The latest round of the Northern Runner/ Esk Valley Winter Fell Race Series brought a relatively warm day with high winds on the top and plenty of clart on the forest
tracks. It was not a day for fast times but the course was easily runnable and with a
record number of first timers (virgin fell runners) it was almost ideal to give the right sort
of flavour! We had a first in this event as there were more female teams completing than
men’s for the first time in my recollection, which goes back almost 40 years.
In the female event it was Kay Neesam of New Marske who led the way with Nicola Kent
of Loftus and Whitby chasing. Shelli Gordon and Kath Aspin were not too far adrift of
those. Kay went on to win from Nicola leading the New Marske Women to victory in the
team race ahead of Thirsk & Sowerby.
In the men’s race it was the pre race favourite David Beech,( Northumberland Fell
Runners) who was comfortably ahead at the turn into the more severe climbing section.
Chasing him were Kevin McLoughlin of North York Moors and Rory Best of Esk Valley
Fell. As the race progressed David was able to extend that one minute lead to two and a
half by the finish with Kevin second and Rory third. Rory did have the pleasure of leading
his Esk Valley Team mates to a win in the team race ahead of second placed North York
Moors with Esk Valley ‘B’ in third. It was a grand day also for Martin White of New Marske
who ran this event as part of his 60th birthday celebrations.
Next event sees the Guisborough 3 Tops which in 2015 changes places in the calendar
with The Gisborough Moors Races. Click here to see the results.

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