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

Q3, 2019 News & Reports – July to September




Rathfarnham 5k

Terrible overnight rain gave way to a fresh start on Sunday morning 29th September and by lunchtime conditions were perfect for the Rathfarnham 5k. With an extremely high level of organisation and a good course with few hills the race has a strong reputation for fast times. Among the more than 800 finishers was Michelle Bohan, finishing well up in 19:20, to place in the top twenty senior women, an excellent result.

Fast Lane Half Marathon

The Fast Lane Half Marathon in Clondalkin, Dublin early on Sunday morning 29th September was a new race on the fixture list. The course took in long stretches of the tow path along the Grand Canal and some quiet local roads giving it more of a rural feel on the edge of the city, and being relatively flat, it was billed as a race for runners with an allergy to hills! Enda Seery used the race as part of his preparations for the Frankfurt Marathon at the end of October and was very satisfied with his finish time of 1:36, which will give him good reassurance that his training is going well.

Eco Trail Wicklow 45km

Jenny Algar raced the international Eco Trail Wicklow 45km race on Saturday morning 28th September and finished 3rd lady (1st Irish lady). The route began at Bray harbour and headed up the steep climb to Bray Head before turning west towards the Little Sugar Loaf and Great Sugar Loaf Mountains, which was a mixed terrain trail, passing through Kilruddery Estate on the way to the Wicklow Way before finally turning for home at the foot of Powerscourt Waterfall and returning to Bray again. The route climbed 1,660m and was no easy feat, taking Jenny 5 hours and 6 minutes to complete, finishing 23rd overall of 185 starters, so it was quite some running!

Westmeath Schools Cross Country

In between two very wet days, we were very lucky to catch a good weather window on Wednesday 25th September for the Westmeath Schools Cross Country in Belvedere. The event took place in overcast but warm and mostly dry conditions and the odd light shower wasn’t enough to spoil the event for the very big number of young girls and boys that had come from schools right across Westmeath. The grounds in Belvedere looked beautiful and underfoot conditions were good for running. The hard work put in by volunteers from the Club in setting up the course meant that everything was ready on the day. Numbers taking part were up on last year thanks to the good forecast that turned out to be quite accurate and meant that very big numbers attended across all ages, particularly in the primary schools races and it was great to see such enthusiasm in the competitors from the youngest first class pupil to the eldest sixth year student, cheered on by a big crowd of teachers and parents. The event continues to be very popular and we hope that schools and parents will continue to support this excellent event in future years. We are indebted to the many volunteers, members and friends of Mullingar Harriers, who turned up to help officiate and make the day a success.

Thanks to Gerard Gavin who put in a great shift running as the “rabbit” in the primary schools races, giving all the young competitors a clear person to chase so no one got confused or lost on the course. Sincere thanks also to the Westmeath Civil Defence who were on hand in good numbers to look after any first aid needs with their customary cool calm professionalism. The Management and staff at Belvedere House and Gardens were also of great help in organising the day at a venue that is ideal for hosting such an event and the grounds came in for particular praise from the many parents that attended to watch. Thanks too to the local Gardaí who attended and ensured traffic entered and exited Belvedere safely. Finally, our thanks to the teachers and schools for competing in great numbers to ensure that the event continues to be one of the most eagerly awaited sporting events on the calendar for those of school going age in Westmeath.

The Primary school top 20 individual finishers and team scores and the Secondary schools top 10 individual finishers are available HERE. Congratulations to all who took part and as usual, the standard of competition was extremely high and medals were hard won for all the competitors. Team medals will be distributed to the schools this week.

Star of the Sea AC Cross Country

Anyone who decided not to travel to the Star of the Sea AC Cross Country in Co. Meath on Sunday morning 22nd September because of the early morning very heavy rain in Westmeath really missed out because there was little or no rain in Meath. The event was run off in a few hours in overcast but very warm conditions with only one very light shower midway through the event. The Star of the Sea AC open cross country has been the traditional opening fixture of the cross country season for Mullingar for many years and this year a good group of 37 Club members competed and our underage athletes recorded 24 top-ten finish places, including four individual winners, and they won six sets of team medals. Just two adult members took part, both winning prizes.

First into action was Isabelle Mulligan, our sole representative in the u/9 girls 500m where she battled hard, finishing strongly, out of the medals but still a very positive debut race for the Club. Also running solo in his race, Odhran Flynn was all smiles at the end of the u/9 boys 500m despite not winning a medal, but he really enjoyed the race and experience of competition. We had another solo performance in the u/10 girls 500m where Roisin Flynn ran a fine race, finishing very fast in eighth place, just missing an individual prize by a narrow margin in a tight race. We had our first team in the u/10 boys 500m where Greg McDonnell (eighth), Jack Geoghegan (tenth) and Zack O’Leary (twelfth) won the first set of team medals for Mullingar, team silver.

Tianna O’Leary impressed in the u/11 girls 1,000m producing a terrific sprint finish to take second place. Despite good team support from Eleanor Mulligan, Aiveen Lynch and Kiera Vitale, the girls finished just out of the team medals. Oliver Lynch had no team with him in the u/11 boys 1,000m so nothing for it but to run as hard as he could for an individual prize, which he did by finishing in an excellent fourth place. Lydia McDonnell ran a conservative pace in the early stages of the u/12 girls 1,500m so had plenty of pace in reserve for a fast finish, out of the prizes on this occasion but the experience will give her great confidence for future events. Matthew Molloy was our first individual winner, in the u/12 boys 1,500m where he looked very strong, and with Luke Greene producing a terrific sprint finish in second place, and support from Donncha Flynn finishing well up, it was team gold for the boys. Orla Manning bided her time over the long one lap course of the u/13 girls 1,500m and produced a very fast finish to take sixth place and win an individual prize.

Four in the top ten assured Mullingar of team gold in the u/13 boys 1,800m with great performances from Conor Liston (third), Jamie Wallace (fourth), Luke O’Leary (sixth) and Alex Lynch (tenth) to keep team gold coming Mullingar’s way. We had our biggest team in the u/14 girls 2,000m where Caoimhe Kilmurray (third), Adele Geoghegan (seventh), Leah Geoghegan (ninth), Shauna Traynor, Ellen Foran and Lucy Donnelly packed really well to win another team gold for Mullingar. No surprise that our second individual winner of the day was Philip McCartan in the u/14 boys 2,200m and with Callum Costello (third), Conor Sherwin (fifth) and David Burke (eighth) running brilliantly and packing well, it was another team gold for Mullingar. Ross Killalea was just too good for the opposition in the u/15 boys 2,500m and dominated from early on to win well clear in an excellent performance. We finished the underage programme with the u/17 girls 4,500m where it was all about competition between the Mullingar girls, Amy Geoghegan eventually pulling clear to win, ahead of Phoebe Bate (second), Meabh Killalea (fourth) and Annie Kilmurray packing tight to easily win team gold to end on a high note.

The Star of the Sea Shield for best juvenile Club was retained by Ratoath AC when they recorded a narrow two point victory over Mullingar with a score of 66 points to 64 points. With the conclusion of the juvenile programme, our attention turned to the final race of the day, the men’s 6,000m, which was a combined race for junior, senior and master athletes where Mullingar was represented by James Carton and Sean Liston, both competing really well over the four laps of the tough hilly course, with James coming home first in his master category and Sean second in his master category.

We saw some great individual performances in Meath, especially from some of our newcomers in the younger ages, which we hope will translate into success in the Leinster Championships in October. Thanks to the parents and other supporters who travelled to Meath to support and cheer on our athletes.

Dublin Half Marathon

The final race in the Dublin Race Series, the Dublin Half Marathon, took place on Sunday morning 21st September in the Phoenix Park on a very challenging course with some rolling hills and some steep inclines, in warm conditions but with a significant headwind on sections of the course proving difficult and testing for the nearly 7,000 finishers, among them a number from Mullingar using the race to gauge how their training is progressing for the Dublin City Marathon at the end of October.

Leading the Mullingar group home was Kieran Nolan in 1:23:19, followed by Ger Brady (1:25:46), Stephen Naughton (1:37:11) fourth in his master category, Joan Hickson (1:46:18), Mervyn Kennedy (1:47:04), Michael O’Sullivan (1:50:05), Siobhan Farry (1:52:45) and Tommy Archbold (2:04:10). These were good performances by the Mullingar group in testing conditions and will give them all a boost of confidence ahead of their big test in October.

“Leg it! for LARCC” 5k

Now an established annual event, despite the damp misty weather on Sunday morning 15th September, the “Leg it! for LARCC” 5k run in Multyfarnham attracted a good entry of nearly one hundred, led home by race winner Evan McCormack in 17:38, ahead of Kieran Nolan in second place in 18:54, followed by Aisling Corcoran tenth overall and third woman in 22:38 and Christy Creagh (32:28) who were happy with their performances in this very well organised race in support of a very worthy cause.

Clonard 4 Mile

It’s not often you see a woman win an open mixed road race but when the woman is an Olympian of the calibre of Fionnuala McCormack (Kilcoole AC), it’s not too surprising that she led the entire field of just over 100 runners home at the third annual Clonard 4 mile in Co. Meath on Saturday morning 14th September. In perfect warm dry and calm conditions, she won in a time of 20:37. Finishing in fourth place behind her in 23:51 was our own Kieran Nolan, third man to finish and also competing was Patricia Broderick finishing well up in 29:31, taking second prize in her master category.

European Masters T&F

No stranger to International competition, Eileen Kenny was in action at the European Masters T&F in Italy on Sunday morning 8th September. While the track events took place in Jesola, about 10km east of Venice, the cross country course was in Caorle, about 20km further east from Jesola. Eileen competed in the 4,000m cross country event, which was two laps of a grassy flat circuit with one short slight uphill section, which suited her well and she finished an excellent sixth place, not far off the medal places. Better news on the team front though, as Eileen was second scorer on the Irish team that finished third in their category, earning her a European Masters team bronze medal, which is fantastic.

Eileen was in action again on Friday morning 13th September in the 5,000m at the track in Jesola where she raced hard from the start and was always in contention for a medal but despite her best efforts the pace over the final laps was just a bit too quick for her liking and she finished just out of the medals in fifth place, not far off the medal places, but a great result against top class opposition.

The race walk course was in Eraclea Mare, a town about 6km from Jesola, where Sean McMullin headed early on Wednesday morning 11th September to compete in the 10km road walk, which took place over 7 laps. Though he gave it his best as always in this very technical event, Sean had to settle for sixth place, out of the medals on this occasion. As a measure of the standard of competition that Sean faced, the race was won in a new masters World record and in fact all three medal winners were inside the old masters World record time.

Sean rounded off his Championships in the medals when he competed on Saturday morning 14th September in Eraclea Mare in the 20k road walk hoping that the longer distance would suit him better. However, rather than compete in his own age category, he dropped down several categories to make up an Irish team, which proved an excellent tactical decision as Sean was the third score for Ireland that won the team title, earning Sean a well deserved European Masters team gold medal.

Lough Sheelin Challenge 16 Mile & 10k

In near perfect cool, dry and calm conditions on Sunday morning 8th September, the Lough Sheelin Challenge 16 Mile and 10k took place. Hosted by St. Brigid’s AC in Oldcastle, Co. Meath, the 16 mile race is essentially a lap of the country roads around Lough Sheelin, but it’s a tough hilly course. The distance and timing in advance of the Dublin City Marathon means it continues to grow in popularity, with 124 completing the course this year. Being so local, no surprise that the maroon and white of Mullingar was to the fore, and finishing well up in 7th place was Patrick Muldoon in 1:47:09 followed by Stephen Naughton in 1:57:25, which are very good results and will give them a very good idea of how their marathon training is progressing.

While the main event was obviously the 16 mile race, there was also a 10k race, which attracted an entry of 61 where Mullingar had the winning man and woman, siblings Gerard Gavin and Linda Cunningham. Leading the field home in first place was Gerard Gavin in 37:38, followed by Pat Muldoon Senior (47:31) to win his master category, then came Brian Boyle (49:17) quickly followed by 1st woman Linda Cunningham (49:26). After the 10k race, they could then remain in the area to cheer on Patrick and Stephen in the closing stages of the 16 mile race.

Ireland West Three Quarter Marathon and 5k

There was a very good entry of just under 300 runners for the inaugural Ireland West Three Quarter Marathon and 5k organised by Swinford AC in Mayo on Saturday morning 7th September, which took place in beautiful cool and calm conditions, perfect for a good performance. The course in East Mayo was advertised as a fast one but it was actually quite hilly and difficult in places. Clearly focussed on her running, Criona Reid was delighted to finish in the top one hundred in the Three Quarter Marathon in a time of 2:45:23, which is a best time for her for the distance, the latest in a long line of best performances this year showing that she continues to improve, and she was also given 3rd place in her master category. Following closely behind was Jane Creevy finishing fast in 2:49:21 and the Mullingar trio was completed by Declan Costello crossing the line in 2:56:29. These are excellent performances and auger very well for good race times in the Dublin City Marathon in October.

There was also a 5k Race where Andrew Nevin was best of the 172 finishers, pulling clear in the final stages to win in 16:38, comfortably clear of the second place finisher.




Ultra-Trail du Mont Blanc

For most people, Mont Blanc is the highest peak in the Alps that they might see in the distance when on holidays on the Continent, but for David Fagan it was the focal point for his latest ultramarathon effort, the Ultra-Trail du Mont Blanc (UTMB), a 171km ultramarathon on a grueling circular trail through three countries, from the alpine town of Chamonix in France, into Italy, through Switzerland and finishing back at Chamonix, starting on Friday evening 30th August and finishing on Sunday morning 1st September. The race reached an altitude of about 2,500m, and snaked around Mont Blanc, but with over ten uphill and downhill sections, the total elevation gain was around 10,000m, so not for the faint hearted. As a measure of difficulty, typically about a third of the entrants are not able to complete the course every year, so as he headed off on Friday evening, David knew he was really up against it and would have to dig very deep to complete the course!

David started at 6pm on Friday evening and finished just after midday on Sunday, a total of just over 42 hours on the go. Of the 2,543 starters, 970 didn’t finish at all, so the enormity of the test completed by David is not to be underestimated and everyone at the Club congratulates him on his success in completing the “UTMB 2019”.

Tullamore Half Marathon

Tullamore Harriers AC hosted what must be one of the very the best organised events on the domestic road race calendar, the Tullamore Half Marathon on Saturday morning 31st August, which took place in very windy and showery conditions. To really test the more than 800 runners, the heavens opened about an hour into the race and a huge shower that lasted over five minutes absolutely soaked everyone to the skin. When the shower passed though, conditions were actually good for running and the wind was on the backs of the runners for the last six miles. The date of the race was ideal for those training for the Dublin City Marathon in October and as the race incorporated the Leinster Half Marathon and with Leinster honours up for grabs, it was no surprise that Mullingar was out in force and was very well represented by 23 adult members taking part.

The large Mullingar group was led home by the ever improving Evan McCormack in 1:18:21, a fine 22nd place overall, one place ahead of James Keegan (1:18:31), followed by Gerard Gavin (1:21:07), Alan Crowley improving his best for the distance by a minute (1:23:16), Eddie Newman (1:25:14), Gerard Brady (1:27:46), Michelle Bohan (1:32:35) seventh senior woman, followed by Sean Liston (1:33:04), Paul Ginnell (1:33:14), Stephen Naughton (1:33:47), Robin Jackson (1:34:12), Jennifer Algar (1:36:43), Michelle O’Halloran (1:38:56), Criona Reid (1:42:30) running her quickest for the distance (and if not mistaken has run all her best times from 5k to half marathon this year, so improving all the time), Ann Hall (1:43:13), Declan Costello (1:43:46), Aisling Corcoran (1:44:37), Joan Hickson (1:48:11), Siobhan Farry (1:48:01), Joanna Tyrrell (1:48:04), Linda O’Driscoll (1:52:59), Michael O’Sullivan (1:55:16) and Geraldine Langtry (1:55:24), all finishing strongly and delighted to be able to head to the hall in the Tullamore Harriers stadium to dry off and tuck in to the fine spread of food and refreshments to help them recover.

When the results of the Leinster Championship were separated, it was gold for Eddie Newman and Gerard Gavin in their master categories, bronze for Michelle Bohan in hers, and Jennifer Algar took bronze for third senior woman. Michelle O’Halloran and Michael O’Sullivan came close with fourth in their master categories and just missed medals. The master men team of Evan McCormack, Gerard Gavin and Alan Crowley finished 2nd Club in their master category to win team silver medals. We had four other teams that came close but just missed medals; Eddie Newman, Sean Liston and Paul Ginnell (4th Club in master category), Michelle Bohan, Jennifer Algar and Michelle O’Halloran (4th senior women Club), Michelle Bohan, Michelle O’Halloran and Criona Reid (4th Club in master category) and Even McCormack, James Keegan and Gerard Gavin (4th senior men Club).

Overall these were great individual and team performances and everyone is to be congratulated.

Portmarnock 5 Mile

Andrew Nevin was Mullingar’s sole representative at the Portmarnock 5 Mile on Thursday evening 29th August where he finished in 29:01 to place 4th of the 410 finishers.

Claregalway 10k

Fresh from winning the National Masters 3,000m title on the track the Sunday before, Maura Dervin returned to the road on Saturday evening 24th August to finish well up in seventy ninth of nearly 200 finishers of the Claregalway 10k in a time of 45:16 to take second prize in her master category.

Frank Duffy 10 Mile

The Frank Duffy 10 Mile in the Phoenix Park on Saturday morning 24th August had a huge entry of nearly 4,000 and among them was Ken Whitelaw finishing well up in 61:52, followed by Patrick Muldoon (65:22), Mervyn Kennedy (84:34), Tommy Archbold (88:42) and Stephen Bell (92:27) flying the flag for Mullingar among the throng of runners in the Park.

Celbridge AC 5k

PJ Ballesty was Mullingar’s sole representative among the 328 that competed in the Celbridge AC 5k on Thursday evening 22nd August where he was happy to record a time of 43:36.

AAI National Masters T&F

The AAI National Masters T&F took place on Sunday 18th August in a warm but very showery Tullamore. Some of the showers were so heavy at times that competition had to be temporarily halted on several occasions during the day but fortunately the group of five Mullingar masters escaped the worst of the rain and turned in sterling performances with each of them winning a medal.

Lucky to get into action before the rain came, Tom Walsh competed in the weight for distance event where he was delighted to finish third and win the All-Ireland bronze medal and put Mullingar on the medal board. Better known as cross country and road race runners, Maura Dervin and Eileen Kenny made their debuts on the track when they contested the 3,000m and though it was windy they were lucky to avoid the worst of the rain and were delighted to mark their debuts by winning their respective categories and win their first track All-Ireland medals. We finished with the 5,000m race walk where Colm Walsh and Sean McMullin were in brilliant form in this extremely technical event, with Colm finishing second in his category and Sean winning his category, each adding to their growing collections of track race walk medals. Five athletes and five medals meant it was a very fruitful day for the Club, so congratulations to Tom, Maura, Eileen, Colm and Sean on their All-Ireland successes.

Castlepollard 5k

The hard work put in by the organising committee at North Westmeath AC paid off handsomely on Wednesday evening 14th August when the Castlepollard 5k proved yet again to be a great success with over 370 finishers completing the course that started and finished near the square in the village and took in the fabulous grounds of Tullynally Castle. There was a very heavy shower before the start but it cleared quickly and while it was quite windy and the road was wet, the course was excellent as usual and when the damp runners were finished they were treated to the customary fine spread of refreshments, a hallmark feature of the event.

Being local, Mullingar was out in force and 46 Club members took part, winning 15 individual prizes and taking the men and women team titles too. After the races for boys and girls under 6, 8, 10 and 12 years of age on the grass in the village square, and then a 2k out and back race on part of the 5k course for boys and girls under 16 years of age, the 5k main event started.

The race was won by Hiko Tanosa (Dundrum South Dublin AC) in a swift 14:48, ahead of Brian O’Kelly (Crusaders AC) in second (15:06) and Ronan Maguire (Oisin McGrath AC (OMG), an Enniskillen club) in third (15:26). Mullingar’s first finisher was Andrew Nevin (16:19) and with great team support from James Keegan (16:32) and Evan McCormack (16:54) the Mullingar men finished first Club. Following them in was Gerard Gavin (17:15) first in his master category, Tom McGrath (17:40) first in his master category, Alan Crowley (17:47), Kieran Nolan (17:53), Cormac Finnerty (18:14), Patrick Muldoon (18:17) and Gerard Brady (18:34).

Fifth woman overall was Aine O’Reilly (18:25) second in her master category, and with Sinead Whitelaw (18:43) third senior woman to finish and Michele Bohan (19:18) second in her master category finishing strongly in support, the Mullingar women finished first Club. Next in was Stephen Naughton (19:48), followed by Liam McGlynn (20:07), Enda O’Carolan (20:13), Jenny Algar (20:18) sixth senior woman, Catriona Kennedy (20:30) first junior woman, Ollie Gaffney (20:32), Ciara Dillon (21:00), Amy Mahony (21:00), Aoife Darby (21:09) second junior woman, Andrea Brady (21:31), Michael O’Sullivan (21:31) first in his master category, Joan Flynn (21:30), Pat Muldoon Senior (21:36) third in his master category, Kevin O’Brien (21:50), Jane Creevy (21:54), John Bannon (22:12), Michelle O’Halloran (22:18) second in her master category, Joan Hickson (22:25), Joanna Tyrrell (22:26) third in her master category, Patricia Broderick (22:28) first in her master category, Criona Reid (22:30), Linda O’Driscoll (22:49), Linda Cunningham (22:57), Siobhan Farry (23:06), Brigid McCabe (24:28) first in her master category, Lorraine Brady (25:44), Michelle Kavanagh (27:06), Karen Gaffney (30:32), Christy Creagh (31:39), Donal Crowley (33:39), Des Walsh (38:46), Geraldine Walsh (38:46) third in her master category and PJ Ballesty (41:51).

AAI National Half Marathon

The Rock ‘n’ Roll Dublin Half Marathon on Sunday morning 11th August had an entry of nearly 5,500 and as the race incorporated the AAI National Half Marathon Championship, among the entry was over 800 looking for National honours, an impressive entry for a National Championship. Starting at Fitzwilliam Square and heading on a relatively flat course for the first 10k to Chapelizod, the runners then climbed sharply over the next 4k into the Phoenix Park and after taking effectively a lap of the Phoenix Park with some downhill sections but also another 3k of hills, the race ended on the main road in the Park. It was a testing course, and adding to the difficulty, there was also a stiff wind for good measure.

First home for Mullingar was Breda Daly in 1:43:11, followed by Des Walsh and Geraldine Walsh, the Mullingar trio running very well given the windy conditions and hilly sections on the route. Geraldine won her master category to add another National title to her collection, Des finished 4th in his category, missing a medal by just 16 seconds or equivalent to about 30m, so it was very close, and Breda finished a very creditable 8th in her category. Congratulations to the three of them on their fine performances in a tough National Championship.

Monaghan 10 Mile

Andrew Nevin was delighted with his strong finish to secure third place in 56:17 at the Monaghan 10 Mile on Saturday morning 11th August, leaving nearly four hundred and fifty others in his wake as he raced an excellent course in near perfect conditions.

Streets of Galway 8k

The weather really took a turn for the worse in Galway on Saturday evening 10th August but didn’t deter a massive entry of over two thousand five hundred for the Streets of Galway 8k where Mullingar’s sole entrant Hans de Raeymaeker was pleased to continue his return to racing and finished well up in 32:43.

Streets of Athboy 5k

Despite the rain, the Streets of Athboy 5k on Friday evening 9th August drew a very big entry of nearly four hundred and fifty, attracted no doubt by the very flat course and excellent organisation by Fr. Murphy AC. Mullingar was well represented by Alan Sherwin, finishing in 21:59 and Michelle Kavanagh finishing strongly in 25:59 and placing third in her master category.

Rathowen 5k

The Rathowen 5k road race made a welcome return to the road race calendar on Wednesday evening 7th August with an entry of nearly one hundred. Mullingar featured strongly in the results with Kieran Nolan winning the men’s race in 17:58, Barry McDonald finishing third in 19:00 just ahead of Enda Seery fourth in 19:07, while Sinead Whitelaw (fifth overall) won the ladies race in 19:23 with Michelle Bohan close behind in 19:38 to finish third woman, followed by Linda Cunningham eighth woman in 23:00. These are great results for Mullingar, so congratulations to them all.

Youth Nations Cup

A terrific past twelve months in which he has emerged as one of the most improved young athletes in the Country culminated for Eoin Quinn on Saturday 3rd August when he made his International Debut at the Youth Nations Cup in Santry, a new event for the best u/18 athletes from Ireland and England. Winning the All-Ireland title recently saw Eoin selected for the 800m where he competed with great determination to finish fourth in a very fast race. He followed this up with the 4x400m Relay where he ran the third leg, taking the baton in fourth place and showing his customary great turn of pace pulled his team back into second place, though the team eventually finished in fourth place.

Earlier in the day, Oisin Lane and Matthew Glennon dominated in the 3,000m Race Walk and as befits their pre-race tags as the clear favourites came home first and second respectively to earn maximum points for Ireland in the team competition.

Congratulations to our International trio and now that Eoin has run for Ireland, his name will be added to the International Roll of Honour in the Clubhouse, the one hundred and eighth name on the roll so far.

Birr 5k

The Birr 5k, the final race of the very successful Offaly 5k Road Race Series took place on Friday 2nd August on a lovely balmy summer’s evening. Running on a course that had a good balance of level ground and uphill drags, but with a very welcome downhill run into the finish, the race attracted a good entry of 368, among them Eileen Kenny finishing strongly in 22:22 and winning her master category, so congratulations to Eileen.




AAI National Senior T&F Championships

Cormac Dalton continues to make his mark in senior middle distance running when he ran a clever race in his heat of the 5,000m on Saturday 27th July on day 1 of the AAI National Senior T&F Championships in a warm and sunny Santry, keeping with the leading group throughout and being part of the final breakaway group of five in the final laps to comfortably finish in the top five and qualify automatically for Sunday’s final. Conditions were a little cooler on Sunday but the competition in the 5,000m final was very hot and Cormac looked very much at home among some of the very best Irish middle-distance talent to finish well up in 10th place overall, 3rd in the u/23 ranks, to earn an All-Ireland bronze medal for his efforts.

Earlier on Saturday, Andrew Nevin competed in the 3,000m steeplechase and finished fifth in 10:29.59, a new PB by 15 seconds and he continues to improve towards the 10 minute mark. He followed this up by competing in the 5,000m later in the day but his legs were still tired from the steeplechase and though he battled hard he didn’t qualify for the final.

Saturday ended with the sprint relays and looking to defend their 4x100m relay title again, all eyes were on the Mullingar team of Awa Fane, Vicky Harris, Eve Wallace and Maimouna Fane, and they didn’t disappoint. Leading from start to finish they were just too good for the opposition and with a polished performance and slick baton changes they won by a commanding distance, their third win of the senior women 4x100m relay title in a row.

Mullingar 10 Mile

Dry sunny and bright with little wind meant that conditions were perfect for running on Saturday morning 27th July for the Mullingar 10 Mile Road Race, starting at Dalystown National School and after 10 miles running on quiet country roads, finishing at Wallace’s Pub in Dalystown. A huge amount of work by the organizing committee went into preparation for the race in the weeks and months before the race and it paid off with a great event that built on the success of last year with nearly 400 entering, though only 328 actually took part and finished, including more than 40 from the Club. For the first time, we had a hand cyclist, Mark Nugent (Dublin), who started shortly before the main race and, escorted by Ciaran O’Brien (Lakeside Wheelers), Shane Mitchell (Midland Tri Club) and our own Bernard Groenewald cycling in front and behind, powered his way around the course on his high tech specialist hand bike to finish in a fast 47:47.

Members and friends of the Club really got behind the event, so there was plenty of help at registration, plenty of water stations, lots of food and refreshments for the runners after the race, a large number of marshals out on the course, at junctions and at the finish to protect the runners and give lots of vocal support, and the runners were greeted at the finish with music and live commentary and lots of support. A 10 mile road race in late July fits perfectly into the schedule of those training for the Dublin City Marathon in October, so, attracted by the chance to run a quality race on quiet country roads with runners able to motivate and pace each other to run well and give a good performance, the event drew entrants from Clubs, running groups and keep fit groups in Counties near and far. There was representation from Counties Dublin, Offaly, Mayo, Longford, Monaghan, Kildare, Meath, Cavan, Wicklow, Fermanagh, Laois, Leitrim, Roscommon, Cork, and Down, as well as a huge number from Westmeath of course.

Making it three wins in a row, last year’s winner, Freddy Sittuk (Raheny Shamrocks AC), returned and won again in 53:45, with a good margin of victory of nearly a minute on Mick Fogarty (Ferbane AC) in second place in 54:36, ahead of Paddy O’Toole (Westport AC) third in 54:44, holding off a late challenge from Paddy Sharkey (Longford AC) fourth in 54:48, with Fergal Whitty (Donore Harriers AC) fifth in 55:18. First Mullingar Harriers athlete was James Keegan, ninth in 58:23. The first woman to finish was Grace Kennedy-Clarke (Donore Harriers AC) in 64:52, Tara Malone was second in 68:13, just ahead of third place Donna Evans (Clones AC) in 68:15, fourth was Dalva McPhillips (Longford AC) in 69:11, and fifth woman was Edel Mooney in 69:37. Seventh woman and the first Mullingar Harriers woman and winning a prize was Michelle Bohan in 70:41.

Apart from Michelle Bohan, other Club members that won prizes included Eddie Newman (59:48) second in master category, Michael O’Sullivan (77:33) first in master category, Christy Creagh (first in master category) and Geraldine Walsh (first in master category). Also running well was Kieran Nolan (62:29), Alan Crowley (62:54), Ger Brady (66:07), Stephen Naughton (68:42), Barry McDonald (69:51), Paul Ginnell (72:01), Jennifer Algar (72:30), Patrick Muldoon taking it easy (72:30), Robin Jackson (72:39), Paddy Daly (74:19), Aine O’Reilly, Colm McCormack (74:22), Breda Daly (76:38), Ollie Gaffney (77:02), Ciara Dillon (77:10), Mervyn Kennedy (77:21), Declan Costello (79:24), Siobhan Farry (79:40), Jane Creevy (79:41), Aisling Corcoran (79:48), Brian Boyle, Eva McMorrow, Patricia Broderick, Miriam Walsh, Linda Cunningham, Gerard Gavin, Caroline Mullen, Ruth Greene, Geraldine Langtry, Martin Mullen, Caroline Robinson, Emer Savage, Raymond Smyth, Christy Creagh, Des Walsh and PJ Ballesty. Full results are available at www.myrunresults.com.

The weather was perfect for the spectators too who cheered the runners on to the finish at Wallace’s Pub in Dalystown, where they could take water on board and when sufficiently recovered to tuck into the refreshments, which could be enjoyed outdoors thanks to the fine day. Thanks to the many friends of the Club that dropped food from early morning and there was more than enough food and treats to be eaten and enjoyed. An event that caters for such large numbers doesn’t just happen and special thanks is due to the army of volunteers who helped on the day with parking, registration, stewarding, water stations, post-race refreshments and all the other components needed to help make a success of the event. First aid cover was provided by Westmeath Civil Defence to whom we are very grateful. We’re very grateful too to our sponsors, including Irish Tar, McDonnell Property Partners, Grange Motors, Allied Irish Bank, Westmeath County Council, Wallace’s Pub and O’Brien’s Centra. Of course, the greatest thanks are due to everyone who took part and we hope they’ll return again next year and help make the event an even bigger one.

Post-race feed-back has been very positive and many are already looking forward to making a return journey next year. Coming in for particular praise were the facilities at Wallace’s Pub and at Dalystown NS, which provided great bases for the event and Wallace’s in particular was perfect for the post-race refreshments. Many thanks from the Club to Paul Fox of Wallaces’s Pub and to Dympna Alford and the Board of Management of Dalystown NS for allowing us the use of their excellent facilities.

European Youth Olympic Festival

It was a very warm 27degC with humidity over 70% at the European Youth Olympic Festival in Baku, Azerbaijan on Monday evening 22nd July, making the 10,000m race walk a real test of endurance. At 6k, Oisin Lane was in the silver medal position but because he was given a third red card, he was stopped for a one minute time penalty. Normally with three red cards a race walker is disqualified but at this level the competitors are stopped for one minute, as the final warning before disqualification. When he resumed, Oisin was in fourth place and with his rhythm broken just couldn’t get back on terms and he finished in fourth place, just thirteen seconds off a medal. For Oisin to get one red card is rare enough, so to get three is unheard of and he would be right to question the justification behind the third card, which cost him a medal, but in his post-race interview he was very stoic about it and displayed a maturity beyond his years when discussing the race and the dubious decision. Well done to Oisin anyway on competing so well and accepting defeat with such grace, a credit to himself and coach Michael Lane.

Two days later, on a very hot and humid Wednesday morning 24th July, conditions much more to the liking of sprinters, Charles Okafor made his International debut, in the 200m. Charles was a year younger than most of the others and is still relatively new to the sport, certainly at this level, so the huge step up for him was too much this time though he still competed well but didn’t advance from the extremely competitive heats to the final. Two days later, on Friday evening 26th July, Charles made up for any disappointment in the 200m with a terrific run in the 200m leg of the medley relay (100m, 200m, 300m, 400m), helping Ireland win their heat in a new National record and qualify for the final. Unfortunately, Charles sustained a foot injury in the changeover to the 300m runner and he was unable to run in Saturday morning’s final, which was naturally a huge disappointment but it was the right decision not to run and he will be out of action for several weeks. Everyone at the Club wishes Charles a speedy recovery.

For Oisin and Charles, they will hold special memories of competing in Baku and the experience gained is sure to spur them on to even greater things. Now that Charles has run for Ireland, his name will be added to the International Roll of Honour in the Clubhouse.

European u/20 T&F

On the final day of the European u/20 T&F in Borås (Sweden) on Sunday afternoon 21st July, Jamie Battle lined up for Ireland in the 5,000m. This was Jamie’s debut on the track at this level, but he has already competed at European and World u/20 Cross Country Championships within the past year, so he had plenty of experience at this level of competition to draw on. It was never going to be about medals for Jamie, his focus being to give as strong a performance as he could and to gain as much experience as possible for future events, and that he certainly did as he gave an excellent account. Wind and rain made conditions tough during the race, but a good strong pace from the start suited Jamie and he got stuck in and stayed well up with the field for much of the race. It was only in the closing stages that the leading group pulled away from him but he still pushed on to finish an excellent 14th place, only a few seconds off his personal best and in fact even if he had equalled his best, it would have gained him only two places, such was the quality of the competition. This was a very strong performance from Jamie, one that he can be proud of, and it shows that he is well able to perform up to his best in a Championship.

AAI “B” T&F and Juvenile Relays

It was wet and windy and miserable in Tullamore on Sunday afternoon 21st July but that didn’t dampen the spirits of the small group from the Club that competed at the AAI “B” T&F and Juvenile Relays.

Orla Manning ran strongly in the girls 600m u/13 and even though she finished out of the medal places, a very respectable eighth place, improving her personal best by a whopping eight seconds was good consolation. Alex Lynch impressed in the boys 600m u/13 as he kept right in contention for much of the race and with a very determined performance he finished in fifth place, though he really deserved more from the race, such was his effort. Looking strong for much of the boys 800m u/14, Conor Sherwin was very unlucky to finish just out of the medals in fourth place, but he really ran a great race and left nothing on the track.

Qualifying as one of the fastest non-automatic qualifiers from the heats of the u/14 boys 4x100m relay thanks to fine running from Kyle Faherty, Callum Costello, Philip McCartan and Conor Liston, the Mullingar team drew the tight inside lane one in the final. A recurrence of a recent foot injury saw Callum substituted by Jamie Wallace in the final and though the boys ran to their utmost in driving wind and rain, they finished out of the medal places, but as most of the team was underage, they were always up against it, but top marks for effort.

Edenderry 10 Mile

Among the entry of just over 400 for the Edenderry 10 Mile early on Sunday morning 21st July was Andrew Nevin. The wind and rain forecast for Sunday blew in later in the day, but with an early morning start, thankfully it was well after the last of the runners had completed the course. Andrew was Mullingar’s sole representative and he finished fifteenth overall in 59:11.

Schools International T&F

Swapping the gold of the St. Finian’s vest for the green of Ireland at the Schools International T&F in Swansea (Wales) on Saturday morning 20th July, Matthew Glennon race walked to victory and the gold medal in the 3,000m race walk to earn maximum points for Ireland in the team competition.

All-Ireland Juvenile u/14 to u/19 T&F – Days 2 & 3

The domestic season for many of the Club’s athletes concluded on Saturday and Sunday 13th and 14th July at days 2 and 3 of the All-Ireland Juvenile u/14 to u/19 T&F Finals in a sun-soaked Tullamore where temperatures soared as each day progressed. We’ve come to expect only the very best from Michael Lane’s race walking squad, and on Saturday, they didn’t disappoint. Aisling Lane began the day with a polished performance in the u/15 girls 2,000m race walk, taking control on the final lap to record a fine win. Jayne Walsh-Smith was unlucky to finish just out of the medal places, 4th, in the u/17 girls 3,000m race walk but top marks for effort. We got back in the medals again thanks to Jennifer Fidgeon who stuck to her task in the u/18 girls 3,000m race walk to finish 2nd and claim the silver medal. Moving to the boys walks, it was a string of three All-Ireland titles for Mullingar. Andrew Glennon was just too good for the opposition in the u/15 boys 2,000m race walk and raced clear in the closing stages to win the All-Ireland title. Matthew Glennon dominated the u/17 boys 3,000m race walk, winning by a significant margin in a new Championship Best Performance of 13:04.30, bettering the previous by over 35 seconds. We ended the walks with a master-class from Oisin Lane in the u/18 boys 5,000m race walk who blazed around the track showing why he was selected for the EYOF, winning convincingly in a new Championship Best Performance of 21:38.04, improving the previous by nearly eighty seconds.

Shauna Leydon needed to be at her very best for any hope of a medal in the u/18 girls shot putt but it wasn’t to be and she finished out of the medal places in 5th, despite putting together a very consistent series of attempts. A clip to the back of her heel right at the start of the u/16 girls 3,000m saw Amy Geoghegan lose a shoe and though she continued to race on it was clear after a few laps that running in the heat on the hard tartan track in one sock was causing her problems. She bravely kept going but it was no surprise that she finished out of the medals when we saw the blisters she had on her foot after the race. Meabh Killalea found the pace of the u/17 girls 3,000m just too much for her liking and though she competed well had to settle for a place out of the medals. Lorcan Mullen looked comfortable as he kept right with the pack in opening laps of the u/17 boys 3,000m but with two laps to go had to drop off the back of the pack as the pace increased at the front, though he battled on to finish strongly, but out of the medal places.

A fourth place finish by Eve Wallace in her heat of the u/19 girls 100m meant she missed a place in the final by just one place to join Awa Fane who finished a comfortable second place in her heat, and despite a valiant effort by Awa in the final, she finished out of the medal places. Unfortunately, Eta Oviahon was disqualified in his heat of the u/17 boys 200m for a false start. No problem for Charles Okafor who easily won his heat and made it look easy by winning the final with clear daylight on his competitors to win his first outdoor All-Ireland sprint title.

The 200m sprinters were first into action early on Sunday morning and Charles Okafor easily won his heat of the u/17 boys 200m to qualify for the final but unfortunately wasn’t joined by Eta Oviahon who didn’t qualify from the very competitive heats. Charles powered to victory in the final, showing great his strength and determination to hold off a late challenge, to win the sprint double. Awa Fane qualified from her heat of the u/19 girls 200m but Eve Wallace narrowly missed a place in the final. Drawing the wide outside in the final, Awa blasted into the home straight in a great position challenging for a medal but was overhauled and had to settle for a place out of the medals.

Why Mullingar has such a great reputation in 1,500m running was clearly demonstrated with a series of great performances over the course of less than an hour. Aimee Wallace spotted a break going into the final lap of the u/14 girls 1,500m and moved quickly into third place and in a thrilling finale that saw the first three girls finish inside the previous Championship Best Performance, Aimee crossed the line in third to win the bronze medal. Philip McCartan and Callum Costello were full of running in the opening laps of the u/14 boys 1,500m but Callum was hampered by a recent foot injury and had to drop off the pace as the field approached the bell for the final lap. However, Philip kept right in contention and was in second place at the bell, passed and relegated to third on the back straight, but he wasn’t finished yet and with a great sprint finish moved into second place on the home straight to finish second and win the silver medal. Diarmuid Fagan kept right in contention throughout the opening laps of the u/15 boys 1,500m and coming into the home straight for the last time was in third place but he drove hard and with a late surge moved into second place only about 30m from the line, holding his place to win the silver medal. Phoebe Bate was suffering the effects of hay fever in the u/16 girls 1,500m and though she tried very hard, had to settle for a place out of the medals in a very competitive race. Going into the final lap of the u/18 boys 1,500m, Eoin Quinn was with the small group chasing the long time leader and on the back straight moved into third place and though passed on the final bend, used his trademark fast finish on the home straight to move back into third place and held it to the line to win the bronze medal.

By any standards, this has been a terrific championships for Mullingar with six All-Ireland titles won, two in Championship Best Performances, and another five medals won but more importantly, some great efforts and determination by all our underage athletes.

Dunleer 4 Mile Road Race

Good to see Hans de Raeymaeker in action again, though he chose the tough Dunleer 4 Mile Road Race on a very hot Sunday afternoon 14th July to race. An excellent event by all accounts that attracted nearly 300 entrants, Hans endured the temperatures that climbed over 20degC and was happy to finish well up just outside the top twenty in 25:19.

Irish Milers Club Meeting

The final Irish Milers Club Meeting of the track season was held in Lourdes Stadium in Drogheda on Saturday 13th July in mild but breezy conditions. Cormac Dalton and Padraig Moran contested the 1,500m and were both very competitive throughout. Cormac raced particularly well and was contesting the lead throughout the race and was rewarded with a big improvement in his personal best time with 3:55.62. This was a four second improvement on his previous best and he has improved his personal best by over ten seconds over the course of the season, which is a considerable margin over a relatively short distance. Padraig Moran followed closely behind in 4:01.69 having been in the leading pack throughout the race.

Shane Fitzsimons was spiked and almost fell as he challenged for the lead with 200m to go in the 800m. This put paid to his chances but he battled on to finish in 1:53.06. Colin Smith also raced 800m and posted a time of 1:56.07 in what was a tactical affair. Timmy Murphy was back in action for the first time since winning the Pat Finnerty Memorial 5k and raced the 3,000m distance, which he completed in 9:13.

AAI National 10 Mile Championships

The second edition of the Irish Runner 10 Mile, which incorporated the AAI National 10 Mile Championships, took place on Saturday morning 13th July in the Phoenix Park. Over 1,200 finished the race, among them 128 women and 166 men in the AAI race. The course was far from easy and included some very challenging hills and it was cloudy for most of the race but extremely warm and humid, making for testing conditions for the athletes, but that didn’t prevent fine performances from the dedicated group of master athletes from Mullingar.

Leading them home was Eddie Newman (58:52) placing 3rd in his master category, followed by Gerard Brady (65:44), Joan Flynn (68:02) 3rd in her master category, Stephen Naughton (69:33), Eileen Kenny (76:25) 1st in her master category, Michael O’Sullivan (77:17), Geraldine Walsh, 1st in her master category, her 10th All-Ireland title and Des Walsh, 3rd in his master category, only a few seconds away from the silver medal. There was team success too as Eddie, Stephen and Michael combined to finish 3rd Club in their master category. These are great performances from our master athletes when it counts, in a National Championship.

European u/23 T&F

Delighted to toe the start line of the 10,000m at the European u/23 T&F in Gävle, Sweden on Saturday evening 12th July, Claire Fagan made her first appearance at a major championship. As expected at this level, the standard of competition was very high and it was a very tough race, run at a fast pace from the start, and while Claire would like to have run closer to her best, it was not to be, but she gave it her best effort and stuck to her task to finish well.

Kinnegad 5k

The Kinnegad 5k on a mild but showery Wednesday evening 10th July drew an excellent entry of over two hundred competing on the familiar Boreen Bradach route, starting and finishing on the main street. Delighted to lead the strong Mullingar group home in fifth place was James Keegan in 16:41, closely followed by Evan McCormack (16:49), then Matthew Glennon (17:12) 1st junior boy, Ken Whitelaw (17:21), Eddie Newman (17:36), Alan Crowley (17:53), Eoin Clarke (17:56), Kieran Nolan (18:17), Ger Brady (18:58), Enda Seery (19:10), Colm McCormack (19:28), Michelle Bohan (19:33) very happy to finish 1st woman, then Kedagh Geoghegan (19:48), John Glennon (21:04) 2nd junior boy, Andrea Brady (21:32) battling hard in the closing stages to clinch the prize for 3rd woman just ahead of Sarah Glennon (21:38), then Aisling Corcoran (21:56), Kevin O’Brien (22:37), Linda O’Driscoll (23:00), Lorraine Daly (23:07), Siobhan Farry (23:08), young Donncha Flynn (27:08) paced expertly by mum Joan Flynn and Michelle Kavanagh (28:15).

Oldcastle 5k

Competing at the tough Oldcastle 5k , which attracted more than 200 finishers on a mild but showery Wednesday evening 10th July, Andrew Nevin battled hard to finish in 2nd place in a fine 16:35 on a tough hilly course, followed home by Pauric Brady (18:48) finishing fourth in his master category and missing a prize by just a few seconds, Stephen Naughton (19:40) 3rd in his master category, Ollie Gaffney (21:43) and Vincent Glennon (22:40).

All-Ireland Juvenile u/12 to u/19 T&F – Day 1

Day one of the All-Ireland Juvenile u/12 to u/19 T&F finals took place on Saturday 7th July in a sun-soaked Tullamore where the standard of competition was extremely high and medals were very difficult to win. Delighted to be competing at an All-Ireland in a new event for him, James Flynn just missed a place in the final of the boys 60m hurdles u/13 by a narrow margin but he has definitely taken to the event and can only improve with time. There was disappointment for Shauna Leydon as she struggled with her stride pattern in the girls 100m hurdles u/18 and pulled up rather than risk colliding with the third hurdle and injuring herself, but she’s an experienced competitor and will bounce back again. In the boys 3,000m steeplechase, despite the difficulty and exhaustion-inducing effort of negotiating the solid three foot wooden barriers including a water jump for seven and a half laps in sweltering heat, Ruairi Fagan ran considerably quicker than in the Leinsters but had to settle for a place out of the medals, though he can take great satisfaction from his valiant efforts in one of the toughest track events.

Aimee Wallace safely negotiated her heat of the girls 800m u/14 and lined up in the final as a clear medal favourite. Wisely deciding not to try and match the furious pace of the early leader, Dunleer AC’s Erinn Leavy, Aimee settled instead into the chasing group. Slightly boxed in at the bell, Aimee waited until the back straight to make her move to the front of the chasing group and began to close down on the leader. With 200m to go Aimee attacked hard and despite the attentions of another girl she kept her form and focus and with every step the gap on the leader was closing but the line came too soon and she crossed in second place in 2:15.74, a new personal best by two seconds. As a measure of the quality of the race, first and second place were inside the previous Championship Best Performance.

Callum Costello contested the boys 800m u/14 and though he ran a fine opening lap and was in contact at the bell, the size and strength of the opposition began to show and he began to fall back a bit and despite a late rally and fast finish he had to settle for a place out of the medals but will have gained great experience from the race. Colin Smith wasn’t long recovered from recent injury and though he started the heat of the boys 800m u/17 knew very quickly that something was wrong and he very wisely stopped rather than risk further damage. Frustrating for Colin, but it was the right decision. Eoin Quinn played it very cool on the opening lap and a half of the boys 800m u/18, biding his time, but with 200m to go, he quickly spotted and responded to a break and still keeping his powder dry he waited until the home straight to make his final perfectly timed strike for home, taking the lead with 70m to go and pulling away to win his first All-Ireland 800m title, crossing the line so fast that he nearly knocked over the official photographer!

That ended the day for Mullingar. Well done to the group that competed, many of whom will return to chase National glory again on days two and three.

Jamie Battle selected to compete at European Junior T&F

We knew he had achieved the qualifying A standard for the 5,000m at the Connacht Indoors in late February, but Jamie Battle had to wait until Sunday morning 7th July for the official announcement by Athletics Ireland that his selection has been confirmed and he will travel with the Irish team to compete in the 5,000m at the European Junior T&F in Borås, Sweden in two weeks time. This is a fantastic achievement for Jamie and everyone at the Club congratulates him and wishes him well.

AAI Junior and u/23 T&F Championships

Early morning mist gave way to generally dry and quite warm and humid conditions in Tullamore on Saturday 6th July for the AAI Junior and u/23 T&F Championships. First up were the race walkers where Jennifer Fidgeon raced to third place in the Junior Women 3,000m race walk, which is an excellent result considering that she is eligible for another two years. Matthew Glennon is eligible for another three years but was still too good for the opposition in the Junior Men 5,000m race walk and pushed ahead at 4k to open a lead and finished in a new personal best of 23:08.55 and win the National junior title.

Jamie Battle and Cormac Dalton contested the 3,000m where the junior men and u/23 men ran together, which made for a great race and great competition. Jamie and Cormac favour the longer 5,000m distance but worked hard and Jamie finished sixth overall, fifth junior, with Cormac right on his heels after a terrific final lap, seventh place overall but second u/23 to take the silver medal.

Colin Smith was ranked fifth on time going into the u/23 Men 800m and that’s how it finished for him, fifth place, but that was after a good race where he gave himself every opportunity to take a medal in a close fought race that came down to a sprint finish on the home straight.

We ended the day with the u/23 Women 3,000m where Claire Fagan put in a good shift, keeping in touch with the leading group throughout and only began to lose touch with the leaders on the final lap, coming home just out of the medal places in fourth but this was a good performance from Claire who has been focussed in training on longer distances in advance of the European u/23 T&F in Sweden in a week’s time where she will compete in the 10,000m.

Achill Half Marathon

Regarded as one of the toughest courses in Ireland, the Achill Half Marathon on Saturday morning 6th July took place in overcast, windy and very humid conditions, which only added to the toughness of the course. Among the big entry of just over 600, Michael O’Sullivan was Mullingar’s sole representative and though he finished less than 30 seconds off third place and a prize in his master category, he was still pleased to finish well up in two hundredth place overall in 1 hour 50 minutes and 47 seconds on such a tough course.

Roscommon 10 Mile

Now in its sixth year, the Roscommon 10 Mile Road Race on Saturday morning 6th July proved its growing popularity with another sell-out entry of over 550. The course is fast and flat on the scenic outskirts of Roscommon Town, which attracts a good entry in itself but add in the legendary hospitality and post-race food and refreshments provided by Roscommon Harriers AC and a good crowd was always guaranteed. Conditions were good for running, overcast though a bit humid, and clearly suited the group from Mullingar that took part, led home by Evan McCormack in 10th place in 58:50, followed by Gerard Gavin (61:50), Maura Dervin (74:15) first in her master category, just ahead of Michelle O’Halloran (74:27), then came Vincent Glennon (76:28), Siobhan McCarthy (81:41) and Mervyn Kennedy (85:41).

CSIT Games

Competing with the Athletics Leinster team at the final athletics session of the CSIT Games in Tortosa, Spain on Friday evening 5th July in very hot 31degC and very humid conditions, Sarah Glennon was really tested in the oppressive conditions but she came through to win the 3,000m race walk and though admitting to being absolutely exhausted by her efforts, was delighted to win the gold medal. Congratulations to Sarah on her success from everyone at the Club.