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Jack proves he's a real ace as he sets Bradley Fell Race record
11:49am Thursday 5th September 2013 in Sport
The fell races have been a feature of Bradley Family Day and in recent years, they have become increasingly popular.
The fast 3.6 mile course takes in a wide range of terrain and pushes runners to their limits.
This feature is one of the reasons why the under-17 race was selected as a trial race for the England fell running team ahead of the home internationals in Aberfoyle on September 21.
Due to the small time frame in which to fit all of the races, 35 under 17’s set off five minutes ahead of the 99 seniors, giving each age group opportunity to watch the elite runners as they passed on the main track to High Bradley.
Whilst the under -17s had a slightly shorter course to negotiate, they had no intention of being caught. Twenty-four of them made it back before the senior winner Jack Simpson from Leeds City who beat the course record by four seconds as he clocked 23:17.
Under-17 record holder James Hall from Wharfedale Harriers, new to the senior ranks, took second place in 23:32 with fellow Wharfedaler; Dave Kirkham third in 25:09. Adrian Pickles, formerly of Settle and now running for Mercia was first MV50, whilst Maurice Smith was first MV60. John Wootton of Wharfedale Harriers was first local home in 29:06 in 30th place.
The senior field comprised 24 lady runners including an in-form Caroline Lambert from Wetherby Runners.
She finished in 11th place overall in 26:50, taking 49 seconds off the ladies’ record.
Second Lady was Zara Knappy with a strong run in her first year as a senior in 28:38 and last year’s winner Clare Pearson from Wharfedale Harriers had to settle for third.
In the veteran categories, Rebecca Mon-Williams from Ilkley Harriers was first LV40, with club mate; Diane Haggar first LV50. Local lady Claire Kearns is more familiar with Ironman Triathlons, but the Craven Energy runner finished well as first local lady in her first time in the Bradley Race.
The under-17’s race was started on the road due to the numbers competing, so it was expected that they may have a few seconds advantage.
However the winning runner; Jack Willis from Middlesbrough and Cleveland finished in 20:36, 18 seconds inside Hall’s record and 45 seconds ahead of his nearest rival, Jack Denton of Calder Valley.
Emile Cairess of Bingley Harriers was third just three seconds ahead of Sam Convery and Liam Burthem after a battle to the line.
First under 17 girl was the reigning under-16 English Fell Champion Elizabeth Greenwood, who really showed her form finishing the 3.4 mile race in 24:04 nearly two minutes faster than the girls’ record.
Second girl, Rosie Dale from Lancs & Morecambe was also inside the record time. Third place went to Jenni Willison of Derby AC. Alex Lulak finished in 27th place to gain the fist local trophy.
The under-14 race almost had a brother and sister holding the records as Matthew Merrick from Bingley Harriers was just three seconds away in 10:40, with record holder James Lund having to settle for second, 15 seconds behind.
Robbie Johnstone from Wharfedale Harriers was third boy with the local prize going to Alex Blake of Keighley & Craven.
Victoria Merrick followed in fourth place as first girl, knocking a further 44 seconds off her own record set last year.
Second girl was Scarlet Dale from Lancs & Morecambe, with Shauna Williamson of Wharfedale Harriers in third.
Katie Atkinson showed some remarkable promise in the under-12 race, winning in 6:15, and beating the girl’s record by 49 seconds. She was just seven seconds from the overall record. The first three boys followed her in close succession, with Alexander Thompson from Keighley & Craven taking first place ahead of Ciaren Crabtree from Wharfedale Harriers and Max Bradley from Ilkley Harriers.
Second girl was Mia Walsh from Helm Hill, just two seconds ahead of Lucy Fryers from Keighley & Craven. First local boy and girl were Toby Meynell and Charlie Coughlin.
A total of 48 runners competed in the under nine’s race and just five seconds split the first three runners.
Evan Mills from Keighley and Craven led way with club mate Charlie Whitehead in second. George Milner of Wharfedale Harriers was third, just one second ahead of Beth Roberts from Keighley & Craven who beat the girls’ record by 17 seconds.
Second girl was Hannah Jackson from Keighley & Craven, with Maddie Walsh from Helm Hill in third. First local boy was Charlie Teale.