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The 2013 Wharfedale Off Road Marathon and Half Marathon

by Editor
Thursday 13th June 2013

Race report: Mick Hawkins reports from the Wharfedale Off Road Marathon and Half Marathon - Saturday June 1, 2013

Once again there were record entries for the Wharfedale Off Road Marathon and Half Marathon with over 400 entries for the runs and 45 in the walk.

The marathon was chosen as the trial race for the World Long Distance Mountain Running Championships in Szklarska Poreba, Poland.  All eyes were on this event with the likes of pre race favourite Huw Lobb, Ricky Lightfoot, Carl Bell and Karl Grey on the entry list for the men’s race.

As the course had to replicate the World Champs the organisers had to flag the whole course at 100 metre intervals and also ensure there were marshall’s at every check point. Overall we were very successful with our marking although you can not legislate for a few flags being moved and cars parking in front of markers! It must be said that on a day like this a huge thankyou must be given to the many route markers and volunteer marshall’s who gave of their time throughout the weekend.

Ricky Lightfoot clearly set off with the intention of making the team, starting the race as if it was a 10k run and opening up a one minute lead by the first check point, followed by Bell, Grey and Lobb. By the time the runners had reached Arncliffe, which is about halfway, Ricky had a two minute lead over the ever-improving Carl Bell and the consistent Karl Grey. Pre race favourite Huw Lobb was now struggling and had been overtaken by Andrew Siggers from Kenilworth Runners. 

Ricky continued to pile on the pressure on the five mile climb to Mastiles Lane and by the finish had smashed the record with the amazing time of 2:33:07 beating last years record of 2:48 by Richard Pattinson by a massive 15 minutes.  Almost 30 minutes have been taken off the record in two years! Carl Bell and Karl Grey both ran exceptionally well, posting very fast times, with Andrew Siggers also beating the old record.

In the ladies race Jo Buckley also smashed the old record leading from gun to tape and gaining 10th place overall in a wonderful time of 3:04:31, which was eight minutes inside the record. Scottish runner Shona Robertson closely followed in 3:05:15 to hopefully claim her place on the Scotland team.

The half marathon was the sideshow this year and was won for the third year running by Quentin Lewis in 1:30:08, which was four minutes outside of the record he set last year. Quentin was followed home by Gareth Briggs who had travelled up from Staff Moorlands with local runner Julian Hood having an excellent run in third place in a time of 1:33:17.

First woman Louisa Pickles was ninth overall in a very good time of 1:42:24 but was some four minutes outside of last years record.

We hope to see you all again next year and if you have still not taken part in this event add it to your diary. Stunning scenery, great facilities and a friendly welcome awaits in this ‘ Must do’ event.

Find out more or enter the 2014 events at: www.wharfedalemarathonevents.com

Men's marathon results

1 Ricky Lightfoot Ellenborough AC/Salomon Trail Team 02:33:07
2 Carl Bell Keswick AC 02:37:53
3 Karl Gray Calder Valley Fell Runners 02:42:00


Women's marathon results

1 Jo Buckley Calder Valley Fell Runners 03:04:31
2 Shona Robertson   03:05:15
3 Emma D'Alton Westbury Harriers 03:18:26


Men's half marathon results

1 Quentin Lewis Baildon Runners 01:30:08
2 Gareth Briggs Staffs Moorlands AC 01:32:23
3 Julian Hood Skipton AC 01:33:17


Women's half marathon results


Louisa Pickles

2 Molly Ralphson Trawden AC 01:49:42
3 Nicola Sweeney Pudsey and Bramley 01:51:14


Click here for full results


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