THE 2018 running year was rounded off in style at the Auld Lang Syne fell race on Haworth moor and, in increasingly familiar style, Ribble Valley Harriers topped the podium in both the ladies and men’s races.

In the latter, however, a nasty early tumble by Ilkley Harriers star Jack Wood - who had won the Chevin Chase in Guiseley on Boxing Day - was a possible factor in him only managing to finish second.

Ribble Valley's birthday boy Chris Holdsworth still had Wood literally breathing down his neck for long periods, with the pair on each other's shoulders, but the effects of the Ilkley man's fall took their toll.

It allowed Holdsworth to eventually pull ahead and win the race in 41 minutes and six seconds, with Wood second in 41.55. Third man home was Pudsey and Bramley’s Joe Baxter.

Last year’s ladies race winner, Ribble Valley’s Nicola Jackson, returned to defend her title. She did this in style, finishing 18th overall and taking over two minutes off her 2017 time, to win in 47.28.

Club mate Louisa Powell-Smith was runner up in 49.49, with her time ensuring she broke the LV40 record.

Holmfirth Harriers' Ruby Sykes, who spent her youth racing in the Junior Quarry runs, came home as third lady in 51.29.

Sponsored by Daleside Brewery, old traditions were maintained as many runners completed the course in fancy dress, including one road worker complete with a “Stop” and “Go” lollipop sign.

First run in 1984, the race starts in the bottom of the old Penistone quarry above Haworth in the heart of Bronte Land.

The link with the Brontes is continued as the route follows part of the Bronte Way before veering off and down the valley to cross South Dean Beck, fed from the Bronte Falls.

Racers must negotiate a sharp incline towards Bully Trees farm, where the race turns left and heads out across the moor towards Top Withins.

Here, runners round the ruins and head up to the trig on Delf Hill. The race returns via a similar route back through the beck before returning to West End Cricket Club and the welcome finish line.

The weather, always temperamental in this part of Yorkshire, did not disappoint as a mean wind blew in runners’ faces on the outward journey.

However, the sun made a rare appearance to warm the backs of those same runners on the return leg of the race. Underfoot, the course was described as firm with even regular bogs being dry.

There were 327 hardy runners from across Europe gathered in the quarry bottom to the sound of the lone piper, Callum Falshaw, prior to the signal to go.

City of York’s Tyler Hutchinson was first male Under-21 in 44.51, ahead of Holmfirth’s Ted Chamberlain (45.06) and Nidd Valley’s Alexander Robinson (51.11).

First U21 lady was East Cheshire Harriers’ Lily McGuinness (58.00), from Bingley Harriers' Vicky Merrick (58.24).

The firm conditions clearly suited the more experienced lady runners as veteran records tumbled. In addition to a new LV40 record, Ilkley Harriers’ Pauline Munro smashed the LV50 record, with a time of 51.51.

Meanwhile, Stainland Lions' Judith Greenwood took seven minutes from her own LV70 record, coming home in one hour, 33 minutes and 12 seconds.

Bingley Harriers pulled off a veterans double. Bruce Duncan took the MV70 title in 1.12.06, while the LV60 title went to Becky Weight, who finished in 1.05.34.

North Derbyshire’s Martin Dawson was first MV40 (45 minutes and 33 seconds) finishing 13th overall, while Dark Peak’s Graham Moffat was first MV50 (49.26). Finally, Horwich’s Graham Schofield was first MV60 (54.40).