Winner Ricky Lightfoot with women's winner Victoria Wilkinson. Photo: Brian Dooks

Winner Ricky Lightfoot with women's winner Victoria Wilkinson. Photo: Brian Dooks

Bonuses of £1,000 went unclaimed as high winds and boggy underfoot conditions prevented runners smashing records in the Three Peaks Race.

Organisers offered £500 each to men and women who could beat long-standing fastest times in the tough 37km (23-mile) fell race, which celebrated its 60th anniversary yesterday.

But Salomon runner Ricky Lightfoot’s winning time of 2hrs 53mins 16secs, just over seven minutes slower than Bingley Harriers’ Andy Peace’s record, meant the extra bonus wasn’t paid.

Victoria Wilkinson’s 3hrs 16mins 17secs time missed taking the £500 women’s bonus by less than seven minutes, Czech runner Anna Pichrtova’s 2008 record surviving the attempt.

Wilkinson’s 17th overall place was the second-highest for a woman, two places behind Sarah Rowell’s 1992 record.

Maryport-based Lightfoot beat fellow Salomon team runner Thorbjorn Ludvigsen comprehensively. The Norwegian holds the record for an ascent of the Empire State Building in New York but could only manage sixth place, almost 13 minutes behind the Cumbrian.

Second place went to another Salomon runner, Tom Owens, 32, from Glasgow, who won the Three Peaks Race in 2011 and finished eighth in 2012. His 29 minutes to the summit of Pen-y-ghent was 10 seconds faster than Lightfoot, but he finished three minutes behind in 2hrs 56mins 13secs.

Third was four times winner Rob Jebb, 39, of Bingley Harriers, in 2hrs 59mins 57secs. Jebb, who won in 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2009, also holds the record as eight times winner of the Three Peaks Cyclo-Cross Race since 2000. In 2005 he broke Catalan dominance in the Buff Skyrunner World Series when he became champion.

Lightfoot, 29, got a late entry for the Three Peaks on Wednesday and started the race hoping not to aggravate a knee injury, which stopped him running from the end of January to mid-March.

Men’s team trophy went to the Dark Peak Fell Runners Club while Ilkley Harriers AC picked up the women’s prize.

Speaking after the finish, Victoria Wilkinson said: “I was pleased. I was aiming for a sub-3hrs 30mins so to get 3hrs 21mins, I was quite happy.”

She said she never expected to win the £500 bonus. “The record is do-able on the right day, in the right conditions. But today conditions were pretty hard. It was fairly muddy and I have only done it twice. It was pretty ‘gloopy’ in places and it was windy.

“Going up Whernside was fairly wet and there is that tricky bit coming down. You have walkers about and those steps, so that was probably the bit I did not enjoy.

“You have just got to get your pacing right and that is hard. It is a hard race because going up Pen-y-ghent you are thinking: ‘I had better back off and not burn out then you are thinking I had better press on to get a decent time’.

“I was running with the men and men are good pacemakers, so I was happy. There were a lot of good spectators out there and I had Bingley Harriers shouting me on.”

Prizes at the 60th race, which involves the ascent of Pen-y-ghent, Whernside and Ingleborough, were presented by Shirley and Dave Hodgson of Leeds, who have been involved in competing or organising the race for more than 50 years.

Both are life-vice-presidents of the Three Peaks Race Association. Mr Hodgson, who competed 21 times between 1958 and 1993, never won the race, but finished second in 1960, 1961, 1962 and 1964. His 1964 time of 2hrs 53mins 56secs was less than a minute behind the winner.

Race director and Three Peaks Association chairman Paul Dennison presented them with a specially commissioned painting showing Pen-y-ghent, Whernside and Ingleborough and familiar landmarks including Ribblehead Viaduct and the Old Hill Inn to mark their commitment to the race and its organisation.

Salomon was the main race sponsor.

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