Report by David Adams
Race Date: Sunday 17th February 2019
As the SEF (Striders Expeditionary Forces) headed south for the all out invasion of Leicestershire, a small crack commando unit of 3 Striders headed west, into the Badlands of Southern Lancashire to carry out important missionary work among the strange folk of the Red Rose.
Marple was to be our destination for the Stockport Trail Half Marathon.
The race is run, mostly, on the Middlewood Way, which is a trail that was created along the old Macclesfield, Bollington and Marple Railway line, much like our own TPT and Monsal Trails etc. It’s flat and well surfaced and allows for some good running (while trying to dodge walkers and cyclists etc.)
Starting from Marple RUFC ground, the first 10k is a straight run out along the Middlewood Way before turning off to start the return leg along the Macclesfield Canal. An “interesting” section of uneven and often quite narrow tow path, interspersed with a few low bridges to negotiate. As far as I’m aware no-one went for a swim, although in the sun it was quite warm and pleasant along that stretch.
With a little over 5K left, we rejoined the Middlewood way for the run back to the finish in the delightful setting of the train station carpark, just next to the local Dumpit site.
All in all, a very pleasant race in a nice setting.
The field is wisely limited to 500 but this lent itself to a friendly atmosphere and a nice day out. On the day 447 finished the race.
On a personal note, I’d just like to thank Sallyann for dragging me (sometimes literally) round to ensure I achieved a PB.
The Race was won by Ian Harding of Morpeth Harriers in 1:12:02.
1st Female was Sara Barron (unattached) in 1:37:33.
1st Strider home in 237th and 5th in his MV65 category was David Hewitt in 1:55:46.
Link to full results here.