It was a clean sweep for Bolton United Harriers’ male runners as they secured the top three positions for the first time at their own event, the Bolton 10K. The 10K is known for its grandstand start and finish at Leverhulme Park, and saw the 683 competitors encounter - contrary to pre-race forecasts - warm, spring conditions on Sunday (26 April).
Bolton's Jonny Kay opened an early gap on the rise up Spooky Hill and, comfortable with the quick pace, decided to take the race on his own terms. His lead was never threatened and victory was claimed in 33:20. Tony Valentine, returning after a six-month absence, took second in 34:12, with club-mate Karl Darcy closely following (34:17).
In the women's race, Leeds City's Katie Parry clearly blasted out with determination to finish in 38:08, beating the course record. Trafford AC’s Sarah Hadak was a little more than a minute behind in 39:12, with Sophie Whittaker of Bury AC third in 40:25. The mid-point runner came home at 54:29, while the field closed at 1:33:39.
Race organiser Steve Houghton said: "Never trust the five-day forecast - instead of the expected monsoon, conditions for the runners were tough in the sun! Feedback has been incredibly positive again, and it was great to see a Bolton 1-2-3 for the first time."
Over 43 runners competed for the host club, with a further 40 assisting in the organisation of the event, a statistic Steve was delighted with: "I'd like to pay tribute to the volunteers, especially the marshals, as no matter the amount of planning, the smoothness of the event would not have been possible without so many assisting on the day. The best side of the club was truly on show today."