Great Manchester Run & Great City Games

A Great Weekend Of Sport
A Great Weekend Of Sport

The Great Manchester Run is the largest 10k race in Europe and is part of the Great Run Series.

The run series are hosted across the UK and operated by sports management and promotion business Nova International.

In 2011, for the third year running, Nova combined the Great Manchester Run with the Powerade ION4 Great City Games.

This involved the creation of a top class running track on Deansgate in Manchester City Centre.

World class athletes including Jessica Ennis, Tyson Gay, Christine Ohuruogu and Allyson Felix were among the stars who competed in the weekend.

The British Gas Great Salford Swim completed the Great Weekend of Sport.

Elite athletes led by Great British Olympian Keri-Anne Payne joined amateur swimmers for the one-mile open water swim through Salford Quays.

The Brief:

Onside PR joined forces with Manchester based Tangerine PR to promote the Great Weekend of Sport.

The brief was to promote the event and create interest in the weekend, and then to ensure the smooth operation of the event.

This included the management of world class atheltes, coordinating and arranging media access.

Utiilising our journalistic experience and national media contacts book we set about creating support and publicity for the weekend.

Aside from the obvious attraction of world class athletes the weekend included thousands of members of the public, many with extraordinary reasons for competing.

Onside PR analyside those personal stories and set about placing relevant content in national and local media.

These included national newspapers, magazines, local newspapers, radio and TV.

A host of celebrity athletes competed in the Great Run and we were able to place interviews in a host of publications ahead of the event.

In the immediate build-up to the event Onside PR managed the international press conference, coordinating interviews with elite athletes with TV, radio and written press.

During the weekend Onside PR worked with Nova International to coordinate media interview requests, provide press conference facilities and manage media access after the event.

We also were to provide crisis management and event management support to the Nova Team.


The 2011 Great Weekend of Sport was heralded an incredible success.

Media coverage in the build-up to the event included an agreement with The Daily Mirror, national and regional newspaper coverage.

Onside PR were successful in placing coverge in both B2C and B2B media titles.

In the immediate preview to the event Onside PR ensured attending media secured the access they required without disturbing the athletes preparations for the event.

Onside PR arranged for some of the star athletes to visit the set of Coronation Street and to meet some of the TV soap actors to publicise the event.

We organised a number of TV and radio interviews including a ITV interview with former Manchester United star Philip Neville, his wife Tracey and their children Harvey and Isabelle to promote the Mini Run

On the day of the weekend our experience of coveraging major events was crucial, particularly as a deterioution in the weather required a last minute change to mixed zone facilities.

During the Great Run Onside PR worked with the elite athletes and celebrity runners to provide media access.

The weekend secured global media coverage and was hailed a great success.