Richard Hamer writes: As 2017 draws to a close, the club’s inaugural fell race championship is hotting up with less than one point separating Antonio and Don Buffham.
The latest round saw both contenders along with fourth placed Tom Lynch turn out for the Shepherds Skyline race, a firm favourite on the fell calendar.
Held at Lumbutts, near Todmorden, this category BS race involves two climbs adding up to 350m of ascent over 10km. While the weather was dry, the ground was anything but; most people had wet feet just from being on the starting line.
The first mile and a half was a mad muddy dash uphill to Langfield Common then it was a mostly flat ridge run for about another mile and a half to the star of the show, Stoodley Pike monument; the original version being built to commemorate the defeat of Napoleon and the surrender of Paris.
A mad steep dash downhill took us back down to ground level to a flat but muddy farm track for about a quarter of mile, and then a steep climb saw us back on the ridge at a point about halfway between Langfield Common and the pike.
Here there was cold breeze and most runners found it hard to get going again after the lung-busting accent which was only runnable by the top end of the field.
It was then just a matter of retracing our steps across the ridge and then the mile and half technical downhill to the finish. Great fun. Mostly.
Tom Lynch was first back for Otley in 56th place in 55:06. Tom Pomfrett 63:24, Bob Baker (9th M60) 74:14, Caron Ralph 75:33 (7th F45), Richard Hamer 76:49, Phil Robinson 81:10 (2nd M70), Don Buffham 82:10, and Antonio Cardinale (7th M65) 106:47.
The winner in 44:20 was Tom Owens (Shettleston Harriers) and the first lady in 48:52 was Holly Page (Calder Valley). Full results.