In short: Well worth the drive from Stoke - a classic 10k race In full: This race is friendly, well organised, great for new runners and club runners alike, a nice, challenging course, great facilities (snack shop, running stall, changing rooms, loos, I think I saw showers too).
The race starts and finishes in Springfield Park which and goes up and down the hilly streets of Rochdale. The landscape might not sound appealing, but that's not what this race is about. This race is special because it's great for anyone who is new to running, new to a club, unaffiliated or a long term club member. After the challenging hills, there's a long, undulating run that eventually descends into Springfield Park. Runners and spectators at the finish cheer their clubmates, friends, rivals and strangers in as they go down that last straight bit of road before the descent into the finish. It's a really uplifting way to finish a race that is, deservedly, getting more popular.
I'm sure that there will be one or tow Michael Winner types who will moan about the memento (a pair of unbranded socks), but really, if you train for (and pay for races) for the contents of a goody bag, then you're missing the bigger picture - this is a great, uplifting, well organised, charming race with nor frills. The socks always bring a smile to my face.
I moved away from Manchester a few years ago but always make sure I get here straight from work in Stoke to do this race - it remains my favourite 10k. Many thanks to all organisers and volunteers - this race is an absolute classic. Date of review: July 2, 2013
In short: Fete fell run atmosphere with world marathon major slickness In full: How can such a friendly event have such a cruel course? This run had all the good humour and camaraderie of a low key fell run, but with the slick organisation and impressive finishing touches of a world major. From beginning to end this race is very professionally organized. Information and updates are thorough enough to make sure that nothing goes wrong on the day. Registration was slick but low key (no annoying expo and you can reg on day) and included a decent pasta / pizza offer for runners. The race itself was extremely well organized, very well marshaled, clearly signed (hard with two simultaneous races) and the brutality of the course was rewarded with the some of the best scenery I have seen in a race. The good humour of the marshals (one said, “Don’t worry, it ends. Eventually…”) carries you along, the food stations are fantastic – well overstocked with water, isotonic drinks, Torq energy gels (I’d eat the rhubarb and custard flavour as a snack!), 9 Bar, flapjacks, cut and peeled banana portions… for me it was a buffet and a much needed rest, but faster runners could snatch a snack and carry on running. Where there were no marshals, runners provided each other with plenty of support and gallows humour. This was a major lift every time my lungs swapped places with my earlobes. I did spot a few energy gel wrappers and bottles that were discarded away from the deeding stations. If you enter this race, make a point of shoving the wrappers down your shorts or something. Goody bags don’t draw me to races (and are normally full of tat) so I never bother commenting on them – this race is an exception. Nice tee (not and advertising board), coaster, energy bars, Salomon trail running socks, Outdoor Fitness mag, decent race branded waterbottle, the bag itself is one of those cotton re-usable ones (also race branded).
Da iawn & diolch yn fawr to all organisers and volunteers, this is a classic race and I highly recommend it. I don't know if this race wants to grow, but if it wanted to, it would be exponential, and deservedly so. Now, anyone got the number for Stannah Stairlifts?
In short: Hilly, spectacular, very weel organised In full: Never been in a race with such a high marshal to runner ratio so this is not an easy race for Buxton to put on. The race HQ has all you need - toilets (not busy), swift number collection, close to parking and start, all in the spectacular Pavillion.
The course is spectacular, scenes that come to mind are; climbing that 3 mile hill and watching the runners winding up the road ahead of me, beatuful rock formations, the peak districts wonderful hills, running through Buxton Pavillion Gardens for the 3-400m finish - it's all absolutely gorgeous.
There arre 3 bottled water stations - well manned and efficiently served (i.e. they even take the bottle tops off).
You get a great cheer at the end no matter how fast / slow you are. Bryan Dale and his volunteers are there to take photos, all of which online for free (as opposed to £29 a go like other races I shan't mention).
The bonus was hanging round Buxton Pavillion after the race. For a donation to the Mountain Rescue you get a massage, there were very nice food stalls and a brass band played to complete the occasion.
I always try to give even the best race organisers some feedback just to make them even better (I help organise quite a few races / parkruns). In this case, I can't, it was perfect.
Thank you Buxton, this race is a hidden gem. For purely selfish reasons, I hope it stays that way! Date of review: May 26, 2013
In short: Flawless organisation again - great event In full: Organising an event on this scale cannot be easy, especially when the weather has gone from one extreme (very hot last year) to the other (Siberian winds this year). Doing a course inspection for a 5.15am update, regular, timely updates about car parking and weather, huge massage tent, co-ordinating marshals from lots of local organisations (hats off to them, today's conditions were horrendous for marshalling), decent mementos - all made for a fantastic event.
The course undulates but is very fast, there is plenty of vocal support along the way and very well stocked and staffed water stations (no congestion at water stations makes a big difference). Road closures all the way help a lot too.
Fantastic event, well supported, all the facilities a runner needs and a great fast course, the most unique race t shirt I've ever been given - what more do you want?
In short: Excellent as always - best 10m in UK for good reason In full: I always enjoy the Stocky 10, but I wasn't in the mood this year. Good job that some new touches made this race even better! Chip timing - didnt add much to cost (how much does Bupe Manchester 10k charge again?!?!) Track Start - very easy to mess this up but it always goes smoothly - the Benny Hill music put a smile everyones face Route - I love this route. I know Offerton is not exactly Snowdonia but the twists, turns, undulations, hills, big hills all make this route exciting. There's even a nice bit of trail. This course is always my fastest 10 miler of the year, somehow the hills make me run faster - hence great rating for PB potential. Ron Hill long sleeve technical tee - even better than last year - what on earth will they think of next? Tony Audenshawe (of Marathon Talk fame) impersonates John Motson and reads out as many runners names as he possibly can. I pretended it WAS John Motson saying my name and thumped the air like I was Vincent Kompany on 13/5/12 as I approached the finish. Mashalls great as always, despite the weather (as always!) - but Harriers, give them a brollow would you!? :-) I've done Stocky 10 more than any other race now. There's a reason I keep coming back, even though I live further away than I used to. Well done Stockport Harriers! Date of review: December 20, 2012
In short: Awesome race - Best marathon there is In full: Too many highlights to mention. Flawless and friendly organisation, amazing course, spectacular scenery, plenty of water stations, amazing crowds.... See you next year! Date of review: October 27, 2012
In short: Great course, well organised, start needs tweaking In full: Really enjoyed this, a nice hilly course in Autumnal Macc. I'm a big fan of track starts but this race is so well attended that I think the start could be sectioned into target finish times. I know that this would be hard to enforce but most would cooperate and this it would ease congestion at the start. Lots of folk with iPods getting in the way of faster runners tarnished it a bit - volume so loud they couldn't hear a polite 'excuse me'. I agree with the comments below about the PA system. I was further back and heard nothing about the minutes silence for Raymond Eagle, a local runner who died very recently and tragically. I'm not sure what the solution to this is and know that organisers will have done all that they could. Great to see so many Wilsmlow Running Club members out there today. The course is excellent, never a dull moment, slme great views and lovely hills. Very well marshalled and well signed. The water stations were well manned and four stations is a good number. The track finish is always a bonus and the goody bag, banana and water distribution was well organised. Thank you Macc Harriers, I really enjoyed the race. Date of review: September 30, 2012
In short: Great venue for a fell run In full: A lapped course is not always a bad thing, some junctions could have done with police cover / assertive marshalling as cars were curing runners off. Good facilities at start / finish. 30p for a brew at start, orange free at finish. One water station half way round would be nice. Will be better when the old start returns. The surroundings were spectcular but you only get to glimpse them on the way round. I'll have to see if there's a fell race round here. Date of review: August 9, 2012
In short: Still a favourite In full: Done this 10k more than any other, harder to get to now I work in Stoke but made the trip this year. Nice race, nice atmosphere, undulating/hilly course - never a dull moment. Everyone moans about the socks - have they compared the price of this race to other 10ks?!?! Race photos free too. Many thanks Rochdale Date of review: July 30, 2012
In short: Typical Wilmslow RC event... a Great race as always In full: Done this three times now... flawless organisation, two bottled water stations (with well placed boxes and bins to discard - nice touch), super venue, nice memento and, unlike most other races branded as Great (Great Manchester Run, Great North Run) proceeds go to charity (The David Lewis Centre). The course itself is and undulating tour of the Cheshire lanes, some of the hills seem challenging but anyone can do them. Don't be put off by the fact that it's laps. You only do the big lap twice and on this course it sort of enhances the enjoyment. The finish is a flat run into The David Lewis Centre, spectators and earlier finishers use the abundant space to cheer home friends, family and clubmates - something most organisers don't consider, really useful at the end. Well done Malcolm etc... This race remains firmly on the Belle Vue Racers list