Halifax Hariers
Halifax Harriers Athletics Club - Est. 1888


Esholt 5k


Report by Harry Johnson

There was an outstanding turn out for the Halifax Harriers with 28 blue and yellow vests crossing the finish line at the race which attracted over 450 runners.

The race was won in a time of 15:40 with Michael Gaughan the first Harrier home in a time of 16:34, finishing in an impressive 7th overall. Paul Berry and Simon Johnson were the next to cross the finish line in times of 18:13 and 18:37. Harry Johnson and Stephen Rainbow then followed with times of 18:43 and 18:52.

It was clear to see that everyone was looking forward to the race on the team photo, but maybe not as much at the end of the grueling course, that was in place for the first time, after being changed in 2016 as well as this year.

The course consisted of a one kilometer loop around the country house followed by an undulating three kilometer section followed by a fast last kilometer back in the country house into the finish.

Full list of Halifax Harriers times


  1. Michael Gaughan - 16:34
  2. Paul Berry - 18:13 (3rd vet 45)
  3. Simon Johnson - 18:37 (2nd vet 50)
  4. Harry Johnson - 18:43 (1st junior)
  5. Stephen Rainbow - 18:52
  6. John Whitlow - 19:16
  7. Bryn Barker - 19:27
  8. Mark Crabtree - 19:34
  9. Michael King - 19:42
  10. Will Carver - 20:34
  11. Peter Matthews - 20:44
  12. James O’Rourke - 20:51
  13. Mark Gaughan - 20:59
  14. Richard Palethorpe - 21:01
  15. Marc Rocheteau - 21:01
  16. Rober Hick - 21:13
  17. Nigel Taylor - 22:28
  18. Wayne Stevens - 22:31
  19. Jonny Lister - 22:17 
  20. Keith Lemon - 23:07 
  21. Nigel Rigg - 23:12
  22. Andrea Ackroyd - 24:37
  23. Deborah Kirkbride - 26:35
  24. Christopher Kirkbride - 27:24
  25. Kirsty Carver - 27:41
  26. David Parington - 29:31
  27. Monica Gallagher - 29:34

All times are chip times, for full times go to:  https://racebest.com/results/john-carr-series-race-2

Yorkshire Track and Field, May 13/14


Report by Brian Burgin

Successful day a the above championships for Halifax Harriers athletes.

Senior Men Harry Mallinson 400m Silver Medal: U/20 Men Tobi Adeniji  Triple Jump Gold Medal:  U/17 Boys Max Burgin 800m Gold Medal: U/20 Ladies Megan Ascough  Hammer Gold Medal: Jessica Hirst Discus Gold Medal, Hammer Silver Medal: U/13 Boys Leo Austin 800m Silver Medal:  U/13 Girls: Emma Mitchell 800m Silver Medal.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      

London Marathon


Report by Sarah Cumber

The Harriers contingent had a glorious day in the Capital for the London Marathon this year.  The weather was bright and mild with a slight breeze.

Jo Winks was first Harrier back in her debut marathon in a fantastic 3.07.36. Watch this space!

Next home was Andy Wiggins in 3.15.35 (a great time especially when carrying an injury) followed by Geoff Cumber in an amazing 3.26.33 which placed him 2nd vet 70 and a new club record in what was his 1,000th race to date.

Rachael Beaumont returned to marathon after 20 years to complete her marathon in a very pleasing 3.35.02 which qualifies her a place for next year.

Our other 3 club members finished quite close: Keith Lemon in a great 4.15.43, Nigel Rigg 4.19.14 (being his 86th marathon) and Sally Shacklock in 4.34.55, which is super especially being her first attempt at the marathon distance.

Mary Keitany was the first lady in 2.17 dead, breaking the women's only marathon after 12 years.

Daniel Wanjiru (Kenya) won the race in 2.05.48.

David Weir won the wheelchair race in 1.31.06 making it his 7th London marathon win.



Report by Raymond

Halifax Harriers runners Sarah and Geoff Cumber both won their age groups at the Salford 10k.  The race attracted 600 runners to this top class event which comprises two laps on flat roads from Salford Sports Village.  Last year the runners were treated to cool sunny conditions, but this year it was damp and drizzle for most of the race.  However, conditions did not stop some fine performances from not only Halifax Harriers but also runners from other clubs.  The standard at the front end of the race was very high with 14 men under 32 minutes and 16 ladies under 40 minutes.  Marc Brown from the host club won in 30:49, with Emma Clayton of Leeds City first lady in 33:56.

First back for Halifax Harriers was Sarah Cumber 37:42 (1st F45) followed by father and son duo Simon Johnson 38:00 and fifteen year old Harry Johnson 40:15 in his first 10k race.  April Caufield continued her rapid improvement with a PB of 42:00.  Geoff Cumber won the M70 age group comfortably in 42:27.  Nigel Taylor ran 46:21, John Moore 50:36 and Susan Hall 59:10 (3rd F65).




55 junior athletes from Halifax Harriers attended the Awards Presentation at the Electric Bowl, Halifax.  Club President, Brian Burgin, presented the awards to athletes who had triumphed at cross country and in track and field events over the last 12 months.

The cross country winners were Elise Horner, James Duffy, Sidonie Malcher-Akesson, Sophie Hall, Jude Baldero, Lucie Hall, Max Burgin and Lucy Mills and Watson Peel.

Special awards for the outstanding junior female and male athletes went to Isabel Castelow and Max Burgin.

Isabel Castelow also won the Lister Horsfall Challenge Cup and Max Burgin the Middle Distance Trophy.

The Dave Smith Sports track and field female trophy was jointly won by

Jessica Hirst and Megan Ascough.

The Dave Smith Sports track and field male trophy was won by Harry Mallinson.

Sean Pugh Trophy was awarded to Luke Webb.

Manchester Marathon, 2nd April


Report by Paul

After a ‘mixed’ weather week leading up to the big day, the forecast for Sunday proved ideal for racing – cool with sunny periods, light winds…what could possibly go wrong?

Well, for those travelling with the author – fellow runner Dave Nutton, support crew Jenny Hopkinson and Margaret Deacon – it all started to go wrong in the 2km/1 hour queue to park in the official car park.  Car boots started to open, people were seen wriggling into running gear in passenger seats and then trotting off to the start leaving their drivers to sort out the parking.  Not a good start to such a big race.  Dave and Paul joined the walk and just reached the start basically in time to set off running!

The first few miles had to be focused more than normal on getting into a steady pace, letting go of the frustration and anger at such poor parking arrangements and telling oneself that the long hours of training mustn’t be thrown away.

A small, but very welcome, contingent of Harriers (Sarah, Steve, Deb and April) had travelled across the Pennines just to support.  Supporters have a HUGE positive effect, especially in a long race such as a marathon.  Everything tends to be hurting, your mind is telling you to walk, and the thought of Harriers supporters a mile or so ahead does just spur you on.

The sun shone on us all at the finish, which was a good way to end and can be seen in the ‘smug post-race’ photo of Dave and Paul!

Halifax Harriers results were: Paul Hopkinson 3:32:49 (his best marathon time since 2013); David Nutton 3:41:09 (his first marathon since the age of 21!); Janine Thompson 4:02:22 and Lucie Fenton 4:19:35 (another two great first marathons) and John Moore (racing in the UK!!) 4:49:51.

Double Success at Malham


Report by Steve

On Saturday, two Harriers, Sarah Kidd and Steve Sladdin, competed in the second event in the Maverick X Series. The event is designed to test your resolve and take you to the upper limits of your abilities. We entered this race in honour of fellow Halifax Harrier, Elizabeth Sanderson, who loves the fells, but unfortunately can’t compete due to a heart condition. The race began at Malham Tarn, a glacial lake 1,237ft above sea level making it the highest lake in England.

The route took in some incredible locations such as Gordale Scar a limestone ravine that contains 2 waterfalls and has overhanging limestone cliffs over 100 meters high, an eye catching amphitheatre called Malham Cove, and of course the tremendous views provided by the Yorkshire Dales on a beautiful, crisp, sunny day. The route was challenging and with it being an early event in the calendar the conditions were pretty testing. The descents from the peaks were incredible, lung busting experiences and the climbs were unforgiving, particularly the first climb up the steps of Malham Cove after a hair raising descent and the final climb up fountains fell (2,192 ft) which was knee deep in snow and lasted a mile or so, before reaching the summit.

The race was an incredible test of stamina. Neither runners expected to win the event, however, Steve was neck and neck with another runner from Sussex. At mile 22, he decided he wanted to go for the win, knowing he is good at descents, he took his chance on the last 5 mile and made a gap of a mile or so, which gave him ample time to secure the win in 4 hrs 31 min 57 seconds. Kidd, who has never run an off-road marathon was anxious from the outset at the prospect of a 27 mile off road race, however she proved that she has the stamina, gut and determination to compete off-road just as well as road and secured first lady back in a time of 5 hrs 40 mins 12 seconds.  



Report by Raymond

On a busy weekend for Halifax Harriers, the Cumbers both broke club records at the Thirsk 10 mile race.  Sarah’s time of 62:35 was a F45 record and Geoff’s time of 68:30 was a M70 record.  They both won their age groups with Sarah finishing as 2nd lady.

At the Trimpell 20 mile race in Lancashire which follows paths and cycle tracks along the side of the River Lund, 5 hardy Halifax Harriers completed the race as part of their training for Spring marathons.  First back for the club was Andrew Wiggins 2:21:04 and Johanna Winks was 1st F40 in 2:24:18.  Rachael Beaumont broke the F45 club record with a time of 2:36:41.  Paul Hopkinson and Margaret Deacon ran the race together finishing in 3:01:09 and 3:01:32 (PB) respectively.

Closer to home was the Bradford Epilepsy 10k which starts in Centenary Square and runs along Canal Road almost to Shipley before returning back to Bradford.  It was a damp day with some wind on the return leg which slowed the runners. 

First back for Halifax Harriers was Watson Peel 38:13, followed by David Ingle 39:40 and William Stewart 41:13.  First lady back for the club was April Caufield 42:17 (PB), an excellent run in those conditions.

Other Halifax Harriers runners: Michael King 42:09, David Johnson 42:38, Nigel Taylor 48:31, Nigel Corns 51:07, David Parrington 60:12 (PB), Susan Hall 61:18.




Report by Raymond

Halifax Harriers started their Race Challenge League for 2017 with a trip to the west coast for the Sweatshop 10 mile race.  This is a two lap race run along the promenade from Bispham.  Though it is classed as flat there still is a few short inclines along the upper paths to tire weary legs at the end of the race.

First back for the club was Bryn Barker making a welcome return to the racing scene after a lapse of almost eight years.  His time of 66:11 secured him 2nd place in the M55 age group.

April Caufield continued her spell of excellent performances with a time of 68:52 (PB) as she finished as 5th lady.

Hazel Berrett, who has just rejoined the club after last running for Halifax Harriers almost 40 years ago as a junior, was in splendid form finishing as 2nd F55 in 74:19.

The ladies team of April Caufield, Hanni Fisher and Margaret Deacon won the ladies team prize.

Other runners for the club were:  Robert Hick 71:55 (PB), Will Carver 73:33, Kevin Lusk 73:40 (PB), Mark Crabtree 75:24, Hanni Fisher 75:26 (PB), Jonny Lister 77:42 (PB), Nigel Rigg 79:02, Nigel Taylor 80:45 (PB), Margaret Deacon 83:05 (PB), John Moore 88:32, Deborah Kirkbride 92:42, Kirsty Carver 96:49 (PB), David Parrington 99:08 (PB), Susan Hall 99:53 (1st F65), Chris Kirkbride 1:46:20.



Halifax Harriers Annual Dinner and Senior Presentation Evening at the Imperial Crown Hotel, Halifax was a sell out this year with members eager to celebrate the achievements of all their friends.

Mark Gaughan, Halifax Harriers Club Chairman, presented the awards to all prize winners.  It was his honour to select recipients for two of the awards.  The Pearson Endeavour Trophy was presented to John Moore, he travels all over the country and abroad competing for the club and always shows enthusiasm in all the races he competes in.  The Chairman’s Trophy was presented to Victoria Midgley for all her work over the years helping out at races and organising social events.

This year there was a special award presented to Cathy Dawson in recognition of her achievement in becoming the 2016 ITU World F45 Duathlon Champion in Spain.

Each year, the club has both Fell and Road Race League Challenges.  The ladies fell league champion was Elizabeth Sanderson and the mens champion was Joe Crossfield.  The Road Race Challenge is split into 5 divisions, with prizes for the first 3 in each division.  Division A winner - Mark Crabtree, Division B winner – Johanna Winks,  Division C winner – Kezia Rooke, Division D winner – Margaret Deacon, Division E joint winners – Kirsty Carver and Susan Hall.

Other trophy winners:-

  • Most improved 10k winner – Jane Hobson 
  • Under 20 men cross country – James Habergham
  • Senior men cross country – Michael Gaughan
  • Female Veteran cross country – Katrina Oddy
  • Male Veteran cross country – Ryan Barker
  • Burnsall Cup – ladies – Sarah Cumber
  • Burnsall Cup – men – John Whitlow
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