Category: Photo Gallery

Corsica

Corsica, whilst strictly a French département, is actually a fiercely independent island, closer to Italy than to France, a few miles north of Sardinia. Wild, mountainous, great beaches, potent cheese and improving wines.

It has not been the easiest place to visit in the past, usually entailing Easyjet (Liverpool) or Jet2 (Leeds) to Nice or Marseilles, then Air Corsica to Calvi (northwest), Bastia (northeast), Ajaccio (southwest) or Figari (southeast). However, since last year, Air Corsica have run two (excellent) flights a week each week from Stansted to and from Figari. Right through the summer. So, whilst the drive down the A1 is a bit of a drag (three hours from Leeds/Wetherby), the possibilities of a short break are far greater than previously was the case.

There is a vibrant trail running community in Corsica and, therefore, a lot of good races to choose from during summer (Corsicans are not great winter competitors). I will mention a couple here, in case anyone would fancy building a short break around them.

First, chronologically, is E Nivere. This race starts and ends in the lovely village of Cardo, in the hills outside Bastia. It is usually on or around the first weekend in April, so a great warm-up for the 3Peaks. The weather at this time of the year in Corsica is really changeable: I have run E Nivere in 28 degrees of gorgeous spring sunshine, and in 12 degrees of pouring rain. But it is never really cold, not like the 3Peaks can be.

The main race is about 25K with 1500m of elevation. Essentially, there are two big climbs, stunning views of Bastia and good runnable terrain. As with all Corsican races, the trail is marked, not brilliantly, but enough never to need think about taking a map out. E Nivere, again as with most Corsican races is low key but very well supported by local villages, who usually raise funds for local causes.

The only big Corsican races take place in Corte in July, when they have a festival culminating in the Ultra de Restonica, about 120K.  It is very easy to do E Nivere if you are staying in Bastia which, as the largest town in Corsica — this is not saying a lot as Corsica’s entire population is less than that of Coventry — has plenty going on.

Next is the Trail du Lac d’Ospedale.  This is always at the end of July in Cartalavone, a tiny hamlet near beautiful Ospedale which itself is in the hills outside of Porto Vecchio (served by Figari airport). The Trail du Lac is a much shorter race, it’s only about 12K with 450m elevation. It is very runnable through beautiful larici pine forests around the Ospedale reservoir. It is such a nice race, with a great atmosphere, and always stunning weather. And it’s always short enough not to occupy a huge chunk of your day. Also there are loads of food at the end, and it takes place next to a fabulous restaurant, Le Refuge. Cartalavone is only about 30 minutes drive from PortoVecchio, which is a cracking town near to the best beaches in Corsica (which is saying something).

Finally, there is the Trail di Monte Cardu. This one takes place near to Corte in the middle of the island, where you find the most spectacular scenery. It is a bit like E Nivere but, given that it takes place towards the end of August, it will usually be brutally hot. This is another decent-sized course, similar in length and elevation to E Nivere, but it feels tougher because of the time of year. Being so far inland, away from the resorts, this race route feels the most like real Corsica. Some of Corsica’s best trail runners live in the area such as Lambert Santelli, Thomas Angeli and Guillaume Peretti. who held the record for GR20, beating Kilian Jornet’s time and only losing the record a couple of years ago to Francois d’Haene.

Now that Corsica is a lot more accessible than it used to be, I would certainly recommend combining a holiday with a race. It is almost certainly the case that you will be the only non Corsican/French competitor, apart from the odd 2REP paratrooper, who could be from anywhere in the world, and the Corsican trail community are a pretty friendly bunch, so you would be made welcome.

It’s very easy to enter races via Corse-Chrono. You’ll need your UK Athletics card on race day [ed’s note: always check the race instructions, many French RO’s require a medical certificate] or considerable ability to charm your way into being allowed to compete without it.

Also, if anyone is just interested in nice running trails in the south of the island let me know, as I have twisted my ankles on most of them.

–Ian Sampson

Calderdale Way Relay

Write up by Dom-

NLFR entered a mixed team this year with high hopes of a strong placing in that category. CWR is one of the most competitive relays in the UK and with 102 teams entered we came a very creditable 43rd and fifth mixed team overall.

It was a good day for running with sunshine and little wind. Matt and Phil led us off and had a storming first leg completing their 10.5 mile run in just  65 mins and fourth overall, less than 2 minutes behind the leaders. No pressure then on Leg 2 runners…Well we held on as best we could and with Leanne getting stronger as the leg went on we arrived at the changeover with half an hour to spare before the mass start and only one mixed pair ahead of us.

Hilary and Ann took a break from posing for photos long enough to power through leg 3 and hand over the baton to our long distance specialists Mike and Katie who clawed back a place before re-running the leg back to their car for a sharp 20 miler. Leg 5 saw Richard and Tim  finish strongly as the 27th fastest pair before the baton went to our tarmac specialists Kate and Sharon for the largely urban final leg, leading us in ten places better than last year.

I went with Leanne and Dave McGuire of Wharfedale back to the Rugby Club race HQ and enjoyed a perfect pint of Wainrights and pie and peas before watching the Wharfedale men cruise in for a deserved victory, with Barlick FR second and Calder third. As ever a great day out with good company, fantastic atmosphere and well organised by Halifax Harriers.

Final results can be found at this link.

Some photos below nabbed from FB with the synchronised runners courtesy Neil Wallace.

Jack Bloor 2016

Photos from tonight’s Jack Bloor race which was won by Jack Wood with Graeme Pearce second. Good to see Kevin back on the hills after his knee injury and op.

Kettlewell Anniversary Fell Race 2015 – Results

Scroll down for photos.

Pos Name Club Category Time
1 Ted Mason Wharfedale MSEN 37.00
2 Mark McGoldrick Wharfedale MSEN 37.24
3 Nick Charlesworth Wharfedale MV40 37.46
4 Christian Holmes Wharfedale MV40 39.33
5 Phil Livermore North Leeds MSEN 40.20
6 Andy Robertshaw Otley MV40 40.39
7 Dan Wilkinson Ilkley MSEN 42.03
8 Mark Irvine Bowland MSEN 42.06
9 Tom Gomersall Bingley MSEN 42.35
10 Charlie Murgatroyd UA MSEN 42.59
11 Dave McGuire Wharfedale MV40 43.45
12 Jason Helmsley Wharfedale MV40 43.53
13 Andy Preedy Rossendale MV40 44.15
14 Joel Dalby Skipton MSEN 45.04
15 Rob Furness Horsforth MSEN 45.31
16 Tim Harvey Nidd Valley MV40 45.55
17 Paul Calderbank Ilkley MV50 46.14
18 Marcus Preedy Rossendale MSEN 46.27
19 Richard Foster North Leeds MSEN 46.30
20 Dave Copping Keighley MV40 46.34
21 Alan Hirons North Leeds MV40 46.42
22 Charles Casey Tyne Bridge MSEN 47.17
23 Gary Bastow Ripon MV50 47.21
24 David Fountain Harrogate MSEN 47.23
25 Philip Birch Harrogate MV40 47.26
26 David Chandler Ilkley MSEN 47.33
27 Nick Andralosc Harrogate MV50 48.18
28 Nick Rhodes UA MV40 48.46
29 Ben Karlin Farsley Flyers MSEN 48.47
30 Paul Harris North Leeds MV60 49.49
31 Graham Bird Wharfedale MV50 50.07
32 Martin Farrar Wharfedale MV50 50.14
33 Matthew Hird Wharfedale MSEN 50.28
34 John Thompson Wharfedale MV50 50.31
35 Chantal Busby Ilkley LV40 50.34
36 Randolph Haggerty Kirkstall MV40 50.55
37 Stephen Kirk Harrogate MV40 50.57
38 Mark Jordan Harrogate MV60 51.10
39 Nigel Weaver Clayton Le Moors MV50 51.36
40 Tony Shepherd Wharfedale MV50 51.37
41 Martin Roberts Todmorden MV50 51.39
42 Mark David Nidd Valley MV50 52.12
43 Martyn Price Harrogate MV50 52.20
44 Helen Price Harrogate LV40 52.30
45 Andrew Ellwood Skipton MV50 52.36
46 Kevin Walker UA MV50 52.41
47 Theo Jonathan Gibson Wharfedale MV50 53.15
48 Lionel Sands UA MV60 53.46
49 Sam Butterfield Farsley Flyers MSEN 53.48
50 Michael Shaw-Bray Wharfedale MV40 54.33
51 Jonathan Lane Winterburn Harriers MV40 54.33
52 Pablo Gonzalez UA MSEN 54.49
53 Dan Oxtoby Harrogate MV40 54.56
54 Lynn Whittaker Wharfedale LV50 55.59
55 Peter Edwards Harrogate MV50 56.05
56 Chris Buck UA MSEN 56.22
57 Hillary Tucker Abbey Runners LV50 56.29
58 Rob Myers Baildon MV50 56.46
59 Phil Robinson Nidd Valley MV50 57.16
60 Lisa Holmes Wharfedale LSEN 59.39
61 Lucy Mallinson Wharfedale LSEN 59.39
62 Graham Breeze Wharfedale MV70 1.00.18
63 Sue Morley Ilkley LV60 1.00.21
64 Adam Mason UA MSEN 1.01.01
65 Sarah Golden Nidd Valley LV40 1.01.07
66 Paul Sessford Keighley MV40 1.01.11
67 Elizabeth Sandell Harrogate LSEN 1.10.19
68 Sean O’Hallohan Otley MSEN 1.18.44
69 Jill Buckley Kirkstall LSEN 1.26.21
70 Carmen Dojan-Wood Dragons RC LV40 1.26.22