Jenny B medal

With entries closing on 24 September there in only a day left to get your name on the starting list! Scotland international Jenny Bannerman has been a regular competitor in the Baxters River Ness 10km over the past decade and she’s keen for others to experience the vibrant atmosphere and enthusiastic support which propels so many people to fast times in one of the country’s most popular races.

But anyone wishing to join the Inverness Harriers club member on the streets of the Highland capital for the festival of running on 6th October needs to act quickly as entries for the 10km and the River Ness 5km will close on 24th September. The Baxters Loch Ness marathon has already attracted a record number of sign-ups and only charity places remain in that race.

Bannerman first ran the 10km in 2009 and has been back for each of the past five years, winning three times and never finishing lower than fifth. In 2018 she set what was then her fastest time of 34min 53secs.

There’s little doubt it’s one of her favourite races and she feels its popular appeal is due to the event ticking a number of boxes which runners of all levels of experience and ability are keenly looking for.

She said: “It’s held at a good time of year, coming at the end of the summer when the weather is cooler and people have had plenty of time to train in decent conditions. It’s also a good course. Although it’s a net downhill, the first third of the route is quite tough as it’s gradually uphill. That’s not such a bad thing as it makes sure you don’t set off too fast. The second third is a nice downhill and the final third is relatively flat. So it’s perfect for elite runners looking for quick times and it’s also ideal for people doing their first 10km.

“The support along the route is good too as there are a variety of places where people gather, and as you get nearer the city centre and the finish area the number of spectators grows significantly.

“There’s no doubt there’s a fantastic atmosphere at the race and it is very well organised. Of all the big 10km’s I have done throughout the country, this one is up with the best of them.

“I like the fact that there’s races for all members of the family starting with the Wee Nessie for kids. There’s a 5km as well and for some people that can be a stepping stone towards perhaps doing the 10km in the future and maybe even the marathon after that.

 “I find myself getting involved by cheering on the marathon runners after I’ve finished the 10km. It’s great to see how tired runners get a bit of a lift and respond to the encouragement they get from spectators.”

The 10km is part of the Baxters Loch Ness festival of running which kicks off on Saturday 5th October with a sports expo and runners’ café at the event village in Bught Park. A full programme of eve-of-the race activity is planned with presentations given throughout the afternoon, headed by BBC Scotland TV and radio presenter Bryan Burnett alongside radio host and running author Vassos Alexander. It’s an ideal occasion for runners looking for an input of last minute motivation and inspiration.

Race Director Malcolm Sutherland said: “We are delighted to see top local runners such as Jenny Bannerman supporting our event year after year, but we welcome runners of all levels from across the world. We can guarantee they will all receive a special Highland welcome whether they are at the front, middle or back of the pack.”

Full entry details can be found at