IT WAS Ladies Day when Holmfirth Harriers powered to victory in the Calderdale Way relay.

The six-leg event organised by Halifax Harriers covers 50 miles of fell and road and Holmfirth’s Ladies were able to repeat their victory of 2011.

Lisa Lacon, back after nine months out through injury, got them off to a great start with Maggie Sykes and handed over in first, 44th overall from 80 teams, with a lead of four minutes on Abbey Runners.

Nicky Brown and Debbie Hall stretched the lead on the second leg by another four minutes and held onto 44th place overall.

Lesley Ewart has raced the third leg many times and, with her partner Karen Sinkinson, picked up five places on the overall standings, handing over in 39th and, more importantly, 13 minutes ahead of the next Ladies team.

Helen Berry and Katie Walshaw have both been selected to run for Yorkshire at the Inter-Counties fell race and used the event as an opportunity to test their speed – and they did it with great effect!

They ran a fantastic time of 1hr 15min 40sec, giving them the 13th fastest run overall on Leg 4, pulling them up to 32nd overall and leaving the team over 25 minutes clear of the next ladies team, Clayton-le-Moors.

Although Berry and Walshaw missed the cut-off for the mass start of Leg 5 by just two minutes, new recruits Helen Standing and Fran Whitworth knew they would be in the lead and twisted and turned on the footpaths and trails with no small measure of success, maintaining the lead over Clayton and dropping only one place overall to 33rd.

The final leg was also a mass start for Kath Farquhar and Jacqui Khoueiry, who led from the off. They improved on their 2011 time by over a minute, finishing 23rd fastest in 1-21.03, holding onto 33rd place overall and, crucially, extending the lead over Clayton to over 35 minutes.

The total time was 7-34.40, ahead of Clayton Ladies in 8-11.09 and Abbey Runners in 8-28.25.

The Men’s A Team were also without a couple of the usual suspects, but still ran extremely well and improved on sixth last year by finishing fifth overall in 6-39.07, a great effort when eight of the 12 runners were Vets.

John Ewart and Andy Hauser who ran the fifth fastest time on the second leg. The All Stars also had a good day, significantly improving to 25th overall in 7-28.08 (20 minutes quicker than last year). Wharfedale Harriers scored their first win in the event (6-18.49).

Holmfirth results:

Men’s A Team – Leg 1 (10.60 miles): Bill Stewart & Gavin Baxter 1-24.11, 13th; Leg 2 (8.46 miles): John Ewart & Andy Hauser 1-05.09, 6th overall (5th on leg); Leg 3 (4.80 miles): Geoff Hall & Wayne Byram 42.19, 6th overall (9th on leg); Leg 4 (9.36 miles): Tom Brunt & Matthew Pierson 1-10.21, 6th overall (7th on leg); Leg 5 (7.55 miles): Julian Rank & Andy Shaw 1.02.27, 6th overall (13th on leg); Leg 6 (9.23 miles): Jim Durrans & Rob Savin, 1-14.50, 5th overall (10th on leg).

Ladies Team – Leg 1 Maggie Sykes & Lisa Lacon 1-37.36, 44th; Leg 2 Debbie Hall & Nicky Brown 1-19.16, 44th overall (40th on leg); Leg 3 Lesley Ewart & Karen Sinkinson 49.18, 39th overall (39th on leg); Leg 4 Helen Berry & Katie Walshaw 1.15.40, 32nd overall (13th on leg); Leg 5 Helen Standing & Fran Whitworth 1-11.37, 33rd overall (41st on leg); Leg 6 Kath Farquhar & Jacqui Khoueiry 1.21.03, 33rd overall (23rd on leg).

All Stars Team – Leg 1 Maz Khoueiry & Kevin Yewlett 1-36.18, 41st; Leg 2 John Robinson & Dave Knight 1-18.08, 39th overall (37th on leg); Leg 3 John Adair & Andy Keast 45.52, 35th overall (20th on leg); Leg 4 Phil Hobbs & Nigel Moran, 1-19.42, 31st overall (27th on leg); Leg 5 Chris Beadle & Ian Goulding 1-05.56, 29th overall (24th on leg); Leg 6 Jonny McLean & Graham Howatson 1.22.12, 25th overall (27th on leg).