In a year where fell racing has to still fully get going again it was great to see 112 seniors and 157 eager and enthusiastic junior runners toe the line to start.
Results are available here: Kettlewell 2021 Results
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God’s Own County provided the perfect backdrop of sunshine and beautiful scenery for this year’s short, sharp, Kettlewell Fell race.
All races start with an adrenaline fuelled sprint to the gate out of the cricket field. Shortly after leaving the cricket field, all courses take a sharp right turn, over gnarly loose rocks, to enter the field at the fell base. Runners now race along a flat track before the steep grassy incline to “the chimney” and the first false summit. After clambering and climbing through the chimney the course flattens off before the 2nd of three climbs. Once over the 3rd false summit racers are allowed the luxury of a relatively flat though tussocky skyline trot, at the edge of Middlesmoor Pasture, before the sharp, varied and technical descent. The descent starts with a small cliff edge before competitors negotiate the scree at Gate Cote Scar. What follows are rocks and steep grass banking, to test all skill levels before the flat run back along the track, sharp left turn over the gnarly loose rocks, and mad dash across the cricket field to the finish line. The junior races follow the same outward route as far as the chimney summit, then turning at various points to return via the same route as the senior race. Only the very youngest of runners in the U9 race are denied the climb through the chimney and chance to launch themselves from the cliff edge!
Staffordshire Moorland’s Simon Bailey showed everyone yet again that he is a running force to be reckoned with as he shot off like a bullet and was already in the lead at the summit with Wharfedale Harriers’ Ted Mason and Calder Valley’s Alex Whittem following in his wake. Despite some varied route choices on the descent, the finish order did not change with Bailey taking the win (11.36) from Mason, 2nd (11.40) and Whittem , 3rd (12.17).
In the ladies race, Howgill Harriers Elsie Butler was first to the summit followed by Skipton AC’s Hannah Cairns and Edinburgh University’s Abi Plowman. However, the varied demands of the descent altered the rankings somewhat as Butler won, (13.33) from Todmorden Harriers’ Annie Hassel, 2nd (14.34), and Harrogate Harriers’ Lex Whitaker, 3rd (14.42).
The U17 race follows the same course as the senior race allowing some interesting comparisons to be made. Wharfedale’s Amelie Lane was first to the summit, leaving the rest of the field trailing behind her. However, on the descent the first 3 boys showed their dare-devil brinkmanship to over-take Lane before the finish. Settle Harriers’ Dougie Seggar-Staveley won the race (13.19) from Ilkley Harriers’ Sam Bentham, 2nd (13.33) and Calder Valley’s Charlie Pickens, 3rd (13.47). Finishing 4th overall, Lane won the girls’ race in a time that would have placed her 2nd in the ladies race (13.51)! Harrogate Harriers’ Eve Whitaker took 2nd place (14.44) from Leven Valley’s Georgia Bell, 3rd (15.23).
Keighley and Craven’s Ewen Wilkinson enjoyed a fantastic race and a clear lead as he romped home to win the U14 race (10.05) from Otley’s Ned Gallagher-Thompson, 2nd (10.12), and Leven Valley’s Oliver Oldham, 3rd (10.37). Helm Hill’s Millie Jebb showed her running pedigree as she won the girls’ race by a country mile (11.16) from 2nd placed Keighley’s Millie Timbers (12.13) and Keighley’s Charlotte Chambers, 3rd (12.22).
Keeping podium finishes in the family, Leven Valley’s Sam Oldham won the U12 race (7.01) from Ilkley’s Robert Carter, 2nd (7.02) and Chorley’s Henry Ward, 3rd (7.07). More running pedigree was on show in the girls race as Keighley’s Bethan Buckley won (7.35) from Helm Hill’s Isla Jebb, 2nd (7.48) and Leven Valley’s Lucy Bell, 3rd (8.11).
The shortest race is the U9 race but it is also one of the most fiercely competitive as these tiny athletes fight all the way to the finish. Helm Hill’s Joss Jebb came home victorious (5.40) adding yet another trophy to the family cabinet. Settle’s Calum McGoldrick was 2nd boy in 4th place overall (6.42) from Wharfedale’s Harry Newman 3rd, (7.07) in 6th place overall. Proving that girls are as good as boys at this running lark, girls’ winner, Ilkley’s Harriet Carter romped home in 2nd place overall (5.52) followed by Staffordshire’s Bleu Bailey, 2nd (6.26), in 3rd place overall. Third girl home was Skipton’s Jaya Benn (6.59) in 5th place overall.
Geoff Thompson’s Photos
Dave and Eileen Woodhead’s Photos
U12 Girls – Start & run out -|- U12 Girls – The Climb -|- U12 Girls – The Scree descent -|- U12 Girls – Descent to path
U12 Boys- Start & run out and climb -|- U12 Boys – The Scree descent -|- U12 Boys – Return to finish
U14 Girls- Start & run out and climb -|- U14 Girls – The Scree descent -|- U14 Girls – Return to finish
U14 Boys- Start & run out and climb and return to finish -|- U14 Boys – The Scree descent
U17’s – Run out and Return to finish -|- U17 – The Climb and Scree descent
Senior Women – Run out and Climb -|- Senior Women – The Scree descent -|- Senior Women – Return to finish
Senior Men – Run out -|- Senior Men – The Climb -|- Senior Men – The Scree descent -|- Senior Men- Return to finish