Duffy and Donegan strike gold in Wexford
Tullamore Harriers stalwarts have known for a long time that Luke Duffy and Ava O'Connor had great potential in cross country and on Sunday both passed the acid test at the Leinster Cross Country in Wexford where they won gold in the U13 Boys and U15 Girls respectively. Two other Harriers athletes picked up medals on the day, with Andrea Ryan and Danielle Donegan both competing for gold in the lead packs of their races too in tough conditions in Adamstown.
While it didn't rain the ground was very mucky after weeks of downpours and this along with two tough hills and very cold and windy conditions meant that runners had to really be at their best to get into the medals. The Sunday mornings on Croghan hill are obviously paying off and the athletes, parents and coaches are very grateful to Croghan GAA club St.
Brigid's for facilitating this.
Luke Duffy had already won a medal in the U14 Boys race a fortnight ago so was expected to do well in the U13 race. He was quickly to the front and settled in the lead pack of a field that included 140 runners. After the first kilometre Luke started to push the pace and he and Myles Hewlett of Wexford broke clear. Luke made the decisive move at the base of the last hill and quickly started to stretch clear and got home with a comfortable seven second margin of victory. Jack Donegan, Ronan Murray, Ronan Dooley, Peter Charles and Peter McKeagney all also competed well in this big field of runners.
In the U15 race there was a fast pace right from the start and Ava O'Connor went with the early leader Hannah Kehoe of Kilkenny and they quickly gapped the chasing field. After the first mile young Kehoe had a slight lead on Ava and over the next mile stretched her lead to thirty metres or so. However, with three hundred metres to go Ava surged and quickly caught up on the leader and went on to be clear winner. Ava adds this club Leinster title to a schools Leinster cross country title and track 800m victory that she had earlier in the year. Sarah Condron, Cara Martin and Hannah Larkin all did well too in a competitive race.
After a slow start in the U17 Girls race Danielle Donegan started to push the pace and quickly gapped the field. She went on to have a twenty metre lead at one point before Holly Brennan of Meath gave chase. The two pushed on over the last lap and raced one another for victory. While Danielle came second she really gave it her all and this was her second silver having two weeks ago been on the podium in Navan. Derbhail Cuddy too showed true grit to finish 16th, her best ever Leinster performance.
In the Under 11 race young Andrea Ryan was quickly to the front and despite losing both her spikes led the field all the way to the finishing straight. She got caught in the finishing sprint but still her run was excellent and she should be delighted with her Leinster medal. She is great talent and huge prospect for the future. Polly Duffy, Eimear Cotter, Rachel Donegan, Laura Condron, Ellie Fox, Eabha Owens, Aine Larkin, Faye Kelly and Ailbhe Hynes all competed well in this age group.
Others to do well for the Harriers were Emily Cunningham, Aisling Cotter, Sinead Walsh, Meadbh Rouse, Ella McNally, Imelda Lambe, Mette Cleary, Ava Spollen, Jane Maher, Cian Law, David Owens, Ronan Murray, Nacho, Philip King, Connor Dunne, James Dunne, Cian Martin, Claire Rafter, Christopher Whittle, Aaron Mangan, Cian Horkan, Dylan Leonard, Conor Kinnearney, Eoin Rouse, Conor Egan, David Coughlan, Donal Dooley and Owen Egan.
Leinster Senior Cross Country Championships
Nadine Donegan was the sole representative for the Harriers ladies at the Leinster Championships in Wexford last Sunday. The course at Adamstown in Wexford was a tough one with challenging drags. Nadine put in a great performance to finish 7th overall in 21.00 for the 6000m race in a very competitive field. On what was a bitterly cold day, the men’s team of Pauric Ennis (23rd 38.00); Padraig Berry (33rd 38.53); Leonard Mooney (48th 39.56); Anthony Harpur (70th 42.08); Darren Butler (71st 42.18); Robbie Westman (74th 42.58) and Peter Bennett (85 th 46.58) all battled hard for the team in a very tough 10,000 race. The men’s team finished the day as 9th club and 5th county. Well done to all who raced.
Well done to Rita Daly who was 3rd lady home and 7th overall in the Belleek Marathon Challenge in Ballina, Co Mayo last Sunday. Rita finished the testing course in 3.48.30 just a few weeks after running the Amsterdam marathon.
Remembrance Run 5K
David Murray, Ray Murray and John O Connell took part in the Remembrance Run 5k in the Phoenix Park last weekend. The event encourages people of all levels of fitness to walk, jog or run together through the Park while remembering family or friends who have passed.
Sun 26th : National Senior Cross Country Championships, Abbottstown
Thurs 16th Harriers Winter League Rd 2
Tues 5th : Harriers Winter League Rd 3, 5k
Sun 17th : National Novice Cross Country Championships, WIT
Tues 19th : Harriers Grand National
Mon 25th : GOAL Mile
Sun 31st : Harriers Round the Houses
A list of AAI-licensed fixtures is available on www.athleticsireland.ie
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 Adrian Martin 086-8727311 or Mary Daly 086-1906747 or any club member. Full details regarding Juvenile training on Tullamoreharriers.com.
Access to Harriers Facilities
Please note that use of the club’s facilities, including the tarmac track, is restricted to members of the club. Walkers are not permitted on the track during training sessions on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 6.30pm-8pm.
If you have a story for us, sports news, an event happening in your area, or if you want to submit pictures or videos, contact the Offaly Express team via email to firstname.lastname@example.org, or through our Facebook.
Subscribe or register today to discover more from DonegalLive.ie
Buy the e-paper of the Donegal Democrat, Donegal People's Press, Donegal Post and Inish Times here for instant access to Donegal's premier news titles.
Keep up with the latest news from Donegal with our daily newsletter featuring the most important stories of the day delivered to your inbox every evening at 5pm.