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Notices and Forthcoming Events


Got some news, photos, information or just need an OAC question answering? Email

Please check the club notice board in the Cricket Club for forthcoming races and car sharing options.

Our Absolute Beginners group is for anyone wanting to have a go at running, regardless of ability. Find them on their Facebook page or email

The final club rankings and runner of the year tables for 2015 – well done to Mark Hall runner of the year for 2015, where are you?

A reminder of other forthcoming events in the near future:

Structured training - Structured training is available every Tuesday and Thursday, meeting at the club as normal. Here is the sessions rota.

Liam’s Hill Reps – 6:15pm every Tuesday, meet at the junction of St Richard’s Road and Kell Beck (up behind the hospital).

Sunday 21st Feb – Our resident kit expert Gilly Wright, boss of Up & Running in Leeds, starts her charity run from Otley to Cambridge. She’ll be there the following Saturday, and after a good night’s sleep she’ll be poised and ready for the Cambridge Half-Marathon. She’s doing it all in aid of the Candlighters charity and you can sponsor her here.

The Harrogate League - 3rd May Ilkley (provisional); 24th May Nidd Valley; 31st May Swaledale; 14th June Ripon; 28th June Otley handicap race (provisional).

Thursday 11th February – Away night Moonlighter, Beamsley Beacon, meet 7:15pm, Addingham, the road by the suspension footbridge, or 6:45pm at the club for car share.

Saturday 13th FebruaryWindy Hill FR

Sunday 14th FebruaryLiversedge Half

Sunday 21st FebruaryWombwell 5,  Snake Lane 10,  Ilkley Moor Fell Race, (400 limit,  prob. no entry on the day).

Saturday 27th February – Race 2 2016 Eric Smith Handicap Trophy, Eccup Alwoodley Lane Handicap, 6 miles,  meet 10:30 – 10:45 New Inn Eccup to car share / jog down to the start, limited parking at the start @ 11:00am.

Saturday 5th March – Not long to wait if disappointed with your handicap at race 2.., Race 3 of the 2016 Eric Smith Handicap Trophy is the revival of the Wellington handicap, a 3 lap, 5 mile course from the Wellington Inn, Darley, 10:45 for 11.00am start.

Saturday 27th FebruaryBanff Mountain Film Festival, Harrogate.

Thursday 3rd March – The OAC Bake Off & Quiz!


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Runner of the Month for January

Tom Pomfrett at Stanbury Splash 2016

Photo courtesy of Woodentops

GemmaHarringtonTom Pomfrett and Gemma Harrington were chosen as last month’s runner of the month.

Tom for his excellent runs at the Stanbury Splash and the John Cowan Handicap.

Gemma for her pb at the Brass Monkey Half Marathon.


Sunday 7th February – Dewsbury 10k

Report from Howard Jeffrey:

I must have been on the computer when the entries opened for this race (in its 30th year) because I was issued with Number 1. I quite liked being Numero Uno for a while but it was a very, very tall order to live up to, even for a category win today. Another, was to match last years’ time of 40.34 but I was thinking 42.30 at best to 45.00 at worst. The day did start well with a clear starlit sky while I walked the dog and bright sunshine on the way to the race although I was conscious of a bit of a blustery wind on the way there. The route is a straight out, slightly uphill through built up Batley but not unpleasant for that, to halfway, round some cones and straight back.  My pace was slightly off on the way to the turn but I was motivated by the sight of Jamil, Scott, Mark and Peter all storming back to the finish. I was not able to pick up quite enough on the way back, the wind was not wholly in its usual ‘back to the finish’ direction.

All in all a great day for a race and I made the finish in 335th place in 43.54, chip time behind Mohamed Abu-Rezeq in first place in a blistering 30.06, Jamil Parapia in 4th in an awesome 31.37, Scott Harrington 6th in a scorching 32.42. First lady Charlene Thomas from Wakefield 16th overall in an impressive 33.33, Mark Hall an inspiring 35.00, 1st MV55 in 30th place, shaving 10 seconds off his club record, Peter Crowder in an enviable 39.03 in 130th. Other Otley finishers were Phil Robinson who was aiming for a sub 50.00 clocking and got 49.37 for 610th place, Charlotte Tomlinson 51.15, 693rd, Gemma Harrington 51.57, 709th, Andrew Rayner 52.37, 734th, Emma Thomson 57.28, 865th (all chip times). See full results here.  The race was full with 1300 entries and 1084 finishers. I saw a few people dropped out but where are and what happened to over 200 no-shows ?????

When I got home Mick had brought my trophy for the runner of the year 2nd place as well as the accolade for best report writer of last year, for which I thank you all (ish?). I have been concentrating on triathlon at the expense of running training recently so I am pleased to have hung on to second behind Mark, who I repeat is inspiring. I hope enough rubs off for me to sub 40.00 again for 10K. Watch this space!


Saturday 7th February – Rombald Stride

Report from President Matt Podd:

Well done to all who completed this today – it was challenging. Not sure if everyone got home safe as I was hypothermic and needed to lie in the bath for a long time.

Well we all met up at St Oswald, with a large Black and White contingent and as we were led out to the start it commenced with the rain – which was a feature of the day – some may say negative. Very wet and slippery round the course, with sleet at times and appalling visibility. Spent a lot of the time running in my own bubble, and I’m glad I know the route. Saw some friendly faces on the way round – cheers Mark and Graham – others saw Andrew. I’ve done this race a few time and today was special, but all praise to the marshals and feed stations – who were cheerful and fed us well.

Saw a few folk when I finished Mr Rombalds himself – it wasn’t his year, Shane, Ross, Tom P, and Kirsty arrived soon after me. Hope the others are not too traumatised – for a lot this is their longest outing.

Lots of photos on Sport Sunday here  :-)


Saturday 6th February – Park Runs

Lots of Park run results this week with a few pb’s too.

Alice Holt

Position Gender Position Parkrunner Club Run Time
1 1 Sarah Hill Farnham Runners 19:57
2 1 Luke Bone Unattached 20:08
95 75 Sean O’Halloran Otley AC 28:58

Bradford,  pb for Ann

Position Gender Position Parkrunner Club Run Time
1 1 Will Kerr Saltaire Striders 17:51
19 1 Lesley Watson Bingley H&AC 20:55
76 70 Stephen Small Otley AC 23:45
114 13 Ann Yeadon Otley AC 25:15
128 110 Eriks Zvaigzne Otley AC 25:40

Fountains Abbey

Position Gender Position Parkrunner Club Run Time
1 1 Toby Osman Ripon Runners 16:53
8 1 Hannah Oldroyd Airedale Dodgers 18:18
80 68 Peter Crowder Otley AC 24:49

Harrogate,  pb for Jenson

Position Gender Position Parkrunner Club Run Time
1 1 Joe Gresty Unattached 18:35
11 11 Jenson Brogden Otley AC 21:32
18 1 Sharon Hardcastle Unattached 21:53
48 3 Holly Davey Otley AC 23:46
190 52 Gloria Jackson Otley AC 33:18

Woodhouse Moor,  pb for Natalie

Position Gender Position parkrunner Club Run Time
1 1 Ben Douglas Durham Uni. AC 16:14
7 1 Laura Dransfield Roundhay Runners 18:19
69 60 Andrew Webster Otley AC 22:38
214 49 Natalie Kettleborough Otley AC 27:58


Position Gender Position Parkrunner Club Run Time
1 1 Nathan Veall York Triathlon Club 17:13
31 1 Sharon Lynn York Acorn RC 20:15
195 168 Howard Jeffrey Otley AC 25:01

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Friday 29th January – Presidential Presentation Awards Address

For those of you unable to attend – or remember – the Strictly Come Drink and Dine with Otley AC, brought to you by Toblerone, held at Korks last friday, this is what President Podd said in honour of the very great and good Black and Whites!

“This [award giving] was a great idea and saved me writing a speech. Thanks for all the responses – some of the more libellous or vindictive have had to be removed on the advice of my attorney.

  • Runners’ Runner of the year

Sara Richard, Sara sneaks under the radar but does an awful lots of races and performs well and mixing it on and off road. Last year Sara did 10K’s, 7, 9, 10 and 20 miles, three half marathons, a full marathon and two ultra-marathons, not forgetting the Millennium Relay.

Honourable mentions: 

Liam. A top performance in the London Marathon, then he eased of a bit due to work commitments and at some point in the late summer he reappeared. Often in the shadow of the fast lads but up there with them. And he can drink.

Sarah Fuller for doing the Spine Challenger and Hardmoors 110 in one year, both of which make me feel sick just thinking about attempting.

Antonio cos he always turns up and runs with a big smile on his face

Frank with a proper try-again attitude to coming second in Rombalds and not breaking 2hr30 for the marathon.

Howard! Out there practically every week in an OtleyAC vest

Mark Hall for breaking age group records, even uk best in his age category.

Scott Harrington – some brilliant performances and came back well after injury.


  • Performance of the year – who ran out of their skin in a race

Jamil for one of his 2 PBs this year, 5k and 1/2 marathon. No mean feat for someone who’s run well while younger, and still getting PBs into old age!

Honourable mentions:

Can’t decide between Jamil at Abbey Dash or Mark Hall at pretty much every race he’s entered, he’s amazing!

Sean for running any and every XC race he can find, always tries so hard

Frank Beresford London Marathon

Sarah Fuller; you know why!

Team win in John Carr

Derek’s Bob Graham


  • Club member of the year – who has done the most to help/support the club

Old war horse, Andrew Robertshaw -quietly gets on with stuff; tirelessly devoted service; constantly committed, good reports, race/route/website guru and we wouldn’t have a hotly contested handicap otherwise. Oh and runs a fair few races pretty well.

Honourable mentions:

Sara E, she is giving up a lot of her time to support the club, coach to 5k, training sessions, represents the club at races, the new conditioning session, committee, the list goes on. She is very supportive of everyone and can be relied upon to help out.

The commitment, support and energy Hannah Lupton gives to the club is unparalleled. She encourages everyone irrespective of their abilities. She praises all and is an asset to the club. She does volunteer but ultimately must spend hours on club things despite everything else she has had going on?

Colin Best


  • Best report writer on the website

Runners questioned why I had this as a prize, but I’m justified by the response, love clicking on the website and finding an erudite yet amusing race report. Self-aggrandisement or deprecation is a skill. Personally I like a description of the landscape passed through!

Howard Jeffrey by a mile! His reports are amusing, detailed and very well written. A pleasure to read,  a treat.

Honourable mentions:

Graham Lake

Steve Boddy – dry, like a boilerman’s throat.

Andrew Robertshaw


• Improver of the year

Nicola Lee has grafted in 2015 in what is her second full year at the club. In 2015 Nicola gained substantial PB’s at 5k and 10k but also did her first 10 mile and half marathon in respectable times.  Nicola Lee x1 x1

Honourable mentions:

Tom Lynch

Sean has put in a massive effort to improve his fitness and lose weight which has seen him get pb’s and he’s running really well

Tom Midegley for knocking 15 mins of his marathon time

Gemma Harrington. Her marathon training has paid off and she has had a fab year.

Joanna Hobson


  • Wackiest race a member completed

Gathering Winter Fools. Fancy dress in freezing conditions and it’s not even a race!!

Honourable mentions:

Gilly Wright, The Hardmoors Rosedale Marathon, a tough race in its self but Gilly decided to run it with her dog Max. Gilly has subsequently completed more races in 2015 with Max, one being the Paras10 and coming 3rd cannicross female.

Anything entered by Sarah Fuller


  • Buffoon of the year

Tom Hannah for his training blunder on top of the Chevin resulting in a broken shoulder, so near a pub too! Thankfully he’s back running again although slowed his drinking for a bit.

Honourable mentions:

Emma Jones, broken nose and hand falling along the river path,

Sara E.  and Louise probably for going wrong on just about every route..

Robin for dressing as a nun at Pudsey Pain Barrier

Frying in the Palma 10k


  • Anyone else who deserves a mention

Hugh for all the work with the juniors

Andrew Rayner (Billy), always at training (unless on holiday) and often doing back to back sessions supporting the beginners and the bridging group at main club. A regular racer and all round nice guy.

I think Colin needs a special mention for sorting out Otley 10 every year, it’s a huge under taking and he does an amazing job

Also, thanks to Tom H for organising the training weekend year in year out, must be a challenge trying to organise everyone and keep us all happy!

The team organising both the efforts sessions and the conditioning sessions – great addition to the club offering

Antonio! he keeps on turning out for us: at xc no less – so brave! and always comments positively on the website.

Richard Hamer’s social media reporting and information is very much laughed at.

Neil Charlton for web work [when it’s done]

Chris Carver…all those emails must do his head in!!!

Flash (Caron’s bassett hound – he’s always there at cross country, relays and, oddly, anywhere that Caron is racing)

Christian Hosker stopping to offer help to a stricken athlete at Leeds half.

The beginners who’ve moved up-Louise Penny, Rob Fearnley, Claire Hastings, the lovely Isla and Beth.

Everybody & anybody who turns up for training sessions/races & social events making this a great club

All our families who allow and help us to do this

The woman with the Bacon Sandwich at Baildon Boundary way”


Sunday 31st January – Meltham “Tough” 10k

Report from Phil Robinson: 9.30am, 2oC, drizzly sleet, but conditions much better than last year (a local runner told me) when several competitors were hospitalised with hypothermia. I was glad to have full body cover unlike a rugged few in singlets and skimpy shorts. The route is just a series of climbs and descents, so for me it was into survival mode from the off, trying to avoid black thoughts whilst grinding slowly up the hills. The last exhilarating mile – all downhill – cleared the cobwebs and put a smile back on (almost) everyone’s face. A severe test but great fun – once it was over. The only other runner in my age group was Tim Cock, who finished a few minutes behind.

Results –

1 Matthew Pierson Stainland 34.25

2 Tom Kaye u/a 34.58

3 Philip Eccleston Burnden RR 35.57

160 Phil Robinson Otley 54.50

221 finished.


Saturday 30th January – Park Runs

Bradford parkrun

A total of 437 runners took part.

View full results for Bradford parkrun event #295


Position  ↓ Gender Position  ↓ parkrunner  ↓ Club  ↓ Run Time  ↓
1 1 Marcin SOSZKA Saltaire Striders 00:18:24
22 1 Jen WILLINGHAM Saltaire Striders 00:21:38
80 71 Stephen SMALL Otley AC 00:24:31


Roundhay parkrun

A total of 318 runners took part.

View full results for Roundhay parkrun event #251


Position  ↓ Gender Position  ↓ parkrunner  ↓ Club  ↓ Run Time  ↓
1 1 Jonathan SMYTH Valley Striders AC 00:17:48
27 1 Kathryn FISK Horsforth Fellandale Club 00:21:05
142 121 Michael Jeffrey Otley AC 00:26:43
212 51 Emma THOMSON Otley AC 00:29:38


Fountains Abbey parkrun

A total of 271 runners took part.

View full results for Fountains Abbey parkrun event #98


Position  ↓ Gender Position  ↓ parkrunner  ↓ Club  ↓ Run Time  ↓
1 1 Ben PEASE Unattached 00:17:04
13 13 Peter Andrew CROWDER Otley AC 00:19:03
24 1 Emma SORBY Ripon Runners 00:20:46
35 32 Howard Jeffrey Otley AC 00:21:47

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Saturday 30th January – Northern XC Championships

Report from our XC supremo, Sean O’Halloran: On Saturday I travelled over to Witton Park Outdoor Leisure Centre in Blackburn to keep my run of cross country races going and to take part in the Northern XC Championship race.

During my warmup the heavens opened to a torrent of hail and snow, accompanied with a head in artic gale and I managed to develop brain freeze. At this point I did question myself with “what the hell are you doing, it’s not as if you are going to win!!” I soon dismissed these negative thoughts and took up my position at the back of the gathering pack. There were over 700 senior men on the start line; the line was approx. 30m long and 10 runners deep. The starter’s gun went off and the race got underway with what can only be described as a medieval battle charge down the field to the first bend.

The senior men’s race was 12K race, a 4 lap affair with each lap being approx. 2km. Each lap contained two large climbs, one steep decent and one gradual decent with a few switch backs, total elevation gain was 865ft.  The course had treacle like mud nearly all the way round and was calf deep in places. I wore my 12mm XC spikes and wished I had 15mm as grip and traction was rare. But I have learnt how to control sliding while running and remain upright, only slipped over once. Weather conditions made the going even tougher, with horizontal hail/snow that hurt at times and with the arctic gales that caused further brain freeze but I was not going to stop until the end – I loved it!!!

I appreciate XC running is not everyone’s cup of tea, but it’s a great experience to take part in such an event and I hope more OAC runners will take the plunge next season. Today I witnessed first-hand some awesome running in tough conditions. The front runners are machines and it’s amazing how effortlessly they glide around the course.

I am not the fastest person in the world and my mission in any of these top level races is not to come last. On Saturday I think there were 6 people behind me so I am pleased with that result as I could not have given it anymore and had jelly legs on the last 400m. Senior results are as follows:

 Senior Mens Race 12k
1st Charlie Hulson Sale Harriers Manchester 00:43:16
2nd Peter Huck Barrow & Furness Striders AC 00:43:24
3rd Jack Morris Stockport Harriers & AC 00:42:32
713th Sean O’Halloran Otley AC 01:36:18
Senior Ladies Race 7.7K
1st Claire Duck Leeds City 00:30:21
2nd Sarah Tunstall Kendal Amateur AC 00:30:41
3rd Rosie Smith Durham City Harriers & AC 00:30:44

Full results can be found here



Sunday 24th January – East Lancashire Hospice 10k, Great Harwood

Report from Phil Robinson:

Rishton, Great Harwood and East Lancs are three of the former Lancahire League cricket teams I remember watching as a junior member at Nelson in the 1950s when the local professional was Johnny Wardle. So I revisited the Accrington area last weekend to test out my legs and lungs. The course was a mixture – bits of road, canal towpath, old railway line, muddy paths and parkland, with a nasty hill about halfway. My mediocre time was adequate enough to be 1st in age group (out of four). The only familiar face in the crowd of nearly 500 was that of Dave Smart, whom older members will remember as a former Otley runner; he’s just retired from running a pub in Silsden.


1 Danny Collinge Clayton-le-Moors 34.20
2 Philip Eccleston Burden Road Runners 34.50
3 Nick Gaskell Trawden AC 36.04
160 Phil Robinson Otley AC 51.20
279 David Smart Leeds Bradford Tri 58.15

457 finishers.