The morning of Sunday 15th January dawned bright clear and cold, very cold, however this was not enough to stop 169 fell runners lining up on the start line in Marsden for the inaugural running of The Trigger.
This new event in the fell running calendar was the brainchild of Nicky Spinks together with husband Steve Burgess and Andy & Amanda Heading at who sponsored the race. Wanting to provide a challenging mid winter race on the classic Marsden to Edale route, they devised a route that took in the Dark Peaks three highest and most remote hills, Black Hill, Bleaklow and Kinder Scout. The organising team very generously decided that the race would be run to raise much needed funds for Woodhead Mountain Rescue Team, with all race proceeds to go to the team.

Ian Winterburn - Trigger Race 2012 FellThe race derived its name from the three main hill top checkpoints, Black Hill, Higher Shelf Stones and Kinder West Trig points, two roadside checkpoints were also included, Crowden and Snake Summit. A huge amount of hard work on the part of the organisers together with the very generous co-operation of land owners allowed for a free reign of route choices between the main checkpoints, setting the scene for a classic race with lots of choice for the competitors.

The day was a stunning day to be out in the hills, the usual knee deep bogs of Bleaklow and Kinder were frozen hard allowing for some very fast running. Woodhead Mountain Rescue team were out in force providing race safety cover and tracking the progress of all competitors as they made their way from Marsden to Edale.

The race was won in a very fast time of 3hrs 13mins by Oli Johnson, while in 25th place and first lady Heather Catherine Marshall came home in 4hrs. Both received the new trophies made for the event comprising an Ordinance Survey Trig Point Flush Bracket, obtained through the generosity of the Ordnance Survey, mounted on a hardwood plinth funded by Andy Plummer – organiser of the Trunce race series. Further prizes were supplied by the race sponsor Racekit, Bradfield Brewery and The Huntsman Pub in Thurlstone. After the race all competitors tucked into a hearty meal supplied and cooked by Pete Sparks, owner of Bank View Café at Langsett and also a Woodhead Team member, Pete had a long day having first prepared all the food then being deployed onto the hill to marshal the race!

Due to the generosity of local businesses and community groups who donated everything from prizes to the use of the start hall at Marsden, finish campsite and Edale Village hall the race has raised £2502 for the mountain rescue team, providing much needed funds to enable the team to continue it’s life saving work on and around the moors of the region.

Team Leader Keith Wakeley says “On behalf of the team I would like to thank the race organisers and all sponsors in the local community for the time and effort they have put in to getting this race off the ground and making it such a success both as a classic fell race and a fund raising event for the team. I am humbled by the generosity of both funds and time that people are willing to commit to raising money for the team, without their assistance it would be far more difficult for us as a team to operate.

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