On Saturday 19th October, 12 Settle Harriers made the 2 hour-plus journey to Fairholmes in the Peak District and joined approximately 250 other teams for the British Fell Relay Championships. Aiming to cut down on carbon emissions around the race-site, competitors parked 6 miles from the start and boarded a shuttle bus.  The whole day, hosted by Dark Peak Fell Runners, was impeccably organised and those in charge couldn’t have done a better job. The back-drop to the hand-over/start area was stunning; the imposing Derwent Dam was accompanied by the forest and craggy hills of the National Park.

The courses were over rugged terrain, with large parts of the courses off-path and over thick heather. A few bogs and steep sections were dotted about the courses, very much making it a proper fell race and one which would take everything out of our legs.

The relay consisted of 4 legs: a solo 5 mile leg with 360m climb; a mapped 7.5 mile leg with 480m of climb (2 runners); an orienteering route of 7 miles and approx. 550m climb (2 runners) and finally another solo leg of 5 miles and 375m climb.

First off for us was Matt Holroyd of the Men’s team and Catherine Speakman of the Mixed team. Both runners placed their teams in great positions for the following legs, with Matt picking off several runners on the descent before finishing 73rd and Catherine moving through the runners to come back 189th.

Our duos for the 2nd leg were Matt Fretwell and Matt Cardus (Men’s team), and Richard Timms and Sam Allsopp (Mixed team). Both teams moved up a lot of places on this leg, as Matt and Matt had the 41st fastest lap time and Sam and Richard had the 127th.

Leg 3 was the most challenging leg of them all, as the runners were only given a map of their route a few minutes before setting off. In addition, this map was not the most straight-forward of maps, and therefore tested their orienteering skills greatly!  Martin Holroyd and Zach Jennings had a cracking run as they propelled the Men’s team into the top 40, with a 48th fastest time of 1:34:45. Carol Evans and Sharon McDonald also had a great run, finishing 206th on their leg.

Several hours after the start of the relay, leg 4 runners eventually set off on their route. For the Men’s team, I moved us up into 34th and 27th Open Men’s team with the 59th fastest leg time and John Osborne propelled the Mixed team several places up into 168th and 18th Mixed team as he registered the 105th fastest time for leg 4.

Both teams had a stellar performance, but more importantly, everyone had an amazing time and the great fell running atmosphere was not lost in the competitiveness of this race.

Report by Sebastian Segger-Staveley

Please note that there will be NO break in junior training sessions for half-term – so there will be sessions on the 22nd and 29th of October and right through until we break for the Christmas holidays.  The last session of term will be on Tuesday 17th December.  

Juniors in school years 6 and above will need to bring headtorches with immediate effect – due to the dark evenings.  They should also wear some reflective clothing.  Younger juniors will be training on the floodlit astro pitch – so will not need headtorches.

Congratulations to the 11 juniors that took part in these races on Sunday 13th October at Penistone Country Park, near Haworth.  This was a good turnout considering the heavy rain first thing in the morning which made the course slippery & muddy in places.

This was the last fixture in our Junior Club Championships for 2019.  The final scores will be kept secret until the awards are presented at the end of November !

A special well-done to under 9s Teddy Brearley & Toby Pear who took part in their first races for Settle Harriers.  Ben Brummitt had a fine run to finish 4th in this race that entailed a loop around the quarry and 2 ascents of the quarry cliff race.

All other age-groups started together and their 1.6k course involved an extra loop on flatter but muddy terrain.  Highest placed in their age-groups were Charlotte (3rd in the U13 girls), Lucy (4th U11 girl) & Jack (5th U13 boy).

Everyone seemed to enjoy themselves despite the weather – the generous goody bags afterwards made sure of that ! 

Settle Harriers Results from Curly Wurly Rat Runs

U9 Boys
4 Ben Brummitt 03:09
7 Teddy Brearley 03:41
9 Toby Peart 03:55
U11 Girls
4 Lucy Bagot 08:33
15 Francesca Bagot 10:39
16 Bella Latty 10:58
U11 Boys
7 Carl Sanderson 08:16
U13 Girls
3 Charlotte Peart 08:28
U13 Boys
5 Jack Sanderson 07:11
13 Finn  Durkin 07:51
14 Oliver Brummitt 07:55