THE 26th Angus Tait Memorial Hexhamshire Hobble was characterised by cold, clear conditions coupled with the usual stunning scenery.

Conditions were frosty, but a lack of wind and clear blue skies coupled with the glorious backdrop of the Allen Valleys made the hobble one to remember.

The event was once again organised by the Allendale and Catton-based Allen Valley Striders running club, with 162 competitors representing clubs from the North-East and beyond. The challenging route takes in steep climbs and testing under foot conditions. Among the racers was John Humble, one of a handful of competitors who took part in the first hobble race, who kindly agreed to present the prizes.

Before the race, a minute’s silence was held in memory of Stewart Beaty, a co-founder of the race, who died earlier this year.

First home was Chris Larkin of Newcastle University, with a time of 65m 48s. He was followed by Kris Axon of Claremont, who finished in 68m 16s. The district was represented on the podium by Allendale’s Cees van der Land, representing Tyne Bridge, who finished third.

Leading the ladies home and in 32nd overall was Rebecca Bryen, with a time of 82m 22s. Second was Elaine Bisson of Elvet Harriers with local Tynedale Harrier Karen Robertson very close behind in third.

In total, nine runners from Allendale entered this year. Allen Valley Striders provided all the marshals and helpers.

Age category results: Cees van der Land MV40 Tyne Bridge 69:53; Gary Robson MV50 North Shields Poly 74:27; Thomas Mason MV60 (unattached) 87:10; Elaine Bisson FV40 Elvet Harriers 83:04; Karen Robertson FV50 Tynedale Harriers 84:01; Gail Tombs FV60+ Calder Valley 108:38.