Tullamore Harriers Half Marathon (incorp. National & Leinster Half) 2023 (25th Aug)
National and Leinster honours at Tullamore Half
National and Leinster Championship medals were on offer at the annual Bord Na Mona Tullamore Harriers Half Marathon, which incorporated the National Half and the Athletics Leinster Half, held on Saturday morning 26th August. Early morning rain cleared to leave largely dry if somewhat windy conditions for the 1,175 athletes who took to the roads around the Offaly town. While it was into the wind in the opening 5 miles, turning back towards the town outside Mucklagh, shelter was provided on country roads, and it was with the wind at their backs that all headed towards the Tullamore Harriers club grounds. A lap of the track tested the resilience for the final push to the finish line.
Ryan Creech (Leevale AC) was the overall winner in a new course record of 1 hour 5 minutes 47 seconds, with Natasha Adams (Letterkenny AC) winning the women race in 1 hour 18 minutes 15 seconds. Mullingar Harriers had 31 athletes participating. Johnny Morrissey was first home in a very fine 1:17:31 and showing his preparation for the Dublin City Marathon is well on track. There was success for Mullingar individuals and teams in both the National and Leinster competitions. In the National competition, Jacintha Reilly (1:27:23) won bronze in the senior category, master bronze went to Sinead Whitelaw (1:21:39), it was gold for Mary Stuart (1:30:41) and bronze for Maura Dervin (1:33:33) in their master age category. In the Leinster competition, Sinead won senior bronze, Mary master gold, Maura master bronze and Eddie Newman (1:20:14) won silver in his master age category. The senior women team of Sinead, Jacintha and Mary won silver in both the National and Leinster Club team events, as did the master women team of Maura, Criona Reid (1:37:21) and Caroline Mullen (1:43:49). The team of Sinead, Jacintha, Mary and Maura finished an excellent 2nd Club in the open race where it was teams of four to score, rather than three to score as in the National and Leinster team competitions.
In the Leinster competition, where Mullingar athletes were competing alongside athletes from Athlone AC and Coralstown Kinnegad AC who had a good number of athletes competing. Sinead, Jacintha, Mary and Maura (together with Theresa Hughes and Monika De Almeida from Athlone AC) finished 2nd senior County. Criona and Caroline (together with Lisa O’Rourke and Eileen Kenny from Athlone AC) finished 2nd master County. Finally, Eddie and Gerard Gavin (1:21:15), together with David Watson (Athlone AC) and Andrew Bracken from Coralstown Kinnegad AC, finished 2nd master County.
The other Mullingar Harriers who took part were Ken Whitelaw (1:18:48), Evan McCormack (1:23:20), Andy Boyhan (1:28:27), Tommy Byrne (1:28:26), Murty Hanly (1:33;56), Darren Carroll (1:34:22), Niamh McEntegart (1:34:58), Aisling Corcoran (1:36:04), Aeilish McGovern (1:37:30), Paul Ginnell (1:39:06), Mark Dunne (1:42:44), Linda Cunningham with a whopping 10 minute personal best (1:43:46), Marie Louise Johnson (1:43:42), Gemma Kelly (1:46:31), Eithne Spellman (1:46:28), Richie Kelly (1:47:28), John Bannon (1:52:17), Brendan Rice (1:55:31), Ray Smyth (1:59:06), Martin Mullen (2:03:14), Kelly Dunne (2:05:29) and Joan Mulvihill (2:06:18).