Team supports Winter Hill Fell Race by providing Standby Rescue Cover

Today the team provided its usual standby rescue cover provision for the gruelling Winter Hill Fell Race, organised excellently as ever by Horwich RMI Harriers and Athletic Club.

Now in its 31st year (the team has attended every event), the course takes in an 11 mile route with 2700 feet of ascent, centred on Winter Hill, starting and finishing at Rivington Hall Barn.

This year, 34 Call Out List members and six probationary members provided cover at each of the nine checkpoints, with ’spot pick up crews’, radio links, start/finish liaison and control and communications (MRT radio network only).
(Many thanks to Bowland Pennine MRT for the use of their Winter Hill radio repeater)

In addition the following members of our Support Group, Iain Clarkson, Julie Thompson, Sarah Hindle, Laura Tunnicliffe and Andrew Wilson provided an endless supply of bacon, sausage butties (with a choice of sauces!) and hot drinks to the team from our purpose built Catering Trailer.

208 runners entered the race today, which took place in low visibility foggy and snowy conditions, with freezing temperatures. Ten competitors retired from the race, and a small number missed the cut off times as the marshall stations shut down, with the weather conditions causing some navigation issues on the course. Other than these retirements the team did not deal with any incidents involving the competitors today (amazing really given the atrocious ground conditions, which is testament to the skill and experience of the fell runners taking part)

The team is happy to provide standby rescue cover for this event (as with other fell running events on our moors) and to support our local fell running community.

The Winter Hill Fell Race is the first race we provide cover for across the year. The next race we are covering is the Darwen Dashers “Mr Sparkle’s Dark ‘Un Fell Race” on Friday 22nd February.

A caller at our Control point at Lower House car park turned out to be former team member (1976-1984) Tom Ward, who met up with his former colleagues (who are still team members) Alan James, Bob Hutchinson, Geoff Seddon, Garry Rhodes and Dave Marsh. Tom recalled that as Team Tresurer at the time, the team had in the region of £100 annual income & expenditure; he further commented that he remembers his proposal to the then Team Council to try and raise £5000 in one year, he was absolutely amazed to now realise the income and expenditure of the team as it currently stands. Tom left us today with the promise of visiting us at our Ladybridge Hall base sometime soon in the future.