The 2017 ASICS Greater Manchester Marathon took place in Trafford yesterday, Sunday 2nd April, and proved to be a day of thrilling sporting achievement, first class entertainment and incredible crowd support.
The spring sunshine welcomed in the 41st edition of the event which is well known for being the UK’s flattest, fastest and friendliest marathon, and which resulted in a disproportionately high number of PBs.
The 2017 ASICS Greater Manchester Marathon was officially started at 9am under the Trafford Arch by Manchester running legend Dr Ron Hill MBE and ASICS ambassador Mara Yamauchi, and saw thousands of runners begin their 26.2-mile challenge to the cheers of thousands of spectators.
As is the case each year, the race attracted athletes of all ages and abilities, from first time marathon runners and charity runners to club runners and elite athletes seeking a PB or qualifying time on the fast course. Among these was a top quality British elite field attracted by the generous British and Irish only prize fund.
Patrick Martin of Stockport Harriers & AC put in a fantastic performance on his marathon debut and claimed the winning title after crossing the finish line in a time of 02:22:37. Will Mackay, who ran a strong place but missed the podium after finishing in fourth place, was challenging Martin at the 30KM mark but Martin managed to pull away and he kept building the gap from there. Tom Charles of Trafford AC shaved over three and a half minutes off his marathon PB and secured second place in 02:23:55, ahead of Andrius Jaksevicius of Belgrave Harriers who finished in 02:24:28.
The women’s field was dominated by Georgie Bruinvels of Aldershot, Farnham & District AC, who returned to Manchester to reclaim her title from 2015. Bruinvels secured the win with a time of 02:37:03, eighteen seconds faster than two years ago. Charlotte Firth of Windsor, Slough, Eton & Hounslow AC took second place in 02:45:28, and Gemma Connolly of St Helens Sutton AC secured the third spot on the podium in 02:46:43
Many runners were also raising money for the official charities including Alzheimer’s Society, Cancer Research UK, Save the Children, The Christie charity and Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital Charity.
ASICS Greater Manchester Marathon, 2nd April 2017
1. Patrick Martin (Stockport Harriers & AC), 02:22:37
2. Tom Charles (Trafford AC), 02:23:55
3. Andrius Jaksevicius (Belgrave Harriers), 02:24:28
1. Georgie Bruinvels (Aldershot, Farnham & District AC), 02:37:03
2. Charlotte Firth (Windsor, Slough, Eton & Hounslow AC), 02:45:28
3. Gemma Conolly (St Helens Sutton AC), 02:46:43
The full results are available on the website .
Race Director Simon Hill commented: “The 2017 ASICS Greater Manchester Marathon has been a great success, and we would like to congratulate all the runners who crossed the finish line. The atmosphere was superb, the entertainment was outstanding and it was very clear why this is known as one of the country’s friendliest marathons. We would like to thank all the wonderful spectators who cheered the runners on the whole way round, as well as our wonderful marshals and volunteers.
“It’s fantastic to hear that the flat and fast course saw many athletes smash their targets and achieve a PB. A big thank you also goes to our title sponsor ASICS and to our other sponsors for their continued support, as well as to all the charities and local communities who have contributed to the success of this year’s event. We are looking forward to seeing everyone again next spring!”
Cathy McGinnis, ASICS Marketing Manager UK & Ireland, added: “ASICS are proud be the title sponsor of the Greater Manchester Marathon, and it was fantastic to witness the inspirational atmosphere at the event. The race is a key event in the running calendar, we are delighted to see so many runners of all abilities gather in Manchester each spring and to follow the runners on their personal journeys. Congratulations to all who achieved their marathon goals in Manchester.”
Joanne Hyde, Corporate Director for Resources at Trafford Council, said: “It was a fantastic day with a real buzz in the air! On behalf of Trafford Council I congratulate all those who took part on the day and I hope that spectators and participants alike enjoyed coming to our borough, seeing our sites and our hospitality at Trafford Town Hall which was host to many spectators next to the finish line.”
The Athlete’s Village was located at Emirates Old Trafford home of Lancashire County Cricket Club, where the AIMS-accredited ASICS Greater Manchester Marathon culminated in a glorious finish. Spectators also took advantage of the wider footprint of the site with Trafford Town Hall being a perfect setting for post-race hospitality and its gardens a relaxing environment for families to enjoy. The 26.2-mile route took in Sale, Brooklands, Timperley, Altrincham, Urmston and Stretford.
The ASICS Greater Manchester Marathon has been shortlisted once again in the Best Marathon category at The Running Awards 2017. The race was voted the UK’s Best Marathon in 2014 and 2015 and, after the success of this latest race, the organisers are encouraging runners, spectators and supporters to cast their vote for free online. Voting in the Best Marathon category is open until 6pm on 13th April 2017.
ASICS was the title sponsor for the 2017 ASICS Greater Manchester Marathon. Other sponsors and partners include MLP Law, Metrolink, Runners Need, Trafford Council, Emirates Old Trafford, Lancashire County Cricket Club, SiS, Erdinger Alkoholfrei, Best Western Cresta Court Hotel, INNSIDE Manchester and JustGiving.
The date for the 2018 ASICS Greater Manchester Marathon will be announced soon. In the meantime the organisers have confirmed that a special “Be the First” introductory price of £45 is available until midnight on 10th April for runners to enter next year’s race.