Young orienteer Zac Hudd hit the fell running headlines this week when he took the honours in the annual Blake’s Heaven race from Lamplugh

Organised by Cumberland Fell Runners, the route had to be changed as a result of the forestry work and this year saw an extra loop around Cogra Moss before climbing up the “donkey trod” and the Pens on towards the summit of Blake.

The rest of the race route is very fast, with the choice of routes over or under Burnbanks before the final checkpoint on Owsen Fell before the plunge back down to the finish field.

Most of the route was run in thick mist, which resulted in a few runners losing the best lines but there were no such problems for Hudd who hit the line under Burnbank perfectly and managed to move into the lead.

There was a sprint finish, but Zac held of the much more experienced Josh Hartley of Black Combe to win in a time of 44:39, three seconds ahead of Josh, with Derwent AC member Tom Durcan a couple more seconds behind. This is a superb result for Zac, who is an under 21 runner.

There were over 100 runners taking part, of which there were 23 from Cumberland Fell Runners racing. First home was vet 40 Jim Masters, who finished a creditable eighth overall and first vet 40. Mark Blackwell finished in the top 20, another vet 40 runner.

Perhaps the best performances of the day went to Emily Robinson winning the ladies race in a time of 52:28 in 21st place overall. Second back, just over four minutes behind was Elena Davies, running for the first time in a blue and white vest, a great debut. Junior runner Mia Easthope was fifth lady home.

CFR featured in the prize giving in several of the more senior categories. John Boyle took third spot in vet 45, just ahead of Andy Wigley. Ex English champion Brian Thompson showed his class in the vet 55 finishing second and Andy Beaty had another tremendous run in the competitive over 60 class, finishing in 25th overall, with teammate Peter Crompton just a couple of minutes behind in second. Kate Beaty, another ex English champion won the ladies vet 60 race.

The next race in West Cumberland is the annual handicap race Jarrett’s Jaunt, which takes place on February 16.