2005 saw the anniversary of the 50th 'open race' held by Horwich RMI Harriers & A.C at the 'Rivington Pike Fell Race.'

In 1956, the pre-war 'Easter Saturday classic' would be revived in it's old form as an 'open event' after early competitions were held for 'professionals' only in 'closed' events. 'Handicapped' and 'scratch' races were staged in the first 5 editions after Horwich RMI Harriers revived the race after the Bolton Harriers organised pre-war races had come to an end in 1939 due to the outbreak of World war 2. Before Horwich's revival, the race was held as part of the 'victory' celebrations in 1946 and continued onwards in various guises until 1956, when the race as we now recognise it first took place.  

Over it's long history, the race has seen many International athletes enter, with many falling by the way side in their pursuit to become 'Champion of Rivington Pike'. With 2005 being a 'special anniversay' edition of the race, all past winners of the 50 open races were invited back to the race to witness this special event, and to sign a copy of the newly published 'Rivington Pike History and Fell Race' book. The book would be presented to the Male and Female winners of the 50th race. All past champions were also presented with a fine 'limited edition 'Royal Doulton' plate' to commemorate their achievements. It was indeed a fine turn out, with most of the past champions attending, with many donning their studs once again to relive fond memories of their successful triumphs at the 'pike'. The overall race was won by Local man and fell expert Rob Hope, who had previously took the title as a younster 10 years earlier. Bingley's Mary Wilkinson took the women's honours by a good margin in what was the beginning of a very successful period where she dominated fields in many fell, road and mountain races. The day was a great success, and was a grand finale to a great past 50 years of 'Pike' racing history, and the springboard towards the next 50 years.

 

 

50th anniversary champions, Rob Hope and Mary Wilkinson (shown above) have won many titles in successful athletic careers between them. The 'Royal Doulton' limited edition plate presented to all previous winners of the 'open' pike race, displaying the champions names in gold plate is also shown above as well as the mens and ladies winners trophies.