CHALLENGER HISTORY

From 2012 the Spine® family has continued to grow. A brief history of the event is detailed on this page.

The Spine® Challenger was, like the Spine® Race first attempted in January 2012. Officially only 1 Challenger athlete finished the first Spine® Challenger and this was the winner, Mark Brooks in 36h30m.

In 2013 returning ‘Spine® Breaker’ Mark Caldwell was narrowly beaten by French athlete Philippe Gatta in an incredible sprint finish Philippe’s record time, some 4 hours quicker than the previous record was 32h18m. 2013 also saw the first female finish to the Challenger race, Anne Green completing the course in an impressive 53h38m.

2014 MONTANE® Spine® Challenger witnessed our largest field of athletes to date and they did not disappoint! Neither did the weather… Marcus Scotney set an astounding record for the men, completing the course in 29h01m chased all the way by the dogged Grant MacDonald. Jacqui Cooper set an amazing new record for the women completing the race in 42h13m the only female athlete to officially complete the 2014 Challenger event.

A very stormy, dramatic and interrupted race in 2015 witnessed some incredible individual performances. It was an earlier than usual start in the dark for the Challengers in to fierce and unrelenting winds. The amazing competitors pushed through with Ed Catmur winning in 29h52m, closely pursued by Janson Heath. The returning Spine® finisher, Annabel Cremin finished as the first female in 41h59m, setting a new course record* in the process.

2015 MONTANE® Spine® Challenger is a pretty unique set of results and cannot really compare to other editions of the race. The race was severely interrupted by extreme periods of weather which, in some cases, resulted in alterations to the race route and holds by race marshals. This affected individual race clocks in some instances.

*As the Challenger results at the front of the field were not affected by holds and releases, any records set can stand. Which resulted in a new record for the ladies.*

The 2016 MONTANE® Spine® Challenger was a competitive race from start to finish. Tom Hollins produced a stunning sub 30h run, which almost broke our existing record (held by Marcus Scotney). Conditions were wild but Tom needed to press at the front if he were to win, as Beth Pascall and Matt Bennett were hot on his heels.

Towards the Cam High Road it looked as if Beth and Matt had a chance to catch Tom, however Tom was first through the door in an incredible 29h25m. Beth and Matt would arrive in 30h18m. These are quite simply incredible times. The remaining athletes were 8-9hrs behind the lead pack.

Sarah Davies was the 2nd place female, comlpeting the course in 44h35m, which is a little over 2.5hrs shy of the 2015 record. This is not only testament to how hard Sarah raced but Beth’s achievement as well.

The remaining athletes all battled extremely hard through some of the most challenging weather we have seen on the race. Particularly heavy snowfall in the Malham area and on the exposed moors made simple tasks and navigation incredibly difficult. If you ever question why goggles are on the equipment list, ask a 2016 Challenger! In all 37 athletes would complete the 2016 event.