Success for the Lakeland Six

Report: Peter Powell -

Some would question the idea of running 100 or even 50 miles through the Lake District as a weekend break but six intrepid Stockport Harriers undertook just that.

Star of the show went to local runner Nick Ham who was egged on by his colleagues to again run the full 100 mile circuit for the fifth occasion and received a special award from the organisers of the Montane Lakeland challenge as well as sore feet for his year on year endeavours.

From Friday evening, all through Saturday and on into early Sunday morning our intrepid hero churned out the miles and compared well with comic strip athletic folk legend Alf Tupper and crossed the finish line in 35 hours and 14 minutes for well deserved beer and sandwiches.

Meantime at the lower distance of 50 miles, Steve Jones, Neil Thompson and Lee Barratt were first three man team home in 10 hours and 14 minutes and with individual performances by Phil Burns (12 hours 39 minutes) and Paul Stepto (13 hours 49 minutes) it was back off to work on Monday for a well earned rest and so completed the heroics of six hardy men in one of Europe’s greatest ultra running events. 

More mountain running will take place at Betws–y–coed later in August when local harrier Sally Ratcliffe has been selected to run for England in the under 23’s event with an aim for European selection to follow in Slovenia in September.

Back at lower levels on the track, the youth development league is now complete for the season and in the upper age group, team Stockport took the runner’s up spot on 16 team points in their division behind newly promoted club Bolton United harriers’ score of 23 and therefore remain in division two for the 2016 track and field season. The star billing for Stockport Harriers went surely to Michael Quin who achieved wins in the under 17’s middle distance double in a time of 4:45:6 for the 1500 metres and just over two hours later took the winning spoils in the 3000 metres in 10:31:5.

As usual team Stockport met expectations in the horizontal jumping events with wins for Nick Barrett and Mark Jackson in the triple jump and Sophie Quinn and Laura Pegler in the long jump discipline.

Stockport had two representatives in the recent anniversary games at the Olympic arena, Stratford with Carly Tait going in the T34 400 metres wheelchair event and finishing seventh behind Holland’s paralympic silver medallist Amy Siemons in 6th and in the longer distance of 5000 metres, local girl Jess Coulson lowered her personal best time by 15 seconds to record second British athlete home in 15:29:50 and a new Harriers record for the event. 

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