Jack Bloor Fell Race

Ilkley moor

Jack Bloor Fell Race

The Jack Bloor race is an annual event held on Ilkley Moor, and the event is held as a tribute to Jack Bloor (1926-84). All profits from the races are used to promote outdoor activities and sporting interest for young people. During the last fifteen years, the Jack Bloor Fund has distributed over 5,500 to over 90 young men and women. This year saw a number of orienteers take high positions in this 5.2mile race, with 1150ft of climb. The route consists of 6 checkpoints over the moor; 1. straight up path, 2. straight down through bracken, 3. straight up through heather, 4. slight up through heather, 5. down through marsh, 6. steep down through rocks, bracken and heather, Finish steep down through sheep tracks. There is no set route, and runners are given the option of having an orienteering map, though many fell runners dont take this option (probably because they wouldnt know what to do with it!)
AIRE juniors Hector Haines and Jack Wood went flying out of the start to set the early pace, but after a couple of minutes GB Squad runner Matt Speake, running as Team Nopesport, took the lead. Leeds Uni runner John Heneghan was the only runner who could keep up with Matt, and the pair of them slowly pulled away from the rest of the field, although it was Matt who pulled away at the front running strongly through the heather to win by nearly 2 minutes. Another of Leeds Uni runners, Jorge Thomas, was determined to catch up with the leading pair, though was punished for being unable to read a map which led to some dodgy route choices through the heather. Another GB Squad runner, Dickie Wren, started relatively slowly, and was gradually catching up the leading group due to some cunning route choices through the heather and bracken, with the AIRE pair of Niall Bourke and Ian Nixon following in his trail. The second steep uphill started to stretch the field a bit, and route choice was very important as vital time could be lost by spending too much time in terrain, or not taking the direct route. The last check point proved to be the downfall of many fell runners, as this involved careful navigation through the terrain and following sheep tracks, and many non-orienteers suffered from their lack of ability to descend through terrain at speed. Wren managed to catch up the leading pair, and looked like he was going to take 2nd spot, until a fall (producing a rather nasty cut on his arm) allowed Thomas to creep through to take 2nd spot. Wren finished just 3 seconds behind, with Heneghan in 4th a further 5 seconds back having made a similar navigational error to last year well have to teach him to map read!
In the womens race, it was Bingley runner Kathy Bailey who took victory by nearly 2 minutes from GB Squad runner Aislinn Austin, though the pair were more than 10 minutes down on their respective places in the mens race. Austin showed that orienteers have an obvious talent for running through terrain by overtaking the eventual 3rd place runner on the final descent to finish just 12 seconds in front of her.

1. Matt Speake Team Nopesport (EBOR) 40.26
3. Dickie Wren Team Nopesport (EPOC+NYT) 42.07
7. Niall Bourke Team Nopesport (AIRE) 43.27
11. John Wootton Wharfedale (AIRE) 44.00 (1st Vet40)
13. Ian Nixon Team Nopesport (AIRE) 44.48
16. Steve Webb Valley Striders (AIRE) 45.26
22. Steve Watkins Baildon Runners (AIRE) 46.45
27. John Houlihan EBOR 47.35
30. Hector Haines AIRE 48.07
35. Jack Wood Skyrac (AIRE) 48.59
50. Ian Marshall Ilkley Harriers (AIRE) 50.52
60. Steve Corrigan EBOR 51.50
65. Aislinn Austin EBOR 52.28 (2nd Lady)
78. A. Hall AIRE 54.11
94. B. Woodley AIRE 56.22
95. Jeremy Wilde AIRE 56.23
97. Tony Thornley Ilkley Harriers (AIRE) 56.33
99. Joyce Marshall Ilkley Harriers (AIRE) 56.36 (7th Lady)
105. Dave Shelley AIRE 57.41
115. Barrie Speake EBOR 59.32 (2nd Vet60)
126. G. Ramsden CLARO 62.17
133. Geoffrey Hensman CLARO 66.11
134. Henk Van Rossum AIRE 66.12
136. Dave Walton AIRE 67.33

Team Result
1. Team Nopesport 11
2. Pudsey & Bramley 20
3. Pudsey Pacers 45

Full Results are here

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