Ian Roberts fell race, Sunday 14 March 2010
Oh tussocks!!! I think that just about sums up this year’s Ian Roberts fell race – the second counter in the 2010 Holmfirth Harriers fell championship.
In his quest to make the race more fell-like and to avoid the chance of runners taking short cuts over the golf course, Tom decided to change the route and add in a tussocky sting in the tail. Race stalwarts were generally of the opinion that this route change is a big improvement, but there was still a bit of cursing in the cricket club afterwards.
Of the 94 runners who started the race (25 Harriers), all 94 returned safe and sound, which is always good news. The weather was much better than last year (no rain, sleet or snow), there were plenty of marshals at key points, and thanks to Tom’s Blue Peter-esque flag-making frenzy, the course was meticulously marked. It was practically impossible to get lost (though I did try…)
It really should have been Bill’s race, with Tom out of the way doing race organisation-y things and nursing a mysterious ankle injury. There were rumours that Ben ‘The Bullet’ Mounsey from Calder Valley would be turning up to spoil the show, but that didn’t happen. Instead, poor Bill was shown a clean pair of heels by 16-year old Sean Carey from Todmorden Harriers who led the field home in 48:07. Fresh-faced Ryan Gould of Salford Harriers took second place in 49:35, with Bill finishing a few seconds behind in 49:41.
Next home for Holmfirth was Nigel, who continued his strong start to the 2010 season with an eighth place finish (53.19). The ever-improving Jonathan Sykes took 10th place (53.57), securing the three-to-count team prize for Holmfirth’s men.
John E, who claims to have been running “abominably” of late, saved face by finishing (just) ahead of the first lady – who happened to be Katie W - in 55.19. Mr Ewart was also first V50 in the race, beating his closest challenger by one and a half minutes.
As just mentioned, Katie W was the first lady home, finishing comfortably ahead of the other female competitors in 55.39. Second and third place in the women’s rankings went to Kath F (60.40) and Lucy (61.40) – securing the ladies team prize for the Harriers. Chris Couch and Barbara completed the Harriers’ prize haul as first and second FV50 runners in 66.09 and 68.32 respectively.
As is traditional at this event, Holmfirth Harriers laid on a generous spread of sandwiches and cakes at Marsden Cricket Club afterwards. The prize-winners also went home with an assortment of beers, bottles of wine or (in the case of our 16-year-old race winner) fancy chocolates.
All Harriers and friends of the club who had volunteered their services as race marshals, entry takers, caterers, and timekeepers were thanked for their work – and asked if they might come back and help next year….
3 Bill Stewart (49.41), 8 Nigel Moran (53.19), 10 Jonathan Sykes (53.57), 15 John Ewart (55.19), 16 Katie Walshaw (55.39), 28 Phil Hobbs (60.12), 30 Phil Martin (60.36), 31 Kath Farquhar (60.40), 33 Lucy Griffiths (61.40), 34 Ian Shuttleworth (61.52), 40 Maz Khoueiry (62.58), 45 Andrew Keast (65.37), 46 Ian Arnold (65.43), 47 Christine Couch (66.09), 48 Paula Gould (67.16), 55 Barbara Hinchliffe (68.52), 56 Chris Whitelegg (68.54), 58 Bill Hunter (69.20), 68 Robert Halstead (71.44), 70 Rebecca Halstead (72.24), 79 Tim Cock (76.11), 81 Kiersti Dickinson (77.35), 84 Sophie Barraclough (78.04), 85 Claire Whitwam (78.11), 86 Alison Whitelegg (78.11).