Sat 3 Aug 2019, Hellifield Five intrepid junior Preston Harriers make the short journey over the border to Yorkshire for the Hellifield Gala Junior Fell race. This was the last race in the Harriers Junior Fell Championship for 2019 and points were up for grabs!!! The weather was sunny, hot and humid, with hardly a breath of wind to cool the unsuspecting athletes as they prepared to run from the quaint Gala Showground in the centre of Hellifield. The setting and atmosphere were reminiscent of a traditional English village summer fete of times gone by.
First off was Lucas Cooke, who stormed into a great position near the front of the pack in the under 11 category; he kept up the pace for most of the race and finished a very creditable 8th place in 5:40min. Brilliant runs by the ever improving Link twins followed next in the under 13 race, with Adam finishing just ahead of his brother Matthew in 5th (8:16min) and 7th (8:54min) place respectively.
The run of the day was Emily Knell’s performance in the under 15 race. She is the only female Harrier to compete in all the championship races this season and she finished in 6th place in a tremendous time of 14:12min in a very competitive field of local Yorkshire runners.
The final junior to run was under 17 Arran Baldwin, in the 5.6km senior race. The course was quite testing for a short fell race and Arran coped admirably under the conditions to finish in 1:04:36 and 6th boy home.
In the senior race, Jenny Macdonald, Arran’s mother, was 3rd Vet 45 home in a time of 46:18min and 49th place overall and Roy Parkinson rounded off the Harriers participation in the event, finishing in 21st overall and 2nd Vet 55 over the line in 35:36min. Well done to all junior and senior runners who competed in the various races, especially in the hot conditions and against a small, but competitive field of runners from clubs such as Wharfdale, Bingley and Ilkley Harriers.