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British Fell Championship race: Maesgym Muddle, Llanberis

Helen Berry at Maesgym Muddle

Helen finishes a fantasic 3rd lady

The final race in the British Fell Championship four-race series took place on Saturday from Llanberis in North Wales. The Maesgym Muddle race was specifically designed for the Championship and certainly provided a tough route, with 4,000 feet of climb in 10 miles, and it was estimated that half of that climb was covered within the first couple of miles!  Dropping all the way back down from Moel Cynghenion into the valley after this first brutal climb, the route climbed back up to Moel Eilio and finally Cefn-du before a gradual descent to the finish.

With the first race in Northern Ireland in March considered a ‘non-counter’ for many, thanks to most of the field getting lost in the mist, the Maesgym Muddle race was the decider for many of the leading athletes.

This was certainly the case for the Vet 40 ladies, where any one of three athletes, including Holmfirth Harriers Helen Berry, could have lifted the overall title on Saturday.

As with the recent English Championship race a fortnight earlier, Helen ran neck and neck for most of the route with her closest rival in the Vets Championship, Mel Price of Mercia, but once again found the strength in the final mile to take and extend her lead.  Helen finished a fantastic third lady overall in 1:43, her best result in the series, and first Vet 40, clinching the 2014 British Vet 40 Fell Championship and 5th in the Open women’s series.

The men’s race was won by Rob Hope of Pudsey & Bramley in 1:24, which secured him both the Open and Vet 40 and Championship. Victoria Wilkinson of Bingley won the ladies race in 1:37. She and Jackie Lee of Welsh club, Eryri, will share the British Women’s Open Championship title.

 

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