Report from OAC’s Mick Jeffrey:
I ran the Weets Fell Race (5.5 miles / 1,800′) in 1989, 90 and then in 1996, 97 and 98.
I recalled it being a very easy fell race for picking up Runner of the Year points but logistically it was going to be hard to enter this year and consequently I decided to do the Park Run Leeds 5km on Saturday morning however the opportunity to take part at Barnoldswick came up.
I had seen from the Fell Runners website that the registration point had changed and when I finally found it, it seemed that numbers were depleted. Rather worryingly I did notice everyone but me had fell shoes on.
At the start area I met Don Buffham who described the route from his last year’s experience.
Basically it was up and down the fell four times, not what I’d expected.
A comment on the Wharfedale Harriers website says it all, “Being the fortieth Weets Race, it attracted runners who had taken part in earlier Weets races and they all commented how the present race is much more challenging than the old race which merely went up the Weets and back from Barnoldswick town centre”. I’ll second that.
That said the winner Mark McGoldrick (Wharfedale Harriers) completed the course in 40.05.
I came 25th in 51.00 just one position ahead of the first lady Lucy Needham (Holmfirth Harriers) in 51.07. Don finished 55th in 68.49. I would have been first MV55 had that Nick Pearce (Ilkley Harriers) not turned up as he did in all the mid 90’s races!
Strangely enough I didn’t feel the morning’s 5km race had been a major disadvantage and I actually found myself enjoying the experience, so I’m going to lie down in a darkened room for a while now.
Results from wharfedaleharriers