Flying start to West Yorkshire League

Team and individual winners at Thornes Park

Thornes Park, Wakefield, Saturday 14th October


Isabel Richardson

Junior athletes from Holmfirth Harriers shone it the first meeting of the West Yorkshire cross country league held last Saturday at a sunny Thornes Park in Wakefield. There were both individual and team successes and a fabulous over turnout from the club’s junior section in a league meeting that saw record fields in many of the junior races. 

The U11 boys got the racing off to a great start with 9 Holmfirth boys competing. First back was Declan Levay still with a year to go in this age group in 14th position. He was followed home by Harry Gilligan in 22nd and Tom Fraine in 24th these 3 the team counters. Backing up these 3 were Jamie Stewart 27th, Jack Sunderland 28th, Oscion Waterman 39th, Greg Wood 54th Max Williams 59th, Patrick Wood 72nd and Alex Hicks 78th, most of these were competing in their first cross country race for the club. The boys team finished in 4th position In the U11 girls the club had fewer representatives but Alice Bridge and Lucy Holland both had storming runs to finish in 19th and 20th spots respectively.


Kristian Green

The U13 age group was particularly exciting for the club’s supporters with a first place finish in the boys from Kristian Green and a hard fought battle in the girls with Isobel Richardson coming in a close second to Rebecca Flaherty of Bingley Harriers. Isobel was followed home by Imogen Wolff with a brilliant run in her first cross country race for the club in 7th and Elena Inch in 9th the girls clinching first place in the team standings. Annie McClean (50th), Libby Pringle (56th), Zara Farrow (63rd), Elizabeth Gilligan (70th) and Zara Earnshaw (71st) all ran with real commitment in this their first year in the U13 age group. In the boys Kristian who had an impressive winning margin of 22 seconds by the finish line, was supported by Soljai Waterman in 22nd, Calum McFarlane in 33rd and Rory Byrant 37th. The boys team finished in 5th.


Olivia Sykes

The U15 girls finished a close 4th Olivia Dyson and Zara Tyas running a close fought race and coming home in 19th and 20th respectively. Mollie Scaramuzza was next home in 29th, Sophie Kettlewell just behind in 33rd. Their U17 counterparts managed one better with a 4th place finish. Juliette Branford was first back for the girls in 6th place, with Annie Stone and Alice Shelbourne in 15th and 16th place respectively.

The senior women were triumphant once again, making a great start on the effort to retain their league title. Even with a couple of key athletes out with injury and illness, Holmfirth showed their strength in depth by still winning the team event by a considerable margin over second placed Leeds City.
The battle at the front of the field was between Leeds and former GB international, Emma Clayton, and Holmfirth’s in-form Olivia Sykes. Sykes fought hard all the way round the 5.7km course and it was only in the latter stages that the Leeds athlete pulled away to win by 16 seconds. Olivia’s second place was also first U20 (20:40)). Helen Berry worked her way through the chasing pack to finish an excellent third and 1st W40 (21:18). Ruby Sykes and Claire Leaver ran a close race finishing 11th (22:14) and 13th & 2nd W35(22:20) respectively, both in front of Leeds City’s third-placed athlete, securing the quartet a comfortable victory.


Aaron Kettlewell

Other Holmfirth women’s results were; 33rd Harmonie Waterman (24:00), 42nd Kath Farquhar (24:39), 56th Amy Kettlewell (25:53), 61st & 1st W60 Lesley Ewart (26:06), 141st Ann Smith (39:38).

In the Junior/Senior men’s race it was Aaron Kettlewell who was the lead challenger for Holmfirth Harriers. He stuck with the leading two runners, Mike Burrett (Leeds City) and eventual winner, Dan Garbutt (Skyrac), only to succumb by 11 seconds and finish in a fantastic 3rd place & 1st U20(32:51). As always Dave Watson ran consistently well to come home in 24th & 2nd M45 (35:14) closely followed by Steve Green in 29th & 3rd M45 (35:54). Phil Hewitt had a strong run to come back in 37th (36:59). It was two U20 athletes, Lavell Pierre and Harry Shelbourne, who coped well over the 10km distance to finish in 59th (38:54) & 62nd (39:05) respectively. These results ensured that Holmfirth Harriers finished in 3rd place by a mere three points.

Other Holmfirth men’s results were: 79th & 3rd M50 Jonny Sykes (40:02), 125th & 3rd M60 John Ewart (43:24), 126th Damo McQueen (43:28), 132nd Simon Barrans (44:18), 147th Karl Dransfield (45:20), 151st Shaun Coggon (45:53), 155th & 2nd M65 Kevin Yewlett (46:30), 161st Louis Cromwell (47:10), 163rd Rob Kersey (47:51) & 166th Jason Haigh (48:27).

Link to photos (courtesy of Norman Berry): https://www.flickr.com/photos/hhac/albums/72157687351369150

Pre-2012 news, results & reports are on the old sites: 2009 to 2011, Pre-2009

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