A: Grange, Mullingar, Co. Westmeath, Ireland | E: info@mullingarharriers.com

AON Mullingar Half Marathon 2024 (17th Mar)


No half measures at the Mullingar Half Marathon & 5k

The 9th staging of the AON Mullingar Half Marathon on St. Patrick’s Day saw the largest ever field assemble on Pearse Street, just coming up to 10am. The early morning clouds gave occasional drizzle but as the race progressed the drizzle turned to heavy showers at times, which was actually a welcome addition for the large field, as it kept runners nice and cool on what was a very mild day, but not so pleasant for the large number of spectators along the course. With a record sell-out of 1,700 entries, it was a fantastic fundraising success for charity partner TEAM (Temporary Emergency Accommodation Mullingar).

For Mullingar Harriers, it was our biggest participation ever, with 73 finishers, and the majority of the excellent pacers were also club athletes. We will get to the finishing highlights in a moment, but let’s savour the atmosphere, as from the record entry of 1,700 nearly 1,400 runners of all ages and abilities headed off into a light breeze out of town just after 10am. The first 3k brought runners past St. Loman’s Hospital and across the bypass, before turning right and on to Curraghmore. Just after 5k, at the site of the old primary school, was the first of a number of well manned water and feed stations. Well stocked with water and fruit, there was plenty for all who wished to avail of the “goodies”. Heavy rain came in the following few kilometres as the runners made their way through Marlinstown Bog and on through Wooddown. Large crowds gathered at house entrances and at a number of road junctions to cheer everyone on. Indeed, there were several offering sweets and biscuits to help the runners along. Emerging through Greatdown and up “heartbreak hill” to cross over the N4 road and down onto the Canal, the runners reached the 13k mark. Just 8k to go on a Canal route we regularly travel on our Sunday morning long runs. For some participants, the lack of long running on those Sunday mornings was beginning to bite but the comradery of athletes is a joy to behold as in those lung bursting and muscle aching kilometres along the Canal, there was lots of encouraging remarks and sweets offered to keep spirits up. The clock was our enemy, but many were focused on individual targets or to remember loved ones in those last kilometres.

At last, off the Canal just after Saunders Bridge and down into a crescendo of noise along Millmount Road, before turning into the town park. The final 100 metres was pure joy, with family and friends waiting, as athletes reached the finish line. After the finish line the bag with the medal, T-shirt and plenty of more refreshments was gratefully received. This was a superbly organised event, with road closures, top class stewarding and something for everyone on the roads and streets around Mullingar on St Patrick’s Day 2024. We’ll be back!

For the record, Mullingar Harriers won both the men and women team events. Andrew Nevin was 2nd overall in 1 hour 12 minutes 27 seconds, James Keegan was 6th in 1:14:18 and with Kedagh Geoghegan (1:15:37) and Eoin Clarke (1:19:50) 3rd in his master category, they made up the winning men team. Niamh McEntegart was 3rd woman in 1 hour 25 minutes 40 seconds, and with Mary Stuart (1:32:13) 3rd in her master category, Aisling Corcoran (1:32:32) and Criona Reid (1:32:33), they made up the winning women team. Eddie Newman won his master category with 1:22:15.

Among the very big squad from Mullingar Harriers were a few men that are currently in the transfer system, so even though not technically members we’ll include them anyway for completeness. Other finishers included Alan Crowley (1:19:59), Enda O’Carolan (1:20:47), Andy Boyhan (1:21:11), Kamil Orenczuk (1:24:04), Tony Doran (1:25:17), Kyle Smith (1:25:59), Enda Seery (1:27:26), Mick Fagan (1:27:28), Tommy Byrne (1:28:19), Val Bohan (1:28:44), Darren Carroll (1:28:45), Patrick Muldoon (1:29:04), Liam McGlynn (1:31:23), Mark Geoghegan (1:31:42), Dara O’Shea (1:31:46), Tyrone Brunton (1:31:54), Jason McKevitt (1:32:33), Declan Claffey (1:33:37), Brian Collentine (1:33:49), Aelish McGovern (1:34:18), Therese Glynn (1:34:49), Orlaith Flanagan (1:35:37), Aine O’Reilly (1:35:59), Laura Geoghegan (1:35:43), Kieran Dodrill (1:36:00), Jacintha Reilly (1:35:57), Orla McLaughlin (1:36:18), Colm Walsh (1:37:54), Paul Ginnell (1:37:59), Meabh Killalea (1:38:22), Maria Doherty (1:39.09), John McNamara (1:39:39), Richie Kelly (1:40:29), Marie Louise Johnston (1:42:09), Eva McMorrow Byrne (1:42:31), Eithne Spellman (1:43:37), Joan Hickson (1:43:56), Niamh Doherty (1:44:14), Jane Creevy (1:46:02), John Keane (1:46:30), Brendan Rice (1:46:31), Caroline Mullen (1:48:27), Laura Fitzpatrick (1:47:54), Shaun Mills (1:47:58), Aisling Farrell (1:48:58), Sharon O’Dowd (1:50:39), Julie McLaughlin (1:51:50), Terri Greene (1:54:22), Emer Savage (1:54:06), Ray Smyth (1:54:37), Nuala Moran (1:55:10), Patricia Broderick (1:56:33), Andy Quinn (1:56:37), Rodney Farry (1:57:02), Siobhan Farry (1:57:56), Catherine Gavin (1:58:23), Sinead Campbell (1:58:57), Joan Mulvihill (2:02:05), Kevin O’Brien (2:02:08), Brian O’Loughlin (2:03:17), Martin Mullen (2:06:17), Michael O’Sullivan (2:06:36) and Declan Costello (2:21:23) [MO’S].

There was also a 5k Race, which attracted an excellent entry of nearly 300, including 30 from Mullingar Harriers. The half marathon started first, followed by the 5k a few minutes after and it finished in the town park where everyone could wait to welcome the half marathon runners back, which really helped to fill the gap of over an hour while the half marathon runners went out into the countryside before returning to finish in the park.

The Mullingar group was led home by Kris Foster taking the win in 17 minutes 1 second, followed by Txema Lozano 5th (19:16), Ailbhe O’Farrell 7th (19:34), Jessica Cunningham 8th (19:35) and Antonio Bertolo 9th (19:42). Following in behind was Mel Bohan (20:29), Noah Morgan (20:54), Paul McCool Junior (21:04), Alex Sheridan (21:05), Conor Mulvany (21:47), Ronan Kelly (21:47), Penny Bohan (22:02), Katie Bohan (22:32), Oisin Kilmurray (23:34), Fionn O’Donoghue (23:38), Huw Keaveney (23:41), Emma Broughan (23:48), Daniel Cosgrove (24:12), Blathnaid Peters (24:17), Vera McCool (24:21), Emma Lagan (24:39), Siofra O’Reilly (25:13), Austin Keaveney (25:35), Aaron Robinson (25:46), Paul McCool (26:26), Clare Cullinan (29:19), Lucy Mulvany (29:36), Luke Cosgrove (30:40), Grace Farry (31:32) and Amber O’Loughlin (31:32) [GD].