Fell Running: Crossfield takes King of the Mountain crown

Joe Crossfield
Joe Crossfield

Fell runners are straightforward people. When the route of the Crow Hill Fell Race was reversed, as it was a better route, rather than rename it, it just became the Crow Hill Reverse Fell Race.

All the proceeds from the race go to the Ovarian Cancer Charity.

The race itself is fairly straightforward too, from Mytholmroyd, through Redacre Woods, up to the moors via Churn Milk Joan to Crow Hill before returning to Mytholmroyd. Only a 1,000ft up and back down again.

Traditionally held on the first Tuesday of August, this year was no different. All the proceeds from the race go to the Ovarian Cancer Charity.

So, last Tuesday night, August 4, 168 runners lined up, the fastest ones hoping to win the king and queen of the mountain – the prize for which is to wear the crown on the descent.

Three Calder Valley runners challenged for the King of the Mountain – Joe Crossfield, Alex Whittam and young Jack Denton, with Crossfield getting to the top of Crow Hill first. He was also first back to Mytholmroyd to win the race overall.

Lynne Clough of Chorley was Queen of the Mountain, beating Calder’s Lindsay Oldfield to the top.

Calder Valley results: 1 29.14 Joseph Crossfield, 2 29.32 Alex Whittem, 3 31.45 Jack Denton, 5 32.14 Martin Howard, 12 33.38 Tristan Sheard

15 34.09 Stephen Smithies, 20 34.52 Iain Powell

21 34.59 Mark Goldie, 22 35.24 Giles Simon, 27 35.58 Toby Cotterill, 31 36.14 Chris Standish, 43 39.08 Lindsey Oldfield, 48 39.39 Andy Davies, 70 41.25 Mike Dean, 71 41.25 Nathan Kennaugh, 75 41.49 Rachael Crossland, 92 44.11 Dave Culpan, 93 44.17 Brian Horsley, 99 44.50 Steve Woodhead, 108 46.00 James Cooke, 135 49.46 Rod Sutcliffe, 154 55.01 Harley Beecroft, 165 1.03.04 Tamsin Cooke.

The latest race in the Calder Valley Club Championship took place last Sunday.

The Boulsworth Fell Race is part of the Trawden Agricultural Show, so plenty of entertainment was laid on for runners once they finished.

A race for those who prefer more even ground, the majority of the route is on tracks and across hayfields before a sharp climb up Boulsworth Hill to Great Saucer Stones, along the ridge to Weather Stones before dropping back down to reverse the run out, finishing in the Show Ground. It still packs in 1,000ft of climbing in six miles.

Many of the frontrunners didn’t think the route was long enough so they took an unscheduled detour on the run in. At least it gave slower runners a chance to catch up.

The race was won by Andrew Newton of Preston Harriers. First back for Calder Valley was Jon Smith in fifth who gained maximum club points, followed by John Killerby in 19th. John just pipped Richard Sunderland before the line leaving Richard to come in 22nd. Jo Buckley was 27th overall and first woman back. The improving Jack Bridger was 39th. Mike Dean had a good run in 57th, just beating Richard Ingram.

In the junior races there were notable performances from Joseph Hobbs, second in boys’ under-10s and Fearne Hanson, second in the girls’ under-8s.