TENBURY 10k organisers are already planning to make next year’s third instalment even bigger and better after the ‘staggering success’ of the 2019 race earlier this month.

Buoyed by the response to the second annual edition, organisers opened entries for the 2020 event hours after the race finished – and it almost sold out.

They raised the entry threshold to 300 for next year’s event – from 250 this year – and there are just 39 spaces remaining.

Joint organiser Oli Prouse said: “We opened the entries for 13 days until August 16 because that was how long it took the race to sell out this year.

“Not only have we increased the numbers, we have also committed ourselves to chip timing for next year as that is natural progression – runners want their official time stamp at the end.

“Technically, we would have sold out already if we had kept the field to 250 but we wanted to build on the success and make it even better next year.

“The feedback has been fantastic from runners, spectators and businesses alike and the race is growing year by year but we want to retain the quality of the race and grow it gradually.”

Entries will reopen next May and Prouse added: “We know Ludlow Runners are making us their Championship race and they already have around 40 people signed up, as do Cleobury Mortimer.”

The organisers are not stopping there, either – Prouse said they are “on the cusp of finalising” plans to introduce a ‘Santa Run’ in Tenbury in December to raise money for firefighting charities.

This year’s 10k attracted runners from all over, including competitors from Devon, but it was local athletes who dominated the top finishing positions.

First across the finish line was Luke Williams, from Cleobury Mortimer Running Club, in 37.15mins, followed by Jamie Shingler in 37.34mins.

Cleobury’s Joanne Watson was the first female runner home – and 13th overall – in 42.40mins.

Joint organiser Claire Thomas said: “I was delighted that so many local running clubs turned out in full force – Cleobury Mortimer Running Club in particular flooded the start line with a sea of red!

“What makes this event even better is that it supports our own community, so when businesses and residents offer to marshal, sponsor, run or support the race it really gives you an adrenaline rush like no other.”

Profit made from this year’s event, which also featured a 1k fun run completed by 140 children, will go to Love Tenbury, a charity that provides fun days out for those in and around Tenbury Wells.