The distance of the course, for both runners and walkers, is almost 5 miles.
Manchester Road Race has a little bit of everything. At the front of the pack you will find the elite runners - internationally known, professional, Olympians, etc. Next, you will find the serious runners. The course is seeded to 40 minutes - those people who have proven they can run the course within specific time periods will line up in "pens" according to their finishing times.
Behind the seeding areas you will see all of humanity! Some wannabes, some people in costume, some just out for the fun of the day.
Finally, there is a special "mall" area for walkers. Once all of the runners have passed the start line, the walkers will fall in behind them.
On the course you will see several bands playing music along the route. If you think there are a lot of participants (10,000), you should see the spectators!! They usually number at least 20,000. So there's lots of support for the runners and walkers.
This IS especially a race for families! We love to see whole families signing up for the race together. Fathers and mothers who have earned the right to stand in a seed "pen" will give up that right for a couple of years to run at the same pace as their children, as they are starting out. Pretty soon, the children are competing with their parents for their own seed cards.
A word of caution for new or young runners - the "pack" of runners at the start can feel a bit overwhelming. If you have a child of tender years, please start the race with them. The huge throng of people can be a bit frightening.
We encourage entire families to participate. When you get to the race, ask any of the volunteers; they will help you line up in the appropriate places to make your experience be fun and enjoyable!