What another fantastic day for our 2024 running of the Battle of the Brampton Valley Way!

Runners chose to run from Market Harborough, along the Brampton Valley Way to Northampton and back, or start at Northampton, running to Market Harborough and back again. All runners completing slightly over marathon distance, with many completing their first ultramarathon at 28 miles.

78 runners eagerly awaited the countdown on the startline, before shooting off along the old railway line aiming to have more runners back before the other side returned.

Although warm for April, it was much cooler than it had been in previous days, and the route is well sheltered along the way.
Two pitch-black tunnels, totalling 716m in length are passed through by all runners twice along the course, so headtorches were a must, despite the sunny skies along the rest of the course!

It was clear from the beginning that Jason French, from Wellingborough & District AC who started at the Northampton end, was going to have a strong run, reaching the halfway mark 14 minutes before anybody else.

Jason did indeed go on to win the event outright, finishing in a very impressive 2:59:23! This was despite getting cornered by a loose dog out on the course!
James Robinson was the second male to finish, and first to finish at the Market Harborough end, more than thirty minutes after Jason but still in a very impressive 3:32:33.
Ben Tysoe, from Lonely Goat Running Club completed the male podium, crossing the Market Harborough finish line shortly after James to finish in 3:34:52.

The ladies had a much closer race, with the three podium finishers crossing the halfway mark with just two minutes between the three of them! It was Wellingborough & District AC’s Helen Murfitt, however, who went on to finish first, crossing the Northampton finish line in a time of 4:08:57, very closely followed by Melissa Emerson, completing her first ultramarathon in a fabulous 4:10:16. Sarah Pryce completed the podium at the Market Harborough finish when she crossed the line in 4:15:39.

Excellent performances all round by those taking part, but it wasn’t until the following day we were able to analyse the finishing positions to declare which team was the fastest overall. Despite both first place finishers starting from the Northampton end, we can confirm that the winners of this year’s ‘Battle’ of the Brampton Valley Way were MARKET HARBOROUGH!
The winning team has been calculated using the average times from the same number of runners from each starting side. Once again, Market Harborough take the title!

I want to make our events the very best they can be, and fit around the existing commitments and preferences of our runners.
Therefore, if the Battle of the Brampton Valley Way is a race you would be interested in future years, it would be really helpful if you could complete our poll and tell us the time of year that would be most preferred, as well as sharing your reasons for this decision.