Luddenden Locomotive Howard steams to Cragg Vale CR

Calder Valley Fell Runner – 4 July 2022

Durisdeer Hill Race

Last Saturday was the 3rd British champs race (out of four) of 2022 and the medium race counter.  Held at Durisdeer in Dumfries and Galloway, Scotland it is a 16km race with a steep 1200 metres of climbing.

Calder Valley put in a great team effort winning  2nd open team and 1st V40 and V50 teams.  Run of the day was Gavin Roberts in a top 10 position and 1st CVFR to finish.  Math Roberts (no relation) was next in 11th overall and 2nd V40 just narrowly getting pipped by Andy Fallas of Carnethy. Math is in a strong position and should take British V40 title with a good run at the next race, Black Mountains in Wales. 

Karl Gray was 1st V50 back in 12th place overall and just 10 seconds behind Math.  Karl should take the V50 title at Black Mountains if he gets a top three V50 finish there.  With Darren Kay 2nd V50 and Gavin Mullholland 3rd V50 it was a clean sweep for the oldies.

Darren Kay was a doubt due to injury, and while not pain free he managed an excellent run to finish 5th for the team and support the V40 and V50 teams.  It was good to see Andy Worster back racing.  While not fully fit yet he had an excellent run and was 4th team counter.

Notable commitment to the club yesterday were from Shaun Godsman and Bill Johnson for making the long trip north to support the V40 and V50 teams to ensure a full compliment of team counters in case of any injuries and non-finishers on the day.

Cragg Vale

The Cragg Vale Fell Race celebrated its 20 year anniversary last week.  Organised by CVFR’s Jackie Scarf it is a favourite midweek race for many local runners.

Top 3 Cragg Vale runners

Top news this year is that Calder’s Martin Howard broke the course record by 43 seconds.  He completed the 4 mile course in 25 minutes and 44 seconds.  Martin’s plan was to run steadily from the start, uphill along the tarmac and gravel climb to Withens Lane, and then overtake any runners on the moor who had thrashed themselves on the climb.  As it was he led comfortably from the start and smashed the 14 year record set by John Brown of Salford.  Harry Holmes of Matlock was 2nd in 27:20 and Kieran Manchester of Halifax was 3rd in 27:33.

As a short counter in Calder Valley’s club championship 34 CVFR runners turned out, with some superb running from some of the younger members of the club. 15 year old Charlie Pickens was 5th and U19 Elijah Peers Webb was 8th.  With Thomas McKee (age 14) in 14th place and Euan Logue in 17th place, these Calder juniors beat all but a handful of the CVFR seniors.

Natasha Butterfield was 1st v40 woman and second overall behind Janine McGregor Stead of Todmorden.  Alex Whittem was 1st v40 man and Bill Johnson 1st v50 man. Jonathan Emberton was beaten to 2nd V60 by 3 seconds by Thornton Taylor of Rossendale.

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CVFR enjoy a weekend gala Hall

Calder Valley Fell Runners – 27 June 2022  

Kinder Trog

This is one of those races that you think you should enter because it’s one of the Club Championship counters but come the weekend – warm weather, lots of gentler gala fell races taking place elsewhere – and only the fit, brave or foolhardy take on Kinder Trog. Nine CVFR runners entered this 15.5 mile race with 2,952 ft of ascent (25km / 900m) and nine finished. The route circles the picturesque village of Hayfield in the High Peak and takes runners on a gruelling series of steep climbs – including Lantern Pike, Kinder Downfall and Kinder Low as it edges Kinder Scout – and tough, often rocky descents. The weather was favourable for a long, hard race after the heatwave of the previous week. In the race organiser’s words ‘good conditions for this long race today. Dry underfoot and not too hot though the strong wind was not always helpful’. And up on the higher ground, the wind was strong.

A bit of wind and a few peaks and troughs was not going to deter some of Calder Valley’s finest with Ed Hyland and Mark Burton coming in first and second overall and having a proper battle for the spoils with just 25 seconds separating them as they raced to the finish line at Hayfield’s Scout Hut in 2:04:10 and 2:04:35 respectively. Twenty-five seconds over a twenty-five km race is as close as it gets – the spoils went to Ed who notched up another perfect 100 in the club championships.

Further down the field, Louise Williamson (3:01:29) was 6th woman overall, first Calder Valley woman home and 2nd in the FV50 category. In the words of Charlotte Wetton (3:48:14), the only other Calder Valley woman who braved the race, ‘I am broken – it was hard!’. Mike Wardle took the MV60 honours in the club championships with a sterling run of 3:21:39 and 95th place overall.

1 Ed Hyland M 2.04.10
2 Mark Burton MV40 2:04:35
19 Dan Marsden MV40 2:25:00
39 Kieran O’Prey M 2:38:08
46 Mark Wharton MV50 2:41:17
72 Toby Sydes MV50 2:55:09
81 Louise Williamson FV50 3:01:29
95 Michael Wardle MV60 03:21:49
106 Charlotte Wetton F 3:48:14

Eldwick & Gilstead Gala Fell Race – 4.8km/168m

A victorious Will

What better way to spend a warm summer’s afternoon than a traditional local gala – barbeques, ice-creams, stalls and games galore and to top it off, a lungbusting dash to Hope Hill trig point. In amongst the Eldwick and Gilstead Gala is the delight of the Gala Fell Race, a 4.8km run with 168m ascent. The route starts off fast on tarmac before taking a well-worn footpath to the summit of Baildon Moor before plunging back down the hillside and rounded off with an uphill finish.

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It’s a PB for Fiona

On Saturday 18th June at 10am I set off from Capel Curig in Snowdonia to attempt the Paddy Buckley Round.  The route is a circuit of approximately 62 miles long taking in some 47 summits amassing approximately 29000 foot of climb.  The route takes in the well-known high mountain ranges of Snowdon, the Glyderau and the Carneddau as well as the slightly less visited ranges of Moel Siabod, the Moelwynion, Moel Hebog and the Nantlle Ridge.  Unlike its cousins the Bob Graham Round or the Ramsey Round there is no time stipulation to complete, rather that it is completed in one go.

The weather gods were smiling all day as we set off.  There are 5 legs or stages to complete and I had a navigator and support runners to carry supplies on each leg.

Name check for my fellow Calder Valley club mates, Stuart Russell navigated the Capel Curig leg and Helen Buchan navigated the Snowdon leg with expertise!  I enjoyed the first three stages without experiencing many issues and was happily ticking off each top.  On the final two legs, during night and early morning, I experienced some tummy issues which made eating and drinking difficult.  However I was still able to make progress. 

Fiona well equipped for all conditions and she needed to be

Visibility was poor and winds were really high which added to the adventure and also slowed me down.  However we were rewarded by clear views as we made our way to the final two tops and dropped down into the valley and along the road to finish in a time of 26 hours 31 minutes.  It was an amazing weekend on the mountains with my favourite people. Lots of brilliant memories were made, and made all the training and weekends of recces and travel definitely worth it.

A very happy Fiona at the finish in Capel Curig

report in fiona’s own word

Big Round(s) Up

Calder Valley Fell Runners – 20 June

The weekend just past proved to be a memorable one for Calder Valley Fell Runners. Massive achievements. Where to start? Why not at the Buckden Pike Fell Race! This race, which took place on Saturday 18th, is a ‘counter’ in the English Championships. It’s a tough 6km (486 metre ascent) event in the Yorkshire Dales – starting and ending in Buckden Village. Sunny summer weather greeted both male and female runners.

Martin battling hard with local Toddie Doni Clarke

In the male event, Lochaber Athletic Club’s Finlay Wild took 1st place in a time of 30:39 breaking fell legend Colin Donnelly’s 34 year old record by 12 seconds. The first CVFR runner across the finish line was Martin Howard who came 13th overall in 33:30. Great runs also from Matthew Roberts in 16th and 2nd V40 in 33.50 with a 17th place for Gavin Roberts just 6 seconds behind. Another impressive performance by MV50 Karl Gray in 34.58 to take 28th and first MV50. He was pushed all the way to the finish line by team mate Gavin Mulholland in 29th with only 4 seconds separating them and a further 6 seconds to team mate Darren Kay in 30th. Ben Mounsey placed 33rd in 35:18,  and several more CVFR runners took part, representing the club in great style. Martin Howard was delighted to be 1st ‘counter’ for the senior men’s team who were placed 2nd behind Keswick. The men’s Vet 40 took another 1st  team spot. With Gray, Mulholland and Kay taking the top three places in the Vet 50s it’s déjà vu from last season in this team competition.

Dom, Karl, Ben and Gav looking happy in the sunshine – photo courtesy of Dave Woodhead

In the female event, Helm Hill runner Hannah Russell took 1st place, in a time of 37:11. The first CVFR female to cross the line was Natasha Butterfield (FV40) in a great time of 45:27, which won her 23rd place. A 34th place went to twin sister Susannah Richardson (FV40) in a time of 47:01. This was even more impressive as she’d been out running a leg of the Bob Graham the night before!!! Trudi Entwistle was took 45th spot and 7th FV50 in a time of 48.49 with Sarah Noot (8th FV50) coming 49th in 50:00, and Rachael Beaumont (12th FV50) ran a sterling 52:37 to take 64th place. With Championship points still to be confirmed from this race it looks like 4th for the LV40 team and a well earned 2nd for LV50s team.

Susie working hard on already tired legs – photo courtesy of Dave Woodhead

Great team performances by all the red and whites.

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