Last Saturday saw the penultimate club championship race for Hoad Hill Harriers at the Allithwaite eight-miler, a superb race, well organised by Allithwaite Running Club, near Grange.

The course had everything to test the competitor; swift road sections, a technical off-road wooded section and a steep demanding climb up Hampsfell before returning off its summit back to the village.

Over 100 competitors toed the line in overcast yet dry condition and a good contingent of Hoad Hill Harriers were there to finalise their positions in their championships before the last race at the Lytham Windmill Remembrance 10k.

In the senior section, Darren Coward was first home, securing his title while his nearest rival Andrew Dorrian was winning the Parkrun in Ulverston with another sub-18-minute time.

Frank McKeown kept ahead of his fellow vet 40s and secured ten points, enabling him to push nearest rival Mike Cubin into second. The evergreen Ashley Cooke (vet 50) recovered from his recent injury and ran well to secure his age category win.

The women’s section of the club championships had been exceedingly close in the open section. Leanne Bayliffe, running in her first trail race, needed to secure first place to nudge ahead of the chasing Stephanie Roberts.

She ran a perfect debut to secure ten points and take the open category win. Meanwhile Naomi Capstick has raced consistently well over the series and her first longer off-road outing secured her the points she needed to win the vet 40 group.

Alison Cooke, who placed second in this race last year, pulled out all the stops to secure the winners medal and sufficient points to seal the vet 55 category over Sally Barton.

Last Sunday saw Tom Southward recover from his recent Brathay Langdale marathon run to place 68th in a 448-strong field, running 70mins 46secs at the Derwentwater ten-mile race in Keswick.

Not to be outdone, Mick Cull knocked three minutes off a ten-year-old personal best to finish 40th in 1:34.42 at the Lancaster Half Marathon.

This weekend, the club will be out in force at their second Mid Lancs Cross Country League fixture at Hyndburn, eager to secure points to keep in the chase to retain divisional standings.