Details are now available for The Crosses Challenge event on 4th/5th July organised by Scarborough and Ryedale Mountain Rescue Team. The 53 mile off road course, for runners and walkers, links many of the historic crosses on the North Yorkshire Moors. Ros Blackmore has become an accomplished ultra runner in the last few years and finished 34th out of 188 starters in 13h27min. Niall Cheyne, in his first event of this kind, completed the course in 19h38min to finish in a respectable 109th place.
On July 19th four club members ran in the Ingleborough fell race (6.8 miles, 1968 feet ascent). Jim Coldwell gave Jacqueline Keavney a shock as he flew past her on the steepest section of descent, but he was soon passed again as the course levelled out. Jacqueline finished in 65.07 (2nd FV50), with Jim in 65.48, comfortably ahead of his main rival Michael Keavney in 68.38. Ros Blackmore finished in 79.32.
At the Darlington Parkrun Jess Young underlined her excellent form by winning the women's race in a PB of 21.55, just a little ahead of Stuart Hardcastle in 22.09. Marion Hunter was first FV60 in 28.54. Meanwhile, at the Fountains Parkrun Andrew Fletcher continued his comeback to win the V55 category for the second consecutive week in 21.52. Nicky Logan also ran, finishing in 31.14.
SWALEDALE MARATHON 13 JUNE 2015 - AKA TWO BROKEN LEGS, ONE HEART ATTACK & TWO SHATTERED QUADS
On January 4th 2015 I downloaded the entry form, filled it in and with a 20 pound note I posted it to the Swaledale Outdoor Club Richmond , NorthYorkshire, England. My entry arrived - but the race was already full.Because I was willing to come so far they made a space for me & because my surname was Swale. Once confirmed I set about training for the run. On the race profile I could see very steep climbs & descents. For the race I had to carry first-aid kit, food & drink, gloves , hat , rain jacket, & leggings, whistle, map & compass, all crammed into my camel pack.
Our first stop was 3 days in London and a run in Regent’s Park to loosen my legs from the long flight. We then took the train to Darlington and a hire car to Richmond. I ran with the Swaledale Runners on their Thursday night club outing. We did a 40 minute jog around town.
After a long break due to injury, Andrew Fletcher made a welcome return to competitive running at the Fountains Abbey Parkrun on 4th July, promptly winning the V55-59 category in 21.57. The following day Ronnie Cassar also won his age group, finishing as first V70 at the Harrogate 10k in 50.33.
Twelve club members ran in the final race of this year's Harrogate midweek league in Otley on July 7th. The race has a handicap format with start times determined by performances in earlier races in the series. Ronan Walsh excelled himself to cross the line in first place overall in a time of 42.48. Fastest Swaledale runner on the night was Steve Brown in 34.14, although this was only quick enough for 104th place. Other times for club members - Zoe Mackay 47.02, Robbie Kelly 37.42, Sarah Norman 49.19, Alan Mackay 38.15, Chris Sayer 50.40, Louise Branford-White 45.14, Shelagh Price 53.17, Janet Ilsley 46.17, Karen Palmer 51.20, Nicki Walsh 59.21. Overall 30 runners represented the club in this year's league. Stu Smith was the highest finisher overall in 11th place, just ahead of Steve Brown in 12th. Steve won the prize for first V55 overall. Jacqueline Keavney finished as 4th woman overall and first FV50. Special mention must go to Karen Palmer, Alan Mackay and Steve Brown, who ran in all five races.
At the Darlington Parkrun on July 11th Jacqueline Keavney ran 20 minutes exactly to win the women's race. Jess Young was 9th woman in 22.55. On the same day the second race in the Dales Trail Series organised by the club's friends at Swaledale Outdoors took place. The 30k race based in Muker involved around 3000 feet of ascent including a section of the Pennine Way to the Tan Hill Inn. Derek Parrington was first club runner home in 2.57.29 for 10th place overall and 2nd V50 spot. Martin Randall wasn't far behind in 3.01.19 and 17th place. Vicki Howe finished in 3.52.25 and Jan Ilsley in 4.25.25. The final race in the series, the DT40 is in September in Wensleydale, where Derek will be hoping to win the overall Grand Slam series title.
This is a new event only the second year it has been run. It is organised by the Uper Wharfdale Fell Rescue Association and comprises of three events: a 22 mile route covering the three peaks of Birks Rigg, Buckden Pike and Great Whernside, a 13.5 mile route covering Buckden Pike and Great Whernside or a family valley walk up Dalesway path and Paradise Walk.
I hadn't heard of this event but Lynne from work found it and challenged me to complete the three peak route before she and a few others walked the two peak route. I thought my running might be up to it by the time the event came around so I accepted the challenge. But as most people know I'm having a a pretty rubbish time at the moment, especially how I felt after the Swaledale Marathon when I wish I'd never bothered!
Anyway I thought I would have a go. I decided I needed to recce the route as I don't know the area at all, so I set off to walk round it the Sunday before the race. The recce would have been very useful as it was quite challenging following the route description and I went wrong a few times. But as it turned out on the race day it was so well marked out there was no chance of getting lost, I've got to admit I felt slightly cheated by this! But on the other hand I found walking the recce such hard work ( I was out for 7 hours and I didn't even manage to complete the whole recce, I had to miss Great Whernside as I needed to get back home) that I'me glad it was well marked and easy to follow. This recce gave me no confidence at all and thought I had no chance of getting round before the girls.
The second Saturday in June is perhaps the biggest day in the Swaledale Runners calendar as it is Swaledale Marathon day. This year 36 club members completed the event which climbs around 4000 feet in its 23 mile course. Having traced his family tree (not surprisingly) to Swaledale, Vaughan Swale, a friend of the club from New Zealand, came from the other side of the world to make the race the focus of a trip to Europe. Jacqueline Keavney acted as tour guide and accompanied him around the route.
A cool day, with good visibility and good conditions underfoot saw some quick times. Matthew Hayes from East Hull won the race in 3h00, Heather Mochrie was first woman in 3h44. Stu Smith was first Swaledale runner in 3h21. There was a close contest between the next three club members. Martin Randall finished 12th in 3h33, followed by Robbie Kelly,13th in 3h35 and Derek Parrington 14th in 3h41. Mark Sowerby was next club finisher in 3h52. Rachael Alderson was the first Swaledale woman home in 4h12 with Christian Player 4h15, Jim Coldwell 4h18, Jim Gleave 4h18 and Mike Warren 4h22 not far behind. After a bigger gap there was another tight contest between the next four women with Claire Stewart in 4h46, Lucy Tulloch 4h39, Zane Agapova 4h43 and Ros Blackmore 4h45.
The remaining club runners were evenly spread throughout the field. Michael Rosher finished in 4h49, Suzie McGann 4h57, Vicki Howe 5h01, Rachele Dunn 5h10, Ronnie Cassar 5h15, Julia Spittle 5h20, Kenton Smith 5h30, Liz Sowter 5h30, Tracie Taylor-Page 5h43, Zoe and Alan Mackay 5h43, Jacqueline Morphew 5h48, Stu Clarkson 5h48, Helen Inglis 5h48, Richie Smith 5h58, Sarah Haynes 6h01, Anne Singleton 6h08, Shelagh Pearce 6h44, Karen Thompson 6h44, Roger Brisley 6h45 and John Elliot in 8h22.
Vaughan Swale and his guide finished in 5h05. He found the route tougher than expected, especially the rougher descents, but had an enjoyable and memorable day out.
The event was the first race in the club's inaugural Fell Championship. This uses a handicap system to allow men and women to compete fairly in the same competition. This seems to be working perfectly, with Stu Smith leading, Rachael Alderson second and five men and five women in the top ten. You can see these results under competitions above.
See galleries for a few photos, courtesy of Andrew Fletcher.
Thankfully, Sunday dawned with bright sunshine and the strong wind of the day before had died down to a light breeze. Jacqui and I arrived at Kirkby Stephen school around 8am, to a relaxed, but organised registration. I collected my number and was directed to the next table to collect my dibber, (a wrist band, with a plastic end attached) this would be used at the start, finish and 3 other checkpoints along route and so, record an accurate time. A little later we were joined by Michael Rosher, who had managed to come through, last minute.
Walkers were set off from 8am and the runners were then set off 9 - 10. Basically, once ready, you could set off by activating the dibber at the start line and go. So no mass start.
After a short run through part of town, we headed off along a farm lane and very soon began the first long steady climb. It seemed to go on forever, but as Ros had assured me, on reaching the top (eventually) the views were absolutely phenomenal. After running for some time along the top, it was then time for the downhill. Very nice, till I slipped on my bum, on a particularly muddy bit. Yuk!
Of course after every downhill, comes the uphill again, which always took 3x longer to do than the downhills.
Two club members ran in the hilly Kirkby Stephen 10k on May 31st. Jacqueline Keavney finished 15th overall and second lady in 44.38. Lucy Turner, in her first 10k, finished in 62.51 and would surely have broke the hour barrier on a flatter, less windy course. On the same day Roger Brisley completed the Edinburgh Marathon in 4.47.36.
The third of this year's midweek league races took place in Thirsk on Tuesday June 2nd. It was another tight battle between Stu Smith and Steve Brown to be the first club finisher. Stu came 14th overall in 30.07, just 12 seconds ahead of Steve, who won the V55 category. Derek Parrington was next Swaledale runner in 30.57, then Neil Bowmer in 32.40 and Jacqueline Keavney, 1st FV50 in 33.51. There were 20 club members in all, with Alan Mackay in 34.50, Robbie Kelly 34.14, Andy Gaines 36.34, Stuart Hardcastle 37.23, Michael Rosher 38.25, Vicki Howe 39.26, Janet Ilsley 39.42, Ros Blackmore 40.06, Ronnie Cassar 40.21, Liz Sowter 42.17, Karen Palmer 43.46, Martin Luxton 43.47, Sarah Norman 43.58, Karen Thompson 44.48 and Shelagh Pearce 45.51.
On Sunday 31st May I ran my first 10k road race in Kirkby Stephen. It was a small, friendly event run by Howgill Harriers with about 50 runners. As a novice runner this looked a good challenge to start with. The course was described as undulating and had enough variety for me to test myself on. On the day windy conditions meant I was pipped for my aim of under an hour with a time of 1.02.59. However, I learnt a great deal and would encourage runners,new or otherwise, to have a go next year. Jacqueline Keavney was second woman with a time of 44.38 and was a great support on the day. Oh, and I won a spot prize of two bottles of beer!