MORE than 70 runners took part in the ninth Darrens Dash event near Longtown.

Competitors included a number of Cani Cross runners, with dogs, as well as a contingent from Ilkeston Running Club who were running the day after taking part in the ‘Man Vs Horse’ event.

First time ‘Dasher’ James Smith of Black Pear Joggers, Worcester, led strongly from the start and flew down the descent slopes to set a new course record of 43.12, while Niki Morgan from Chepstow Harriers made her way confidently through the field to finish in an impressive 53.34 and set another course record. Simon Downs and his dog Figaro were the first finishers in the Cani Cross event in a time of 76.54.

The ‘first local’ trophy was re-instated and won by Archie Gemmell who was awarded the trophy after completing his first ‘Dash’ in 63.50.

Chris Hawkins of Forest of Dean Athletic Club hobbled to the end of the course with his dog Maya, supported by Herefordshire runner Harry Franklin, despite sustaining an ankle injury.


MEN: 1 James Smith, Black Pear Joggers, 43.12; 2 John Pullen, Wye Valley Runners, 44.55; 3 Jim Masters, Wye Valley Runners, 47.11.

WOMEN: 1 Niki Morgan, Chepstow Harriers, 53.34; 2 Nicola Gething, Parc Bryn Bach, 54.21; 3 Nikki Childs, Wye Valley Runners, 55.27.

Full results available on:

This year’s Crocodile 8 Multi terrain Race saw tough running conditions including knee-high mud and a very slippery climb up the Badnage Wood Steps.

This did not deter this year’s winner Jonathon Pugh from Rhayader RC stomping home in a new course record of 55.41, closely followed by Tim Iveson, (Builth and District) and Wye Valley Runner John Pullen, 58.50.

First lady home was Niki Morgan, Chepstow Harriers 1.08.30, very closely followed by Sarah Jane Hassall 1.08.52, and Laura Tootle, Wye Valley Runners 1.09.39.

First team back for both male and female was Wye Valley Runners , for all other results please see the Crocodile 8 website,

The Crocodile 8 team would like to thank their sponsors, HR Smith, NFTO and Cotswold Mini Hereford for supporting this charity event and also each and every volunteer that made this community event such a success.

Next year’s Crocodile 8 is on May 24.

Almost all runners at the race were pictured with copies available, for a small donation to the school charity which organised the event, by emailing