FIONA Lynch took on a mountain of a challenge when she became the first woman in the club to complete the Bob Graham Round, one of the toughest fell running challenges in Britain.
With 24 hours to cover its 66 miles, 42 summits and its 26,000 feet of climbing she finished the circular route at Keswick’s Moot Hall on Saturday evening in 23hrs 12mins.
After her achievement in good conditions she said: I have had the most incredible weekend completing the round. This has been the better half of three years work, learning about fell running, becoming mountain fit and building endurance.” She said it would not have happened if she had not joined Radcliffe in 2012.
Navigators and supporters are needed for the road crossings and on the hills and the challenge needs a lot of planning. Her husband Pete and her family, friends, clubmates from Radcliffe and runners from fell clubs Dark Peak and Rossendale helped her. She will now belong to the exclusive Bob Graham 24 Hour Club and at the next club dinner will receive a certificate to mark her completion. (Lots of great pics on Facebook from several people).
Twenty-nine runners from the club lined-up for the midweek Horwich 5 Mile from Rivington Village Club battling it out for points with other clubs in the Central Lancs Grand Prix which runs throughout the season. The women’s team took third place and the men’s fourth.
Dave McGrath was well up the field in 11th place in 30mins 29secs out of more than 200 runners, followed closely by Chris Whittaker who was 14th in 30mins 37secs with John Wrigley in 21st place in 31mins 30secs. John Gibbs was 24th in 32mins 02secs. Mike Cooke (V45) was 37th in 33mins 30secs and Katie Percival was fourth woman in 34mins 17secs. Rob Lister (V50) clocked 35mins 34secs: Lee Cooper 36mins 13secs: Mark Garner (V45) 36mins 18secs: Jenny Yates (V50) 36mins 31secs: Paula Aberneth (V50) 36mins56secs: John McNicholl (V50) 37mins 16secs: Steve Hamer (V60) 37mins 53secs: Nick Barnes 37mins 57secs: Paul Barrington 39mins 10secs: Kirsten Cook(V55) 43mins 45secs: Chris Fletcher 44mins 00secs:Helen Sandiford 44mins 04secs: Katie Benson 44mins 33secs: Vince Ashton (V45) 44mins 52secs: Caroline Malone (V45) 44mins 59secs: Wayne Holden 47mins 01sec: Elaine Bailey (V55) 47mins 28secs: Andy Wheeler (V60) 47mins 34secs: Deborah Barrington (V40) ran with Debi Warrington (V45) clocking 47mins 55secs and 47mins 56secs respectively. Sarah Rushton (V45) was well pleased with her personal best time of 44mins 39secs: Karen Doherty (V40) ran 50mins 08secs and Iain Harris (V65) 51mins 54secs.
There was a great turnout for the second running of the Tor Mile at Helmshore with 146 seniors and also 31 juniors who took on a much shorter course. Radcliffe club chairman Chris Paxton, who lives nearby and organised the event, had helped to keep the race going last year, one of the oldest fell races in the country and he was well pleased with the evening race’s popularity. The course had a sharp up and down climbing 551 feet up Musbury Tor from the race headquarters in Helmshore. Radcliffe members not only ran but helped out with the organisation and it was a night parents and children were both able to take part. For many it was their first fell race and sliding down on their bottoms was the way they tackled the very steep first part of the descent! A grand total of £570 was raised for charity.
In the senior race Benn Heywood was 16th in 14mins 34secs. Chris Whittaker was 17th close behind in 14mins 36secs and just behind them was John Wrigley in 19th position in 14mins 43secs. Junior Lachlan and finished in 20th place in 14mins 44secs. Kris Lee (V40) ran 18mins 02secs: Steve Hamer was first vet 60 in 19mins 03secs: Janet Rigby first vet-50 in 20mins 33secs: Susanne Andrew (V45) ran 24mins 18secs: Karen Doherty (V45) 26mins 29secs: Amanda Darbyshire 26mins 31secs and Christine Berry (V50) 33mins 38secs.
In the under 15 event Jack Andrew was 5th in 05mins 46secs with brother Harry 11th in 06mins 19secs and Ben Darbyshire 17th in 06mins 41secs.
At weekend Chris Whittaker got himself a fine first place in the Heaton Park 5k running 19mins 08secs, a course personal best by more than 30 seconds.
Four faced some hot conditions on Sunday when they ran the 16 mile Kinder Trog Fell Race in the Peak District. Dave McGrath clocked 2hrs 15mins Paul Swyers 3hrs 08mins , John Andrew 3hrs 26mins and Lisa Carter 3hrs 39mins. The tough course, starting from Hayfield, had 3,491 feet of climbing and the race was part of The Run The Moors Grand Prix that the club takes part in along with several other local clubs.
Sarah Rushton and Lucy Dewhurst ran 14miles when they took part in the Round Sheffield Run, an undulating multi stage race they completed together in 2hrs 33mins.
Several took part in the Keswick Parkrun with Ian and Debi Warrington clocking 29.08 and Karen Doherty running 30mins 25secs.
In the 5k parkruns Chris Fletcher ran 25mins 30secs at Heaton Park, Peter Hunter 26mins 27secs: junior Ben Darbyshire 26mins 15secs: Amanda Darbyshire had a pb with 29mins 47secs: Iain Harris ran 31mins 30secs: Lisa Donnelly 32mins 09secs: Sharon Peterkin 33mins 32secs and Christine Berry 33mins 54secs. At Bolton Dave McGrath ran 18mins 53secs: Ken Smith 23mins 06secs: Andy Wheeler 30mins 13secs: Mark Murphy 33mins 16secs and Natalie Hitchen 37mins 23secs.