Weather Icon 16.8°C Partly Cloudy
Rob Flies The Flag For Royton Road Runners At Mossley 10k
Tuesday 19th July 2016 @ 13:36 by Mark Phillip
Mossley & Saddleworth Sports

A record-breaking 350 runners took to the streets of Mossley on Sunday for the annual Mossley 10k.

Entering its third consecutive year, the event attracted a good mix of club class competitors, social runners and charity fundraisers, as well as spectators and volunteers who helped marshal the course.

Sponsored by O’Donnell Solicitors, the race was held once again to raise funds for Mossley AFC.

As we went to press, an exact figure had yet to be announced.

However, funds raised from the event will go directly towards the day-today maintenance at Seel Park, home of the Lilywhites.

Reflecting on the momentous occasion, race director Andrew Rowles said: “The whole day was absolutely brilliant.

“To see competitors travel from different parts of Greater Manchester to take part in the race was great to see.

“We even had 51 Mossley Running Club members compete on the morning which is a fantastic turn out, especially given the club was formed little more than six months ago.”

Following weeks of persistent rain, athletes were treated on the day to sunshine and temperatures which soared above 17C.

Representatives from running clubs across the region took part on the morning, including Wakefield Harriers, Glossopdale Harriers, and Stockport Harriers.

However, it was Royton Road Runner Rob James who stole the spotlight on the day, crossing the finish line in first place in a record-breaking 34.01.

Trailing closely behind in second and third place respectively were Paul Green and Tony Muir who finished in 35.05 and 36.49.

Fellow Royton Road Runer Jennifer Bloor claimed first place in the women’s category with a creditable time of 40.23, while Kirsty Johnson of Glossopdale Harriers and Kirsty White of Royton finished in second and third respectively in 41.36 and 51.53.

Nigel Pengelly took the honours in the men’s over 45 category with a finishing time of 39.24, while Deborah Shaw claimed first in the women’s over 45 division, finishing the course in 44.59.

The Mossley 10k Facebook page was inundated with positive messages following the race, although some were critical of ‘road rage’ incidents which occurred throughout the course.

Simon Denby said: “Fantastic event and superbly well organised. Thank you to all the marshals, organisers and supporters; you did a great job. Apologies for the actions of a few local idiots and I hope it doesn’t put you off marshalling future events, as the overwhelming majority of people support your efforts. Thanks again.”

Questioned on the cause of the incident, Andrew said: “I’m not too sure what happened in all honesty, although I’ve been told one chap confronted our marshals.

“It’s really disappointing – and the only sour note of the day – to see volunteers who spare their time being treated in this manner.

“The incident has been noted, so we’ll try and establish what actually happened and take it from there.”

Despite the unsavoury scenes, Andrew is extremely happy with the way the event transpired.

So happy, in fact, that he and other race organisers have already started planning for next year’s event. He said: “We’ve already pencilled in a date for 2017: Sunday 16 July.

“The Mossley Running Club will continue to train three days a week throughout the year, and we even have ideas of establishing another ‘couch to 5k’ plan.

“We welcome all abilities and ages, so if anyone wants to join then feel free to do so.”