On Sunday we hosted the 11th English Schools Fell Running Championships for the second year running.
Despite a weather warning earlier in the week, the 500 runners spread between four age group races from Y7 through to Y12-13, were blessed with blue skies and fair autumn temperatures.
The event attracted entries from 98 English schools and a cohort from the Isle of Man. Amongst them were some of the very best athletes in this specialist sport including Giggleswick’s Euan Brennan who represented Great Britain at U20 level in the recent World Mountain Running Championships in Andorra and Tom Humphries who ran for England in last week’s Home International Championships in Ireland.
Organiser, Fergus Ogilvie, said “Conditions could not have been better for racing and visibility on the hill was perfect. This provided a great opportunity for spectators to view the runners on long stretches of the courses which included low and high fells, some technical climbs, descents and even a stream crossing.”
Euan Brennan successfully defended his Y12/13 title while fellow pupil, Tom Humphries, running in the same race, was just pipped at the line to finish third. Brookfield Community School’s Alex Ediker separated the two.
Overall, Dallam School took the honours with Sedbergh School in second and Queen Elizabeth’s Grammar School (QEGS), Penrith coming third.
Fergus said “Nineteen Giggleswick pupils turned out to represent the school and a large number of those had never run on the country, let alone the fells before so hats off to them. The runners certainly participated to the best of their ability, rising to the challenge and did both themselves and the school proud.
Full results are available on the website www.esfrc.org
Prizes were presented by fell and ultra distance runner, Emma Hopkinson and author Tom Palmer was on site promoting his book, Armistice Runner.
Fergus thanked Giggleswick’s properties, domestic, catering and marketing departments. Also, the PE department and other staff volunteers, the Giggleswick Parents Association, Chris Jones of the Fell Runners Association, Settle Harriers and Wharfedale Harriers who did sterling work marshalling the course, road crossing and sweeping the races. Kong Adventure from Keswick also visited with their stand and were generous sponsors of the event and donated prizes.
The catering tent and sale of T- shirts raised money to be shared between ‘Bullies Out’, Yorkshire Air Ambulance and the Cave Rescue Organisation.