to go. This was disappointing, but a certain sense of obviousness arose in my mind – back to back mountain marathons? Bloody idiot! On the positive side – at least I found my limit! Day two then became a battle of attrition as I struggled to collect what controls I could and find a route with the least climb and most direct way into finish. If you are late back on a ‘Score’ event, you begin to lose points for every minute you are late. I wanted to hold what I had so had to dig deep to get myself to the finish line with a disappointing 140 points and 30 seconds to spare to end up in 94th from 148 finishersStill a cracking event and good weekend, just next year I won’t be OMM’ing the week before…
SKYRUNNER 3X3000 80K ULTRA TRAIL RACE
Congratulations to Jean Brown who finished 7th overall and 1st Lady in this unique ultra-running event linking the Lake District’s highest mountains-Scafell Pike, Helvellyn & Skiddaw. It is a circular route which starts and finishes at Keswick, incorporating a superb variety of terrain on some of the finest mountain trails in the Lake District. From the spectacular rock scenery of Scafell Pike to the rolling ridges of the Dodds, the route combines all the elements of a classic Lakeland run combined with aspects of European style ultra-running.
Following the huge success of the inaugural event in 2014 the Lake District 3 X 3000 80k Ultra Trail is set to be a classic ultra. The course has been designed by 2013 IAU World Trail Running Champion and Salomon International Mountain Runner Ricky Lightfoot.
Report from Jean Brown
People talk about a slump after a target race… after the exhilaration of the UTMB (which was fantastic) I certainly found I had itchy feet, was getting grumpy and had a strong desire to race again after 2/3 weeks. With everything else going on in family life, Saturday was the first opportunity I had so I scanned the possibilities. I was keen to go back to the Isle of Man for their ultra, but by the time I had decided my legs could run again I had missed the entry deadline so that was out… It was then that the ‘3 x 3000 80km ultra trail’ came forward as a contender for my first post-UTMB race. Entering a week before didn’t allow any time for recces, but I knew large sections of the race, if in the opposite direction.
5am saw me on the start line with around 80 other runners and off we went from Keswick along the shores of Derwent water. The short description of the route is Keswick, Watendlath, Scafell Pike, High Raise, Helvellyn, Skiddaw, Keswick – off road but on paths; not like a fell race where you are usually allowed to take the shortest route from A to B! It is a brilliant route, technical early on, a set of good climbs throughout the route and plenty that was runnable if you had the legs. The wind was a tad stronger than ideal – with wet rocks on the technical section over Scafell Pike I was getting blown across the rock at times, and running against it was only really possible on the flat or downhill. The cloud was also sitting at around 500m making the views less engaging. All good fun though, especially as I came in first lady and 7th overall. It was only a small field but you can only race those that turn up! The very nice Leki poles I won for being the first lady at each of the summits were an excellent bonus prize! A great long trail race for fell runners!
SWINTON 10 MILE ROAD RACE
Daniel Isherwood and Kevin ‘Tiger’ Davies ran in this 10 mile road race organised by Swinton Running Club. Daniel was our first finisher in 23rd place with a time of 01:05:46 closely followed by ‘Tiger’ in 24th a few seconds later in 01:05:53. There were 158 runners in total.
|24||Kevin ‘Tiger’ Davies||M50||01:05:53|
THIEVELEY PIKE FELL RACE
Sixteen Clayton-le-Moors Harriers took part in this race organised by club member Pete Booth. It’s a tough but enjoyable 4.3 mile route with 1310ft of ascent. There are races for junior runners with the younger runners taking on a circuit of the boggy and rutty starting fields and the older juniors following the seniors until the turning point at the ruin.
The main race sets the runners off from a boggy field beside the Ram Inn, Cliviger and race follows the Mary Towneley Loop to Scout Farm where a sharp left takes them up a mercifully short, ridiculously steep climb to the moor, which levels off towards a ruin at CP4. (U14 &U16 runners turn here down to CP10 and back to the finish.) After crossing a couple of fields it’s back onto rough moorland for the climb to the Pike, steep at first then it eases as you follow the fence to the trig point. A fast grassy descent precedes a shorter, technical drop to the fell gate. Then you battle through a young plantation before a steep ‘sting in the tail’ brings you back to the ruin. A second grassy descent leads to the bridleway for the last push to the finish in the field where you started.
Peter Coates was our first finisher in 6th place overall and 1st M40. Geoff Gough was next in 20th place and 1st M55. Ivan Whigham was 33rd and 1st M50. Katy Thompson was our first lady finisher and also 1st F60 hotly pursued to the finish by Sarah Helliwell. Michelle Butschok was our 3rd lady and the three of them took the ladies team prize.
A quintet of Clayton runners took part in the junior races. Jenson Bentham was 4th in the U12 race. The U16 and U14 runners ran with the seniors and Nick Hennessey was our first finisher taking the U16 race as well. Jackson McKay was the winner of the U14 race with Natasha and Bronia Olszewska taking 5th and 6th place and 1st and 2nd girl.
|5||Natasha Olszewska (1st Girl)||23:51|
SUNDAY 25 SEPTEMBER
3 Peaks Cyclocross
Report from Andy Armstrong
The 3 Peaks cyclocross race is a 38 mile cycle event that visits the same peaks as the fell race; Ingleborough, Whernside and PenyGhent. Now in it’s 54th year, it’s billed as “the toughest cyclocross event in the UK” which is undoubtedly true as it’s the only one of its kind. It’s probably the most unusually perverse event to visit the Yorkshire dales; the sight of over 500 competitors shouldering drop-bar rigid frame bikes up the forty degree slopes of Simon Fell, picking their way down the stone slabs off Whernside and hammering down the stony bridleways around Pen-y-Ghent is definitely worth the trip.
For my first attempt at this race I was determined to take it steady and get round in one piece. Cross bikes are tough but there’s a limit to what they’ll put up with and the route is littered with cyclists fixing punctures, broken chains, twisted gears or just nursing injuries born of over-enthusiasm. Being a fell runner, not a real cyclist meant having to make up time on the hill sections; either working hard carrying the bike on the climbs or pushing the limits on the off-road descents (did I say I was intending to take it steady?). A dented rim required a puncture stop near Ribblehead but otherwise the bike stood up to the course well and I finished the race in 4h40m
Also at the race; Andy Laycock had a storming race to finish under the magic four hour mark at 3h52m. Others were less fortunate; Alan Dorrington had a crash coming off Ingleborough, the bike was fine but a knee and hip injury forced his retirement. Paul Hesketh also had to retire due to (his words) “err, technical issues”.
In summary; a top days fun for both competitors and spectators, I’ll be back again next year, hopefully as the former.
IKANO BANK ROBIN HOOD MARATHON
More than 1000 runners completed the Ikano Bank Robin Hood Marathon. John Hartley was our sole representative, finishing in 36th place overall and 1st Vet55 in 03:06:19.
Report from John Hartley
I was hoping to run under three hours. I set off OK and was going well until mile sixteen. Then the last ten miles became a real struggle and I felt like I was treading water. Mental strength took over and got me to the finish where I was chuffed to find out I had won the Vet55 category and finished 36th out of 1192 runners.
NORTHERN ATHLETICS ROAD RELAY CHAMPIONSHIPS
Two teams of ladies took part in the Women’s Four Stage Road Relay Championships and one team of men took part in the Men’s Six Stage Road Relay Championships.
Ladies Four Stage Championship
Report from Angela Shian
Clayton Ladies had 2 teams competing in this year’s Northern Road Relays. We all met up nervously at Sport City Stadium in Manchester. The class of opposing runners was a lot higher than last year’s event at Stanley Park. Louisa Powell-Smith on leg 1 on team A came in at a more than impressive 10th position at outstanding time of 17:43, then Danielle Walker running her first race for Clayton again got an amazing time of 18:43. Elizabeth Mullan stepped up to the mark in the first team getting 20:58 on leg 3. Leg 4 was Helena Leathley who despite carrying a nasty cough and cold ( well she couldn’t back out on her sister could she!!!!) still held her own to bring Team A in to 22nd position which more than qualifies them to compete in the Birmingham nationals in 2 weeks’ time for the second year on the trot!
Team B leg 1 was myself (regretted that one!). Fast and furious is all I can say! Leg 2 was again a debut appearance from Natalie Wright, who I’m glad to say totally loved the experience and gave it her all for 22.14. Leg 3 was our ever faithful runner Amanda Duffy who always give us 100% effort with 22:03. Finally we had Donna Airey who’s going from strength to strength and had a perfect sprint finish in front of a noisy Clayton crowd; her time 21:34. Overall team position 42, more than happy with that! Great day, great team spirit, thanks to Bianca Bennett for support. Good luck to team A at Nationals! We know you will do well.
Ladies A Team – The Ladies’ A team finished in 22nd place overall.
Ladies B Team – The Ladies’ B Team finished in 42nd place overall
Men’s Six Stage Championship
Our men finished in 49th place overall in the competition in a field of 100 teams.
Report from Jacob Watson
Great atmosphere, fantastic support and (for the most part) decent weather made up for a somewhat fiddly and irritatingly short course (5600m instead of 6400m). I’d decided to forgo Captain Brewster’s advice of just setting off at 5k pace and planned on keeping enough energy to got round a 4 mile course. I had a bit of a shock when I’d realised I was about to get back into the stadium for a final lap round the track! I guess I should have made a mental note after the first lap, rookie error! Despite this I’m still pleased with my time and the twists and turns didn’t ruin my enjoyment of it out there. I’ll be looking forward to the next set of road relays in 2017
ROCHDALE HALF MARATHON
Three Clayton Harriers took part in this half marathon race organised by Cannonball Events. The route offers exciting and varied scenery, with the course taking runners on a traffic-free tour of the town and Hollingworth Lake. Jon Cleaver was our first finisher in 13th place with a time of 01:25:59. Robert Morrison was 75th in 01:37:54 and Colin White was 157th in 01:47:30
Report from Jon Cleaver
There was a total of 437 runners for this race starting at Rochdale town hall. The race start time was set for 10:10 so I was busy chatting when the gun went at 10am and had to scramble to the start line setting off right at the back. This involved having to weave in and out of people for the first mile or so to get some breathing space.
The route climbed out of Rochdale and headed to Littleborough on the Canal bank. Coming off the canal we climbed up to Hollingworth Lake and looped round there for the half way point. The run in from there was really fast downhill and back along the canal. The slow start probably helped conserve some energy for the final push back into the town centre. Overall I came 13th in 01:25:59 chip time which was ideal prep for the Manchester half in a few weeks’ time.
Ian Hargreaves was our sole competitor in the 10K and finished in 59th place with a time of 50:56 taking 1st M50 position.
Five seniors and two juniors took part in the Run Preston races.
Three club members ran in the Run Preston 10K race. Mick Hughes was our first finisher in 71st place overall and with a time of 44:17. Stephen Biscomb was 93rd in 44:33. Michelle Abbott was our only lady runner finishing in 164th place overall with a time of 48:06. There were 998 runners in the 10K race.
|71||Mick Hughes||Vet 40||00:44:17|
|93||Stephen Biscomb||Vet 60||00:44:33|
Great results for our two junior runners in this popular 5K. Lennon Jackson was our first finisher in 12th place overall with his younger brother, Matthew in 19th. Success also for our lady runners; Lisa Johnson was our first lady finisher in 47th place overall with a time of 25:03 and 1st LV40 and Marion Wilkinson was 167th and 1st LV70 in 32:07. There were 323 runners in the 5K race.
|47||Lisa Johnson||Vet 40||00:25:03|
|167||Marion Wilkinson||Vet 70||00:32:07|
STAINLAND 10K TRAIL RACE
This was 6th race in the club trail championship organised by the Stainland Lions Running club. The route goes through the stunning west Yorkshire countryside running through the woodland and rural roads and trails around Stainland Dean.
John Wilcock was our sole representative at this race. He finished in 27th place with abime of 55:57. There was a field of 128 runners.
Trust 10K Trail Run
The Trust10 is a new, monthly 10k trail run, that gives you the opportunity to explore National Trust places for free. You can take part in a free 10K trail run on the fourth Sunday of every month. Registration is at 8.30am and the run starts at 9am. They are working on offering a timing system, but at the moment there isn’t one in place, if your time is important to you please remember to bring your own timing device for the time being.
Ivan Whigham took part in the Inaugural Trust 10 run at Lyme in Cheshire. He reports:
“I entered this event on Sunday, first one to be organised, and managed 14th place (I was 7th but lost 2 minutes following non racing runners!). In total 152 runner took part in this inaugural run. The event is free very much like parkrun so for a family a cheap day out for families. They are rolling them out all over the country.”
Burnley parkrun – A total of 299 runners took part.
|9||Reece Adam LAWRENCE||19:55||JM15-17||New PB!|
|55||David Ian SCOTT||23:46||VM70-74|
|168||Jane PIER||29:43||VW45-49||New PB!|
|248||Christine Jennifer EGERTON||33:41||VW65-69|
Dewsbury parkrun – A total of 100 runners took part.
Fell Foot parkrun, Newby Bridge – A total of 200 runners took part.
Lytham Hall parkrun – A total of 182 runners took part.
Marple parkrun – A total of 181 runners took part.
Pendle parkrun – A total of 84 runners took part.
Witton parkrun – A total of 93 runners took part.