UTMB Local Hereo’s

Two neighbours from a small hamlet in Calder Valley finished 1st Brits in 2 of the toughest mountain races in the world this week.

The 2 CV runners took to the global stage in the ever impressive UTMB challenge.  Attracting trail runners from all over the world, each year elite runners gather in  Chamonix alongside almost 10,000 other runners keen to participate in one of the event’s 7 races.

Holly Page preparing for the UTMB CCC

Calder Valley’s Holly Page ran in the UTMB CCC race, a unique trail race now deemed one of the most prestigious in the world. Taking runners deep into wilderness using for the most the international path “Grande Randonnée du Tour du Mont-Blanc’ this 101km mountain race, requires serious training, adapted equipment and a real capacity of personal autonomy.

Holly Page UTMB CCC

Holly was the first Brit back finishing in an incredible 9th place in 13:56. 

Her hometown neighbour and fellow CV runner, Simon Bourne, raced the TDS event, completing the gruelling 147km course in 25:30 after climbing the equivalent of Everest. He too was first Brit back. Said an exhausted but smiling Simon:

‘I’m absolutely delighted with 55th overall and 2nd V50. I started off steady and pulled trough the field from 180th. An amazing race; fantastic atmosphere and crowds, stunning scenery and loads of brutal climbs and descents’

Closer to home and making his come-back after 6 months out of action, CV’s Ben Mousey came 7th in the short and sharp Kilnsey Crag Fell race last Tuesday.

Mounsey at Kilnsey Credits: Carolyn Brett Muir

That then set the trend for other notable CV performances with CV securing a successful trophy haul at Blackshawhead Fell race on the Saturday. The final CV summer series counter,  CVs Martin Howard was the overall winner  with Alasdair Pedley 3rd and Natasha Butterfield first lady, beating the unbeatable Annie Roberts of Tod Harriers. With Mark Wharton taking 1st V50, the men scooped the mens Team prize, despite stiff competition from neighbouring Tod Harriers.

Photos: Carole Fryer, Natasha Butterfield (1st lady) and Jocasta Fletcher


This year also saw the second Junior fell race at Blackshawhead. (More info on the Juniors page)

Sunday saw the club’s annual Castle Carr race weaving across Midgley Moor. At 15 miles with 4000ft ascent/descent over some very varied terrain, Castle Carr is a testing race and was used as a national championship counter two years ago. Starting and finishing at the Hare & Hounds in Old Town, the race passes through the idyllic Castle Carr estate, does a full circuit of the moors around it, dropping into local woods on the slopes above Mytholmroyd, and then crosses back through the estate to the finish. It’s a tough route, renowned for its challenging navigation and climbs. Wharfdale’s Ethan Hassell was overall winner in 02:29:28 with Tods Annie Roberts first lady in 02:41:37. First CV home was John Allan who came in 12th in 02:46:24.

Photos: Di Wright (L) and Stella Chrisanthou, Castle Carr (photo credit: Woodentops)

John Allan Castle Carr 2019


– Calder Valley News Reporter: Gill Dickson

Howards burning up the competition


The Burnsall Classic held at the Burnsall Feast Sports last weekend is a 1.5 mile 800ft category AS blast from the village to a flag placed on the nearby moor and back. Six runners from Calder Valley raced in what was the last and shortest short counter for this year’s club championship.

onny Croston, Andy Wright, Martin Howard and Phil Wells at Burnsall

Martin Howard ran extremely well to come third to win a £35 prize voucher. He was just 12 seconds behind winner and arch rival Robin Howie of Wharfdale and he missed out on 2nd place to Ian Holmes by 1 second. He said he took the wrong line down the tricky descent from the summit by not turning immediately left below the summit flag. Kirsty Hall of Wharfdale was 1st woman.

Jonny Croston came 15th 2nd MV40 prize to gain a £15 voucher. Andy Wright was Calder’s short king leading into the race and, gaining more points than any other team mate in the series, takes the crown for 2019.

Andy Wright cools off in the Wharf after the Burnsall Classic

CVFR Results

3 Martin Howard 15:38
15 Jonny Croston 18.08
18 Phil Wells 18.40
25 Mark Wharton 19.32
28 Andy Wright 20.12
58 Tim Brooks 22.38
124 Eileen McDonach 33.00

140 Ran

Golf Ball

Named after the weather radar station on Hameldon Hill, last Wednesday’s Golf Ball Fell Race was the penultimate race in Calder Valley’s summer series. The 5 mile 900ft climb proved no challenge for Calder’s Natasha Butterfield who was 3rd woman and Carole Fryer 1st LV55 (also beating all LV50s) The muddy course was enjoyed by Jocasta Fletcher but less so by Graham Lloyd.

Calder Valley Runners, Carole Fryer 1st FV55 2nd from left and Natasha Butterfield 3rd woman 2nd from right

Natasha is winning the summer series with only the Blackshaw Head Fete on Saturday to come. However Carole and Jocasta are only 3 points behind her. Jonathan Emberton is leading the men’s series with a strong lead over Graham Lloyd although it is not a certain win at this stage. All to run for on Saturday.

CVFR Results

67 Natasha Butterfield 50:13
113 Carole Fryer 57:03
142 Graham Lloyd 1.00:42
151 Calvin Ferguson 1.02:32
180 Jocasta Fletcher 1.06:31
199 Eileen McDonach 1.14:52

220 Ran.

– Calder Valley News Reporter: Tim Brooks

Calder’s Karl and Jo Shine at tough Sedbergh Hills

Sedbergh Hills Fell Race is not one for novices, nor the faint hearted! With 6000 feet of climb over 14 miles, this category AL race packs a punch. To put that into context, Sedbergh averages more than 400ft of ascent per mile. Nine CVFR braved the trip out of the valley to Cumbria take on this penultimate long race in the Club championships. Their efforts were rewarded, with Calder’s Karl Gray and Jo Buckley bringing home 1st MV40 and FV40 prizes (finishing 2nd and 33rd respectively). Helen Buchan finished 2nd FV40 (49th overall).

CVFR’s Catherine Holden, paints a good picture of what it was like. “It was as expected, a tough race. The weather was kinder than forecast, but that didn’t stop us getting buffeted by 20-30mph winds trying to stumble up the Calf and traverse the Calder (no relation!). Several were happy to get round in one piece and claim their long counter for the club champs.”

Catherine Holden finishing at Sedbergh Hills (Credit: Stella Christanthou)

James Cooke was leading Catherine in the race until the last mile when he inadvertently climbed another hill. He crossed the finish line saying “bad times”. That may have summed up Sedbergh for some.

CVFR Results

Karl Gray 2nd
Paul Haigh 30th
Jo Buckley 33rd
Rob Rawlinson 43rd
Helen Buchan 49th
Andrew Wright 51st
Toby Sydes 65th
Catherine Holden 85th
James Cooke 88th

– Calder Valley News Reporter: Eileen McDonach

Two hills and a Gala

Boulsworth Hill, Pilgrims Cross and Pendle and Burnley Grand Prix

Despite the Trawden Agricultural show being cancelled last Sunday because of the rain, the 6 mile Boulsworth Fell Race went ahead as planned. It was the final race in the Pendle and Burnley Grand Prix, which comprises of the best 9 races out of 14.  Calder Valley’s Carole Fryer was 1st  FV55 in 1.01.16.    The previous Wednesday was the Pilgrims Cross Fell Race, also part of the Grand Prix, with  7 miles and 1100ft of climb. Calder Valley were represented by three runners, 18th James Williams 56.48, 85th (1st V55) Carole Fryer 1.12.07 and 125th Calvin Ferguson 1.21.28.

Carole’s persistence and fast running has paid off as she was the overall winner of the Grand Prix FV50 category, having finished first v50 in all 9 qualifying races.  She will be presented with her prize on night on Friday at Burnley football club.

Arncliffe Gala BOFRA

Calder’s Charlie Ing was 2nd in this short, fast 1.6 mile 400ft of climb race.  Steve Smithies was 10th.

Charlie Ing 2nd at Arncliffe Gala (Photo By Woodentops)

Crow Hill Reverse

Run from Mytholmroyd this 5 mile race up to the moor tops and back, was won by Calder Valley’s Max Wharton who is home on holiday from studying in the USA.  Along with under 23s Martin Howard (2nd) and Alistair Pedley (3rd) Calder took the mens team prize.

Max Wharton Crow Hill Reverse Winner

Martin Howard 2nd at Crow Hill Reverse

Alistair Pedley 3rd at Crow Hill Reverse

Calder’s women Jackie Scarf, Gillian Wisby and Charlotte Wetton also took the team prize.  Phillipa Barret of Time 2 Run won the women’s race in 42.42.

Charlotte Wetton and James Cooke High 5s

Calder Valley results from 61 runners.

22 43.14 TOBY SYDES
23 43.17 ANDY DAVIES
26 44.24 PHIL  SCARF
27 44.49 JAMES COOKE
29 45.52 TIM BROOKS

– Calder Valley News Reporter: Tim Brooks