Calder Valley’s Ben Mounsey ran his heart out on Valentine’s weekend for another comprehensive victory.
He finished more than four minutes ahead of his nearest rival at the Windy Hill Fell Race, completing the nine mile route in 56.36. The event on the hills surrounding Hollingworth Lake takes in fast trails, runnable fells and one all-mighty, memorable climb that takes the total ascent to 1300 feet.
It begins at Littleborough RUFC and immediately opens up into a fast paced, undulating run before being met with the memorable climb, which shares it’s namesake with the race, Windy Hill. Once at the top, runners can see with the whole of South Pennines laid out before them. An adrenalin packed 4.5 mile descent follows on a rollercoaster-esque trail leading back to the finish.
Mounsey’s victory indicates he has taken his running to the next level, winning his last nine races since coming second to Alex Baldacinni at Trofeo Vanoni in October. Mounsey was delighted with his run.
“The short steep Windy Hill was a complete comparison to the 22 mile Trog the week before – it’s a seriously fast fell race.
“I went out with my usual intention to dominate from the word go and within the first 400 metres I’d established a very commanding lead.“ From there I continued to pull away and worked hard on the steep climb to Blackstone edge to widen the gap.
“Had it not been for the headwind it would’ve been a very quick time but that section slowed me down a tad, as did the boggy, wet ground”.
The Calder runner is looking a strong contender for the 2016 British Fell Running Championship, with the first counting race at Blackcombe in March. Jon Smith was a fine seventh and Ben Frenchette a creditable 23rd for the Valley who took the mens team prize.
Calder Valley results:
1, Ben Mounsey 56:36; 7, Jon Smith 1:04:08; 23, Ben Frechette 1:09:57; 72, Anthony Castell 1:19:21; 107, Nathan Kennangh 1:24:40; 191, Graham Davy 1:46:39.