ANDREW Mascarenhas was fastest round the course when Ackworth Road Runners began the year with their winter handicap race.
It was held on a new seven-mile course, starting at Bell Lane, Ackworth, and taking in Low Ackworth, Hundhill, Carleton and the challenging Castle Syke Hill.
It was formerly called the Joe Thorpe handicap race in memory of a well loved club member who died during a race in 1989.
This year’s race - held on a sunny day in ideal conditions - attracted 49 entrants which was probably a record for the event. All but one finished.
Lead off man was the evergreen octogenarian Ken Bingley, who had an outstanding run to finish eighth on handicap. The scratch man Craig Daniels took a long detour and finished well down the field.
First finisher on handicap was Helen Wainright (four minutes, 32 seconds ahead of her handicap time), followed by Janet Terry (3-51) and Rob Sproston (3-35). Mascarenhas, returning from a lengthy injury lay-off, was fastest around the course in 48-58, followed ten seconds later by Sproston.
The fastest lady was Rebecca Winter (51-45) followed by Gail Wrangles.
One runner, who was observed taking a short cut through a garage forecourt at Carleton, will be brought to book unless he can prove that he was taking on fuel.
Afterwards, the race results were announced at an enjoyable social gathering at the Mason’s Arms, Ackworth.