Runners are in peak condition

ThE White Peak marathons are to be held on Saturday, May 19 and will this year have an increased international flavour.

A host of Dales runners will be pitting their wits against the course while contenders will be coming in from Holland, France, Germany, Hong Kong and Denmark, plus four non-UK runners who are based in this country.

Peter Bates of Bury AC, a former winner over the full distance of 26 miles from Thorpe to Cromford Meadows, will be on the start line yet again.

The organising club, Matlock AC, will be represented by John Birch, Andy Lessiter and Joanne Nuttall. Local interest in the team race is also assured by four entrants each from Buxton AC, Clowne Road Runners and Redhill Runners.

Starting at the same time, 11am, but from Friden, the half marathoners will cover the second half of the route down the High Peak Trail, with the stragglers hoping not to be caught by the leaders from Thorpe before they reach the finish at Matlock Rugby Club.

Two clubs, Wooton AC and Barnsley Harriers, always make this their top event of the year and are each turning out 14 runners, but local honour may yet be salvaged in the team race by the six entrants from Totley AC.

For Matlock AC, Dave Ridding is accompanied by the vastly experienced Mick Moorhouse, who, in his first race on this course as a veteran 60, should nevertheless still beat the majority of the field.

There are good vantage points for spectators at all the picnic sites on the two trails.