EAST Lancashire’s finest trailed in the wake of City of Stoke AC ace Marc Hartley in the back-to-back Burnley and Pendle Grand Prix races.

Hartley raced to first place in both Thursday’s Todmorden 5k Road Race and Sunday’s Trawden 7 Trail Race to move ahead of his rival, Barlick Fell Runners’ Jimmy Craig, at the top of the men’s standings.

Craig, having won three out of the previous four races, had to settle for third place in Todmorden on Thursday in a time of 16 minutes 10 seconds.

Hartley passed the post first in 15mins 38secs with Salford Harriers’ Simon Bruton second in 15mins 44secs.

Also making the top 20 were Clayton-le-Harriers’ Christopher Holdsworth (fifth in 16mins 23secs), Lee Smith (13th in 17mins 49secs), Jonathan Pye (17th in 18mins 7secs), Kevin Davies (18th and fastest M50 in 18mins 11secs) and Richard Stevenson (20th in 18mins 19secs), Barlick Fell Runners’ Nick Treitl (seventh in 16mins 54secs) and Andy Berry (19th in 18mins 14secs), Todmorden Harriers’ Robin Tuddenham (10th in 17mins 23secs), Burnley AC’s Daniel Balshaw (12th in 17mins 47secs), Trawden AC’s Chris Quigley (14th in 17mins 56secs), and Accrington Road Runners’ Graham Morris (16th in 18mins 5secs).

The in-form Sarah Tipler, of Barlick Fell Runners, was the fastest female and 29th overall in 18mins 55secs. The other age group prizes went to Belgrave Harriers’ Paul Freary (fastest M45 and fourth in 16mins 21secs), Skipton AC’s Michael Keedy (fastest M40 and ninth in 17mins 9secs), Rossendale Harriers’ Thornton Taylor (fastest M55 and 21st in 18mins 19secs), Bingley Harriers’ Sue Beccorsell (fastest F55 and 35th in 19mins 21secs), Clayton-le-Moors Harriers’ Stephen Biscomb (fastest M60 and 49th in 20mins 7secs), David Scott (fastest M70 and 93rd in 22mins 40secs) and Marion Wilkinson (fastest F70 and 147th in 27mins 53secs), Stainland Lions’ Rachel Cullen (fastest F35 and 57th in 20mins 24secs), Accrington Road Runners’ Deborah Gowans (fastest F45 and 61st in 20mins 49secs) and Peter Blackledge (fastest M65 and 128th in 25mins 27secs), Trawden AC’s Nicola Nuttall (fastest F40 and 71st in 21mins 12secs) and Elizabeth Allison (fastest F50 and 143rd in 27mins 26secs), Northern Vets’ Jennifer Adam (fastest F60 and 138th in 26mins 33secs), and Todmorden Harriers’ Jackie Hesketh (fastest F65 and 151st in 28mins 7secs).

Barlick Fell Runners stars Craig (second in 39mins 9secs) and Treitl (third in 40mins 30secs) then pushed Hartley (first in 38mins 40secs) all the way in Sunday’s Trawden 7 Trail Race.

Blackburn Harriers’ Andy Buttery finished sixth in 41mins 45secs and he was followed by his clubmate Gary Pearse (11th in 43mins 56secs) as well as Clayton-le-Moors Harriers’ Thomas Brewster (10th in 43mins 31secs), fastest M50 Davies (12th in 44mins 14secs) and Paul Hesketh (18th in 44mins 43secs), Trawden AC’s Nicholas Cook (13th in 44mins 16secs), Quigley (16th in 44mins 27secs) and Paul Redman (19th in 44mins 45secs), Rossendale Harriers’ Sean Molloy (14th in 44mins 21secs) and fastest M55 Taylor (20th in 44mins 57secs), and Barlick Fell Runners’ Berry (15th in 44mins 24secs) and Andrew Driver (17th in 44mins 38secs).

Tipler once again was first female home in 31st overall in 47mins 5secs.

The other age group prizes went to Skipton AC’s Keedy (fastest M40 and fifth in 41mins 27secs) and Jayne Butterworth (fastest F50 and 90th in 54mins 45secs), Western Australia’s Stephen Stockwell (fastest M45 and seventh in 41mins 56secs), Rossendale Harriers’ Ken Taylor (fastest M65 and 38th in 48mins 14secs), Clayton-le-Moors Harriers’ Biscomb (fastest M60 and 55th in 50mins 7secs) and Scott (fastest M70 and 88th in 54mins 28secs), Barlick Fell Runners’ Lorraine Slater (fastest F40 and 67th in 51mins 54secs) and Jean Rawlinson (fastest F60 and 104th in 57mins 11secs), Trawden AC’s Michelle Brooks (fastest F35 and 84th in 53mins 39secs) and Jean Baiston (fastest F65 and 138th in 65mins 55secs), Burnden Road Runners’ Lesley Fisher (fastest F55 and 100th in 56mins 21secs), and Keighley & Craven AC’s Catherine Mercer (fastest F45 and 114th in 60mins 4secs).

The next race in the series is the Towneley Park 10k Road Race and will take place on July 27 in Burnley.