IRONMAN Bolton has kicked off with the 5K Night Run through the town centre.
An overcast evening was lit up by hundreds of fluorescent running jerseys as the night runners made their way through Bolton from their starting point at Le Mans Crescent.
How to watch Bolton Ironman UK Live Stream ?
Watch Bolton Ironman UK Live Stream Here: WATCH
Where to watch Bolton Ironman UK Live Stream ?
Described as a ‘family-friendly 5km race through the pedestrianised streets of Bolton’, the first of the preliminary events to Sunday’s showpiece proved popular, with runners of all abilities turning up to set the weekend off in style
The runners were started at 7pm by Deputy Mayor Cllr Linda Thomas. They were staggered in terms of ability and predicted 5K times.
Sophie Monk and Jessica Sammon have both competed in half Ironman’s recently and thought they would come to flex their credentials.
Sophie said: “It’s our birthday too. Mine and Jessica’s boyfriend’s. We’re both 32 today.”
There were people who had turned up on their own, as well as large groups, like the Robin Park Runners from Wigan, all 27 of them running dressed in their club t-shirts.
Jane Schofield managed to convince her friend Jennie Grove to commit to the Night Run, despite living all the way down in Peterborough.
Jane said: “IRONMAN goes past my house every year and I’ve been getting into it through that. I’m not quite fit enough for the proper one so I’m doing this.”
Police are making themself noticeable throughout IRONMAN weekend.
Project Servator is an operation by Greater Manchester Police which focuses on police presence in order to allay public unease and to help detect and deal with criminal activity.
As part of the project, officers have been visible throughout the busy IRONMAN events so far this weekend and will continue to be so for tomorrow’s showpiece.
The approach seems to be yielding results. At yesterday evening’s Night Run, officers recovered a weapon during a drugs search.
A spokesperson for GMP said: “Project Servator Specialist Officers deploy anywhere at any time, engage with public and local businesses to detect criminality, which is what led to positive drugs search and recovery of a weapon nearby at Night Run.”
Today, officers were on the scene of tomorrow morning’s swim section of the race.
The spokesperson added: “GMP Transport Unit Specialist Project Servator Officers made an unexpected stop Ironman UK Pennington Flash – working with staff and volunteers to detect suspicious behaviour (and wish competitors good luck).
A statement on GMP’s website says that Project Servator “aims to deter, detect and disrupt a range of criminal activity, including terrorism, while providing a reassuring presence for the public.
“Our officers are experienced and specially trained to spot the tell-tale signs that someone is planning or preparing to commit an act of crime.
There will be a number of road closures in place.
Leigh, Atherleigh Way and Lostock – 06.00 – 10.30
The bikes will follow Atherleigh Way (A579) to the Chequerbent roundabout and will continue through Chewmoor and Lostock over the railway bridge then onto Regent Road. All will be closed from 06.00 – 10.30.
Vehicles travelling east to west and vice versa can cross the closed roads at the junction of Atherleigh Way (A579) at the Wigan Road (A577) roundabout. Vehicles will be able to cross the route at the A6/Bolton Road traffic signals travelling eastbound.
The bike course then travels west along Chorley New Road from Regent Road and does a U-turn before the Beehive Roundabout returning east into Bolton. The course will travel down Chorley New Road and turn onto Park Road then Spa Road to the town centre.
The A58/Victoria Road to the Beehive will be closed eastbound from 06.00-10.30.
Chorley New Road and parts of Bolton town centre will be closed 06.00 – midnight.
Northbound residential access at the Chorley New Road/Victoria Road junction will be available between 07.30—17.30.
New for 2022, traffic can access the Beehive Roundabout in all directions after 10:30.
Middlebrook retail park is open as normal on race day.
Tonge Moor, Ainsworth and Bury – 06.30 – 15.30
The bikes then exit Bolton town centre using the A676 and B6208, following Winchester Way, Bury Old Road, Church Street and Cockey Moor Road towards Bury, before turning left onto Lowercroft Road.
There will be no crossing the route at the A58/Thicketford Road junction.
Thicketford Road, Winchester Way, Bury Old Road, Church Street and Cockey Moor Road will be closed eastbound.
There is a crossing point on southbound A676 Tonge Moor Road and B6208 Thicketford Road.
There are also crossing points for Blair Lane and Arthur Lane.