Sarah leads charge as ladies move into British championships top three

THE Sedburgh Hills Fell Race on Sunday marked the final race in this year’s English Fell Championships. The 16 mile race featured over 6,500 feet of ascent and was also a counter in this year’s British Fell Championships.

While Todmorden Ladies were safe in the gold medal position for the English Championships, the race was still a chance to add to their score as they pursue a British Championship medal.

Lauren Jeska had already secured the individual ladies championship so opted not to race, but Sarah May led the Todmorden charge as she sought to improve her own position. Starting in joint eighth place, Sarah finished in eighth in the ladies race, which moved her to seventh in the overall standings.

Gemma Kendall was 25th followed by Mel Blackhurst in 44th place, to take the ladies into fourth team on the day and keep them in third in the British Championships, with just one race to go.

Jane Leonard kept hopes of an English Championship V50 medal alive with 52nd lady, and is second in the overall standings.

Alistair Rhodes-Dawson returned from injury to lead the Todmorden men in 65th place, with Dwane Dixon in 97th place.

Todmorden Results: 65 Alastair Rhodes-Dawson 2:30:40; 97 Dwane Dixon 2:39:09; 122 Nick Barber 2:47:58; 129 Sarah May 2:50:03; 130 Dave Collins 2:50:31; 180 Andrew Bibby 3:06:05; 190 Gemma Kendall 3:07:11; 247 Melanie Blackhurst 3:23:10; 275 Jane Leonard 3:33:46; 295 Peter Ehrhardt 3:43:39.

On Saturday, several Harriers took part in the Burnsall 10 road race in the Yorkshire Dales which featured in this year’s club road championship.

Paul Brannigan finished eighth, with Martin Stork 13th and John Lloyd 15th, winning them second placed team prize.

Richard Blakely was 74th, with Peter Ehrhardt 79th and Mel Robertson 82nd.

Todmorden Results: 8. Paul Brannigan 1:02:23; 13. Martin Stork 1:04:12; 15. John Lloyd 1:04:46; 74. Richard Blakeley 1:24:12; 79. Peter Ehrhardt 1:27:14; 82. Melanie Robertson 1:28:49.

The race was part of the Burnsall Feast Sports Day and was followed by the classic Fell Race, which a trio of Todmorden runners entered.

James Riley completed the 1.5mile course in 19:46 for 41st place, with Peter Clarke in 77th in 22:24. Sue Roberts was 10th lady with 25:44.

Sean Carey battled with Eryri’s Matthew Roberts at the Golf Ball Fell Race on Wednesday as they left the rest of the field trailing, with Sean losing out on the line by one second.

James Riley in 75th and Kevin Booth in 84th place were the Harriers other representatives.

The race was the final race in Rossendale’s Mid Week Fell Series and second place was sufficient for Sean to claim a comfortable win in the series overall.