MORE than 300 runners took part in the annual Hot Toddy Road Race in Todmorden with Damian Nicholls (Wilmslow RC) taking the honours.

A host of local athletes took on the 8.9km course on Sunday, with Steve Clawson the leading local finisher crossing the line in ninth place with a time off 33 minutes 3 seconds.

That was enough to edge ahead of Darwen Dasher Jonathan Brown who crossed the line 14 seconds later in 11th place overall.

Clayton’s Laura Hesketh finished fifth in the ladies race with her time of 39mins 44secs seeing her 80th overall and five minutes shy of winner Sarah Louise Cumber (Halifax RC).

Ivan Gee headed the host club’s charge with the Todmorden runner clocking 34mins 37secs to finish in 19th, just ahead of team mate Trevor Davis who finished 22nd in 34mins 42secs.

Another Todmorden runner Paul Hobbs finished 31st in a time of 35mins 36secs narrowly ahead of Clayton le Moors’ John Roche in 35mins 53secs.

Richard Butterwick ran well for 39th in a time of 36mins 24secs while Clayton’s Kevin Davies finished inside the top 50 with his effort 9of 36mins 57secs good enough for 44th place overall.

Rossendale’s Stepehen Corbishley finished 53rd in 37mins 44secs with Todmorden’s Dan Taylor six seconds further back in 56th.

Nicholls’ time of 29mins 50secs saw him finish well clear of Mike Flatley (Middleton Harriers) who was second in 31mins 19secs narrowly pipping Salford Harrier Mark Russell by four seconds.

The race followed a circular route from the town centre, climbed past the Shepherd’s Rest Inn and finished with a fast descent to the finish line.

There was also a one mile fun run that saw 50 runners compete.