In short: Decent race, poorly organised overall In full: As others have said, this is a reasonably fast course (although not exactly pancake-flat, like some have claimed) whith a nice start and finish on the Regional Athletics track near the City of Manchester stadium. Once you get away from the stadium, most of the course winds through run-down industrial parks and housing estates.
Around the start / finish, I thought that more signs could be put up directing people to e.g. registration, toilets (there were loads going unused in the "city square" bit just around the corner from the track, where dozens of people were queueuing).
The organisers also seem to have messed up the results - mine doesn't match the time on my watch, and despite them taking the results down for 24 hours to "check", the same incorrect time is still shown for me. Other people are reporting problems too.
I didn't have any of the problems with water at the finish, but by the sounds of it those finishing a little later had to do without. As for on the course, people - you need to take your own in weather like that!
The t-shirt was half-decent, but the rest of the goody bag was a bit pants (although I'll be using both the Manchester Sport & Leisure 7 day pass and the Sweatshop £5 voucher). Somebody else mentioned sunglasses, which I didn't get. Date of review: July 4, 2011
In short: Cracking race In full: Very well organised race in Wythenshawe park, starting and ending at the Sale Harriers track. A very strong club field means that beginners might be a bit intimidated but the atmosphere and friendliness more than make up for it.
Only negative was that the promised technical shirt ended up being a regular cotton one.
I saw the signs with the photographers URL, but can't remember it - did anybody else see it? Date of review: May 30, 2011
In short: My new favourite race In full: I can only echo what others have said, the marshalling was absolutely superb and very friendly, every single one had a nice word for you as you passed.
The route is definitely challenging, but if you like a challenge then give it a go!
Finally, I can't review the event without a mention of the legendary goody bag - it really is bonkers! The shirt is excellent though, although I'm not entirely sure why they did winter running shirts in black. Date of review: December 12, 2010
In short: Not great In full: For me, this was a good event let down by poor organisation. The weather was appalling too, which was obviously out of everybody's hands.
The route was ok in the main, but I didn't appreciate the narrow trails - even apart from the weather turning them into mud, they were too narrow to pass.
The start was rather congested, and I think the need to dedicate more room to each of the finishing time groups.
Despite my concerns with having to pick the number up on the day, that appeared to go smoothly for most. In my case, my number simply wasn't there so had to mess around getting a replacement.
Signage wasn't good for people driving to the event, in particular the route from the main road to the blue car park was coned off with no directions. A nearby marshal had no idea how to get to the car park.
On the plus side, the support from local residents was fantastic especially given the conditions. Date of review: October 3, 2010