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Sunday, 10 April 2011

Mourne Peaks [British Champs] | Wardle Skyline Fell Race

Todmorden Harriers sent a quartet of runners to the Mourne Peaks in Northern Ireland for the first round of the British Fell Championships at the weekend and were rewarded with third place in the ladies team competition.

The opening race in this year’s championship was a demanding rollercoaster route over 10 mountain peaks, racking up over 6,300 feet of ascent and descent over a 12.5 mile course. A strong breeze in the hot and sunny conditions added to the challenge.

Kath Brierley led the way for the club, finishing 14th lady and second v45 in a time of 3:15:02. Jane Leonard was the first v50 lady to finish, seven minutes later, in 3:22:29.

Sue Roberts completed the course in 3:52:18 and Mandy Goth in 4:19:57.

Whilst the ladies were away, Todmorden’s men chose to stay local as eight Harriers took on the Wardle Skyline Fell Race in equally hot and sunny conditions.

The 7.2 mile race, organised by Rochdale Harriers, started with a climb from Wardle village, past Watergrove Reservoir, to the summit of Brown Wardle Hill. It then followed an undulating route over Hades Hill, Rough Hill and Crook Hill.

A long descent towards Shore led onto a cobbled section and the final climb of the day on the track back to Wardle.

John Lloyd and Alistair Rhodes-Dawson enjoyed a race long battle, with John crossing the line in 5th place to take the honour of first Todmorden finisher.

Alistair finished 6th, and first v40, with Robin Tuddenham closing rapidly on the pair towards the line for 7th place, to win the team prize for Todmorden.

Clive Greatorex finished in 56:20 for 31st place, half a minute ahead of Martin Roberts in 39th.

Richard Butterwick finished fast to squeeze in just under the hour mark for 57th, with Simon Galloway in 67th and Simon Anderton crossing the line in 74th place.

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