THE third and final race of the Red Kite Challenge summer trail series was held at Longwood, Lampeter on 3 July and drew another fantastic turnout from runners near and far.

Lampeter running club, Sarn Helen, hosted the race which took runners along a beautiful but challenging five-mile route through Longwood Community Woodland.

Having won the last race of the series at Hafod Estate in May, Sarn Helen’s Dylan Lewis was the outstanding favourite for the win, and so it proved as he led the race from gun to finish. Aberystwyth AC runners Owain Schiavone and James Cowan were second and third respectively.

Men's series winner Dylan Lewis with Dic Evans

With a pair of wins to his name, and a solid third place finish at the opening fixture in Nant yr Arian, the result gave Lewis the overall victory for the series and the prize was presented to him by Red Kite Challenge founder and honorary president, Dic Evans.

Dee Jolly, also of Sarn Helen, was the favourite for in the women’s race as well having won this fixture in 2023.

She indeed dominated the field to take the victory by more than a minute ahead of Sophia Barker in second place and Bethan Williams in third.

The result completed the hat-trick of wins for Dee in the series this year having also taken first place at Hafod and Nant yr Arian. It also meant she retained her series victory from last year, and was also presented with her trophy by Dic Evans.

There were also category wins for James Cowan (Senior Male), Sophia Barker (Senior Female), Dylan Lewis (M35), Dee Jolly (F35), Ian Evans (M45), Claire Morris (F45), Glyn Price (M55), Liz Pugh (F55), Jack Parry (M65) and Chris Thomas (F65).

Claire Morris and Owain Schiavone with Rhys Burton, race director
Claire Morris and Owain Schiavone, series director, with Rhys Burton, race director (Supplied)

Earlier in the evening junior races were also held with the Year 3-4 primary age first to go. Ifan Jones of Aberystwyth AC was first home for the boys with Hawys Gruffudd of Sarn Helen first of the girls.

It was then the turn of the Year 5-6 children with Elis Herrick taking the win after a very close battle with Celt Davies, both of Sarn Helen. First of the girls was Ellie Tansley of Ysgol y Dderi.

The secondary juniors started with the seniors but ran a shortened route of around 2.5 miles. First home was Tomos Green of Sarn Helen after a hard fought battle with Gethin Thomas of Carmarthen Harriers, who was just four seconds back. First of the girls was Gwen Tompsett of Ysgol Penweddig with Paige Lilly-Williams and Emily Evans-Williams, both of Carmarthen Harriers, not far behind in second and third.

Series winner Dylan Lewis with Rhys Burton, race director and Owain Schiavone, series director

“This is the second year we’ve held the Longwood trail race and it’s great to be once more involved with the Red Kite trail series,” said race director, Rhys Burton.

“It’s a busy little time of the year for Sarn Helen in terms of holding races with Felinfach 6 having just been, and Cwmann 5 coming up on 12 July, but it’s great to squeeze this trail race in between those road races to add some variety.

“Thanks to everyone who helped with the race, and also to the runners who supported, including those travelling from clubs like Builth and District, Carmarthen Harriers and Aberystwyth AC. Course manager Marc Davies would particularly like to thank Longwood for allowing us to use the trails to host the event.”

Full results can be found on the Red Kite Chellenge website.