Brecon Beacons Fell Race        Sat 15th August 2015       Results

The race is well established in the Welsh Fell Running calendar and entails running to seven mandatory checkpoints (including Tor y foel, Corn Ddu, Pen y Fan and Cribyn) from near the dam at Talybont Reservoir. The race is approximately 30.6km long with 1372m ascent and qualifies as a long race. The race was a counter in both the WFRA/Inov8 Open Welsh Championships and the WFRA South Wales Summer Series. The race was run in the anticlockwise direction this year with a long climb to Carn Pica to start.

The Brecon Beacons were blessed with warm dry weather for the majority of the race but there patches of mist and cloud on Pen y Fan during the race and the marshalls had to wrap up warm. The runners found it very hot and were grateful for the water supplied by the organisers at Neuadd Reservoir. The runners were advised to wear suncream and take water from the start during the pre-race briefing.

Hugh Aggleton and Chris Jones (both MDC) took an early lead in the race and distanced themselves by approximately three minutes by the time they got to the first summit of Tor y Foel. Chris Jones found another gear after Tor Y Foel and distanced himself from Hugh by 2 minutes by Cribyn and managed to hold onto the lead to win the race in a respectable 2hr 47m 40s. Hugh finished second overall in a time of 2hr 50m 42s and Mark Palmer (Mynydd Du) finished third overall after passing Sarn Helen’s Dylan Lewis on a better line from Tor y Foel.

Helen Brown (Mynydd Du) comfortably won the ladies race in a time of 3hr 25m 18s which was just over 3 minutes ahead of Macclesfield Harrier’s Kirsty Hewitson. Lauren Jeska completed the ladies podium places with a time of 3hr 34m 15s.

Mark Palmer won the male over 50 veterans category, however the prize was awarded to Jonathan Bamber (GWR) since Mark placed third overall. John Aggleton (MDC) won the male over 60 veterans category with a time of 3hr 32m 40s. The event hadn’t attracted over 70 veterans for several years however 2015 was blessed with the presence of Rob West (MDC) and Yiannis Tridimas (Bowland Fell Runners). Yiannis successfully won the male over 70 veterans prize with a time of 4hr 22m 00s at his first ever attempt in the race!

Helen Brown won the ladies over 40 category but the prize was awarded to Louise Barker who placed just outside the top three. Sue Howarth (Mercia) won the ladies over 50 veterans category with a time of 4hr 23m 46s.

A spot prize was awarded to Daniel L (Wye Valley Runners) for recording the nearest time to 4hrs.

The podium finishers and the winners in each age category were awarded with a bottle of wine each and bespoke mug designed by Gary which included an OS map of the Neuadd Reservoir Horseshoe!

The race attracted a larger field than in previous years with 86 runners starting the race and 80 completing the full course. The race organisers, Gary and Dawn Davies would like to thank each of the ten volunteers. The marshalls included those that had generously given up their time year on year (Martin and Kay Lucas) and those that had volunteered in this race for the first time (Paul Kerno, Marcus Pinker, Lucy Baker, Jane Aggleton, Richard Cronin, Mark Bottomley and Joe Botomley). John Derby also assisted Gary with some back breaking work in clearing some of the lesser used paths. Without them, the race would fail to exist.

The organisers remind potential competitors that map reading skills (using map and compass) are necessary for this race.         Gary Davies