Karl Gray earns veteran victory for Calder Valley Fell Runners at Duddon Valley Fell Races

Calder Valley Fell Runners enjoy their post-race recovery at the Duddon Valley Fell Races in the Lake District. PHOTO BY LEE SHIMWELLCalder Valley Fell Runners enjoy their post-race recovery at the Duddon Valley Fell Races in the Lake District. PHOTO BY LEE SHIMWELL
Calder Valley Fell Runners enjoy their post-race recovery at the Duddon Valley Fell Races in the Lake District. PHOTO BY LEE SHIMWELL
From the Lake District’s Duddon Valley to Calderdale’s own Luddenden Valley – and most places in between – Calder Valley Fell Runners members were out enjoying the sunshine, achieving great results and having epic adventures along the way.

CVFR were out in force for the Duddon Valley fell races.

With the Long Duddon, 18 miles with 6,000ft of ascent, race being a counter in the 2024 club championships, most of the CVFR entrants braved this option.

Karl Gray led the red-and-white contingent, his time of 3:13:21 placing him in the top ten overall and earning first prize in the veterans category.

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Junior star Clara McKee on winning form at Kettlewell. PHOTO BY LINDSAY BUCKJunior star Clara McKee on winning form at Kettlewell. PHOTO BY LINDSAY BUCK
Junior star Clara McKee on winning form at Kettlewell. PHOTO BY LINDSAY BUCK

Finishing in 4:54:33 was a satisfying result for club captain Cass Chisholm.

Both Oliver Beaumont and Paul Taylor also put in impressive performances.

Other Long Race results: 49th Mark Taylor M50 3:54:48, 74th George Kettlewell MSEN 4:33:40, 79th Lee Shimwell M40 4:40:15, 87th Mark Wharton M50 4:44:42, 94th Cass Chisholm W40 4:54:33, 100th Oliver Beaumont MSEN 5:08:02, 105th Paul Taylor M50 5:13:54, 106th James Cooke M40 5:15:02, 107th Ian Dobie M50 5:15:46, 111th (=) Toby Sydes M50 5:20:03, 111th (=) Stuart Russell M50 5:20:03

Short Race results: 27th Luke Meleschko M40 2:08:54, 55th Bob Howard M60 2:39:04, 72nd Tamsin Cooke F40 3:10:06.

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Helen Curtis and her 5-nation team in NormandyHelen Curtis and her 5-nation team in Normandy
Helen Curtis and her 5-nation team in Normandy

Clara McKee represented CVFR in the junior races at Kettlewell on Sunday.

The U17s run the same 1.4-mile course as the seniors.

Despite being at the younger end of her age category, Clara continued her winning ways, taking first place in the U17 Girls and third place overall, in a time of 13:40.

The 6.4-mile Edenfield fell race climbs 1,300 feet as it visits the summits of Cowpe Lowe and Whittle Hill.

Sunday’s event saw several notable runs by CVFR members.

In the women’s race, Ambi Swindells ran well to take third place.

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In sixth place overall, Stephen Hall was the first Calder runner to finish, while Shaun Godsman, not far behind him, took first place in the veterans category. Stephen Morran was first V65 and Fiona Lynch second FV45.

The event also marked a welcome return for CVFR’s Andy Smith, who was pleased to be back in the game after a long break from racing and completed the course in 1:53:49.

CVFR’s Ed Hyland blazed a trail to victory at Pete Shields Ilkley Trail Race.

He burned round the 6.9-mile course in 43:38, putting in his trademark arms-out sprint finish to beat Richard Anderson by a single second to take the glory. Stephen Morran also claimed first place in the V65 category, finishing in 53:54.

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Stella Chrisanthou and Francis Wooff represented CVFR at the Stanhill fell race, a five-miler near Oswaldtwistle.

Stella took second place in the women’s race in 40:30, less than a minute behind the winner, Wigan’s Kelly Staunton.

Francis’s finish time of 44 minutes was fast enough for him to claim third V60.

Marking the anniversary of D-Day, CVFR’s Helen Curtis put in a strong performance while representing the UK in a commemorative 45-mile ultramarathon in Normandy, running alongside four athletes from America, Canada, Germany and France.