Despite rumours that Knott Fell Runners were going to take Dungworth by storm this year, nobody turned up to compete in the event consecrated as their traditional club championship race. Penistone FR likewise failed to send a team over, Bob Innes being their sole 'and very worthy' representative. Paul Iseard (from Don Alexander's famous Sheffield shop on Ecclesall Road) put in a pioneering first showing for Sheffield Hash House Harriers.
A streamlined version of the celebrated bent-tennis-racket-shaped course uses the new footpath from Dam Flask through the woods (below Sanderson's Bottom) into the Limpopo Valley and by-passes Hall Broom Farm, whose slurry chute has caused amusement in the past. The modified route proved popular with participants, especially as underfoot conditions were just right: beautifully tonsured field paths and tracks, with a bit of 'softness' at key points like the tussocky pull up to Bramall's Bend and the cows' entrance to Syke House Farm in middle bit of Ringwood Lane. Even though bullocks had trampled the stakes and eaten the marker tape leading to the turning point at Jones's Corner, it seemed that the course had been so meticulously flagged that nobody could possibly go astray. The finish officials, then, were provided with grand entertainment, when Chris Sellens, breathing down leader Rob Little's neck with the end virtually in sight, ignored the abundant tape in the pub car park, leapt a substantial barrier and led a charge of three into the legendary Edwards' alternative finish. This produced an exciting climax and contest for second position, with the three sprinting deviants coming in from various directions, still just ahead of James Varley, who was running with his eyes open enough to see enjoy the spectacle unfolding in front of him. The Edwards' alternative had not been used for some ten or eleven years, and the audacious ploy earned the award of Hiro's fan to Chris Sellens (nephew of Graham: hands up if you remember him), commended too for hanging on to second place. Thus SHUOC claimed the two major trophies, the Granville Harper memorial shield going to winner Rob Little who put in a very composed performance. Debbie Smith is now proud holder of the Moosehead. She and Rob got a few beer-tokens, as did winners in other categories (Tim Hawley and Chris Barber, shared for V40 and V50; Colin Henson, V70). Everybody seemed to have a good time.
Thanks are due to John Manthorpe for ingenious help with course-marking and finish; various volunteers on the day; David Sanderson at Woodside Farm; David and Linda at The Royal.
The clear consensus is that the late-September slot in the calendar provides altogether more atmospheric racing conditions, with the bonus of the convivial debriefing session in the The Royal. Make a note already, then, of Saturday, 24 September 2005.
|1||Rob Little||00:31:48||Dark Peak||M|
|3||Rob Smith||00:33:37||Dark Peak||M|
|5||James Varley||00:33:43||Dark Peak||M|
|6||Tim Hawley||00:34:37||Dark Peak||MV45|
|7||George Yates||00:34:45||Dark Peak||M|
|8||Roger Woods||00:36:18||Dark Peak||M|
|9||Tom Westgate||00:36:23||Dark Peak||MV40|
|10||Paul Sanderson||00:36:29||Dark Peak||MV40|
|11||Tim Ray||00:36:35||Dark Peak||M|
|12||David Holmes||00:36:43||Dark Peak||MV45|
|13||Chris Barber (V50)||00:36:51||DPFR|
|14||John Herbert||00:36:52||Dark Peak||MV45|
|17||Bob Innes||00:38:09||Penistone FR|
|19||Roy Small||00:39:01||Dark Peak||MV50|
|20||Debbie Smith||00:40:08||Dark Peak||W|
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