MORE than 300 runners descended on Todmorden for the annual Hot Toddy Road Race last Sunday.
Damian Nicholls of Wilmslow was a clear-cut winner of the 8.9km race with Halifax Harriers’ Sarah Cumber finishing clear of the other female competitors.
A new headquarters at Todmorden Cricket Club meant an improved route for the one mile fun run, which attracted a further 50 runners to a circuit of Centre Vale Park.
The Mayor of Todmorden, Councillor Abid Hussain, started the runners in the main race and was on hand to congratulate the finishers.
The race followed a circular route from the town centre, along Rochdale Road to Walsden Post Office and a climb up past the Shepherd’s Rest Inn. A fast descent to Halifax Road then took the runners back to the finish line.
Nicholls quickly established a lead and was almost in a race of his own, repeating his 2007 win in a time of 29 minutes 50 seconds.
It was a much closer battle for second place with Mike Flatley of Middleton Harriers crossing the line in 31:19, just four seconds ahead of Salford Harrier Mark Russell.
Ivan Gee was the first Todmorden Harrier to finish, holding off a late challenge from Trevor Davies as they finished 19th and 22nd respectively, followed by Paul Hobbs in 31st place.
Cumber finished in 34:44 and was followed by Victoria Bailie of Edinburgh AC in 36:13 and Stainland Lion Julie Field in 37:03.
Helen Wilson was the first Todmorden lady followed by Myra Wells.
Todmorden results: 19 Ivan Gee 34.37; 22 Trevor Davis 34.42; 31 Paul Hobbs 35.36; 39 Richard Butterwick 36.24; 56 Dan Taylor 37.50; 63 Paul Alexander 38.23; 79 Phil Cook 39.42; 96 Joe Daniels 40.29; 103 Kevin Coughlan 40.51; 118 Guy Whitmore 42.11; 181 David Leslie 46.07; 233 Helen Wilson 49.46; 254 Graham Milnes 51.53; 259 Myra Wells 52.14.