London And Blackpool Marathons

The London Marathon is the one that runners always want to run at least once in their life.  Undoubtedly it is a great spectacle and an amazing experience, but with some runners having to wait an extra hour before they can start, it can be a challenge to run quick times. 

This year Halifax Harriers had five runners at the race.  First back was Angela Clarke in a PB of 3:41:51. Also setting PB’s were Martin Ellis 4:28:53 and Samantha Layfield 4:35:26.  David Parrington finished in 4:34:03 and John Moore 4:54:58.

Much nearer home was the Blackpool Marathon, a two lap course on the seafront.  With a much smaller field the runners were well spread out and there could be no excuses for lack of space to run at their own target pace.

As in London, Halifax Harriers had five runners at the race.  Peter Clegg 3:20:48 was first back for the club, closely followed by Will Stewart 3:21:30.  Nigel Rigg had a solid run to finish in 3:42:50, whilst Niall Smith 3:50:24 and Nigel Taylor 3:58:01 both set PB’s.


Saturday saw some miserable weather for the Three Peaks Fell Race.  Halifax Harriers trio of runners all finished within a short time of each other.  Ryan Barker was first back in 4:03:48 followed by Steven Sladdin in 4:06:33.  Vet 60 Phil Grimes finished in 4:14:29.

Halifax Harriers Junior Athletes Awards

25 junior athletes from Halifax Harriers attended the Awards Presentation at a ten-pin bowling night.  Club President and head coach, Brian Burgin, presented the awards to athletes who had competed with distinction at cross country and in track and field events over the last 12 months.

The cross country winners were Nia Harrison Sargent, Ben Slow, Elise Horner, James Duffy, Verity Clements, James Johnson, Jessica Russell and Max Burgin.

Special awards for the outstanding junior female and male athletes went to Elise Horner and Max Burgin.

Nia Harrison Sargent also won the Lister Horsfall Challenge Cup and Max Burgin the Middle Distance Trophy.

The Maurice Harrop Trophy was awarded to Max Burgin for setting a World Record for a 16 year old athlete at 800m and also winning the European Under 18’s 800m in the fastest time by a under 20 year old in the world in 2018.

Salford Success For Halifax Harriers Ladies

The Salford 10k this year was run in warm sunny conditions which the announcer described as the best conditions ever.  Many runners found the temperature too high for their liking with many drop-outs after the first of two laps.  The race from Salford Sports Village is on a relatively flat course with a mixture of paths and roads.

The standard in this race is always very high with 8 men running under 32 minutes and 16 ladies under 40 minutes.

Halifax Harriers ladies were the female vets team winners comprising of Johanna Sutcliffe 38:44 (first F40), Helen Ward 42:37 (third F35) and Katrina Oddy 43:06 (third F50).

Halifax Harriers men were led home by Ben Crowther 34:34 followed by Harry Johnson 37:56 (third MJ) and Michael King 40:08.

Geoff Cumber had a solid run to take the M70 first prize in 44:36, whilst club mate Raymond Hall was second in the M70 age group in 46:58.  Mark Crabtree is coming back to form and was second M60 in 41:05.  Hazel Berrett was third F55 in 48:33.

Other runners for the club were Will Carver 41:51, Jonny Lister 45:39, Keith Lemon 45:45, John Moore 50:24, Stefanie Dickenson 51:29, David Parrington 53:32, Susan Hall 60:59, Monica Gallagher 61:28, Kirsty Carver 63:44.



At the Ackworth Half Marathon on Bank Holiday Monday, Johanna Sutcliffe certainly shone in the hot conditions as she had an excellent run on this mildly undulating course when she finished as first lady in 1:27:01 just outside her personal best for the distance. Nigel Taylor finished in 1:53:39

Joe Tames The Hills

The Flat Caps 10k saw Halifax Harriers Joe Crossfield triumph on this hilly course.  Some runners described the route like a fell race on the roads.  The route was certainly not one for PB’s.  Joe Crossfield finished in a respectable time of 39:03 and first runner back.

Halifax Harriers had 11 runners at the race in total.  Simon Lea and Tim Pegg both finished in 48:31, some way below their normal times for a 10k.

The first lady back for Halifax Harriers was Sally Shacklock in 57:23, just edging out Rachel McCauley 57:48.

Other runners for the club were Will Carver 50:10, Nigel Taylor 53:27, Martin Ellis 57:02, Dennis O’Keefe 59:27, David Parrington 1:02:05, Susan Pegg 1:16:18.

Great Times At Manchester Marathon

Halifax Harriers runners made a great start to the Spring marathon season with five PB’s recorded at the Manchester Marathon.  This marathon continues to grow in size each year due to its flat and fast course.  First back for Halifax Harriers was Andrew Wiggins in 3:03:46.  The next five runners all set PB’s- James O’Rourke 3:06:39, David Ingle 3:23:40, Tom Paget 3:28:21, Rachael Beaumont 3:29:25 and Deborah Kirkbride 4:13:14.

At the Wuthering Heights Wander Marathon Halifax Harriers Will Carver came an excellent third in 3:52:55.  Sarah Sladdin finished in 5:07:19.  Steve Sladdin took on the shorter 20 mile race finishing first in 2:41:52.

The Joe Salt Memorial Cowm Reservoir 5k had seven Halifax Harriers competing.  Will Smith finished second in 16:49, just in front of fast improving Harry Johnson 16:51, whilst his brother James Johnson set a PB of 18:03.  Other runners for the club were Charlie Spencer 17:27, Liam Spencer 19:02, Mark Knowles 20:21 and Laura Knowles 20:30.

The Overgate 10k as usual had good support from local clubs.  Halifax Harriers Johanna Sutcliffe was an excellent first lady back in 40:19 whilst Ben Crowther ran 35:25 for second place in the mens race.  Other runners for the club were Will Stewart 42:03, Mark Crabtree 43:42, Robert Hick 46:24, Marc Rocheteau 47:02, Ian Giles 50:27, Rachel McCauley 55:14, Jane Stewart 58:15.

Two members of the club ran in the Overgate 5k.  Nichola Hinchliffe ran 30:02 and junior Katie Brook 30:32.

Yorkshire Road Relays

This weekend saw the return of the very popular relays held over a gently undulating cycle track of 1mile. It was a good day for racing and yet again the men and ladies were in top contention.

The ladies proved once more they are a top team in Yorkshire by finishing in 6th place behind winners Holmfirth Harriers , Richmond and Ilkley. Each of the 4 legs was approx 4.8k. The ladies were given a great start by Helen Smith finishing 3rd on leg 1 running the 3 mile circuit in 17.35. Katrina Oddy ran leg 2 in 20.27 6th and relay debutant Helen Ward ran a fantastic 19.55 bringing the team back to 4th place. Laura Knowles was up against stiff competition on the last leg and Laura finished in 6th place running 20.45.

We had 3 teams in the mens race and again there were 4 legs of 4.8k. The A team finished 8th , the B team 29th and the C team unfortunately finished as a incomplete team only having 3 men. Not withstanding that our squad maintained their reputation as a top Yorkshire team. James Habergam finished 8th fastest overall out of 200 runners finishing 5th on stage 1.

A team James Habergam 14.55 5th Ben Crowther 15.55 6th Will Smith 16.36 8th & Simon Johnson 17.14 8th

B team Niall Smith 17.10 29th Andy Wiggins 19.04 34th Joe Crossfield 17.06 29th & Rob Macdonald 20.02 29th

C team Will Stewart 18.45 Mark Knowles 19.53 & Paul Sutcliffe 18.38

There were also supporting junior races. The juniors ran 2 laps totalling 3.2k.In the U15 Boys James Johnson ran 11.13 to finish 10th and he was supported by Danny Baxter 18th  12.37 and Ethan Clarke 19th 13.21 and they finished a very good 4th team.

In the U17 boys race Harry Johnson just missed a Yorkshire medal in 4th place 10.36 and Charlie Spencer 6th in 10.59. It was their last race as U17s as they now join the Junior / Senior ranks.

A massive thanks and congrats goes out to Elliot Clarke U13 who was the only U13 Harrier to compete and he finished 36th in a highly competitive race to finish with a time of 13.49 over 2 miles.

Northern Road Relays

March 24th at Birkenhead Pk Liverpool saw the staging of this years Northern 12 Stage Road relays  in conjunction the Women's 6 stage relays were held. The day was breezy but sunny and fierce competition awaited.

The ladies squad produced an amazing effort on the day  and  finished a brilliant 18th place out of 60 teams a truly fantastic team performance. The race was won by Rotherham Harriers followed by National champions Leeds and 3rd was Leigh Harriers.

Sarah Cumber kicked off proceedings running 8k in 29.15 and coming home in 15th place alongside some well known international athletes past and present. the great start was maintained by Katrina Oddy on a 4k leg running 16.09 in 18th place. Junior athlete Laura Knowles ran 16.38 to finish in 20th place which was her first run in the  Senior ranks and Laura was followed by Jo Sutcliffe who pulled off an amazing leg to bring the team home in 15th place running 8k in 29.24. Hazel Berrett continued the ladies momentum holding onto 15th place running 17.49 and the team completed the race in 18th place. Because of racing commitments the ladies are unable to compete in the National Champs held at Sutton Park in Sutton Coalfield held soon.

The mens race consisted of 4 stages of 8k and 8 stages of 4k. We finished a very creditable 31st place out of 70 teams which included the Elite teams of the North. The race was convincingly won by Leeds City who held at the end a 6 minute lead over Sheffield and Salford Harriers. Our aim was to finish inside the top 25 teams and gain automatic selection for the National Road Relay Champs in Birmingham in early April. 

James Habergam set the ball rolling with 12th place on leg 1  running 24.02 for 8k, an excellent start. The other 8k legs were run by Ben Crowther 25.54 Peter Clegg 26.51 and Mikie Gaughan. 28.32 and throughout the race we maintained positions in the mid 20s early on and finishing 31st by the end.

The shorter legs of 4k were run by Ian Whitehouse 13.58 Andy Wiggins 15.05 Ryan Barker 14.31 Niall Smith 13.50 Simon Johnson 13.30 Mark Gaughan 16.36 Liam Spencer 14.43 and Will Smith 13.11.

 A fantastic day out was enjoyed and valued experience was gained by our relay debutants.

Well done and thank you.