Harriers athletes overcome conditions to claim provincial glory

THE Leinster Novice and Masters Road Race Championships took place on Bank Holiday Monday on a most miserable unseasonal day.

THE Leinster Novice and Masters Road Race Championships took place on Bank Holiday Monday on a most miserable unseasonal day.

Four teams from Tullamore Harriers made the trip to Gowran, Co Kilkenny and put in performances deserving of individual and team medals.

Their first medal winner was in the Novice Ladies race of 3000m which was run over two laps of the village of Gowran.

Michelle Mullaney worked her way through the field and was the leading lady going into the 2nd lap. She held this lead until the final 500m but was outrun in the final sprint to the line finishing in a most commendable 3rd place. It was a great achievement for Michelle.

Ber Daly, Mags Grennan and Mary Casey also ran very well to make up the novice team.

Next up was the Masters Ladies, where Liz Cuskelly was in contention for a medal from early in the race. She held her placing well finishing in 3rd place overall and winning her age group also.

Her team mates of Una Mullen, Rita Daly and Martina Conlon added to the effort by winning bronze club and county medals. Martina was 2nd in her age group.

Next was the Novice Mens race where Tullamore’s only representative was Pauric Sweeney in this fast and furious race.

The two teams of Male Masters and Over 50 were involved in the final race of the day which was run over 6000m. Here too Tullamore Harriers featured well in the fight for medals.

In the Masters race, Catch Grennan was to the front of the pack from the start and didn’t show any ill effects of his race in the Dochas Race the previous day. He finished 4th overall and won his age group into the bargin. John 0’Connell, Brendan Abbott and Matt Corcoran made up the team who were 4th club overall.

In the O-50’s team, John Todd won silver in his age group, Jim Langan was 1st O-60. Andy O’Grady made up the trio in this team.

Overall times: 3000m Novice Michelle Mullaney 11.30, Bernie Daly 13.11, Mags Grennan 13.54, Mary Casey 14.33. Masters Liz Cuskelly 12.04, Una Mullen 12.48, Rita Daly 11.05, Martina Conlon 13.07. Men: 6000m Novice Pauric Sweeney 24.18, Masters Catch Grennan 20.12, Brendan Abbott 22.30, John O’Connell 24.10, Matt Corcoran 25.09. Masters 0-50 John Todd 23.03, Andy O’Grady 25.54, Jim Langan 29.31.

Superb run for Ian

Almost 3800 runners lined up for the Belfast Marathon on Monday last. Among the record crowd was Tullamore Harriers athlete Ian O’Kelly who was competing in his 2nd marathon following his debut in Dublin City Marathon 6 months ago.

Rain and cold winds didn’t deter the ever improving Ian in his endeavour. He crossed the line in 3hrs 4mins taking 15 minutes off his previous marathon time proving his dedicated training paid off.

FIXTURES

Saturday, May 19 - Leinster Senior Road race, Rathdrum, Co Wicklow; Tuesday, May 22 - Enfield 5k, Johnstown Bridge, Co Meath; Sunday, May 27 - Abbeyleix 10k; Saturday, June 2 - AVIVA All-Ireland Schools T & F in Tullamore; Monday, June 4 - Ladies Mini Marathon; Friday, June 8 - Ballinagar 10k.