Buckley eclipses Fines’ record in the sunshine

Jo Buckley (CVFR)
Jo Buckley (CVFR)

Calder Valley’s Jo Buckley was in record breaking form at a sun-drenched Coiner’s Fell Race in Mytholmroyd on Monday.

The 7.5 mile race, which has 1330 feet of ascent, runs from near Mytholmroyd Community Centre up to Stoodley Pike. The route then sweeps back round, passing the famous Bell House farms of the notorious Coiners baddies of yesteryear, with a steep final descent back down towards Mytholmroyd.

Buckley powered home in 1:00:15 to claim the coveted ladies’ prize, finishing 11th overall and nabbed the course record of her Calder team-mate, England runner Helen Fines.

Backing up Buckley to help Calder Valley win the ladies’ team prize were the indefatigable Jackie Scarfe and Charlotte Whetton who both put in fine runs.

Buckley pulled clear of the ladies field across Cock Hill Moor, then demonstrated her climbing virtuosity with a rapid ascent up to Stoodley Pike from London Road. This steep section was added to the route last year and has proved a popular addition.

In the men’s race, Wharfedale’s Christian Holmes took the honours in 54:38, with the resurgent Ben Frechette top placed for Calder in a career-best fifth place. Just behind Ben were Rob Dobson and ever-present Rob Paradise in 6th and 11th respectively.

Nicky Murphy, Jon Emberton, Graham Lloyd and the rest of the team staged a slick event and runners were also grateful to helpers at the finish line who handed out the water.

The race raisede £100 for Calder’s High Uganda great generation project.

On Saturday, it was Calder maestro Jo Waites’ turn to lift the silver as she won the ladies race in the popular Cake Race (10 miles/1700ft) out of Diggle in Saddleworth. Jo finished 19th overall, posting a strong time of 1:14:37.

In the men’s race, Calder’s Jason Williams was a superb second as he tamed the testing course with a high calibre run.

As the name suggests, the theme of the race is ‘bring a cake’ and there was certainly no shortage of confectionary at the end in Diggle Church.

Most of it was polished off by Calder’s Ben Frechette who, after underestimating the 22 mile trip from Cragg Vale on his push bike, arrived in the nick of time for the race, ran the 10 mile route in 1:25:35 and then, on the verge of exhaustion and acute sugar deprivation, darted straight into the tea room and tucked in.

On Saturday, Valley’s Shaun Godsman went to Llangynhafal for a Welsh national championship race which attracted many of that country’s top runners.

Past British and Welsh champion Tim Davis battled with Godsman over the five mile, 1750ft of climb, and got away on the last descent.

Godsman was an excellent second, knocking three minutes off the veteran 40 record time that was held by Paul Jones of Mercia Fellrunners, who finished fourth.

Also representing Calder were Rod Sutcliffe and Sharon Godsman.

Calder Valley are continuing to encourage new runners to have a go at their first fell race by joining a series of Tuesday night training runs, culminating in the Tom Tittiman Fell Race in mid-June.

The club welcomes runners of all abilities. Training runs start from Mytholmroyd Community Centre, meet at 18.45. Full details on the club’s website.