Author Archive Christopher Holdsworth

ByChristopher Holdsworth

Durisdeer Fell Race 2015 & The Rest of the Week’s Action

Durisdeer Fell Race 2015

“We started outside the village church, with a mad dash through the parking field, and over a stream onto the hill – about a mile and a half of it to Black Hill, gaining about 300m which was immediately lost in a knee wrenching descent…”

Screen Shot 2015-06-15 at 21.20.45

Durisdeer is a tiny hamlet in the Southern Uplands, about 3 hours up the motorway from home. The annual fell race (9.5m/4000′) usually attracts about 30 runners, but this year 268 competitors gathered for the second British Championship race of the year.

Screen Shot 2015-06-15 at 21.22.05

Friday had been the hottest day of the year so far, but luckily the temperature had dropped with a light but cooling breeze. Linda and Pete Lord were up in Scotland for the week, so Wendy, Jean and I travelled up together, arriving to find ourselves parked next to an injured Jon Sharples. Jon was chauffeuring Gwilym Williams, former Clayton newsletter editor, over from Austria – the only Clayton man to race, and the one who was the furthest from home!

Screen Shot 2015-06-15 at 21.24.03

We started outside the village church, with a mad dash through the parking field, and over a stream onto the hill – about a mile and a half of it to Black Hill, gaining about 300m which was immediately lost in a knee wrenching descent. After smiling for Pete’s camera before crossing the road, there was a more gradual climb to the third checkpoint, remembering to shout “Happy 70th birthday,” to the organiser’s mother, Jessie. Back across the road, with support from Pete again, then a long climb up to Well Hill, the highest point on the race. One more short climb back up to Black Hill then a fast grassy run down to the finish, just spoilt by the short but steep pull up through the parking field.

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There was no need for anyone to go hungry after the race; the village ladies were all set to feed the 5000 – and we were feeding the midges. Despite the midges, we stayed for the presentation where Wendy, Linda and I were all awarded prizes as the first three LV60s. Jean was 22nd lady and 7th LV40, despite still recovering from her record breaking Old County Tops run and a 50m race on the mountains round Lake Annecy a couple of weeks ago. Gwilym found a new friend to run round with – Jean Robson, a former Clayton member now living in Scotland.

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The Southern Uplands are lovely grassy rolling hills, well worth a visit. If the Scottish race in the British Champs is in that area next year, let’s hope more runners can see their way to travelling there – not that much further than Keswick or Wasdale.

137 Jean Brown LV40 2.04.08

155 Wendy Dodds 1st LV60. 2.08.47

222 Katy Thompson 2nd LV60 2.27.24

229 Linda Lord 3rd LV60 2.30.17

264 Gwilym Williams M60 2.59.40

268 ran incl. 73 ladies

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Thanks to Katie Thompson for the report. Full results can be found Durisdeer Results.

The Rest of the Week’s Action

Worsthorne Trail Race


In an excellent contest between two of Clayton’s best talents, Danny Collinge managed to pip new member Joshua Boyle in this tough 5 mile fell race. This will be the first of many exciting battle’s between the two young Harriers, and I look forward to seeing them contents for the win once again in the future.

Full Senior Results

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Jackson Mckay eased to the win comfortably and effortlessly in the junior race. He was followed shortly by Dexta Thompson in second place in a fantastic time, managing under the 20 minute mark. Third Place went to Natasha Olszewska, whilst forth went to Ella Dorrington. All the juniors showed great promise and the determination to succeed was clear to see through-out.

Full Junior Results

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High Hall Fell Race 2015

Julie Toman was out sole representative at this mid-week race, finishing the fell race in 36:28. Well done Julie!

75 368 022 Julie Toman F45 (006/009) Clayton le Moors Harriers 05.40/09.07 00:36:28


2 Towers Fell Race 2015

In a stronger showing for the 2 Towers Fell Race, David Naughton finished as our first senior male in 5th place, whilst Katie Thompson finished first for the ladies.

5 57 005 David Naughton M55 (001/008) Clayton le Moors Harriers 00:39:07
30 19 029 Mark Nutter M50 (004/006) Clayton le Moors Harriers 00:44:24
42 59 039 Mark Taylor M (015/019) Clayton le Moors Harriers 00:46:59
51 20 046 Andrew Firth M55 (005/008) Clayton le Moors Harriers 00:48:40
59 61 053 Peter Dugdale M55 (006/008) Clayton le Moors Harriers 00:51:12
61 3 007 Katy Thompson F60 (001/001) Clayton le Moors Harriers 00:51:59


Weets Fell Race 2015


In this week’s Pendle & Burnley Grand Prix fixture, it was a return to the toughest fell race on the calendar in “Weets”. Overall we had 34 runners compete, and I can now slowly feel my Fell Palladium Trophy slip away as I see so many super efforts each week.

Not least of all in Jordan McDonald, who continues to light up the P&B Grand Prix and is in excellent form right now – long may it continue! Full results below.




The Rings Of Shap 2015

In a race that only psychopaths will enter, runners get to choose how many “rings”, or more appropriately, circles of hell they’d like to travel around. Martin Terry finished third, choosing to race along all three rings! Nick Olszewski, slightly less unhinged decided to tackle two rings, finishing in 6th place overall. A fantastic effort from both men!

South Downs Way 100 – (Results to be found here soon)

Simon Halliday, another runner with a vendetta against his own legs, competed at the South Downs Way 100. Although results are yet to be released, Simon finished in a total time of 19:17:21 (according to his Strava results) – Absolutely brilliant effort Simon!! Full results to follow shortly.
In yet ANOTHER endurance event this week, Julia Rushton and Nerina Gill competed at the famous Mizuno Endure 24. 
Report from Julia Rushton
This weekend I ran my first proper endurance event, Endure24, what was I thinking of when I signed up!! Neri and I had a plan, 50miles for me and 50+ for Neri.
On paper it was only 10hrs running in 24hrs, how hard can it be? Once we got there the atmosphere was brilliant, think Glastonbury for runners, tents, vans and caravans covered two big field. Music, food and drink. We set off at midday on Saturday. My plan was to run the 5mile laps in decreasing sets 4, 3, 2, 1 and I stuck to it forgetting that the furthest I’ve run this year was 16miles and my first set was 20miles.
The 7th lap was the hardest thing I’ve ever done and I gratefully whimpered into bed for a few hours. Neri got up bright and early and was about to aim for 60miles till she heard someone point out it was just short of 100km. Never one to avoid a challenge off she went and clocked up 65miles.
I stuck to my target and on my last lap I walked round taking in the atmosphere, enjoying the woodland surroundings and music filtering through the trees. I was so chilled I almost missed the time and had to run to the finish to beat the midday klaxon. The marshals and support was brilliant, many shouts of “Go Solo” and “well done Clayton Ladies” Will we do it again? You bet we will, planning already underway.
Pos      Team           Laps        Total Time     Cat
24      Nerina Gill        13           24:46:05      SW
41      Julia Rushton   10           23:44:43      SW
BOFRA Hawkswick Fell Race 2015 – (Results to be found here soon) 
Briony Holt continues to excel in the BOFRA races, becoming one of Clayton’s brightest stars in doing so. Also, its clear one of our bravest as I’ve seen many our more seasoned “fell runners” struggle down descents more gingerly compared to this shot from Briony!!
Report from Tina Holt
Another great running day with Clayton Le Moors Harriers. At Hawkswick dash today, the 4th race of the series, briony came 1st girl. An amazing race, good conditions, a steep uphill, with.a scramble at the top, but overall an enjoyable race. Well done Jackson who also raced with an amazing result of 4th place.
Liverpool Half Marathon
Jacob Watson continues to show his strength on the road, finishing in 01:19:23, whilst Elouise show’s just how far she’s come whilst adopting the orange banded vest by recording a Half Marathon time of 02:04:24. Top effort guys!!
Full Results
16 1464 Jacob Watson BURNLEY 01:19:13
1159 3711 Lynsey Birtwistle Burnley 01:49:20
1562 6472 Leanne Cottam burnley 01:53:34
2694 9743 Elouise Pemberton Accrington 02:04:26
If your result is missed, please contact me here.
Edgeworth 5k & 10k
Dan Balshaw managed to take 1st place in the 5k in his first outing for the club! Well done Dan! Bryan Searby also had a good outing, finishing in 13th position for the club.
Full 5k Results
Position        Race Number       Finishing Time        First Name     Last Name   Gender
1                         80                     00:17:58               Daniel            Balshaw      Male
13                        2                      00:24:01               Bryan            Searby         Male
Race For Life 2015
Report from Marion Wilkinson
Well Done to the Clayton Harriers girls at race for life at Towneley, 1st 10k winner Liberty Thompson & 1st 5k winner Ella Dorington, also well done to Sophie & Millie
great effort from all of you!!!
Castle Howard 2015
Last but not least, and mostly because he messaged me in tears as I’d forgotten his race completely, congratulations to Breton Holdsworth for finishing third in his annual race at Castle Howard. Especially impressive due to his recent buggered knee – well done!!
ByChristopher Holdsworth

Stockport Road Relays 2014 & The Rest Of The Weekend’s Action

Stockport Road Relays

“Yes, the hard part’s over!” I thought. Mistake number three. After flattening out we turned a corner to be faced with another steep incline. “Oh dear”. My confidence had now been zapped and I was starting to lose my place…”

3600 metres. 2.2 miles. However you write it down it really doesn’t seem like much. “How hard can it be?” That was my thought as I lined up at the start line. This, it soon transpired, was my first mistake.


Courtesy of Breton HoldsworthJacob Watson

Mistake number two came after lining up next to fellow Harrier Michael Hogan who asked ‘have you recce’d it?” As I had turned up with about 10 minutes to spare (and consequently sending Captain Breton into a minor panic) I answered “nope, didn’t have time”. Oh dear. “There’s a pretty steep hill after the first mile”, warned Michael. He was not wrong.


Courtesy of Breton Holdsworth – Andy Armstrong

The first mile consisted of one lap round the track followed by a flat section round the park. This ended with a steep drop which I confidently sprinted down, not thinking anything of it. This was dispatched with swiftly and easily (almost too easily come to think of it). My Garmin bleeped and I’d recorded my fastest ever mile. By now my confidence was reaching new highs! That was until I remembered Michael’s warning…


Courtesy of Breton Holdsworth – Richard Stevenson

My confidence was soon shattered as we reached the steep incline during mile 2. Managing to keep within the group was proving very tough, with many of the runners starting to puff and pant I kept thinking to myself “no matter how hard I’m finding this, it’s the same for them”. As we reached the top of the hill I couldn’t believe this mantra had worked! “Yes, the hard part’s over!” I thought. Mistake number three. After flattening out we turned a corner to be faced with another steep incline. “Oh dear”. My confidence had now been zapped and I was starting to lose my place. The climb was tough going and with almost no energy left in the tank I finally managed to reach the top.


Courtesy of Breton Holdsworth – Breton Holdsworth

The course by now had flattened out and it wasn’t long until we reached the final sprint back to the track. Crossing the line I wish I’d have had the energy to warn teammate Richard Stevenson of the toughness of this seemingly short and sweet course, however there was nothing left. 2.2 miles. How hard can it be? Brutally hard. More importantly, would I do it again? In a heartbeat.1610799_10205069484760884_124920466217288004_n

Courtesy of Breton Holdsworth – Jon Hanson

Senior Women finished in 24th with an overall time of 50:21

  1. Rebecca Rawcliffe 16:22
  2. Jean Knightley 17:30
  3. Irene Roche 16:29

Senior Men Team ‘A’ finished in 31st with an overall time of 52:10

  1. Jacob Watson 12:54
  2. Richard Stevenson 13:15
  3. Alex Cran 13:38
  4. Breton Holdsworth 12:23

Senior Men Team ‘B’ finished in 38th with an overall time of 54:34

  1. Michael Hogan 13:50
  2. Jon Hanson 13:48
  3. Richard Briscoe 13:55
  4. Andrew Armstrong 13:01


Courtesy of Breton Holdsworth – Jacob Watson

Thanks to Jacob Watson for this week’s excellent race report! Full results are here.


The Rest Of The Weekend’s Action

As this is my last week of writing ‘The Rest of the Weekend’s Action’ , I thought I’d go into a little more detail with the race I was involved in at the weekend. After all, it was an English Championship Fell Race!


Courtesy of Andy Holden – Angela Shian

Not that I had realised before blissfully agreeing to attend the race, having been persuaded to do so by the eager new fell runner Adam Hamer. The race was The Hodder Valley Show Fell Raceand lo and behold, some of the best fell runners in the country were all in attendance. Having a quick warm up before the 4 mile, 1500ft fell race began, I bumped into Matt Perry, who had also unknowingly decided to race without consulting all the details first. As we made our way to the pen, from which we were intended to start the race, it became clear there was to be a stampede towards the exit on the other side.


Courtesy of Andy Holden – Vicky Heys

Oh dear. The race began, and the numpty in front of me fell over his own feet. There was no time to adjust, and down I went too. My earlier writing of “bumping” into Matt foreshadowed what was to come, as my tumble also brought down my fellow Harrier causing a most calamitous start for the both of us. Now towards the back of the pack, and a great number of runners between where we wanted to be, we had to bide our time through the early bottlenecks, frustrated at our early mishap.


Courtesy of Andy Holden – Linda Lord

Not wanting to let the disastrous start get to my head, the opening of the field brought about an almost 5k pace from myself. I was now charging past what felt like a hundred runners, just to get back to a position where I would have originally intended to be. This daft pace took place all on an incline, and by the time I reached the first monstrous climb, I was categorically “goosed”. My legs, where they would have usually felt most comfortable, were now in no shape to be climbing these ridiculous hills, and for the next twenty minutes I was plotting my resignation from fell running altogether.

It was so damn hard….

Let it be known, Hodder Valley Fell Race is one of the toughest fell races I have been apart of, made only harder by the sheer amount of talent on show. After enduring thigh killer climbs and knee twisting descents, I managed to beat the course record by 2 minutes – but so did 33 other men…


Courtesy of Christopher Holdsworth

Now that I’ve set the scene on how tough the race was, as well as the amount of talented runners on display, you can appreciate how well the Clayton-le-Moors ladies did to achieve the 2nd placed team! This was achieved after brilliant performances from Vicky HeysAngela ShianJean BrownWendy DoddsLinda LordKarin Goss and more!


 Courtesy of Andy Holden – Linda Lord

Unfortunately the results have not come out for ladies yet, so I can’t write all your names and times. Well done to all who participated in this very tough, albeit short fell race!

The men also performed really well in what were also very hot conditions with no breeze. Men’s positions and times are as follows:

34 Christopher Holdsworth M 38.44

47 Dave Nuttall MV45 39.49

53 Matt Perry M 40.22

122 Geoffrey Gough MV55 45.11

130 Ivan Whigham MV50 46.07

132 Ralph Baines MV45 46.12

137 Kieran Carr MV65 47.27

144 Peter Browning MV55 48.46

158 Ian Robinson MV60 50.10

171 Dugdale McCullum MV65 52.16

182 Andrew Firth MV55 54.06

184 Rick Moore MV50 54.48

185 Peter Dugdale MV55 54.56

191 Andrew Walmsley MV60 57.49

193 Robin Nicholson MV45 59.34

197 Stephen Fish MV60 61.46

199 Robert Hirst MV60 65.30

202 Adam Hamer M 74.21

A special mention goes to Adam Hamer, as although he finished last, this was only his second fell race (what a race to choose) and previous results show that he would have been far from the back any other year. Well done!

The other big fell race of the weekend was The Yorkshire Marathon 2014. We had eight Harriers competing in total – three in the full, three in the half and a pair! For the full option, Paul Hesketh was our first runner through the finish in 03:58:45, followed shortly by Colin Shuttleworth in 04:02:56. Putting in a fantastic effort and finishing in just under the six hour mark was Adriene Olszewska in 05:55:28. Brilliant times for the hilly Marathon course!

In the half marathon option, Dawn Terry was our the first Harrier back, finishing in 02:26:06. Sue Allen and Peter Costello both finished the half marathon at the same time, completing the course in 03:27:50. Our official pairing competed in the full marathon, with Jeffery Pickup and Martin Terry finishing the race in 04:43:44. Well done everyone!

There was another half marathon being held this weekend, as three of our Harriers competed at Garstang. Steve Biscomb, finishing as the 1st V60, completed the race in an impressive 01:37:51. Alan Clarkson was the next through in 01:38:55, with Brian Wildman bringing us home in 01:44:36.

There was ANOTHER half marathon that our runners competed in this weekend (funny how unique similarities occur each week) – Lake Vyrnwy Half Marathon in Wales was the venue, where over 1500 competed! Fabienne Richmond and Ted Orrell made the trip over, with both posting excellent times. Fabienne finished in 01:33:36 and finished 8th out of 160 in the F35 category. Not only that, but she finished 181st overall! Ted Orrell finished in 01:52:29, and was the 1st M75! Excellent running there!

Lastly, although the results aren’t currently out, Jonny Mckenna competed in the Spen Greenway 10k. Looking at his strava results, he completed the race in 00:34:32 and finished in 4th place! Sorry if there was anyone else and I’ve missed you, please let me know if you raced as well by emailing me here.



Courtesy of Clayton-le-Moors Harriers

Don’t forget, this Thursday is the clubs AGM! The junior race is at 6:40pm, with the senior race at 7pm – both will be staged at the Seedhill Race Track. The AGM will be held after at Nelson Cricket Club at 8pm. Please attend if you can!


Courtesy of GW Fitness & Rehab

Also, this weekend is the Pendle Memorial Fell Race, which aims to raise money towards the stone’s restoration. As much attendance as possible from our Harriers would be a great help towards raising the money, and you can either sign up online, or pay £6.50 on the day. People who would like to walk the course are welcome to do so for £2, and just need to fill in an FRA form on the day.

Departing Message

That’s it for me! I am no longer the Media Manager at Clayton-le-Moors Harriers. If you’d like to fill my boots, you can do so my attending the AGM on Thursday!

Thanks for reading all my posts these past 8 months, I’ve enjoyed seeing how everyone has progressed each and every week in the weekend’s results. There have been a great array of new talent at Clayton-le-Moors Harriers emerging too, so keep up the good work!

See you all for the 5000M track race!

Thanks again,

Christopher Holdsworth



ByChristopher Holdsworth

The Ben Nevis Race 2014 & The Rest Of The Weekend’s Action

The Ben Nevis Race

“I usually dive for this scree as I try to conserve my legs for the run in! The constant breaking action, stepping down the very steep grass, took its toll and I literally ‘fell’ into the river at the bottom with my legs pretty well done for…”

The first weekend in September once again found me in Scotland for my annual run out in The Ben Nevis Race. This was to be my 27th ‘Ben Race’. The weather was initially very good on the journey northwards on Friday but it was raining when we stopped at Hamilton for a break. This year I travelled with Jon Sharples and Steve Bury. Jon and I had booked us in at our usual B & B with Charlie and Isobel. Charlie is a fanatically barmy Celtic fan and we have only ever seen him wearing a Celtic shirt! He greeted us in the famous hooped ‘home’ strip but by Sunday he was wearing the full green ‘away’ kit!



Courtesy of Ryan Wilkinson

On Friday night we had tea a mile up the race route at The Ben Nevis Inn, washed down with beer. We dropped the car off at the B & B and then met up with other runners, friends and supporters in The Grog and Gruel in Fort William, where we consumed a couple more pints! Everyone was making the usual excuses about their injuries and lack of training etc! Steve said he hadn’t done much training and Jon was coming back to running after two operations recently.


Courtesy of Dave Burnett – Spencer Riley

Saturday dawned a little brighter but by the start of the race it felt quite cool in the increasing drizzle! There was a turnout of 24 runners from our club on the start line. Jon set off with a Tee shirt under his vest and I was far too cautious as I set off in a Helly Hansen long sleeve shirt under my vest. Steve was much tougher as he set off in just a vest, (and shorts of course!) After the first mile, passing the Ben Nevis Inn, Jon and I were both regretting donning the extra layer as the conditions became quite benign. The drizzle eased and there was virtually no breeze as we ascended the curve up to the waterfall at half way. On the steep rocky section after the waterfall I passed Mark Nutter, who was out taking some photographs and I threw my Helly shirt at him. I was climbing quite well at this point and Jon, having started steadily, was using me as a marker but was also gradually catching me too.


Courtesy of Dave Burnett – Dave Motley Garry Wilkinson

As the faster runners descended I shouted encouragement to club team mates and I could see a real race developing for the V60 prize. Jack Holt was having another great run but Andy Robinson was working hard to keep him in his sights about 45 seconds behind. Jon immediately overtook me after the summit and started descending very well, as he usually does! Last year I climbed as well as this year but had a very poor descent. So I ran down the summit slopes fairly conservatively in order to ‘save my legs’. I was encouraged to find that I was in front of a number of team mates and other runners who I did not expect to have behind me! As we went ‘over the edge’ at about 3,300feet, into the rough scree I got going really well and I was taking every opportunity to cut corners and use the heavier scree in order to overtake people. Inevitably I had the usual slips, pirouettes and half tumbles but I was descending well and steadily passing runners. By this time Jon was out of sight!


Courtesy of Dave Burnett – Dave Motley & Garry Wilkinson

When we passed the to the left of the waterfall on to the famous ‘grassy bank’, it was very frustrating to find the way down limited by two continuous tapes set about 10 feet apart in order to prevent us from using the area of scree half way down the grass. I usually dive for this scree as I try to conserve my legs for the run in! The constant breaking action, stepping down the very steep grass, took its toll and I literally ‘fell’ into the river at the bottom with my legs pretty well done for!


Courtesy of Dave Burnett – Spencer Riley

The next mile descending the stepped path was very hard as my old legs had simply ‘Lost their Bungee!’ After the footbridges I failed to find my usual good way down the steep short cuts and came out on the lower path right next to the junction with the Youth Hostel path. I struggled to get going on the flatter running along the rocky path and realised that I had lost some of the places that I had gained on the descent, as I joined a line of runners descending in front and from my right. I tucked in behind a group of four guys and tried to keep up with them down the road but I just had to let them go with half a mile before the finish! The sun made an appearance as I ran round the field feeling heavy legged but also feeling pleased that I had completed the course 10 minutes faster than last year and with some good runners behind me! I had managed to hold it together quite well on the descent and felt quite satisfied with my performance.


Courtesy of Dave Burnett – Richard Briscoe

In the V60 race Jack Holt was 1st but he was only 10 places in front of Andy Robinson. Both lads had raced really well. First finisher from our club was Spencer Riley who had a superb run on his debut for 12th place! Well done Spencer! Dave Motley pipped Garry Wilkinson by just 2 positions with both of them easily under 2 hours! There were lots of good times achieved by club mates as seen below. I was 5th V60 which was pleasing but frustratingly, the 4th V60 was only 4 places in front me in that little group that I had ‘let run away from me’ coming down the road to the finish!


Courtesy of Ryan Wilkinson – Ryan Belshaw

Andy Firth, who had been around for the week before the race, had done his usual ‘recce runs’ and he had ‘sussed out’ a radically different new route for the descent. Richard Bellaries descended the same way. It was Andy’s 21st ‘Ben Race’ and it was indeed a brave thing to try as he needed to complete the race in order to be presented with the much coveted ”Connochie Plaque”. Both lads had good runs but it was difficult to weigh up if their route was faster than the traditional route down the tourist path. It was probably easier on the legs though!


Courtesy of Ryan Wilkinson – Andrew Firth

All three of the debutants from our club must come in for praise. So well done Spencer Riley, also well done to Ryan Wilkinson and Robin Nicholson. Robin was ecstatic in the field after the finish with a smile from ear to ear having enjoyed the race immensely!

As usual we met up in The Alexandra for a meal and some beer. Moving on later to the presentation where we gave Jack a rousing cheer as he received the trophy for 1st V60 once again. There were eight runners this year going for the Connochie Plaque for completing 21 ‘Ben Races’, including our own Andy Firth. All eight duly completed the event and we gave Andy a particularly loud cheer as he received his plaque along with the other guys. Really well done to Andy and to the other runners!


Courtesy of Ryan Wilkinson – Spencer Riley

The Connochie Plaque has now been awarded to 88 runners, 10 from our club, but all 88 of them have been male! So come on ladies, who is going to be the first to get on the list?

Most of use ‘retired’ to The Grog and Gruel in the centre of Fort William for a few more beers and chat. A great evening was had by all.

Another year and another ‘Ben Race’ completed………..hmmmmmmm………..Now, just three more races for me and I will have completed 30 races at the age of 65! …….and then?


The Ben Nevis Race 2014 – selected results:

!st       1;34;43   Finlay Wild  – Lochaber AC ( 5 wins in a row!)

12        1;46;03   Spencer Riley (Debut)

57       1;56;25    Dave Motley

58       1;56;36    Lindsey Brindle – Horwich RMI AC – 1st lady

59       1;57;02    Garry Wilkinson

82       2;00;59    Neil Hardiman

134     2;08;57    Jack Holt   1st V60

144     2;10;45    Andy Robinson

179     2;16;39    Ryan Wilkinson  (Debut)

209     2;19;40   Jon Sharples

247     2;25;13   Robert Mitchell

258     2;27;43  Richard Briscoe

260     2;27;58  Nicholas Roscoe

272     2;29;48  Richard Bellaries

284     2;32;02  Andy Firth  – Connochie Plaque for 21 Races!

325     2;37;08  Mark Taylor

333     2;38;56  Stephen Bury

350     2;41;31   David Nield

352     2;41;44  Andrew Dugdale

358     2;42;10  Robin Nicolson (Debut)

364     2;42;58  Barbara Savage

379     2;46;10  Gary Balmer

405     2;50;14  Peter Dugdale

406     2;50;16  Nichola Horsfall

431     2;56;21  Peter Thompson

485 finishers – 24 from Clayton-le-Moors Harriers


Courtesy of Dave Burnett – Richard Briscoe


Thanks to Bob Mitchell for this weeks brilliant report. Full results can be found here.


The Rest Of The Weekend’s Action

There have been plenty of big events taking place this weekend. If Ben Nevis was the big talking point of the ‘fell runners’ world, then The Great North Run was the talk of the town for ‘road runners’. Plenty of Harriers turned up to represent the club, all of them putting in great performances. Terry O’Leary, who has fast been moving up the ranks, put in a speedy display to come 266th overall, in 01:23:56. Next through for Clayton-le-Moors was Alan Hall, who finished in 01:43:52. the third and fourth Harriers through the finish were Edward Milne and Christopher O’Brien who finished in 01:55:30 and 01:55:52 respectively. We had one lady runner in Nicola Kay this year, and even though she only just recently joined us in the summer, she had a fantastic race finishing under the 3 hour mark in 02:49:03.

Anthony Gotts, who could be seen in his Clayton-le-Moors vest on national television, performed well in the wheelchair category race, finishing 9th in 00:54:36. Well done to all who represented the club in Newcastle!

In another road race, and yet another highly popular event, Richard Stevenson was the sole Harrier taking on The Salford 10k. Like, TerryRichard has also been showing massive improvements in his recent times, with his latest being a PB. He finished 39th out of over 2700 runners, and in 00:37:32. Well done Richard!

Lastly, although the results are not out, our ladies won the team prize at The Grisedale Horse Fell Race. Wendy Dodds was the first Harrier around the course, followed by Vicky Heys in 2nd, Angela in 3rd and Irene Roche in 4th. Although we haven’t got the results yet, I was told be Vicky that it was a ‘great event’ and that she ‘will do it again’. Great effort ladies!

ByChristopher Holdsworth

Jacob Boyle Earns England Call up! + Maesgywm Muddle Fell Race 2014 & The Rest Of The Weekend’s Action

Maesgywm Muddle Fell Race – The 4th and final British Championship fell race for 2014

“…The clue was in the title, although the race could more aptly be named the Maesgym Rollercoaster with 3800ft of climbing over 10 miles. It certainly felt like there was more up than down with large amounts of very steep ascents and rapid descents…”

Clayton ladies’ vets team were in silver medal position so it was crucial for all of us to put on our best performances!

Neil Hardiman joined the usual suspects – Wendy Dodds, Jean Brown, Katy Thompson, myself (and several others) for what turned out to be a real grueller!!


The start of the race was in Llanberis and the route went over the hills next door to Snowdon. The clue was in the title, although the race could more aptly be named the Maesgym Rollercoaster with 3800ft of climbing over 10 miles. It certainly felt like there was more up than down with large amounts of very steep ascents and rapid descents. It wasn’t a bad day weather wise with just a little cloud on the tops.

Mr Blake from Eryri, the organiser, gave a clear indication of what was in store by setting us off on a steep incline in the middle of a boggy field. This was followed by a bridle way up to Hebron station then a brutal climb up to moel Cynghonion which in the words of Wendy is like the front face of Whernside but much longer -and she wasn’t wrong!


Katy Thompson

All the height gained was soon lost with a rapid descent to join a trail which on any other day would have been pleasantly runnable, but the legs were left somewhere on the previous climb. There were three steep climbs after that ,the high point being Moel Elio which was shrouded in Welsh mist.

The long descent off Moel Elio led to a sneaky out and back to Cefn Du through boggy heather. Just to cheer us up the better runners were to be seen coming down the other side looking not so tired.

IMG_2300 (1)

Wendy Dodds

And finally we were on our way home,over trail, bracken and Tarmac terminating in the savage climb back up to the top of the boggy field which saw many runners
collapsing on the line including our very own Wendy (see picture) who had a last minute tussle with an Eryri lady whom she pipped at the post!

Neil was the first home followed by Jean, Wendy, myself and Katy.

IMG_2312From Left to right:

Wendy Dodds, Jean Brown, Barbara Savage, Katy Thompson

A very tough day out in Snowdonia!

Thanks to Barbara Savage for this weeks race report! Full results can be found here.


The Rest Of The Weekend’s Action

To kick start ‘The Rest of the Weekend’s Action’, Clayton-le-Moors would like to proudly congratulate Jacob Boyle on receiving a call up to represent England at the Junior Home Internationals in Glendalough, Ireland.


Jacob Boyle (left)

This fantastic achievement comes after a superb race from Jacob at the Sedbergh MU20 Trials. He came in at 4th, with an excellent time of 00:28:11. Great effort Jacob!

This weekend, Blackpool was the stage for two running events. First was The Hilton Illuminations 10k, followed the next day by The Hilton Half Marathon. In the first of the Fylde Coast Running events, the increasingly improving Jacob Watson finished in 8th position in a very speedy 00:36:32. Next through for Clayton-le-Moors Harriers was the talented new member Jon Hanson. He managed to finish in under the 40 minute mark in 00:39:12 and returned home in 21st position. Our Harrier 10k specialist, Stephen Biscomb, was next through the finish in 00:41:32, but most importantly as the 1st V60! Lee Moore also put in a solid effort, finishing in 00:46:21, whilst Amanda Duffy flew the flag for Clayton-le-Moors ladies, completing the race in 00:49:12.


Courtesy of Fylde Coast Running – Jonny McKenna

Two Harriers returned the next day, this time in the form of Johnny McKenna and Brian WildmanJonny‘s recent participation in long distance races has certainly paid off, as he put in a storming effort to win the half marathon! He completed the race almost a minute ahead of 2nd place, finishing 1st in 01:15:26. Brian also had an excellent race, finishing in 01:41:57. Well done to all who ran at Blackpool this weekend!

The other major race this weekend was Cannonball’s inaugural Pendle 3 Peaks Fell Race, where a massive 20 Harriers competed, which was almost a 1/5th of the entire race attendance.

Clayton-le-Moors Harriers sure do love a race on Pendle don’t we!


Courtesy of CSHoldsworth Art & Race PhotographyIvan Whigham

There were some excellent performances from our runners on the 9 miles, 2700ft course, and as always unfortunately too many to name, but here are some individual highlights –


Christopher Holdsworth finished in 2nd in a time of 1:26:15

Paul Hesketh secured the 2nd MV45 position in 01:32:29

Michael O’Donnell was the 2nd MV40 in 01:34:18

ChristopherPaul and Michael managed to win the Team Prize for Clayton-le-Moors Harriers

Ivan Whigham scooped the 1st MV50, whilst Nicholas Olszewski was 2nd MV50

Richard Bellaries finished as the 1st MV60


Vicky Heys crossed the finish as the 2nd FV40

Linda Lord won the FV65 category

Linda Bostock achieved 1st in the FV55 category

Truth be told, there were amazing efforts all round on a very difficult course. All our Harriers did fantastically in all of the races this week. Lastly, we’d like to wish all of our runners good luck at The Ben Nevis Fell Race this weekend! Take plenty of photos and be sure to send them in here.




ByChristopher Holdsworth

Pendleton Fell Race 2014 & The Rest Of The Weekend’s Action

Pendleton Race Report

“Back down the fields now and every year I lose at least 3 places on them, it’s fast running – good for cross country & road runners, I look round & see a tall lad in green – No ! Not this year pal…”

I arrived at Pendleton a little late for me, 1.35pm – slight motivational issues but thought nothing “ventured nothing gained – so let’s try my luck”.  A decent Clayton-le-Moors turn out & 98 race competitors in total on a surprisingly warm sunny day. A fellow Clayton runner says to me jokingly “Have I come out of retirement” – I’ve been training enough but racing? – hmm not been focused on it – We shall see…


Courtesy of CSHoldsworth Art & Race Photography

We are checked into the starting field by our numbers – new this year & are all chatting mainly about what position we are going to come in the club. I’m expecting to be around 6th or 7th   because  some fast Clayton lads are running that race a lot more than me. I work on “you’ve got to put it in to get it out”, but I’ve turned up to represent the club so I’m happy enough.


Courtesy of CSHoldsworth Art & Race Photography

We all start to line up 3, 2, 1…. we are racing! Around the field behind the Village Hall & I’m nearer the front than I expected to be, wondering if  I’ve set off too fast but feel okay as I haven’t ran for two days. I trained from the Sunday to the Wednesday to the point my legs were extremely tired & achy – I figured to run this race well, I need to be really fresh.


Courtesy of CSHoldsworth Art & Race Photography

We hit the main street & it’s a slight incline, time to work only being a 5m race. I push myself hard from the start, no taking it steady yet. Having done the race before I am well aware that the hard part is keeping going when it starts to climb steep; that is yet to come. As we go through the gate on to the fields, I’m aware of one or two of my Clayton club mates jostling with me for position, so I push harder and a Dark Peak lady runner, who is really strong & determined, was on my shoulder.


Courtesy of Dave Potter

The first little descent was down Swardean Clough. Through the fern & up the other side, this is where the race starts for me, as it’s keeping going when your legs are telling you “I want to walk”. We are heading up to the road & one of my mates is walking. He’s over-trained – he would usually run me into the ground. I decide to give him some words of encouragement even at the risk of losing a place but I like to play nice so why not?


Courtesy of Dave Potter

We keep climbing, and I’m aware of the  Dark Peak Lady runner behind me – she’s not losing ground on me but I won’t let her gain any either – she will have to earn it.


Courtesy of Dave Potter

We cross the road & gets lots of support off other Clayton members watching, but to be honest,  I’m just aware of not wanting to walk and get to the top of the hill. The climb drags up & I can see the leaders in front reaching Apronful Hill – the  first climb but still know my Dark Peak “friend” is right behind me, my head drops and I make a conscious effort to lift it up again & “dig in”.


Courtesy of Dave Potter

We turn to go down to Ashendean Clough, I should be able to make a gap now between me & Dark Peak but as we cross the Howcroft Brook  she’s just behind me.


Courtesy of Richard Taylor

I’m making my way through the fern to find the path up to the climb to the “memorial“ cairn and my new dark peak “friend” puts a few little runs in when I’m walking & comes past me. I’m trying to get my legs moving again &  I decide to follow her lead, I’m not letting her beat me quite so easily, so  every time she runs I do too.


Courtesy of CSHoldsworth Art & Race Photography

I turn at the cairn, take a look to see runners  coming up the hill –  there is good gap –  but I’m aware I always lose a few race places on the way back as it gets faster, but I’ve been doing a Monday night speed session so hope it’s going to pay off. I’m trying to catch the Dark Peak runner as we run down the long descent, which gets steeper down to cross Howcroft Brook again. The gaps closing but not as much as I wanted, but by the time we cross the Brook I know I can get past her with the support of fellow Clayton members as we cross the road.


Courtesy of CSHoldsworth Art & Race Photography

As I run past her I give her some encouragement, as she dragged me up to the cairn,  & say to her in a few words I don’t mind her beating me but I don’t want anyone else coming past me now. We are running the race in reverse so back down and out of Swardean Clough – this is the moment “my wheels” may not go quick enough. Back down the fields now and every year I lose at least 3 places on them, it’s fast running – good for cross country & road runners, I look round & see a tall lad in green – No ! Not this year pal.


Courtesy of CSHoldsworth Art & Race Photography

I dig in. My thought is, “If I’m wanting to slow down so is everyone else” but tell myself “half a mile to go”.


Courtesy of CSHoldsworth Art & Race Photography

As I’m about to go through the gate onto the main road I turn round again, the tall runner in the green vest has  gained on the Dark Peak runner & as it happens, goes past her, I tell myself quarter of a mile to go and “push, dig”  – a  little mantra I say to myself over and over when I want to stop as I run down the road,  getting nearer to the finish. I try & sprint, daring not to look round as I know the tall lad in green is not far behind me. I turn to the finish, my lungs feel like they want to explode but I’m very happy.


Courtesy of CSHoldsworth Art & Race Photography

My race position was much better than expected, and happier still that my Monday evening road speed training paid off and no one came past me on the run back in.


Courtesy of CSHoldsworth Art & Race Photography

Pendleton is a superb short race and I’m very pleased I made the effort to get myself to the start as I knew I would be if I did.

Thanks to Michael O’Donnell for this week’s excellent race report! Full results can be found here.


The Rest of the Weekend’s Action

Plenty of races to discuss this week. We’ll start at The Burnsall Classic Fell Race, where we three Clayton-le-Moors Harriers competed. The first of our runners through the finish had an excellent race. Andrew Robinson completed the fell race in 20:55 and was also the 1st V60 too! The next two men across the finish should also be highly praised, as both of them went on to race at Pendleton a few hours later. Ivan Whigham completed his race in 22:37, whilst Mick Dobson finished home in 22:50. Well done all three men!

Lot’s of Harriers putting in double shifts this weekend! Like Mick and IvanMartin Brady also competed at another fell race besides Pendleton. He competed at The Tour of Noorland Moor Fell Race, and completed the second race of his weekend in 51:50. Another Harrier took to Noorland Moors in Chris Funnel, who also had an excellent race finishing in 46:30.

More double duties to discuss yet… Jacob Boyle competed in 2/3 of the fantastic Cannonball Events that were held this weekend. The first of which was the Watergrove Trail Race in Shore, Littleborough. Competing against some of the top runners in the country, he managed to finish in 6th place, in a time of 18:48. The day after, he race at the final Cannonball Event Sheep Fell Over Fell Race, again having a great race, finishing a place higher than the day before in 5th, and in 18:48. Also in this race to compete twice this weekend was Christopher Holdsworth. Also one of the many Harriers to take to the hills of Pendleton, he achieved a 3rd placed finish in 18:02. The 3rd Harrier through the finish, and securing team prize for Clayton-le-Moors Harriers was Garry Wilkinson in 7th and under the 20 minute mark in 19:43. This happened to be Garry’s first win in the V50 category, though he was also the 1st Vet across the finish. Well done!!

In this race, Adam Hamer competed in his first ever fell race. He had a tremendous race, finish not far off his 5k pb (not bad for a hilly course) in 32:05. Expect to see his name cropping up more often on the results for fell races soon! Jack Mcguire put in a stirling effort as always, bringing home the Clayton men in 38:03. Well done everyone!







ByChristopher Holdsworth

Sierre-Zinal 2014‏ & The Rest Of The Weekend’s Action

Sierre-Zinal 2014‏

‘Throughout the race there was enthusiastic spectator support; brass bands, alpine horns and children offering sponges, drinks and food. We all received medals, certificates and a timely massage at the finish’

A small band of claytoners and friends traveled to Zinal a small village, a typical alpine village, in the Swiss Alps for the famous Sierre-Zinal Mountain race; known as the 5 4000m peaks (views).  We caught the 0730 bus down to Sierre for the start at 9:30.This was preceded by 2000 walkers covering the same route starting at 0500 and a junior race (from Chandolin) at 0915.


All 1500 runners set off to the first checkpoint after 5 miles and 4300 ft of continuous climbing. After this checkpoint the course flattened out and the route was on forest roads to Chandolin, the route undulated on mountain paths to top of the course at Nava (alt: 8000 ft) then a short descent to Zinal through forests. Throughout the race there was enthusiastic spectator support; brass bands, alpine horns and children offering sponges, drinks and food.  We all received medals, certificates and a timely massage at the finish.

Race: 19 miles / 7200 ftWeather: 18(deg) / cloudy but good visibility
Killian Journet (Spain)2:31first male
Stevie Kremer (USA)3:03first female

Rob Simpson (GB)2:35 (5th overall) first GB male
Victoria Wilkinson (GS)3:19 (9th overall lady) first GB female
Mick Dobson 4:08
Ivan Whigham 4:18
Andrew Firth 4:51
Pete Thompson 5:33
Robin Nicolson 5:41
Pete Dugdale 6:25
Mick Dobson had a superb run, Ivan Whigham suffered from cramp, Andrew Firth had a storming run, Pete Thompson was his first race after major surgery (on his big toe), Robin Nicolson treated this as a training run for his first “ben” whilst Peter Dugdale (King of Pendle) suffered from altitude & dehydration
Thanks to Ivan Whigham for this week’s race report!
The Rest of the Weekend’s Action
The harrowing realisation of how tough Sedbergh Hills Fell Race has swept the Harrier camp this week. There have been several cries and declarations that it was the toughest race of their lives, and with over 6000ft climb overall, it’s easy to understand why!
We had nine Harriers complete the race, who are all very fragile in the days after (especially Ryan Wilkinson). A fantastic effort by Spencer Riley led our runners home, when he finished in 15th place, with a time of 02:19:11. He finished only 1 place behind Rob Hope and 2 places in front of Mark Mcgoldrick, highlighting what a super effort this really was!
David Bagot was our next Harrier home in 02:49:07, whilst bruised and battered Ryan was home in just under the 3 hour mark in 02:58:46. Next over the finish was Jean Brown 03:02:38, shortly followed by Kieran Carr in 03:04:27. Wendy Dodds put in another stellar effort, finishing home in 03:07:32, and Katy Thompson finished in 03:50:01. Both ladies were the only F60s to compete at the race! Richard Briscoe ended his torturous adventure around the fells in 03:24:50, whilst John Russius brought the men home in 03:43:21. Great performances from all!



ByChristopher Holdsworth

Boulsworth Fell Race 2014 & The Rest Of The Weekend’s Action

Boulsworth Fell Race 2014

 ‘As I approached the final stretch I could hear the footsteps of runners approaching in my ear.  I really began to dig in as I heard the dulcet tones of Mr Roche in my head shouting “have a word Martin..”

Running, why running my good lady wife, Alison, would say…………………

It all started back in 2012 when I wanted to get back on a bike and take to the open roads.  Back in my younger days I had been a very keen cyclist but unfortunately, due to injury, I had to retire. The longing to do something I had always enjoyed remained with me and so I went and bought myself a bike naively thinking I could get back on a saddle and start where I had left off.  Sadly not the case!  The years had taken their toll on my fitness levels and so I started to do a bit of running to try and build up my stamina.

It was at this point that I was told about John “have a word” Roche and his sessions at Towneley park. I went along to the beginners group, did an odd park run, progressed to the next group, and made myself a member of the club in 2013 taking in a few races along the way.

This year I made the decision to enter as many of the Pendle & Burnley Grand Prix races as was possible and had finally reached the last race of the season, Boulsworth Fell Race.

Race Day…

We arrived at Trawden Playing Fields on a cool, windy and VERY WET morning.  I was really looking forward to today’s race and it was really nice to see that lots of runners had turned out despite the weather conditions.

I didn’t know what to expect as I had not run it before but some had told me it was a “toughie”. As we set off up the long climb all I wanted to do was reach the top, but keeping in mind to take it easy at the start and not be tempted to rush off. As I approached the top of the climb a big sigh of relief came into play as I could see there was some level ground that lay ahead.


 Courtesy of Trawden 7

It was at this point I could see a long line of runners in front of me tackling the main stretch of the course. I started to focus and raced ahead as I knew once I had reached the summit I could then look forward to the downhill part of the race, and the finish line. Keeping a nice steady pace I continued down the hill, passing others along the way, motivating me even more to the finish. As I approached the final stretch I could hear the footsteps of runners approaching in my ear.  I really began to dig in as I heard the dulcet tones of Mr Roche in my head shouting “have a word Martin”, and I really didn’t want to be caught in my final footsteps to the finish line.

What a relief I had finally made it and completed this challenging course and my 13th race of the season. YES, I had managed to run in all of them! I hope to continue with the Pendle & Burnley Grand Prix in 2015 and hopefully improve my times. Watch this space!

Congratulations to all competitors who have taken part in the Grand Prix and look forward to seeing many of the friendly faces in 2015.

Thanks to Martin Griffin for this weeks race report! Full results can be found here.


The Rest of the Weekend’s Action

Only three other races this week! (that I’m aware of) With a third from Sierre-Zinal 2014‏ which will be featured as next week’s race report!

Firstly, we had two harriers competing over at the 2014 Blackpool Airshow 10k. Ted Orrell finished as the 1st M75 in his category, in 00:50:09, whilst Julie Toman finished in  00:54:11. Well done on what I would imagine was a blustery day over in Blackpool!

Over in Preston we had 9 Harriers compete at the Welcome Tavern 10k Challenge. Terry O’Leary continued his great run of form, finishing 5th just five seconds ahead of Kevin Davies. Full Clayton-le-Moors Harriers results are as follows – 

5 00:38:04 284 O’Leary Terry Clayton le Moors Harriers M
6 00:38:09 285 Davies Kevin Clayton le Moors Harriers V50 M
10 00:40:35 281 Hogan Michael Clayton le Moors Harriers V45 M
16 00:43:20 283 Clarkson Alan Clayton le Moors Harriers V55 M
26 00:46:26 272 Brady Martin Clayton le Moors Harriers V50 M
33 00:47:02 274 Wildman Brian Clayton le Moors Harriers V45 M
41 00:48:55 278 Moore Lee Clayton le Moors Harriers M
57 00:52:05 279 Duffy Amanda Clayton le Moors Harriers V35 F
86 00:59:53 269 O’Brien Kevin Clayton le Moors Harriers V70 M

Clayton-le-Moors are certainly broadening their horizons this week! Paul Shackleton ran at the British Masters Track and Field Championships. He did amazingly well and secured a silver medal in the V50 300 meter steeplechase!! Amazing effort Paul. In his own words ‘And some people think Clayton is just a fell club!’

In other news, Breton Holdsworth completed his ‘pigramige’ into the V40’s by completing the seriously impressive challenge of running over 40 miles in one go. He ran from Bolton Abbey to York Minister with the help from Nick Gaskell, Johnny McKenna, Micheal O’Donnell, Dave Motley, Joanne Motley, Chris Singleton, Christina Singleton, Christopher Holdsworth, Adam Shaw, Lee SmithRyan Wilkinson and Jim Hickie, who all joined in at various stages. There was also support from cyclists Neil Worswick and Adam Hamer, whilst Sophie McIntosh and wife Paula Holdsworth supported in the car. Breton would like to thank all of those who have supported him, as well as to everyone who made a donation. A massive £565 has been raised so far for North West Air Ambulance, if you’d like to make a donation the link is here –


As previously mentioned, a race report from the Sierre-Zinal 2014‏ will be featured next week by Ivan Whigham. Well done to everyone who ran this week, with a special mention going to Jacob Boyle for his fantastic win at Boulsworth Fell Race!

ByChristopher Holdsworth

Welcome Tavern 5k Race Report

Welcome Tavern 5k Report

Instead of doing the normal midweek fell training with the club, I thought that I would have a change – the Welcome Tavern 5k over at Preston. I thought, ‘I’ll get there early’ so I left home at 6pm and it wasn’t a very good start to the night! I’d realised that I’d left my Garmin watch, which I use all the time to time myself, so didn’t have time to go back.

The race was reasonably flat with two hills and was based in a park near Lostock Hall. Unfortunately, I started a bit too fast and was with the leaders for the first mile. I wanted to break my 19 min record (when will I ever do it!) but I was 18 seconds off. Another Clayton runner Lee Moore had a great run in 22 mins.

Was a good night with a pie and peas supper after the race.

Full results will be here

Thank you very much Richard Briscoe for submitting this race report!

We welcome all race reports and would like to hear from all of you in your midweek adventures, as well your weekend ones too for that matter! You needn’t wait to be asked to submit a report, simply post your report here. It doesn’t just have to be reports either, if you have any photography that you’d like to share, please post those too! Thanks.

ByChristopher Holdsworth

Towneley Park 10k 2014 & The Rest of the Weekend’s Action

Towneley Park 10k 2014

‘My decision to pace myself paid off as I knew that the small climb out towards Todmorden road was just the start. Upping my pace and trying not to lose my place within the pack I carelessly plodded along until it dawned on me what was coming next…’

A brief Introduction…

As one of Clayton’s newest recruits, I thought I’d give a little bit of a background story about myself and how I (Jacob Watson) became a member of this legendary running club.

Like all runners who positioned themselves at the top of the Avenue in Towneley Park, my journey to the start line didn’t begin on the morning of the 27th of July. Mine started back in 2012 after a rather self-indulgent Holiday in America, when I realised that I’d inadvertently put on a few pounds. To remedy this I decided to make a change to my lifestyle and took up what I called ‘jogging’. Like most new runners I could barely run to the end of the street, however within a few weeks I was jogging up to 3 miles every few days.

2013 came about and at the end of July I signed up to my first parkrun. That was it, I was hooked! I’d noticed a few white and orange vest during my first few runs but didn’t think much of it at the time (other than noticing that they seemed to be winning a lot!)

2014 saw a few personal bests at Parkrun and I started paying more attention to these white and orange vests, so much so that in April I took the decision to join in on one of John Roche’s speed sessions. “Why didn’t I do this ages ago” I thought to myself! The experience was the polar opposite of the lonely evening runs I’d been doing and I was starting to enjoy running more than ever.

Months passed and after a few more club training sessions I took the plunge, filled in the application form, bought the club vest and I haven’t looked back! In my short time with the club I’ve met some great runners who have given me sterling advice. I’ve pushed myself much harder than I would have done running by myself and I’ve seen some huge improvements. Most importantly though is the fact that running has gone from something I’d do every few days to stay in shape and turned into something I genuinely enjoy and look forward too.

Race day!


Courtesy of Steve Bateson Photography

Fast forward to the present day and I’m stood in Towneley Park at the top of the Avenue waiting for the race to get underway. John Roche was on hand to give some words of advice about the changes to the route before handing over to the race starter. “Ready…. Go” and we were off! The temptation to go full pelt down towards the crossroads at the bottom of the hill was there, however I took the decision to hold back as I had an idea of some of the climbs to come. The downhill stretch from the Avenue was short-lived as we turned left and ran back up towards Towneley Hall followed by a right after Stables Café. My decision to pace myself paid off as I knew that the small climb out towards Todmorden road was just the start. Upping my pace and trying not to lose my place within the pack I carelessly plodded along until it dawned on me what was coming next.


Courtesy of Steve Bateson Photography

Turning left onto Mount Lane I thought to myself “This is a lot steeper than I remember”. A few words of encouragement from Kevin Davies gave me the motivation I would need to get myself up to the top. I knew it was a relatively long and steep climb, but I also knew it was pretty much all downhill from the top. The climb seemed to go on forever and my energy was waning as we turned left for the final part of the hill. Some of the runners I’d tried to keep pace with had left me for dust but I knew what was coming next. picture-22

Courtesy of Steve Bateson Photography

The final two miles were certainly the fastest and I was glad to have paced myself during the beginning of the run. I caught back up with the pack as we turned left off Red Lees road and back towards Towneley Park. Next was a much needed descent down past the golf course and towards the crossroads at the bottom of the Avenue. picture-82

Courtesy of Steve Bateson Photography

This felt good but I knew there was one last (relatively small) climb before the end. We turned off to the right at the crossroads and then back up to the final hill and I knew I had enough energy left in the tank to put in a good finish. We ran back down towards the crossroads one last time, turned right and the finish line was in sight! A few cheers from the crowd gave me the extra push I needed to put it all in and cross the line. I checked my Garmin and while it wasn’t my fastest time, I couldn’t have cared. I knew I’d ran well and most of all I enjoyed the experience. Towenely Park 10k will definitely be on my race calendar for 2015! picture-98

Courtesy of Steve Bateson Photography

Race results

Jonny McKenna was first Clayton vest over the line (and second overall) with a very impressive time of 34:52, followed by Christopher Holdsworth who managed to creep in at sub 36 with 35:59 to take 3rd. Jordan McDonald continues to shine after being first Clayton at Todmorden 5k on Thursday. He ran a very impressive time as first junior in 37:57. Well done Jordan! 10509688_10204634966658203_7103130242072695352_n

Courtesy of Breton Holdsworth

Phil Hall managed an exceptional time of 38:15 as first M50 and Stephen Biscomb continues to impress as first in the M60 category with a fantastic time of 42:28. 10422544_10204634966058188_747061005862558457_n

Courtesy of Breton Holdsworth

Irene Roche claimed first finisher in the F55 category with a superb time of 47:41 and David Scott grabbed first M70 with a seriously quick 48:15. David was followed by Dawn Terry, who claimed first in the F50 category with a speedy 48:19, closely followed by Ted Orrel who bagged a fantastic time as first M75 with 51:50. Marion Wilkinson was first in the F70 category with a great time of 58:55. Good efforts all round! Clayton-le-Moors Harriers Results in Full:

Pos Name Category Time
2 Jonny McKenna M 34:52
3 Chris. Holdsworth M 35:59
6 Breton Holdsworth M 36:47
7 Jordan McDonald MJ 37:57
10 Phil Hall M50 38:15
13 Paul Hesketh M45 38:52
16 Paul Brannon M55 38:55
18 Jacob Watson M 39:04
20 Dave Motley M 39:23
25 Roger Brewster M55 39:59
30 Russ Clarke M 40:54
31 Carl Helliwell M 41:03
34 Richard Briscoe M 41:34
43 Stephen Biscomb M60 42:28
48 Kenan Eti MJ 43:02
53 Alan Clarkson M55 43:34
57 Andy Bradley M45 44:15
59 Andy Quinn M40 44:47
67 Gordon Barrett M50 45:35
71 Peter Browning M55 46:48
79 Irene Roche F55 47:41
85 David I Scott M70 48:15
86 Dawn Terry F50 48:19
90 Brian Wildman M45 48:37
99 Martin Griffin M50 49:32
102 Julia Rushton F50 50:01
103 Lee Moore M 50:05
109 Jean Knightley F55 51:09
110 Tanya Bunkham F 51:19
112 Ted Orrell M75 51:50
117 Jackie Kershaw F40 53:33
119 Richard Lawson M70 53:43
121 Rachel Todd F40 53:54
123 Ron Chappell M65 55:17
125 Sarah Helliwell F 55:29
129 Stuart Barker M45 56:23
132 Robert Hirst M60 57:28
133 Marion Wilkinson F70 58:55
134 Michelle Butschok F40 58:59
141 Andrew Brewster M50 1:03:13
142 Christine Leathley F65 1:04:14
145 Jack McGuire M55 1:07:47

Thanks to Jacob Watson for the race report! Full results found here.

The Rest of the Weekend’s Action

With the race at Towneley being a Road Championship Race, as well as a Grand Prix race, this section will be slightly shorter than usual. That being said, we have a few exciting results to share! Clayton-le-Moors Harriers running couple, Nicholas and Adrienne Olszewski, took on the Lakeland 50, whilst Andrew Armstrong went a step further and tackled the Lakeland 100The three lunatics all had fantastic outings. Nicholas finished just over the 12 hour mark in 12:03:24 and was also the 1st M54. Adrienne was able to keep going for a consecutive 16:13:51 hours. What an amazing effort from the Olszewski’s! 10579984_10152255705564327_6024285707951872856_n

Courtesy of Nicholas Olszewski

In the 100 mile race, Andy Armstrong finished as the 4th man in the M45 category. His race lasted a whopping 32:32:29! Completing 100 miles in a week is quite the accomplishment, so for Andy to do it over the course of this weekend is one of the hardest feats out there! Well done all three of you!!

Our club seems to spawn the most resilient and faithful fell runners of all the clubs competing today. When the speedsters are done racing 10k’s, when the dreamers are done climbing miles of arduous mountains; there will always be the reliable few who come out of the woodwork to compete at our local fell races. Two of those are Ivan Whigham and Andrew Robinson, who ran at this years Turnslack Fell Race 2014Andrew narrowly outran his fellow club member, finishing in 01:29:26, whereas Ivan finished in 01:30:00 exactly. Most importantly however, both men were able to take 1st prize in their respective age categories of V50 an V60. Great effort men!!

There, I think that’s enough padding for one weekend! Don’t forget to check out our training section, and come and join in!


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!!