We’re now into August and still no signs coming from the government that we will be able to break out of our training pods of 15. Road races remain few and far between, with only limited numbers allowed to participate. A reasonable calendar of mountain races has been maintained, but still the numbers have been limited.
In the current environment, Mike and Susan have maintained their end of month time trials. Given the holiday season, it was probably to be expected that numbers would be lower for the last week of July, but the weather did not help either. Once again, we were treated to wet conditions, thankfully, though, not as bad as the those experienced previously.
We should start, however, by congratulating Padraig Sheehan for his win in the Popup Races-organised “Try and finish before Midnight” half marathon which took place on the Mondello circuit on Friday evening. In a small field of 57 runners, which also involved the well-known wheelchair racer, Patrick Monaghan (who clearly came in well ahead of the field), Padraig won in a super time, covering the 6 laps of the undulating circuit in a PB of 1:14:50 and producing negative splits in the process.
Another couple of road races had taken place last Sunday in Galbally in Co. Tyrone, 5 mile and 5k events. Again, we had just the one participant. Alan Kavanagh placed 20th in the 5k in a field of 88 and a time of 24:54.
The Tuesday evening time trials involved 800m and 3,000m races on a wet track in Irishtown stadium. The first of two 800m events involved Brendan Glynn and John Gallagher who respectively finished in 2:45 and 3:15. The second had 4 runners, led home by Elliott O’Beirne, in his first running of the distance, with a great time of 2:11, followed by Michael O’Conor (2:16), Tomas Bradley (2:21) and Emily Sheils (2:34). We then move on to the 3,000m, of which there were three races. There were 38 runners overall. In the first, Brendan Glynn also took on the challenge, along with 9 other runners, leading from the start but overhauled by Luca Marchesotti who ran 12:27 to Brendan’s 12:46. Rebecca Byrne was the first woman home in 13:05. In the second event, Maurice Kelter stormed round the track in 10:20, with Emily Sheils running an excellent 11:08 in her first attempt at the distance. There was also a PB for Maura Mahoney, who ran 11:12, 17 seconds faster than her previous best time for the distance. The field was 14. In the last of the 3 races, Michael Kiely, not unsurprisingly, led the also 14-strong field home in a super 9:28, followed by Daragh O’Reilly in a strong 9:40, with Niamh Allen leading the women home in 9:43. Notable runs came from Kate O’Malley who ran 10:55, followed by Sarah Lyons (11:06 and ahead of fiancé Phelim Murray (11:16)!).
Sarah and Phelim headed over to the UK this weekend and took part in the Shrewsbury parkrun. Parkruns in the UK seem to be back in full swing and the couple joined 492 other runners for this event. Phelim came home in 35th place in 20:39, with Sarah finishing in 22:21, for 68th place overall and 3rd female finisher. Our exile in Australia, Kris Ryan, appears to have been enjoying parkruns down under for a while too. Whilst this weekend she appears to have been a tailwalker in Coomera, recently she placed 42nd overall and 15th female finisher in 25:27 in one of the events there. We also appear to have missed a surprise parkrun in Rostrevor mid-month for our newly-wed Lisa Shine, the club’s intrepid registrar. She was spirited away to the event without her prior knowledge by her mother, Mairin, her two siblings, Fiona and Anna, along with Emer Kenny and Olwyn Dunne, who were all in on the plan. They ran in formation as a group on the day, all recording times around 33 minutes, so not too demanding an experience!
Finally, we have one mountain race on which to report. It was another midweek event that took place this time in the mountains above our fair city. It was the Mountain Meitheal Fundraiser involving a clockwise loop of 11.8km around Fairy Castle and Ticknock. It was conducted on what was described as difficult terrain, with a climb of 480m, over a mix of fire roads and gravel tracks. We had 4 runners among the 108 who took part. Our contingent was led home by Donatas Jocius in 14th place in 57:48, followed by Raghnall O’Donoghue (34th in 61:28), Brian McGuckin (41st and 4th M50 in 64:01) and Michael Maughan (66th in 72:16).
Well done to all our racers! If any results have inadvertently been missed, please let us know.
Mountain Meitheal Fundraiser (IMRA race) (108)
Overall place Name Cat. Place Guntime
1 Paul Stephenson 1 00:51:40
60 Fiona Canavan 1 01:08:45
Crusaders AC runners
14 Donatas Jocius 00:57:48
34 Raghnall O’Donoghue 01:01:28
41 Brian McGuckin 01:04:01
66 Michael Maughan 01:12:16
Full results here: https://www.imra.ie/events/results/id/2076
Mondello Finish before Midnight half marathon (57)
Overall place Name Cat. Place Chiptime
1 Padraig Sheehan 1 01:14:50
11 Ciara Brady 1 01:30:24
Crusaders AC runner
1 Padraig Sheehan 01:14:50
Full results here: https://www.popupraces.ie/race/mondello-try-and-finish-before-midnight-marathon-and-half-marathonin-conjuction-with-donadea50k/#1_7AAEAD