More fireworks from Ben in Skyline contest

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Ben Mounsey led a Calder Valley 1-2-3 at Saturday’s 29th Shepherd’s Skyline fell race from the Shepherd’s Rest pub near Todmorden.

Clubmate Gayle Sugden won the women’s race and Valley also scooped the men’s and women’s team prizes.

Paul Hobbs led the Todmorden Harriers challenge in 19th place.

The weather was kind to the 230 senior and 80 junior runners at the 29th running of the event, which was organised for the first time by Andy McFie with support from many Harriers members.

There was just the right amount of mud to challenge the racers, with the juniors treated to a stream crossing and a challenging climb.

The seniors climbed to Stoodley Pike, dropped down into the valley and then returned to the skyline before heading for home.

Mounsey has been banging in the training miles and reaping the rewards. With the recently crowned Yorkshire champion lining up against Alex Whittem and James Logue, fireworks were definitely expected in an event always staged on the Saturday before bonfire night.

Mounsey set off like a rocket and once he reached the Pike, only misfortune stood in the way of victory. The Brooksbank bullet duly ran away from the field.

Logue has an unerring ability to maintain a high cadence over uneven ground, a skill enough to make him first veteran and second overall.

Local man Whittem completed the Valley clean sweep.

While Mounsey was the top Guy, Sugden finished top of the pile in the women’s race to make this November fixture one to ‘remember, remember’.

With a resurgent Anne Johnson in third and local lass Lindsay Oldfield in sixth the Calder club were able to plot their way to the team prizes.

There were some notable pyrotechnics between Calder’s young stars Jack Denton and Martin Howard and the slightly older Stephen Smithies. They finished high up the field in the low 20s.

Tod’s Hobbs beat that trio and clocked 48.03 while Lucy Burnett (76th) and Rebecca Patrick (95th) were the first Harriers women home.

Todmorden senior results: 19, Paul Hobbs 48.03; 23, Chris Goddard 50.09; 59, Tom Barker 55.32; 66, Dave Garner 55.49; 76, Lucy Burnett 57.15; 91, Roger Haworth 58.41; 95, Rebecca Patrick 59.19; 98, Steve James 59.38; 107, Mark Whitaker 60.41; 108, Stuart Wolstenholme 60.58; 109, Andy Forbes 61.00; 125, Josh Murphy 61.58; 130, Matthew Annison 62.34; 157, Kirsty Patten 65.18; 162, Jane Leonard 66.03; 166, Fiona Armer 66.05; 174, Richard Leonard 68.04; 193, Chris Preston 72.03; 197, Paula Haworth 72.18

Nine juniors represented Todmorden Harriers and under 14 Lewis Kipping showed the way for the club in the older of two children’s races while under 10 runner Euan Logue fared best in the other contest.

For Calder Valley, Tom Owen was third among the under eights while Matilda Baldaro had a truly explosive run to finish as first girl.

James Duffy was third and Alex Duffield seventh in the under 10s while Jude Baldaro, Eilo Beesley and Erik Powell were third, fourth and fifth in the under 12s.

Robin Casey, Beth Blacker, Maya Brunt and Cherry and Olivia Sylge also turned in excellent performances.

Harriers’ juniors times: Lewis Kipping U14 8.31, Jacob Blackhurst U14 9.10, Freya Priestley U12 8.56, Maebh Logue U12 9.18, Euan Logue U10 8.54, Thea Rily Crowther U10 10.12, Rebecca Haworth U10 13.32, Ben Hodgkinson U8 5.21, George Daniels U8 6.48.