British Champs 2nd Counter

From Hebden to Howtown via Tal y Mignedd

With three club championship events this week, it was a busy week for some Calder Valley runners.

The CVFR hoops were out in numbers for the Todmorden Harriers, iconic ‘Thats so Hebden Bridge’ Fell Race on Tuesday night. Will that new name stick?

CV group at Hebden Bridge finish

Making up one third of the entrants, 38 CVFR runners lined up, on a hot, Hebden evening, from the most experienced club runners to six plucky first timers. Many more club members were out on the course cheering them on (Photo 1: Some of CV Group at That’s so Hebden Bridge).

Starting and Finishing in Calder Holmes Park, this category BS, 10km classic route climbs 350m to Stoodley Pike then back via Erringden Moor, with a variety of terrain.
A new course record (40.30 mins) was set by Chris Holdsworth from Clayton-Le-Moors.

First back for Calder valley were U23 Alistair Pedley (9th overall) and Christina Turner (3rd female overall). It was also a good night for CVFR vets as they made off with great prizes donated by local businesses: Christina Turner (1st Female Vet 40), Jackie Scarf (1st Female Vet 50). Mark Wharton (1st Vet 50), Jonathon Emberton (1st Vet 55), Andrew Davies (1st Vet 60). Our first-time fell racers also enjoyed the celebratory post-race refreshments at Macpelah 

CV recruits L-R Natalie Rachel Lisa

Proceeds from the Hebden Bridge race will be donated to Khalsa Aid who did so much to help the town in the aftermath of the 2015 Boxing Day floods.

Howtown Heat and Thunder
Ten CVFR runners made the 100-mile journey to Howtown near Ullswater for the Howtown, a 21.4km Category AL fell race

Catherine with team mates

L-R, Phil, Mark, Catherine, Tim, please insert name, Jonny at Howtown start).

This year saw a record-breaking field of 100 runners

100 entrants Howtown start

Described as an “enjoyable route in the far eastern fells” it has 1415m of climbing with a steep start up Loadpot Hill to the summit of High Raise, with scenic views down to Patterdale. It ends with the cruel ‘sting’ of Hallin Fell climb near the end.

In blistering heat, followed by a thunderstorm, Jonny Croston was first Calder Valley (17th overall), followed by Phil Wells (21st overall)

Jonny Croston 1st CVFR in thunderstorm at top of Hallin Fell, Howtown

Despite some impressive knee strapping, Catherine Holden put in another fine performance as first CVFR female (5th female overall), taking the first female Vet 40 accolade (Photo 7: Catherine Holden with team mates at the start). Summing up the day with other club runners by the lakeside, Catherine reflected on a “cracking fell race with a restorative swim at the end, but a lesson in route choice and not to follow the crowd.” Could this become the ‘new favourite fell race’?

Eggs and Beer at Tal y Mignedd – Club and British Champs
Over in Llanberis, Wales, intrepid Calder Valley runners also took on the short, out and back, 6.2k Tal y Mignedd, Category AS fell race this weekend. A British and club Champs race, this route is reported to feature a ‘violent ascent of 1800ft in just over a mile’ (can this be true?), with a kamikaze descent.

CVFR Math Roberts Photo Credits SixBySevenPhotography

Gav Mulholland reported Calder Valley success with 2nd place in the open team (Matthew Roberts, Gav Mulholland, Andy Swift, Karl Grey and Tim Ellis) and first place in the Vets category (Gav Mulholland, Karl Grey, Mark Taylor, Mark Burton). Eggs and beer were the prizes!

Claiming third Vet 40 spot, Gav Mullholland was quoted as saying “I hated the journey, but loved the race.” Ben Mounsey was 39th, after a great climb he suffered injury on the descent.

Weets Fell Race, Saturday 9th July
In a record turnout of 206 senior runners at the Weets fell race, Helen Buchan put in a fantastic performance to finish 2nd female.

Helen at Weets Fell Race

(Helen Buchan at the Weets Fell Race).

– Calder Valley News Reporter: Eileen McDonach