This weekend's Bolton 10K, which prides itself as the north west's alternative to Virgin London marathon, is set to be a competitive affair with Tony Valentine looking to defend his title and aim for a fourth victory in the process. Sunday's race will also be marked by the attendance of Steve Kenyon, the last British winner of the Great North Run (1985) and life-long Bolton United Harrier.
The event, hosted by Bolton United Harriers & AC, is known for its grandstand start and finish at Leverhulme Park. Returning to the club for the first time in 20 years, Steve has been assigned the #1 race number. While he is unlikely to be aiming for a PB - which stands at an impressive 28:10 - Steve will be aiming for success in the vet 60 category.
Defending champion Valentine, also a Bolton United Harrier, will face challenges from Carl Platt (City of Stoke) and Steve Bailey (Bingley Harriers). Aiming for his fourth victory at the event, Valentine finished last year's race in 34:34 despite blustery conditions and a downpour that rendered parts of the course more like a multi-terrain event.
Organiser Steve Houghton told northernrunningguide.com how preparations for the race are coming along: Current entries are 620 - about 50 below last year, it looks like we should get 700 entrants though, and improve on last year's total. Hopefully the weather will hold as we don't want another monsoon rainfall like last year (people will think Bolton is cursed)!'