A full round-up of the Irish endurance action this weekend, brought to you by Lindie Naughton.
Rathfarnham WSAF AC athlete Mitchell Byrne added another win to his growing collection at the Dunboyne 10km on Sunday (March 26).
Byrne led from the start of the race and had over a minute to spare when crossing the line in 30 mins 3 secs. Second in 31:10 was Stephen Conroy of Celbridge AC, while third in 31:16 was Aaron Hanlon of Drogheda and District AC, an athlete showing a welcome return to form after a few quiet years.
In a Dublin double, Aoife O’Leary of Sportsworld AC was first woman in 36:31. Her clubmate Noreen Brouder was second in 37 :00 and Sarah Baryga of Sli Cualann AC third in 37:08. All three are over 40.
First of the male masters was Myles Gibbons of SBR Ferns AC in 32:47; first junior was Nathan Harper of Skerries AC in 34:08.
In a well-supported team competition, Dunboyne AC, led by Jane Bandila, made it a home victory in the women’s competition. Clane AC was second and Crusaders AC third.
Rathfarnham WSAF AC proved best of the men, followed by Drogheda and District AC and Donore Harriers. Just shy of 700 completed the race with large groups from Bray Runners and Duleek and District greatly boosting the numbers.
1000s lining up for distance races on the road
Another road race with a well-earned reputation for quality is the Mallow 10-Mile, which also took place on Sunday and attracted an entry of over a thousand runners, most of them from Munster clubs.
Leading them home was Leevale AC’s Ryan Creech in 49 mins 35 secs, giving him over a minute to spare on Niall Shanahan of An Bru AC who was second in 50:37. In the battle for third place, Dean Casey of Ennis Track out-sprinted Peter Somba of Dunboyne AC and Kane Collins of Donore Harriers with just three seconds between them; their times were 51:55, 51:57 and 51:58.
Niamh Moore, also Leevale AC, was first woman in 59:37. Catherine Murphy of Eagle AC was second and first W45 in 62:40 and Orla Byrne of St Finbarr’s AC a close third in 62:45.
Biggest race on a busy weekend was the Omagh Half Marathon in Co Tyrone with 2,888 finishers. Winner was Gary Hegarty of Strive Racing in 65 mins 60 secs. Sergiu Ciobanu of Clonliffe Harriers was second in 67:55, Michael Fox of Armagh AC third in 68:01 and Tudor Moldovan of Clonliffe Harriers fourth in 68:01.
Leading home the women was Jessica Craig of North Down AC in 77: 52. Claire McGuigan of Lifford Strabane AC was second and first W40 in 78:07 and Helen McCready of Rosses AC third in 79:57.
Letterkenny won the men’s team race, with three finishers in the top eleven. Armagh AC was second and North Down AC third. A total of sixty men’s teams finished – an entry worthy of an All Ireland championship race. Leading home fifty-three women’s teams was St Peter’s AC followed by Galbally Runners and Carmen Runners.
A quick blast over 5k
Nenagh Olympic AC junior athletes dominated the Banagher 5km with Luke Purcell holding off his clubmate Daniel Ryan Ellis for victory in 14 mins 46 secs. Ellis’s time was 14:48. Ray Hynes of Donore Harriers was third and first M40 in 15:07.
Among the also rans was Irish international athlete Darragh McElhinney, better known for his track exploits, who clocked a time of 16:11. McElhinney’s UCD clubmate Danielle Donegan, a native of Tullamore, was first woman in 16:48. Junior athlete Heather Murphy of St Michael’s AC was second in 16:52 and Caroline Donnellan of Edenderry AC third and first W45 in 17:49.
Team winners were the Ferbane AC women and the Tullamore Harriers men. The race was the second round of the Offaly Road Series.
At the Wicklow Gaol Break Half Marathon and 10km, with 2,137 finishers between the two races, David Lewis in 79:41 and Lucy O’Malley in 87:44 were the winners of the half marathon. Fastest in the 10km were Cian O’Reilly of Annalee AC in 37:58 and Marta Kuclo in 40:50.
On Saturday (March 25), Colm Byrne in 80:48 and Deirdre Gibbons in 85:16 were the winners of the Ros Run Half Marathon in Roscommon.
In the 10km, a level crossing issue delayed participants by up to four minutes. Winner was Paddy Ryan in 34:34, with Emer O’Brien second and first woman in 37:57.
John Paul Williamson battled it out with Conal McCambridge of North Belfast Harriers won the Larne 10-Mile, also on Saturday.
Williamson finished in 51:45 and McCambridge in 51:54. Third in 52:24 was Scott Rankin of Foyle Valley AC. First woman in 60:44 was Caitlyn Harvey of Road Runners AC. Second woman and first W50 was Elisoa Crawford of North Belfast Harriers in 63:15. Third and first W40 was Fiona McQuillan of North Down AC in 63:31.
Here’s two we ran earlier…
Winning the Queen’s 5km in Belfast on Thursday (March 23) for a third time was Neil Johnston of Annadale Strides. Johnston’s winning time of 14 mins 25 secs was quicker than the 15:02 he ran for victory in 2018 and the 14:50 from 2019 – both in the pre-carbon plated shoe era.
Johnston’s win he beat Conall McClean of St Malachy’s AC in a chase for the line with McClean just one second adrift in 14:25. Craig McMeechan of North Down AC was third in 14:30 and Birhane Gebrebrhan of Annadale Striders fourth in 14:34. First junior was Lughaidh Mallon of Lagan Valley AC in 14:56 who is still under 17.
Fastest woman in 16:23 was Nakita Burke of Letterkenny AC. Hannah Gilliland of Annadale Striders was second in 16:47 and Sarah Lavery of Beechmount Harriers third in 16:59. Just shy of 700 completed the race.
At the City of Lisburn series of 5km races on Friday (March 24) John Craig of Annadale Striders clocked 15 mins 25 secs for the fastest time of the day. Fastest woman in 19:35 was Roseann Spence of Annadale Striders.
Golden Opening To World Masters Indoors
A large Irish team has travelled to the World Masters Indoors in Torun, Poland, where middle distance track competition began on Sunday with the 3000m races.
Ireland’s first gold medals came in the W80 race, won by Ann Woodlock of Donore Harriers in 19:42.28 and the W65 race won by Pauline Moran of Mayo AC in 12:31.18.
In a quality W55 race, Annette Kealy of Raheny Shamrock AC finished second in 10:39.75; winner was Lisa Michelle Rohl of the USA in 10:27.11.Both those times would have won the W45 and W50 titles.
In the W50 race, Michelle Lannon took bronze with a time of 10:5209, while in the W45 race, Mary Leech of Drogheda and District AC also took bronze clocking 11:16.85. Competition continues all week, with cross-country races on Monday, 800m races on Thursday and Friday, the 1500m on Friday and Saturday and the half marathon on Saturday. Details https://wmaci2023.com
Best of the Irish at the Raleigh Relays in North Carolina on Thursday and Friday (March 23/24)-was Jane Buckley of Leevale AC who finished eighth in the women’s 5000m with a time of 15:46.24.
In the men’s 10,000m, Shane Coffey’s time of 29:25.60 was inside the qualifying mark for the European U23 Championships. Coffey is a member of Naas AC
In other races, Alex O’Neill of Ennis TC clocked a time of 2:08.39 for 13th in the 800m; Laura Nicholson of Bandon AC finished 24th in the 1500m in 4:22.93, while in the men’s 5000m, Abdel Laadjel of Donore Harriers was 17th in 13:53.80, and Fionn Harrington of Bandon AC 83rd in 14:23.61. In the women’s 10,000m, Lauren Tinkler of Dublin City Harriers clocked a time of 36:10.64.
At the British Championships Mourne Marauder (16km, 1200m) in Co Down on Saturday (March 25), race winner was William Cartwright of Matlock AC in a time of 1 hrs 33mins 15 secs. Nichola Jackson of Keswick AC was first woman in 1:47.21.
First of the local runners was U23 athlete Jared Martin of Ballydrain Harriers who finished 24th in 1:46.42. Other Irish finishers to break two hours were Jonny Steede of Glens Runners fifth M40 in1:51.32, Joshua McAtee of Mourne Runners in 1:52.38, John Marrs of Glens Runners 1:56.24,Andrew Tess of BARF NI in 1:56.14 and James Miller of Mourne Runners in 1:59.40.
Of the women, Esther Dickson of Newry AC finished in 2:06.13, Martsje Hell of North Belfast Harriers in 2:17.32 and Bernadette O’Kane of Springwell RC in 2:24.11.
In Co Wicklow on the same day, Enda Cloake of Slaney Olympic AC won the Maurice Mullins 50km ultra from Lough Tay to Glencullen in a time of 4 hrs 8 mins 12 secs. Exactly two minutes behind for second was Adam Cunningham of Mourne Runners, while third in 4:19.12 was Barry McEvoy.
Finishing ninth and first woman was Elizabeth Wheeler in 5:03.28. Jan Corcoran of Le Cheile AC was second in 5:07.05 and Laura O’Driscoll of North East Runners third in 5:15.10.
Nick Hogan won the Clonmel Trail Half Marathon in Co Tipperary with a time of 1:43.23. First woman was Kath Carty in 2:02.09. That race also took place on Saturday.
At the SIAB Schools Cross-Country Championships, held in Sefton Park, Liverpool, on Saturday, the inter girls’ team, with two finishers in the top five, took silver while both the inter and junior boys’ teams finished third. Full results are not yet available.