Say hi to Colin! (by Andy Holden in 2020)

This is Keswick AC’s Colin Valentine – as lovely a fella as you’d ever wish to meet. To those who know Colin, he’s fell running legend who stays under the radar in his present form as a runner who purely enjoys fell racing and orienteering, and the social side that goes with it, but who used to be a prolific winner of events, from short “dash” style races to the longer slogs, Old County Tops for example, even winning a road race in his time!

I asked Colin if he could provide me a list of his career wins, and this is it…

Borrowdale School Sports 1971, U12’s fell race
Latrigg junior fell race – Keswick Jubilee 1977
Cockermouth Cross Country 1978 – junior men – ran barefoot!
Crag Fell Race – juniors (in conjunction with Ennerdale Horseshoe) – won twice

Criffel Hill Race – first senior win!
Carnethy 5 – deep snow throughout!
Pentland Skyline (16 miles)
Greenmantle Dash (2.5 miles)
Arrochar Alps (13 miles)
High Pike (Caldbeck) – orienteering race
Clougha Pike – 36.30 new record
Coniston Horseshoe (9 miles)
Duddon Valley (18 miles) – low cloud throughout
Scafell Pike – new record due to first running of the event 55.40
New Street Road Race, Penrith – very hilly 4 miles

Kendal Winter League races (KWL Champion sometime between ’96 and ’99)…
Church House, Torver
Preston Patrick, Crooklands
Carling Gill, Tebay
Burney, Lowick
Austwick, Settle

Haworth Hobble – 33 miles (old route)
(1) with Jack Holt
(2) with Sarah Rowell – 1st mixed pair in 4:15
(3) with Pete Irwin – new record 3:51

Old County Tops – 37 miles
(1) with Ruth Pickvance – 1st mixed pair
(2) with Tim Laney
(3) with Dave Nuttall – new record (broken by Rob Jebb & Ricky Lighftoot in 2018)

Blencathra Ridges, Threlkeld (new record 3 & 5 ridges)
Rombalds Moor, Skipton – won twice, including the last ever version
Allendale challenge, County Durham – 28 miles
Tour of Pendle – gales throughout!
Half Tour of Pendle – deep snow throughout

Ian Hodgson Relay
(1) leg 3 – first running of the relay in 1986
(2) Record run in 1989, leg 3, with Nigel Lanaghan – record still stands

Grassmoor Descent (time trial), Loweswater (record)
Buttermere Horseshoe (20 miles) – won twice, including a new record
Blisco Dash
Gunson Knott – part of Langdale Show
Barbondale Round (LDWA event) – 24 miles
Arnison Dash, Patterdale
Billy Bland’s “other” Borrowdale Race (3 Tarns)
Nine Standards – deep snow throughout!
Durisdeer, Moffat

I’m sure that Colin’s list of other placings would be a good read too. One such is his Ben Nevis fastest race time of 1 hour 30 mins! I believe he’s run about 315 different races in his time – maybe not as impressive Darren Fishwick’s list of different races run, but even he will be dazzled by Colin’s performances over the last fifty years!
Like Colin, we’re all missing the races, but we’ll be back on the scene, hopefully before too long. Next time you see Colin at a race give him a friendly shout. He will probably have hit the V60 mark by the time racing starts again.

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