Runners battle dreadful conditions in Ackworth half marathon

The weather conditions this year may have been the worst in the races long history.
The weather conditions this year may have been the worst in the races long history.
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Daniel Kestrel won the annual Ackworth half- marathon on Easter Monday.

It was the second running of the race since it was re-introduced after a six-year break.

The weather conditions this year may have been the worst in the race’s long history as Storm Katie passed through the region.

Monday’s race saw 308 runners, out of an entry of 382, brave the conditions.

There were also more than 60 officials, marshals and helpers, many of whom were out in the wind and rain for up to five hours, although the rain did ease as the race progressed.

Kestrel, of Blizard Physio/Barnsley AC, was first home in 74 minutes, 19 seconds.

Second was Ashenafi Erkolo (Sheffield Running Club) in 75-39 and third Rothwell and District Harriers’ Paul Marchant (first M40) in 76-15.

The first lady home was Jenny Latham (Wakefield Harriers) who finished 22nd overall in 84-11.

Fiona Davies (Rotherham Harriers ) clocked 86-25 and was first F40.

She was followed by Faye Banks (Pontefract AC) who finished in 87-50 and was first in the F35 category.

The fourth lady home was Alison Matthews (Darlington Harriers) in 88-57.

Other veteran winners were M45 Johnathon Walton (Leeds City), M50 Steve Fowler (Barnsley AC), M55 Martin Hall (Spenborough AC) M60 Simon Richardson (Pocklington Runners,) M65 Keith Gordon (Penistone Footpath Runners), F45 Angela Hannon (Pontefract AC) F50 Cheryl Oakshot (City of Hull AC), F55 Carol Keighley (Aircentre Pacers) and F60 Madeleine Stansfield (Dewsbury RR). The first Ackworth resident was Simon Newton in 79-52.

The men’s team winners were Valley Striders, comprising John Hobbs (fourth overall) Andy Mat (sixth) and Ray Panesar (ninth).

The ladies team winners were Ackworth Road Runners trio Rebecca Winter (44th) Liane Warren (119th) and Emma Evas (160th).

Pontefract Athletics Club had two ladies in the first 59 but they did not have a third finisher to qualify as a team.