There maybe a change in the air, the dark nights will soon be drawing in and the frenetic activity of summer is coming to an end. Well not for Clayton-le-Moors Harriers. This week has seen plenty of tarmac thumping action at 10k, half marathon and 20 mile distances. There have been fell races of all lengths, muddy trail races, mountain races and ultra distances in the Lake District.
MONDAY 29 AUGUST
Black Combe Country Fair, Bootle
This is a new route for 2016, based loosely on a previous race route that last ran about 10 years ago and is part of the Black Combe Country Fair. From the showground in Bootle, the route heads through farmland onto the fell, up and down Black Combe and back the same way. The downhill promises to be fast and great fun, possibly rivalling the last downhill of the March Black Combe race.
Wendy Dodds was our sole representative at this race finishing in 18th place overall.
TUESDAY 30 AUGUST
Kilnsey Show first took place 1897 – Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee year. It’s keynote aim – as today – is to promote and showcase the regional agricultural world, notably the breeding, rearing and exhibition of livestock, coupled with other kindred arts, crafts and rural industries.
Towards the end of the afternoon, Kilnsey Sports take centre stage, notably the famous fell races, involving the punishing ascent and descent of famous Kilnsey Crag, one of the toughest fell running tests in the sport.
Andrew Firth and Stephen Fish took part in this short but tough fell race.
THURSDAY 1 SEPTEMBER
This is a 5 mile fell race with 1181ft of ascent organised by Andems Runners. Five Clayton-le-Moors Harriers took part.
SATURDAY 3 SEPTEMBER
23 club members took the trip up to Scotland to take part in the Ben Nevis Race.
The Annual Pilgrimage to the Ben Nevis Fell Race – Dave Motley
(The Ben) is a monster of a mountain and for a lot of us Harriers it’s an annual pilgrimage. This year was my 8th year in a row taking part in this beast of a race. As usual the day starts with the annual meander around Fort William, brew at the Nevis café and a look around every walking shop. This year the talk in the field was about “the grassy bank”, runners not sure of route choice after the organisers placed a no go zone on the area due to erosion. Tales of different routes coming from everywhere, but which way does Finlay Wild go? What about the other locals? I know a man from Borrowdale that went…. You get the picture. I decided to do what I always do, follow the bloke in front of me! Oh what it must be like to be the leader without that choice!
The race starts at 1pm after following the procession of pipers. Quick lap of the field and off we go. I felt I started pretty easy and was surprised when my watch beeped and said 6:30 for the first mile on the road. Get to the pub and this is where the race really begins with a gradual climb all the way up to ‘Red Burn’. Kirt Livesey seemed to set off hard and was climbing well. Me and Dave Bagot had him in our sights but once I got to ‘Red Burn’ I seemed to struggle and runners were streaming past me; all I could think was why can’t I walk as fast as a 60yr old bloke? I reached the summit in 1hr 20 neck and neck with Russell Clarke and just behind the climbing animal that is Belshaw with Bagot and Livesey no longer in sight. I handed in the tag and the descent begins.
No real issues on the descent although I seemed to mince down a little and Russell lost me quickly. Last mile on the road and I seemed to get going again passing runners for fun, am I becoming a road runner? That scares me! Finishing time of 2:04 which I was a little disappointed with. Then it was time to get the dancing shoes for the evening fun. The evening always starts with the team meal at the Alexandra Hotel, which was great as always. Then it’s beer, beer and more beer. Another great night! Which has got to be the highlight of the trip!. Here’s to No 9 in 2017!
Blackshaw Head Fete
Blackshaw Head is a village above Hebden Bridge in the upper Calderdale Valley. The Blackshaw Head Fell Race is part of the village fete held each year on the Saturday after the August bank holiday. It is a 5.5 mile route with 900ft of ascent.
Andy Bradley was our first finisher and was 24th overall. Michael Frost finished in 49th place
Derwentwater 15K Trail Race
A trio of trail runners took part in the Derwentwater 15K trail race organised by the Lakeland Trail Series. Matthew Duckworth was our first man home, finishing in 6th place overall with a time of 01:14:36. Roger Brewster was next in 39th place and a time of 01:24:36. Our sole lady runner was Bianca Bennett who was 152nd with a time of 01:48:06.
Report by Matthew Duckworth
When looking for things to do on holiday in the Lake District for a week I realised that one of the Lakeland Trail Races was on while we were there, and after the reports from the Cartmel race earlier in the year, it was sold for me. Fast forward 2 months, after a great Grand Prix season, an equally strong finish on the Pendle 3 Peaks, and after a two week fasting from racing, I was raring to go on race day of the Derwentwater 15k trail race.
Arriving at registration to a buzzing atmosphere just confirmed how the Lakeland Trails Races had been reported and hopefully the route wouldn’t disappoint. When I saw a friendly face at the start line, Roger Brewster, he let know about how good the route was but there was no time to chat as we were just about to start! Plan was to sit in at a comfortable pace, hopefully in a chasing pace, and save as much as I dared for the reputed very fast 1.5 mile finish. Within a half a mile I realised that wasn’t going to happen. Either there wasn’t a chasing pack or it wasn’t my comfortable pace – I was running on my own with only 7 or 8 others ahead.
When the route started climbing through the very muddy forest I started to test the few runners close enough and managed to pass one before the real climb into the foothills of Blencathra (not that I could see any of the landscape in the low cloud). I managed to go back to the plan on my own for a few miles until that descent found me. It was just as I’d been told, a very fast, very runnable descent although as I looked at my watch showing 8.5 miles I was wondering how I was going to get into Kendal in the distance.
After another mile I realised the route may be a little long! Not a lot left in the tank and not knowing how far it was to the finish, I had to muster the rest of my energy to push myself another quarter mile before I could hear the music and the crowd at the finish. That was the push I needed to keep the places I took down off the mountain and end up in 6th place.
What a great event! A very unique set up with ‘challenge’ and ‘race’ runners setting off separately. ‘Challengers’ set off an hour before the racer giving a new challenge for race runners because from half way round the course you had the added job to pass the ‘challengers’ on a tight path that could be a bit tricky. Was a brilliant event for Bianca and me, also for Roger who once again won his age category!
Grand Tour of Skiddaw
Ultra runners Nicholas Olszewski and Martin Terry took part in this 45 mile, Lakeland ultra race. Martin Terry finished in 8th place with a time of 08:27:17 and 1st V50. Nick Olszewski was 28th in 10:22:09. A total of 68 runners completed the course with the final runner taking over 15 hours to complete.
Report from Nicholas Olszewski
Having a had a traumatic 3 weeks, with my father dying, his funeral and a week later having to take Sally dog to the vets to be put down, topped off with a pending foot operation, my heart wasn’t up for this particular event, but having done it I’m so glad I did.
The Grand Tour of Skiddaw is a small affair, well organised by Gaynor Prior and her crew, sponsored by La Sportiva and covers 44 miles and 7,300 feet of ascent, the start and finish is at Lime House School in Dalston and is almost a spoon shape when you look at the route on the map, from the start you head out towards Caldbeck to the first checkpoint, in and out of here as I still had plenty of fluid and snacks. The route so far had been reasonably flat but with High Pike looming in the distance the climbing was about to start.
The route initially follows the Cumbria Way and on reaching the summit of High Pike the views in front towards the open fell where as spectacular as ever. It was a bit of a trudge to Skiddaw House, much further than I remember, but on reaching it the terrain became all too familiar, as this next section to Latrigg Cark Park was on the Lakeland 100 which I’d covered last year, but in reverse.
Latrigg was a welcome sight, as the weather had deteriorated to persistent rain and driving wind and with the biggest climb of the day ahead, which was the half way point, I started my steady climb up Skiddaw, hood and jacket battened down. At the summit you have a hand bell to ring which I did with vigour and lots of shouting at the wind and rain before sharply descending down Longside Edge over Ullock Pike and The Edge towards the sheltered haven of Melbecks and the 3rd checkpoint at Peter House Farm.
The route back to Cladbeck, the last checkpoint, was fairly sheltered and low level and as the rain cleared and I started to dry out. I managed to regain a nice steady pace towards Orthwaite and a particularly long road section towards Longlands before hitting the fells again towards Fell Side, finally dropping off and hitting the route we took on the way out to the final checkpoint at Caldbeck where there were some yummy, much needed, cheese and pickle sandwiches.
The route from here retraces your steps from the outbound route. It’s strange how distance feels so much further after 35 miles or so, as this section seemed to take me forever! Finally though, I could see the spires of the school and, as I came down the drive to the finish, I was so glad I’d not bottled out because of this month’s events, the 10 hours 22 minutes it took me to complete, finishing 28th, had given me time to sort stuff out and get some perspective back. Not one of my finest hours, but that wasn’t the objective for the day, a brilliant event with the same brilliant people you get on these types of events and I’ll back next year to possibly race it and also drag Adrienne along to have a go, in fact we’ll be camping and making a full weekend of it.
SUNDAY 4 SEPTEMBER
Bolton Community Half Marathon
The newest half marathon in the UK, this race is a lead up to the Bolton Community Marathon in 2017. The Bolton Marathon started in 1981 and was one of the first and largest marathons in the country.
Jonathan Cleaver was our sole representative.
Race Report from Jon Cleaver
There were 700 entrants to this inaugural half marathon starting at the centre of Bolton. The weather was much better than expected. The race started out on a decent climb up the Chorley New Road and the descended into West Houghton. There was a mixture of trail and road surface to contend with on the canal bank. You looped round and climbed back onto the Chorley New Road for a 2 mile descent back into the centre. There was a great atmosphere with a lot of the locals cheering you on. Overall I finished 18th @ 1:26:18 which was better than expected after a pretty disruptive week moving house.
This is 3.5 mile race with 900ft of climb and runs in conjunction with the Bradley Show. Four Clayton Harriers took part. Andrew Priory was our first finisher in 17th place overall and with a time of 29:50.
Robert Hirst was snapping at his heels in 18th place and claiming 1st V60, with Peter Browning in 40th and Stephen Fish in 52nd.
Garstang Half Marathon
140 Runners took part in this half marathon road race through undulating rural countryside around Garstang, the world’s first fairtrade town, and the beautiful surrounding area. The event mainly takes place on quiet country roads.
Four Clayton-le-Moors Harriers took part in the event. Daniel Isherwood was the first Clayton Runner in 28th place overall with John Wilcock In 42nd place, Robert Morrison in 53rd and Stuart Proctor in 69th
Goldenball 20 Mile Road Race, Lancaster
This is a flat and fast, 20 mile course which starts & finishes at Salt Ayre and uses the network of paths the route head towards Lancaster before heading towards Lancaster before returning back to Salt Ayre. Great preparation for marathon runners.
John Hartley had an excellent run finishing in 3rd place overall and 1st V55 with a time of 02:18:41. Joining him in the race was Daniel Plant who finished in 18th place with a time of 02:35:51.
This 10K race starts and finishes on Market Street in Wigan town centre. There is also live entertainment and a continental food market making this a race with a lot of atmosphere. 3141 finishers. There was a quartet of Clayton Harriers taking part. Richard Stevenson was our first finisher in 21st place overall and a time of 37:04. Amanda Duffy was our first lady in 316th overall and 45:58. Ian Hargreaves was 762nd in 51:53. Lucy Stevenson was our youngest runner and continues to improve as she transitions from junior races to senior events.
Report from Lucy Stevenson
On Sunday 4th September, me and my family travelled up to Wigan to run in the Wigan 10k. Me and my dad (Richard Stevenson) ran the course whilst the rest of my family supported us. The conditions were perfect, clear skies with a light breeze. I really enjoyed the run as the course was flat and the atmosphere was amazing. The course was out and back to the sports stadium with a large loop around the stadium.
Overall I came 1616 out of 3129 runners and finished with a time of 1:01:53 for my second 10k. I was really pleased with that as I did 1:03:33 at Burnley. Wigan 10k is definitely a PB course!
Another week of great parkrunning (despite the odd disruptive tractor!) for our club members. Lots of PBs and great placings as well as lots of first time visits. It’s also great to see the Burnley junior parkrun attracting plenty of keen youngsters.
Barrow parkrun – A total of 150 runners took part.
|28||Martin BRADY||23:52||VM50-54||First Timer!|
Burnley parkrun – A total of 352 runners took part.
|12||Reece Adam LAWRENCE||20:23||JM15-17|
|36||James HICKIE||22:38||VM55-59||New PB!|
|89||Cassandra Darling SMEDLEY||24:59||VW35-39|
|190||Jack MCGUIRE||28:53||VM60-64||New PB!|
|232||Jane PIER||30:14||VW45-49||New PB!|
|247||Judith CAREY||30:44||VW35-39||New PB!|
Burnley junior parkrun – A total of 74 runners took part.
|3||Helana WHITE||8:01||JW10||New PB!|
|4||Nathan KEWIN||8:14||JM11-14||New PB!|
|5||Robbie SMEDLEY||8:25||JM10||First Timer!|
|6||Charlie BIRTWISTLE||8:28||JM10||First Timer!|
|9||Natasha OLSZEWSKA||8:58||JW11-14||First Timer!|
|11||Toby BIRTWISTLE||9:03||JM10||First Timer!|
|12||Heidi KEWIN||9:05||JW11-14||New PB!|
|15||Kady THOMPSON||9:15||JW10||New PB!|
|42||Bronia OLSZEWSKA||11:53||JW11-14||First Timer!|
|53||Jessica MCBRIDE||13:08||JW10||New PB!|
Fell Foot parkrun, Newby Bridge – A total of 181 runners took part.
Huddersfield parkrun – A total of 578 runners took part.
|439||Robin PRICE||33:03||VM70-74||First Timer!|
Lancaster parkrun – A total of 232 runners took part.
Lytham Hall parkrun – A total of 201 runners took part.
|174||Philip NAYLOR||35:03||VM35-39||First Timer!|
Pendle parkrun – A total of 103 runners took part.
Witton parkrun – A total of 75 runners took part.
|14||Ian HARGREAVES||25:53||VM50-54||First Timer!|