James Briggs crowned as Eddie Knapp Challenge champion

James Briggs was crowned the champion as Bridlington Road Runners held the second Eddie Knapp Challenge last week.

Thursday, 16th September 2021, 7:10 am
James Briggs won the Eddie Knapp Challenge Photo by TCF Photography

Devised in memory of the much-respected local runner and coach, it is a series of four races on four consecutive evenings at locations around Bridlington.

The challenge was first held in 2019, when Phill Taylor was the inaugural winner, and after being cancelled last year because of COVID-19, it returned for 2021 with a testing schedule for the 24 club members who signed up.

First up was a 5km hill race on varied terrain around Carnaby, followed by an energy-sapping 5km beach race, then a one-mile sprint on the north promenade and finally a 10km on country lanes around Kilham.

The Bridlington Road Runners line up at the Eddie Knapp Challenge Beach Race

Briggs managed a clean sweep, winning all four races, and finished with a cumulative time of one hour, 21 minutes and 18 seconds. That put him almost three minutes ahead of Nick Jordan, with Martin Hutchinson in bronze medal position.

Competition was fierce in the women’s event, with the first four runners separated by less than three minutes, and Thursday’s sprint seeing a nail-biting finish when they were just three seconds apart.

Mim Ireland was the women’s champion, edging out Charlotte Dyer, Kerry Whitehead and Clare Gummerson, after four nights of thrilling competition.

Members gathered at Kilham Village Hall after the final race, which was held in torrential rain, to meet up with the club’s juniors, who held their own version of the Eddie Knapp Challenge for the first time.

The youngsters ran four races over four weeks, a hill race at Carnaby, a beach race, promenade sprint and a downhill mile at Kilham, where parts of the road resembled a river after the downpour.

Ben Edwards took the title, completing the four races in a combined time of 32 minutes and 55 seconds, which included a time of 5:20 for the downhill mile.

Isaac McNulty was the runner-up, with Micah Gibson the third boy and sixth overall.

Girls filled third, fourth and fifth spots, with Rebecca Addison taking the girls’ title, just ahead of Annabelle Miller and Becky Miller.

Results: Eddie Knapp Challenge: 1 James Briggs 1:21:18, 2 Nick Jordan 1:24:13, 3 Martin Hutchinson 1:30:06, 4 Tom Woodhouse 1:31:26, 5 Josh Taylor 1:33:53, 6 Adam Dyas 1:36:26, 7 Allan McFarlane 1:38:24, 8 Graham Lonsdale 1:39:18, 9 Mim Ireland 1:42:00, 10 Charlotte Dyer 1:43:29, 11 Kerry Whitehead 1:44:07, 12 Clare Gummerson 1:44:51, 13 Ellis Hodges 1:53:37, 14 Dom Webster 1:56:50, 15 Bob Eyre 1:59:31, 16 Heidi Baker 2:06:06, 17 Paul Brown 2:08:15, 18 Nicola Fowler 2:14:30, 19 Caroline McFarlane 2:15:36, 20 Becky Lawry 2:17:25, 21 Janet Downes 2:29:23, 22 Lucinda Gibson 2:34:47, 23 Linda Hall 2:43:48, 24 Tina Calthorpe 2:59:53.

Eddie Knapp Junior Challenge: 1 Ben Edwards 32:55, 2 Isaac McNulty 34:23, 3 Rebecca Addison 35:13, 4 Annabelle Miller 36:05, 5 Becky Miller 36:25, 6 Micah Gibson 36:35, 7 Erin Gummerson 38:52, 8 Josh Miller 39:15, 9 Tyler Choat 41:00, 10 Louie Dixon 41:55, 11 Teddy Imeson 42:40, 12 Daniel Imeson 42:44, 13 Hannah Imeson 44:08, 14 William McNulty 45:51, 15 Alexander Fynn 46:43, 16 Alexis Zulueta 52:15, 17 Hope Adams 57:06, 18 Lily Choat 1:04:35.