Fell Running - It's six of the best at Alva for Alistair

First published in Athletics

ALASTAIR Dunn of Helm Hill Fell Runners achieved an incredible sixth successive win in the BOFRA British Hill Championship race at the Alva Games in Scotland.

Over the years 38-year-old Alaistair has beaten many well-respected athletes in this race at the 150-year-old Scottish sports meeting near Stirling and 12 months ago saw off several members of the Ghurka Regiment who also competed.

The Alva race is the highlight of the British Open Fell Running Association (BOFRA) season.

As usual with many of the Bofra series race, Alva is a lot shorter and steeper than many fell races and celebrate the type of historical professional fell races such as the ones seen at the famous Lake District Shows Dunn completed this year's 1.5 mile/1,200feet race in 20 minutes 17 seconds, finishing a minute clear.

Clubmates Paul Tuson and Chris tuson were 17th and 22nd respectively in 28-36 and 29-59.

He said: "I knew I was feeling fit so I went out hard to make it a fast race.

"Sam Watson from Wharfedale came with me and then fell back halfway up the hill, so I was on my own from then on.

"Alva is such a special race to win as the crowd can see the whole climb from the showfield and the atmosphere when you return is amazing."

The Alva success has been the highlight on an injury-ridden season for Dunn, who now tends to train by riding his bike and only runs when actually racing.

His only other victory this year came at the Coniston Gullies Fell Race, but he remains ahead in the hunt for a seven BOFRA series title in a row, though Ted Mason, from Appletreewick in the Dales, is giving him a close battle for the title.

Dunn has decided to donate his prize money this year to theDisaster Emergency Committee East Africa fund, supporting many people caught up in the drought there.

"It is an area of Africa that I have both worked in, and visited as a tourist, so would like to help a little towards it, " he explained.

Result: 1 A Dunn (Helm Hill) 20-17; 2 S Watson (Wharfedale) 21-18; 3 P Faulkner (Carnethy) 22-25.

RISING talent Lauren Munro-Bennett is off to training camp with the England team in August following her international debut when third England counter for the Under-18s in the World Mountain Junior Champiosnhips in Slovenia.

Lauren, the 16-year-old who attends kirkbie Kendal School and has wins at Langdale and Kirkby-in--Furness galas under her belt since, is not off very far ...the camp is at Sedbergh.

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