THE mild January weather presented near perfect conditions as runners travelled from all over the north for the Garstang 10k race and fun run.
With nearly 500 competitors, entries were well up from the previous year. The race is one of the earliest on the running calendar and welcomed clubs from as far as Dumfries, Yorkshire and South Manchester.
The racers set off from the Garstang Community Academy on the 10k route through the town and were led home by Sean Connelly from Manchester in 30mins 56 secs.
Gareth Raven from Sale Harriers took second place with a time of 31.29 and Preston Harriers’ David Rigby in third in 33.04.
In the ladies’ competition, Wesham runner, Joanna Goorney finished first in 39.21, followed closely by Marie Lowe in 39.28.
Catterall teenager Katie Buckley, 18, who began running to take part in the Great North Run last September, just a year after a life-saving bone marrrow transplant, finished in ninth place.
School representative Geoff Markland said: “It was a brilliant day, one of the best events I have ever attended.
“The weather was reasonably kind to us and the numbers showed just what a popular event it is.”
In the fun run, local contenders enjoyed success with Garstang Community Academy pupil Michael Brentreid finishing in first place in 12.29.
Shannon Perry from Lancaster and Morecambe Running Club finished first for the girls in 13.30.
Race organiser Steve Ashcroft said: “It was fantastic – the school did a great job in marshalling the event and the police were a help in managing the traffic.
“There was an excellent turnout and we have already set the date for the same weekend next year and hope to increase numbers further and make it even better.”