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Sunday 9th April – Vale of York 10

Report from the spectator point of view by Jack Robertshaw, an incident packed morning!ValeOfYorkRobFearnley

The sunny weather saw us travelling over to give our encouragement to members in this race. Having consulted the OS map. we decided to park just short of the “lollipop shaped course in a little village about a quarter of a mile off the course. Turning right off the road to York just before Rufforth, a sign declared “” road closed beyond that village ” We parked and walked to the course. A barrier was across the road. Two cars overtook us and were stopped. A runner got out of the second car and was told he would have to run to the start. . Five minutes to the starting time. “A good warm up the Kippax Harrier said. Fortunately for him the demands on the toilets were great and the start was pushed back ten minutes. .We walked down the route to a road junction. The base of the lollipop route

A rather large man from the Company running the race was at this junction. He told us it cost £300 to close the roads, plus his company cost of £1000. One of the Marshalls asked him if that would be the cost in Leeds .Much more than that he replied. They cover mValeOfYorkJoannaHobsonany triathlon races which are ” much more difficult than this and more expensive” He was turning back cars who had driven past Road Closed signs.A driver in a 4WD Porsch was not happy. The marshalls had variety of named Running Club HI Vis jackets on. City of York, Abbey Runners St Theresa A Marshall told us the marshalling entitled him to a free entry in races the Company ran. “We save £20 or so by doing this” he said.

We walked back towards the runners to a bend in the road. Our mindset is still looking for white vests and we nearly missed those running in the mainly black variety. All of the Otley runners were through.Later, with only about a quarter of the field left, there was was an incident. . About 100 yards beyond us loud shouting of ” Marshalls ” was heard. Many runners stopped with marshals arriving . Somebody was giving mouth to mouth followed by the standard elbow stomach pumping. A large group of runners were around him. A female Barnsley runner “orange variety ” had a go at us ” saying we should be attending the incident”. We would have got in the way as we have no first aid experience..

A First Responder arrived within minutes ,and in the next ten minutes two Ambulances. A couple more smaller medical vehicles arrived a little later.. Five minutes after this a Helicopter flew in. .

We were told that he was not wearing a number and he had an angina attack which resulted in him banging his head. By this time the leading runners were returning. They were directed unto the adjacent dry field. The lack of a boundary wall / fence / hedge helped but a ditch resulted in a good length of the field being used, The road was blocked by the helpers and all the vehicles.

It was a warm dry dry over a relatively flat course with the temperature rising as the race progressed. There was little wind where we were so there was a potential for fast times.  A few more photos on the club Flickr site here.

Report from Howard and results: Read the rest of this entry »


Saturday 8th April – Park Runs

Position Gender Position Parkrunner Club Run Time
Fell Foot
1 1 Phil Waite Barrow & Furness Striders AC 16:22
14 1 Bianca Dyer Helm Hill Runners 21:09
22 20 James Rawstron Otley AC 21:53
34 4 Charlotte Rawstron Otley AC 23:01
Fountains Abbey
1 1 Reece Dalton Ripon Runners 16:11
9 1 Mena Scatchard Ripon Runners 19:22
86 70 Peter Crowder Otley AC 23:44
1 1 Jack White City of Norwich AC 16:29
3 1 Pauline Powell Blackburn H. & AC 18:06
148 64 Laurel Frear Otley AC 31:59
1 1 Kristoff Boynton York Acorn RC 16:57
11 1 Carol Morgan Nidd Valley RR 20:22
21 18 Howard Jeffrey Otley AC 22:23
Woodhouse Moor
1 1 Tim Gordon Unattached 16:41
36 1 Colette Mccambridge Unattached 20:31
96 82 Andrew Webster Otley AC 23:28

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Tuesday 4th April – Bunny Run #1 Haworth

Report from Caron Ralph

April brings the annual pilgrimage to Dimples Lane quarry for the Bunny Runs.  I normally try to do at least 2 each year as they’re a great (or not so) reminder of how furiously fast some of the junior runners are!  This year definitely didn’t disappoint as the course was drier than usual so there was some fast running.  Also travelling with us were Holly Davey from our juniors and mum Becky- Holly trying her first Bunny Run,  having an idea of what it would be like after doing a few other junior Woodentops races.  She ran a good tactical race finishing in a good time of 22.37, me following a bit later in 24.06, also running her first Bunny Run was Mary Hampshire, 26:48 and her son Ben, 19.43  We decided to go to the pub after as Holly was eager to see the chocolate throw-out… again that didn’t disappoint with both of us winning an Easter Egg and acquiring a few more Creme Eggs, Haribo’s and packets of crisps along the way.  I’m not sure how many bruises Holly or Becky ended up with from flying Creme Eggs etc but we all enjoyed the evening and it was a good start to the Bunny season…again next week?

Joe Baxter, P&B won in 15:44, 1st woman was Sarah Hodgson, Leeds Uni. 18:27. Results & Photos on Woodentops


Sunday 2nd April, Blubberhouses 25

Nicky Gifford, Sara Richard and myself have been entered for this adventure for a while and on the day we were joined by Laura Hind who decided she was up for a laugh too. We arrived at Norwood village hall and immediately bumped into Laura Martin’s husband, James Sneath, Rob Fearnley, Serena Blackburn, Laura Clark and Steve Robinson, so it was a good turn out as usual from the club for this local almost 25 mile run. According to my Strava it was 24.1 miles.

Nicky, Sara, Laura and myself decided to set off together and take it steady, I was shattered after moving house 2 days before so I just wanted a nice day out with friends and to get round in one piece. The weather was forecast to be sunny and it was certainly warm from the beginning, no need for hats, gloves and thermals unlike the usual long distance running weather we are accustomed to. In fact Laura had brought sun cream with her.

For anyone that hasn’t done the route before you start at Norwood Hall and follow a road route down to Swinsty Reservoir, crossing over the dam bridge and up the side of Fewston Reservoir. There you cross the road and follow the stream up to Thruscross Reservoir where there is a refreshment stop. Nicky and I were trailing behind Laura and Sara a little, Nicky was struggling with an injury she’s had for a couple of months now and I was full of cold and not on form. We stuck together a bit longer till we hit the moor going up to Rocking Hall where Laura and Sara started to pull away. When we regrouped at Rocking Hall checkpoint (which incidentally has the best fruitcake and cheese ever) Nicky and I told them to crack on, I knew the route as I’d done it as a training run with Liz Fawcett last year and I was fairly confident I could get us round without getting too lost.

From Rockinghall we dropped down to the River Wharfe at Bolton Abbey and after a quick comfort break at the pavilion loos and a little dip in the ford we followed the River until we got to a bridleway that takes you up to Storiths. So far the ground under foot had been fairly good paths, a bit of mud along the Washburn Valley but not bad. The fields that took us from Storiths to Deerstones were decidedly wet and boggy, followed by a muddy sharp incline before coming out at Beamsley Beacon car park and a fantastic refreshments stop with tea, coffee, sausage rolls, sandwiches and flapjack. Here we were met by Caron and Andrew who had decided to combine a run with cheering us on, it was great to see them. As we approached the checkpoint we were surprised to see Sara and Laura just starting to climb up Beamsley Beacon, I thought they’d have been much further in front and was pleasantly surprised. Nicky was struggling and wasn’t really enjoying herself, we had various conversations throughout the day comparing the route to Rombalds and the conclusion was she preferred Rombalds and I preferred Blubberhouses.

After a quick pit stop and with our mug of tea in hand we kept moving before we seized up and started the climb up Beamsley Beacon, it was most definitely a walker! Next we headed for Round Hill. I hate Round Hill with a passion, not because of the bogs but because of the uneven surface and I always turn an ankle, I knew that for me this was going to be the biggest challenge of the day. We kept trying to get a little trot going on the climb up to Round Hill but kept having to navigate bogs which would stop us from getting into any decent rhythm. For a little while we gave up trying and walked with a lovely gentleman who turned out to be 75 years young and who walks 10 miles every day with his wife, he walked quicker than I could jog, what a lovely bloke. Over the stile we went and the bogs got bigger, I had a girly scream at one point and Nicky lost a leg in a bog up to her knee but apart from that we negotiated Roundhill unscathed and laughing, exiting the moor by the house with gargoyles on the gate posts. For those of you that have done our Roundhill race it’s where Kath always marshal’s, I breathed a sigh of relief to get back onto solid ground for a bit and we pounded the road to Timble before crossing more boggy fields to drop down to the dam bridge on Swinsty reservoir once again.

From here it’s a mile or so back to the start across some fields, this is where I decided to get confused with which path to follow and ended up taking the turning for Reservoir Ramble, luckily I knew pretty much straight away I’d gone wrong and we were heading the wrong way so we turned around and went further up the road to pick up the right path across the right fields. Nicky was flagging now whilst I’d gone into homing pigeon mode, I just wanted to finish as quick as I could no matter how tired and sore I was. We hit the final bit of road together and managed a quick jog to the finish in 6 hours 16 minutes to be greeted by Sara and Laura who had finished in 5 hours 50 minutes. Can I just point out that Laura’s last and only long run was Rombalds in Feb 2016, she’d done no training for this and was still smiling and being sprightly at the end, she’s a machine!

Sat having a cuppa and our meal we obviously discussed our day, Nicky did not enjoy it and was traumatised, Sara and Laura had enjoyed themselves and were still in fine fettle, I’d enjoyed the route but was now ready to go home to bed and not unpack more boxes and hang pictures. Sara did what Sara does best and started talking us into another long run, although we are now undecided on One foot in the Gargrave or Yorkshireman Full, as they are both the same weekend it has to be one or the other. She also suggested I do another ultra with her, I’m sure you can imagine my response…

Results aren’t out yet but apart from Rob who was walking I’m assuming everyone finished in front of us.

Another fantastic LDWA event and a grand day out. Same again next year I think.


Sunday 2nd April – Baildon Boundary Way

Report from Mr Boddy

The Baildon Boundary Way has been on my to-do list for some years now but the stars have never previously aligned (I’ve never got my entry in on time) as it involves trails I know well. With London just three short weeks away (gulp) I decided to ‘do a Robin’ and run there from Otley as it doesn’t seem enough to just run a race these days. I misjudged the distance from Hollins Hill to the Rugby Club which resulted in an undignified sprint up to the changing rooms and an embarrassing public struggle putting on my Otley vest. I also forget to change my road shoes for my trail shoes. ‘More haste less speed’ has never been more apt.

The start of the race was a gentle downhill through Esholt to the canal which was punctuated by an unexpected and unwanted wooded hill climb. We passed Jonny Brownlee twice on the canal and on the second occasion the lad in front of me shouted “Pride of Yorkshire” at him. I don’t think he intended to shock Jonny so much that he veered into the canal but he very nearly did. The canal miles were relatively quick and straightforward but I knew it would be when we started to head up to circumnavigate Baildon Moor that my legs would start to relent. Relent they did and I was finding it really tough going until it flattened out near the 11 mile marker(which was nearer  10 than 11!) and then dropped nicely off the moor towards the rugby club with just one nasty little incline to conquer and then a short run for home.

I thought it was a well organised race with loads of helpful marshals although I heard mutterings at the end about the leaders going the wrong way and I also thought it was a really nice route, plenty of challenging and undulating terrain but lots of flat fast stuff too.  I saw Rogan, Eriks and Billy at the end, all with a tale to tell and a smile on their face.



Sunday 2nd April: Kong Mountain Marathon

Report from Sarah F:

Had I realised quite how trashed I would still be at this stage post-Spine then I probably wouldn’t have entered this but there you go will I ever learn?! However, I’m so glad I did because it was the most stunning day in the lakes to be out on the fells and not having really run for 2 months I was desperate to get back out there. Expectations were realistic (i.e. low!) for performance in this one given there’s only so much navigational ability can make up for shocking hill fitness! The event was a 4 hour score which started in Coniston and the event area was spread over the Coniston fells as far as the Duddon valley in the West and Wrynose pass in the North. I headed off up the Walner scar road (the dreaded first leg of the Lakeland 100!) and with a few diversions to checkpoints eventually made the climb onto the old man ridge via goat tarn. Once up high my legs had a total refusal to do the drop down to Duddon and when I asked them if they fancied a lap of grey friar instead they totally threw their toys out of the pram. So we compromised with a very pleasant jog along the tops from the old man, brim fell, a couple of out and backs to controls not too far off the ridge and an exciting traverse over swirl how and Wetherlam, before a wandering super swampy decent to pick up a few controls on the way back to the village. I had a last minute word with my legs to put a spurt on to collect an extra 30 pointer but had to turn back before I reached the checkpoint as I was going to be late and lose points (not that I had that many to start with but I sure didn’t want to give them away!). It was definitely a day for the fast runners (of which there were loads incl Jasmine Paris), the navigational challenges were (disappointingly!) few given the lack of clag and the fact that there was a lot of fast ground and controls on pretty obvious features and near tracks. I was just pleased to enjoy a day out and was pretty pleased with my route given the terms and conditions my legs put on the choices available, I ran (slowly!) a lot more of it that I thought I would be able to as well and despite losing 1 lousy point because I took too long to make the decision to turn back (and yes probably too long chatting to folk and taking photos as well!) I was happy (ish!) with my score!

216 started. I was 125th and 10th FV40 with 249 points. results here:


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Sunday April 2nd – Fountains 10K

Report from Howard

Just when you thought it was safe to go back on the web-er, I return with tales of mud and derring do. I entered the Fountains 10k as soon as it opened as I have been doing it off and on since its inception and because it was part of the much missed Black Sheep series. Lucky I did, as it filled up very quickly for some reason this year as it has never before been a sell-out, to my knowledge. Maybe that is why I was also the only Otley representative out today. I decided to race in as light a kit as possible and dispense with the calf guards to let the legs run free. An hour before the start the sky was grey and wet but was just beginning to break up and by the 11.00 o’clock start the sun was up and it was quite warm, with  no wind to speak of. The 400 limit turned out to be 326 on the start line and after a solid couple of weeks of training I felt confident enough to start very near the front. I was not aware of any known age group rivals on the day so despite being 2 to 3 minutes of the required 10K pace in recent races I was optimistic if I ran to current form it could be a good day at the office. I had warmed up effectively and at the gun set of at a sustainable pace out of the village of Grantley and up a relatively steep hill turning to a gradual incline towards the top moor where mud and rough terrain awaited. I had selected my new off road ‘Mud-claws’ on the grounds that they are OK on the road which is 75% of the course, whereas road shoes are useless in the mud. I overhauled a few over-enthusiastic starters up the hill and got to 1K in 4.30 and I was pleased because I was hopeful of a 45.00 finish and it felt comfortable. I put in a spurt to get a few more places before the route leaves the road and onto a rutted albeit dry track to the moor, where passing can be difficult. The rutted track started to get wet and muddy after a few hundred yards and I made up three places in short order as two runners lost shoes to the suck-fest underfoot and one poor lady twisted her ankle for the second time and dropped out. The next couple of kilometres are fairly tough in that there are plenty of deep ruts, mud, rocks, puddles, potholes and tufts to negotiate. Not good but not as bad as in many previous years. You pick the best route you can across the moor and I took a leaf out of Jacque’s horse technique. When he follows me on a training run he always puts his hoof where my feet have trod even when I zig zag to shake him and I presume this to be ‘if the ground is good enough for him, it’s good enough for me’ thinking. So I followed in the steps of the people in front and was able to pass a couple more when the opportunity arose. I think by the time I got across the moor at 4K I was in my final finish position and had a strong run to the finish along the very undulating tarmac. Not a pb course so I was pleased to cross the line in 44.40 in 29th place and first o/60. The prizes were extremely generous in that along with a goody back of nice Sub T shirt and a random selection of goodies, including a nice pork pie for everyone, I got a box of six bottles of wine. One for you Hannah, as promised, (I did count my chickens) which I can give you at the next target race Vale of York 10 or Guiseley Gallop maybe? Get this, also a voucher for Sub gear (which is good stuff) wait for it… £100! The race was won by Ben Pease of Ripon Runners in 34.36, first lady Sharon Barlow of Darlington harriers AC, in 8th place in 40.36.


Sunday April 2nd – Wakefield 10k Road Race

Report From Ursula

I ran this race a few years ago and seemed to remember it had a long incline on the way out and you enjoyed the downhill on the way back. How memories deceive! A good friend of mine was entering to support a student of hers whose mother has recently died and was well cared for by Wakefield Hospice – the organisers of the race. So when she asked if I would run too, I thought ‘Why not?’ After over a year of a troublesome Achilles and now back running, all be it slow and steady, it seemed good to target a race.

So off we went this morning for a 9:00am start (a shock to us retired folks!) and made the start line in good time. Although the inevitable and very long queues for toilets did necessitate finding a suitable alternative… thankfully the race starts and finishes in a park so no problem there!

The weather was kind, an odd shower of very light rain, but otherwise calm and not too cold. But the course was harder than I remembered, more undulating – but at least it stops you getting bored and I did seem to overtake several people on the inclines so that was encouraging. As it’s an out and back course on closed roads you get to see and cheer on those in front of you as they head back, which is always fun. If you were fit, I think you could get a good time on this course, so bear it in mind for next year.

I have to be pleased with my finish time of 52:51 coming in 4th out of 39 in my age category. It’s a start so we shall see what happens next. Fortunately my Achilles held up well so I’ve much to be grateful for. Time for a pint to celebrate!

The race winners were:
Men – Joe Sayer of Spenborough AC in 32:57
Women – Becky Rigby of Preston Harriers in 34:46

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Saturday 1st April – Dales Trail Series – DT20

Report from Gary

The DT20 is the first of three races in the Dale’s Trail series. Race one is a 20km route (that’s 12 and a bit miles to me and you) that starts just outside of Reeth.

The pictures of the course from a week ago showed snowy hills and frozen bogs, so no one was expecting the sun beating down on them for the steep climb up to the top of Fremington Edge in the first mile of the race.

After running across the ridge of Fremington Edge,  the fun really started as we were treated to a series of steep, technical quarry hushes to power down, which lead to Arkle riverbed. From there it was time to start climbing again for another three miles up to Calver Hill. With all the climbing done, it was downhill for most of the way home on good trails, moor and part of the C2C route.

Elevation gain for the day was around 1900 feet. The winner came in at a blistering 1 hour 20 minutes. I finished 18 minutes later in eighth, just as the thunder, lightning and hail signified a dramatic change in the weather for those still out on the course.

The next race in the series is on 15 July and is 18 miles(ish) starting from Muker, including a slog up to Tan Hill for some mid race ‘hydration.’ There’s still places for the race and in the car…join us!

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Saturday 1st April – Park Runs

Woodhouse Moor parkrun
A total of 464 runners took part.
View full results for Woodhouse Moor parkrun event #503
Position Gender Position parkrunner Club Run Time
1 1 Robin OUTTERSIDES Otley AC 00:16:58
2 1 Stevie STOCKTON Unattached 00:17:06
5 4 Thomas MIDGLEY Otley AC 00:18:01
Bradford parkrun
A total of 497 runners took part.
View full results for Bradford parkrun event #356
Position Gender Position parkrunner Club Run Time
1 1 Alexander FLAHERTY Bingley Harriers 00:17:24
3 3 Mark Hall Otley AC 00:17:57
21 1 Beth MASSEY Barnsley AC 00:20:54
209 46 Rebecca KEINHORST Otley AC 00:28:55
Harrogate parkrun
A total of 400 runners took part.
View full results for Harrogate parkrun event #276
Position Gender Position parkrunner Club Run Time
1 1 Josh FULLER Harrogate Harriers 00:17:57
8 1 Millie SOLWAY City of Norwich AC 00:18:59
371 121 Rebecca DODSWORTH Otley AC 00:37:34
Skipton parkrun
A total of 177 runners took part.
View full results for Skipton parkrun event #192
Position Gender Position parkrunner Club Run Time
1 1 Stuart HUNN Wharfedale Harriers 00:17:53
14 1 Bethan MORLEY Ilkley Harriers AC 00:20:37
29 5 Charlotte Rawstron Otley AC 00:22:15
Fountains Abbey parkrun
A total of 325 runners took part.
View full results for Fountains Abbey parkrun event #158
Position Gender Position parkrunner Club Run Time  ?
1 1 Reece DALTON Ripon Runners 00:16:08
11 1 Becky HAIR Birmingham Running 00:19:34
38 34 Peter CROWDER Otley AC 00:21:33
Wetherby parkrun
A total of 48 runners took part.
View full results for Wetherby parkrun event #90
Position Gender Position parkrunner Club Run Time
1 1 Joseph KWALLAH Wetherby Runners 00:18:27
8 8 Howard Jeffrey Otley AC 00:22:47
18 1 Emily MATTISON Sowerby Bridge Snails R.C 00:25:34

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