Nearly 4,000 runners and an army of spectators defied the cold, wet and windy conditions to take to the streets of Chester for the Aldi Chester 10K road race yesterday (Sunday 10 March). Despite the weather, there was a sparkling display at the front, with less than a second separating the top two male competitors.
Staged for the first time last year, Chester 10K got off to a flyer and organisers Active Leisure Events made the call to double the race entry to 4,000 to accommodate the demand for 2019.
The decision was clearly the right one with almost a full house on Sunday. The big field started at the Northgate Arena, headed out to Mollington and returned to town via Northgate Street to a noisy reception from the crowds at the Town Hall square finish.
Three men pulled ahead early on with Patrick Townsend only being dropped by Tomos Roberts of Meirionydd RC and Jamie Arnold of City of Stoke AC in the final stage. Tomos triumphed in a time of 31:49 closely followed by Arnold (31:50) with Townsend coming home in 32:26.
The first woman to cross the line was Faye Lightowler of Pontefract AC who finished in a time of 36:49 followed by Carol Parsons of Ellesmere Port RC (37:35) and Helen Sahgal of Liv Pembroke & Sefton Harriers AC (38:35).
“From what runners have told us it is clear that a massive thank you is due to the local communities, especially those of Mollington and the Garden Quarter for their vocal and enthusiastic support,” said joint race organiser Andy White. “We are glad that lots of people made the effort to turn out to support the runners.”
Active Leisure Events expect their three races this year to raise £1m overall for Chester based local and national causes.