On the (surprisingly sunny) morning of March 30, twelve Sale Harriers arrived at Salford Sports Village hungry for success at the Salford 10k. Or maybe for another coaster for their collection.
It must be said that the first couple of months of 2018 haven’t exactly been runner-friendly due to the snow and ice that has battered the UK. Few have felt this more than our very own (self-proclaimed) ‘Grim Reaper of Half Marathons’ Matthew Harrison, with three race cancellations and a short course already behind him at this point in the year. So, with the phrase ‘White Easter’ being thrown around in the news only days prior, many questions needed to be answered. Would the training put in by many Harriers over the winter months pay dividends? Would the course become a slippery hazardous wasteland (Keep your comments about Salford to yourselves)? Would Reaper Harrison arrive with Frosty The Snowman and freeze everything up?
Thankfully, Matthew arrived alone and, as it turned out, his wintery curse was finally broken.
Salford 10k is an annual road race organised by Salford Harriers that is very popular with runners and clubs from across Greater Manchester and beyond. It has a field of 750 runners and regularly attracts a fast lead pack. The race is held on Good Friday, so although the actual date varies from year to year the race usually finds itself ideally timed for those concluding their winter training, as well as those participating in Spring marathons and half marathons. These factors often combine to result in a sell-out well in advance of race day.
The course is two 5k laps, starting at Salford Sports Village and heading straight up Littleton Road before crossing over the River Irwell and heading down the neighbouring Langley Road for about a mile. Just after the 3k mark there is a brief twisty section through some side streets and a small row of cobblestones to navigate, then the final mile goes back over the River Irwell and re-joins Littleton Road, ultimately returning to Salford Sports Village. The second identical lap then begins, the end of which concludes with a sharp left after Salford Sports Village leading to the finish line.
Although it could be said that the course is perhaps uneventful and quiet in places, the trade-off is that the course is also fairly simple to navigate and visualise, offering runners a chance to make and change their plans of attack as the race goes on. Several long straights on the course (particularly the 4-5k and 9-10k sections) offer great opportunities to give chase and improve race positions – why dwell on running past industrial estates and residential areas when you can make your own drama?
In summary, Salford 10k has no elitism or gimmicks and needs neither. It’s an ideal race to go for if you want an enjoyable, fast and well organised race with friendly faces that won’t break the bank.
In the results, John Ashcroft of Liverpool Harriers won the race with a chip time of 30:17, while Laura Hesketh of Clayton-le-Moors Harriers won the women’s race with a chip time of 34:38. The first male Sale Harrier over the lane was Nicholas Tynan, who finished 52nd overall and 50th male in 34:49. Danielle Fegan, the lead Sale Harriers lady, crossed the line in 35:11 (56th overall and third lady) equalling her 10k Road PB and continuing her successful year following high placings at 2018’s Northern and National XCs.
In other news:
The full club results are as follows: (Full results click here)
Posted 10/04/2018 09:44