The much-loved Tour of Tameside returned to the North West running calendar with a bang last weekend (19-21 June) when more than 500 runners took to the streets for the three-day event. Local flyer (Altrincham & District AC) Mohammed Aburezeq dominated the men's contest after finishing in first place on each of the three stages of the Tour while Kirsty Longley of Liverpool Pembroke and Sefton was the ladies Tour winner, after winning two of the three legs.
The action started on Friday evening with a six mile fell race from Copley Leisure Centre in Stalybridge. Saturday saw the longest leg - the scenic Longdendale Trail Half Marathon; and the short series (the equivalent of a marathon) completed on the road on Sunday (Father's Day) at the Hyde 7. There was a poignant dimension to the Longdendale Half as it was dedicated to PC Nicola Hughes, who tragically lost her life in an incident in Tameside in September 2012.
Race organisers Sports Tours International reintroduced the new version of the Tour which was founded by marathon legend Ron Hill in 1983. Chris Bird, Chief Executive of Sports Tours International, commented: “What a fantastic weekend – this was definitely the 'Friendship' Tour of Tameside. New runners, former Tour of Tameside veterans and the communities in Tameside and the High Peak came together for a real festival of running over three days.
Chris added: “The atmosphere over the weekend was incredible, so a big thank you to everyone involved. The level of interest to bring back this event was phenomenal and the efforts of everyone involved over the past 12 months paid off as it was a great success. We’re looking forward to welcoming even more runners at the next Tour of Tameside!”
The event was supported by local organisations including New Charter Homes, Active Tameside, Tameside 4 Good and Tameside Metropolitan Borough Council.
Race results for the three events are available online at runABC North website.
Image shows Ron Hill with the 2015 Tameside tourists