Langdale Horseshoe race report 2017
With overnight gusts of wind damaging a few of the organising club’s tents, a saturated field to park in and a less than perfect conditions on the fell, the competitors in Langdale 2017 were definitely going to get their money’s worth. A far cry from the almost ideal championship race conditions the previous year, visibility looked like being a challenge and the wind and rain meant an extra top was required to be worn or carried.
368 hardy souls accepted the challenge and as the chatter of the farmyard and initial flat track gave way to huffing and puffing up Stickle Ghyll, a group including Keswick’s Carl Bell, Helm’s Josh Jardine and Borrowdale’s Martin Mikkelsen Barron began to get away in the senior men’s race. As is often the case when the clag is down and runners are wary of becoming isolated, groups formed throughout the field; only the most confident being happy to brave the notorious navigationally nasty section from Esk Hause to Crinkle Crags alone.
When they emerged from the murk, Carl was out front and looked fairly fresh as he finished in a sedate 2 hours 13 minutes lookingvery much like he could go round again. Martin and Josh followed in 2nd and 3rd around 5 minutes adrift. Only 3 runners home in under 2hr 20 was as much a testament to the greasy and sloppy conditions underfoot, as the wind, rain and clag on the summits. Robert Simpson and Sam Watson rounded off the top 5 men.
In the women’s race Ambleside’s Kelli Roberts, as happy as anyone on rough ground, stormed round out front and was a good way ahead of second placed Nicky Spinks of Dark Park Peak, who turned in an excellent performance to take first V40 and 50 ladies title in great style. Ambleside’s Sarah MaCormack had been on registration duties from the crack of dawn but this did not stop her begging a last minute entry and getting 3rd place for her efforts. In the V60 women Lesley Malarkey from Keswick held off Wendy Dodds for the win. Wendy has completed around 25 Langdale races and was returning from injury!
In the male V40 category Helm’s Tim Cowin just held off fellrunning legend Ian Holmes for the win, with Ian taking the V50 crown. The remarkable Leigh Warburton demolished the V60 opposition in a great time of 2hr 48.
The men’s team race saw Ambleside using their tried and tested ‘intense mid field packing’ strategy to take the honours, with Dark Peak triumphing in the women’s team battle.
The real heroes on a day like this however were the summit marshals. To be out in those conditions for up to 3 hours to help account for those racing was something else. Several runners came back to report their concern for Jon Deegan’s wellbeing, huddled up and shivering on Bowfell summit attempting to count runners through! And Jon was one of many. A huge thanks must also go to the large group of AAC helpers in the valley, without whom this race would not happen, St Johns Ambulance and the RAYNET lads.
Here’s hoping for more clement weather next year. See you then.
Hey all you Amblesiders. Get off the sofa! Resist the urge to go out during the day because DARK IS FUN….with your mates!
I think we’ve had as much daylight as we’re going to get for a while but that doesn’t mean that the fun and hard yards all stop! As of Tuesday 24th October, we shall return to Ambleside Rugby Club (be there at 6.35pm for a 6.45 start) for Tuesday Night Training Runs. ALL speeds and abilities are welcome as there are always groups doing any of:
- The legendary “Seven Hills of Ambleside” – can be as hard/easy as you want it and good for ALL speeds as the hills are out and backs so that slower/injured runners can be “scooped” up by faster runners on the descent with a jog to regroup and recover between hills
- trail runs – 1 to 1 1/2 hours variations on Rydal – Coffin Route -Loughrigg Terrace – Deerbolt Wood – Loughrigg Tarn
- proper fell runs – decided by whoever fancies it and what the weather’s doing!
The “Seven Hills” route takes place in and around the (mostly) lit streets of Ambleside but it’s best to bring a head torch and range of shoes (road/trail/fell) so we can shake it up if we want to.
Of course, it goes without saying that we go for a drink in The Golden Rule after our efforts:-)
More runners = more fun + more success + more chance there’ll be folk who want/need to do the same as you:-)
Winter: BRING IT ON! TRAIN HARD! HAVE FUN! SMASH IT NEXT SEASON!
Massive thanks to all the helpers that made today happen, particularly those on the tops in nasty conditions.
Results here (awaiting edit – Sam Watson was 5th)
The FINAL Langdale helpers list is here
We have 521 entries.
Here’s to a great day!
Link to photos from the Three Shires fell race are here https://simonmarsh.smugmug.
Thanks for all the offers of help. Here is the latest Langdale helpers list. One or two changes since the one I emailed round earlier this week.
Ammended Three Shires race results and report here
Jonny Malley and Pete Bray battle it out for the win