IAN Fisher finished a magnificent 32nd place in Sunday's London Marathon recording an extremely impressive time of 2hr 20min 25sec. This was over six minutes faster than his previous best time for the distance set at last December's Majorca Marathon.

From just behind the elite runners and visible to television viewers at the start, Ian ran a sensible race for the first 20 miles at which time he attacked to cut through the sharp end of the field to take some noticeable scalps in the latter stages. Ian sporting the prominent Otley vest was well supported on the famous course.

Other club members participating in the 30,000 plus field included Duncan Burgess, Nick Hodgkinson, Graham Stead, Neil O'Brien and Zoe Pears although at the time of going to press their times and positions are unknown.

At the Sheffield Marathon, also held on Sunday from the Don Valley Stadium, Otley's Steve Mann completed his first ever marathon in 117th place over an extremely challenging and undulating two-lap course in 3hr 32min 04sec. The race was won by Salford's Darren Hale in 2hr 35min and the Yorkshire title went to Paul Young from Hallamshire in 2hr 37min.

In the concurrent Sheffield Half Marathon, Julian Mawson finished the one-lap course in 11th place out of over 1,000 finishers recording a time of 1hr 15min 15sec. The race was won by Mohammed Fatihi in 1hr 07min.

The previous weekend saw Otley's Andrew Sumner finish sixth with a time of 4hr 52min in the scenic Otley Nine Leagues Walk encompassing a 27-mile route through the Wharfedale and Washburn valleys.

Otley AC welcomes all local people interested in running to join them on training evenings each Tuesday and Thursday evening from Otley RUFC, Cross Green, commencing at 7.15pm.

Entry forms are also available for the Otley Ford Motors 10-Mile Road Race to be held on Wednesday, May 24, and it is hoped that many local people will be encouraged from watching the London Marathon to participate in this enjoyable and popular event.

Skyrac fell


IT makes no sense to run 26.2 miles on unyielding tarmac but such is the fascination of the marathon that every athlete has at some time thought about what it takes to run one.

Every runner also knows that if you must torture your body in this way then you may as well do it on the streets of London under the eyes of the TV cameras and supported by thousands of wellwishers.

The latest Skyrac runners to exorcise their marathon demons last weekend in the London Marathon were Graham Grinstead, Derek Emsley and Alan Bye, who was running London for the umpteenth time, and this week during training

night their clubmates empathised with their London experiences.

The fellrunners meanwhile reflected that they face their own marathon on April 30 when they tackle the 23 mile round of Pen-Y-Ghent, Whernside and Ingleborough.

The Three Peaks Race looms so large in late April that the number of fell races falls away and those Skyrac runners who have to race every weekend must seek out their events.

Graham Breeze has travelled to the North Yorkshire Moors to have a good run in the Gisborough Moors race and Neil Clayton has continued to race at least 20 miles every weekend in LDWA events such as the 25 mile Blubberhouses Moor and the Nine Leagues (as in 27 miles!) race in which he finished third overall.

Last weekend Skyrac members were heavily involved in mounting the latest Fell Runners Association Navigation Course at Kettlewell which Skyrac organise on behalf of the FRA.

Despite its nature the sport of fellrunning has few fatalities and Steve and Margaret Batley, Andy Brear, Dave Hill and Howard Sawyer run each course with an enthusiasm and commitment based on knowing that they are helping to make fellrunning a safer sport.

After the handicaps for the first two races have been calculated the Skyrac Fellrunning Championship is still favouring the sprinters and the league is currently headed by Graham Grinstead, followed by Ralph Warman with Steve Batley in third place.

On handicap Steve won the Ilkley Moor race but was only seventh at The Wrekin race; illustrating that every fell race is different and demonstrating just why it is such an intoxicating sport.

Skyrac train from Nunroyd Park in Yeadon and someone in a Skyrac vest races every week of the year. If you would like to join a friendly, enthusiastic club and are good at pub quizzes then call Neil on 0113-229-0924.

Youngsters shine for


Skyrac athletes were involved at four venues this weekend and there were some outstanding performances.

Wakefield Harriers hosted their annual Spring Open Meeting at Thornes' Park Stadium on Sunday and Under-13 Girl Bethany

Staniland was in top form winning two golds and a bronze medal.

She took the 800m in 2mins.37.2s and won the long jump with the fine leap of 4.16m, beating last year's Yorkshire champion in the process. She then went on to gain third place in the final of the 200m in the personal best time of 30.1s.

In the Under-11 Girls' long jump Hannah Thomson was sixth with 3.01m whilst Lauren Walmsley picked up a bronze in the senior ladies 200m.

Andrew Staniland brought home three silver medals in the Under- 15 boys' events and achieved two personal bests.

These came in the long jump with 5.11m and the high jump after clearing 1.50m. He was also second in the shot putt (4kg), twice putting 7.70m.

Also on Sunday Amy Howard competed at the City Of Hull Open Meeting at Costello Park Stadium and achieved second place in the Under-15 girls' shot (3.25 kg) with 8.86m.

She was also 4th in the final of the 200m (28.9 s) and fourth in the 75m hurdles (16.2s). Both these latter two performances were personal bests .

Meanwhile at the Dorothy Hyman Stadium, Barnsley, Elizabeth Spencer was in outstanding form. Representing the Eastern Region at the Northern Inter-Regional match.

She won the Under 18 girls' 3000m in the personal best time of 10mins 48.

Her brother, Robert, had also set a personal best in the senior men's 'A'

race of the 3000m at the Open Graded Meeting at the Don Valley Stadium, Sheffield.

Running in atrocious conditions on Saturday, he came home in 7th place in the excellent time, for a 16 year old, of 9mins 12s.

He was also fifth in the 'B' race of the senior men's 800m in 2mins 07s.

In the 'A' race of the 800m, club captain, Chris Bryan, was second in 1min 57s and Jonathan Keith was third in 1min 58s. Stephen O'Neil also ran well in 2min 03s for the 800m and 9mins 33.4s in the 3000m.

Thomas Poulton-White continued his fine start to the season with fourth place in the 'A' 100m in the senior men's category in 11.8s, whilst Jason Hunt won the 'C' race with 12.1s.

Jason also went on to run 27.3s in the 200m.

These latter two athletes are both internationals in the class for those with learning difficulties

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