On a great day for Tullamore Harriers at the National Cross Country Championships in Abbotstown on Sunday, November 24, with Liam Brady winning the National Senior Men’s Cross Country title, the Club’s juveniles and juniors also put in some amazing performances. It was great to see Liam in his post-race interview mentioning that he hoped his Senior victory would inspire younger athletes in the Club and encourage the work of the Club’s many juvenile coaches.
Danielle Donegan and Sinead Walsh had top three finishes in their races, while Eabhadh Multaney-Kelly came 11th in her U12 race and Ava O’Connor 4th in the U18 race. These performances were hard-earned. The course was mucky all round after heavy rain all week and for three hundred meters on the longer lap it was effectively a mud bath. Their podium placings were the thin end of the wedge though as there were great performances from all the thirty or so juveniles who competed.
Eabhadh Multaney-Kelly was prominent right from the start of the U12 Girls race. Her early front running paid off as she won a national medal for her 11 th place finish and another as part of the Leinster team which win the provincial competition. Saoirse Murtagh, Emily McDinnell, Kara Daly and Rachael Donagher all acquitted themselves well in what were tough conditions for such young runners.
The Girls U14 were covering 3000m which meant they ran two of the bigger laps. Blue and white was prominent from the gun with Sinead Walsh in the leading pack. After a lap the pace was upped and Sinead found herself fighting hard in fifth place. She continued to run well and in the last four hundred meters sprinted strongly to get up for third place. Mette Cleary continued her breakthrough season with a creditable 57 th place finish. The team was rounded out by Meabh Rouse, Polly Duffy and Rachael Donegan who all fought hard right to the finish. In the Girls U16 race Ruby Stueven represented Tullamore Harriers and in a race in which over 150 started she should be very happy with her 14 th place finish. Ruby has in the past two years gained a lot of experience and is proving herself a tough competitor in both provincial and national competitions.
The Women’s U18 and Junior races were combined to act as trials for the European Cross Country Championships. The pace was hot from the gun and Tullamore singlets were visible in the early stages with Danielle Donegan and Ava O’Connor in the lead pack. After the first kilometre the race started to string out and Danielle found herself in fourth place and constantly pulling clear of the main pack. In the mud at the bottom end of the course on the last lap Danielle closed up on Mayo’s Maeve Gallagher and Donegal’s Sarah Kelly. In the final run in she got past the two to win a fine silver medal. Her great performance resulted in her selection for the Irish squad in the European Cross Country Championships in Lisbon in two weeks’ time.
Not far behind came Ava O’Connor who finished 11 th and considering she’s only U17 showed loads of promise for the years ahead in this competition. Laura Mooney was only back a month from injury and should be delighted with her 39 th place finish. The team was rounded out by Dearbhail Cuddy and Sian Corrigan who fought all the way through the tough conditions.
Like the Women, the U18 and Junior Men ran a combined race. The 6000m distance saw them running four of the longer laps and conditions were rough from the start and the pace was very fast at the front. Ronan Hyland led the Harriers team home with a decent 55 th place finish. Next home was Mick Murphy who came 62 nd , with Cian Law, Cian Murphy and Darragh Carroll coming through the pack well over the course of the four laps. Three of this Tullamore squad are U17 with three
years of eligibility left in this competition so this augurs well for the years ahead.
Brady wins National Cross Country Championship 2019
What an emotional day for those Harriers members present at Abbottstown for the National Cross Country Championships and indeed those following on social media. The Senior Men’s 10,000m race started shortly after Danielle Donegan’s brilliant silver medal in the Junior Women’s race.
Right from the start Liam Brady positioned himself at the front of the race, after the field clawed back an early break from a Clonmel athlete, Liam made a burst and quickly opened a 25m gap. This lead grew to around 70m and as the athletes entered the last 1500m lap the gap was closing.
Pursued by Brian Fay of Raheny Shamrock and Sean Tobin of Clonmel, the lead closed to about 10m, before Liam in a final burst pulled away on the run in to win the coveted Athletics Ireland National Senior Cross Country title. Liam’s popularity was demonstrated by the huge reception he received from his fellow athletes and a large number of spectators after he crossed the finishing line. After receiving his gold medal, Liam gave an emotional straight from the heart interview to the assembled media.
Along the way to this title, Liam was National U19 Champion on home ground in 2010, National U23 Champion in 2014 and National Intermediate Champion in Tuam in 2015. Liam has had an outstanding season to date with a fine 3 rd place in the Autumn Open International also in Abbotstown, winning his seventh in a row Offaly title in Killeigh and retaining his Leinster Senior crown in Ferbane.
Liam became the first Tullamore Harrier to win the National Senior Men’s Cross Country, the previous best finishing position was John O’Toole’s 3 rd in the BLE Championship in Kilmacow, Co Kilkenny in 1984. Mick Neville from Tullamore wore the colours of Donore Harriers when winning the AAU title in Santry in 1962.
By virtue of his win, Liam will be automatically selected for the Irish Men’s team for the European Championships in Lisbon. Liam was last on the team in 2016 when he finished 4 th in the National Senior and narrowly missed selection last year when finishing 7th. Next year the European Cross Country Championships will be held in Abbottstown and hopefully with an injury-free preparation period it will be fantastic to see Liam lead the Irish team on home turf.
Winter League 5k
The second race of the Winter League 2019 took place on Tuesday, November 19, on a chilly but perfect night for running. Leonard Mooney was the overall winner of the 5k race with a time of 17.01. First lady was Tara McKinney in 20.05. Team captains Martina Conlon, Andy O'Grady, Sean Reynolds and Michelle Mullaney are watching the scores very closely before the final round on December 1. Well done everyone.
Full Results: 1 Leonard Mooney 17.01, 2 Michael O'Brien 17.06, 3 Conor Butler
17.12, 4 Catch Grennan 17.26, 5 Cian Martin 17.32, 6 Padraig Berry 17.43, 7 Glenn Finlay 17.48,
8 Michael Murphy 18.04, 9 Darren Butler 18.19, 10 Jonathan Dunne 18.27, 11 Liam Byrne 18.44,
12 Jody O'Reilly 18.47, 13 Cathal Dunne 19.05, 14 Alan Heffernan 19.23, 15 Shane Origan 19.26,
16 Leonard Owens 19.39, 17 John Donegan 19.50, 18 Jason McDermott 19.52, 19 Thomas Flaherty
19.55, 20 Matthew O'Byrne 20.03, 21 Aidan G. Egan 20.04, 22 Peter Bennett 20.04, 23 Tara
McKinney 20.05, 24 Marie Triona Keane 20.06, 25 Sean Reynolds 20.06, 26 Richie Galvin 20.16,
27 Finian McDermott 20.24, 28 Evelyn Herlihy 20.29, 29 Fra Mollen 20.36, 30 Alan Mitchell 20.44,
31 Diarmuid Herlihy 21.03, 32 Sean Spollen 21.05, 33 Eylisa McCormack 21.07, 34 Leslie Cornally
21.21, 35 Anthony Hughes 21.36, 36 Dympna Fox 21.36, 37 Eugene Mann 21.42, 38 Adrian Martin
21.44, 39 Rita Daly 21.59, 40 Mark Condron 22.05, 41 Leonie Dolan 22.13, 42 Aoife Marron 22.34,
43 Mags Grennan 22.38, 44 Karen Martin 22.40, 45 Martina Conlon 22.42, 46 Mary Galvin 22.45,
47 Dennis Tennison Ihaza 22.53, 48 Jack Ryan 22.55, 49 Marie Donegan 23.07, 50 Brendan Carroll
23.09, 51 Joe White 23.13, 52 Denis Flynn 23.14, 53 Joe Wrafter 23.25, 54 Paul Hensey 23.33,
55 Jenna Stack 23.37, 56 Maeve Larkin 24.23, 57 Noreen Hunt 24.55, 58 Lorcan Scally 24.55,
59 Maria Gallagher 25.01, 60 Tracey Stewart 25.23, 61 Andy O'Grady 26.10, 62 Paschal Naughton
26.20, 63 Aisling McCormack 26.25, 64 Olive Mannion 26.33, 65 Anne Cusack 26.34, 66 Kevin
Sampson 26.35, 67 Dave Kavanagh 26.39, 68 Martina Lydon 26.51, 69 Jim Langan 27.06, 70 Noel
Browne 27.24, 71 Sharon Daly 27.26, 72 Angela Martin 29.09, 73 Liz Ryan 29.10, 74 Richeal Murtagh
29.11, 75 Mary Fox Mann 29.35.
Sun 1st December Tullamore Harriers Winter League Round 3 – 2 mile Road Race
Tues 17th December Tullamore Harriers Christmas Grand National.
A list of AAI-licensed fixtures is available on www.athleticsireland.ie
Tullamore Harriers Couch to 5K 2020
With just 6 weeks to the 2020 Tullamore Harriers C25K why not book your place in advance with our online booking option? Starting on January 6th and each Monday and Wednesday at 6.30pm for 10 weeks. At a cost of €25 that is only €1 per session so it is excellent value for money. The C25K programme is ideal for people who want to get fit but perhaps haven’t been physically active for a while or are too embarrassed to be seen out of breath and out of shape. It requires commitment and perseverance but the overall benefits are so worthwhile. The sessions usually involve 40 to 50 minutes of exercise including warm-up and cool down. All sessions are supervised by Tullamore Harriers members and you will be advised and supported every step of the way. The programme will involve 2 group sessions per week and another training session is advised at the weekend also.
So register online here and don’t miss your chance to be part of it:
Training for adults every Tuesday and Thursday at 6.30pm and Sunday at 8.00am except on race days. New members always welcome. Please contact Leslie Buckley 087-6130971 or Anna Hyland Guilfoyle 086-8248928 or any club member. Full details regarding Juvenile training on tullamore.com
Club Registration 2020
Application forms for club registration 2020 are available at the clubhouse, please contact Mary Daly, Club Registrar, 086-1906747, or any committee member, if any queries.
Access to Facilities
Please note that use of the club’s facilities, including the tarmac track, is restricted to members of the club.