Over 400 fell runners tasted the delights of the appropriately named Windy Hill at Saturday’s (8 February) race. They made the most of the picturesque course as Storm Ciara started to make her presence felt.
Saturday was the calm before the storm at the Windy Hill Fell Race hosted by Cannonball Events. The weather was bright and sunny as a record number of runners geared up for a testing 9 mile route that included a leg-sapping climb up the 390m Windy Hill. They were introduced beforehand to a range of products from an old favourite – Kendal Mint Co, the organisers’ nutrition partner.
The race started at 10am from Littleborough RUFC and the field followed a rewarding course on good trails and fells across the Pennine moors beginning with a speedy, undulating section along the old Roman Road at Blackstone Edge. Then it was time to grit their teeth as runners wound their way up Windy Hill in blustery conditions.
Once at the top they had a moment to take in panoramic views of Hollingsworth Lake and the surrounding countryside. It was then on to the fun part: a rapid descent for 4 to 5 miles to the finish at the rugby club.
Paul Pruzina of Pudsey & Bramley AC raced across the line to win the race in 57:41. Harry Holmes of Matlock AC was second in 58:06 and Thomas Corrigan of Ribble Valley Harriers third in 58:51.
Julie Darigala of Penistone Footpath Runners & AC was the winning lady in 1:13:42. Charmaine Horsfall was second in 1:15:09 with Rowen Pymm of Saddleworth RC third in 1:15:29.