Turgesius Island 10 Mile 2021 (6th June)
The Turgesius Island 10 Mile race was originally scheduled for February but postponed due to the extended lockdown. Adhering to Covid-19 regulations, the event was held on Sunday morning 6th June with an altered format consisting of wave starts with 15 athletes per group and the starting order was based on estimated finish times submitted before the event.
On a hot, sunny morning four waves of participants lined up in Collinstown with a number of Mullingar Harriers among the socially distanced crowd. At 9am the first wave, consisting of the quicker male runners set off, followed shortly after by an “elite” women wave, and eventually the remaining entrants. Mullingar men were straight to the front of the race with James Keegan and Andrew Nevin setting the early pace with long-time friend of the Club, Peter Mooney, completing the lead trio.
James took the lead in to the second half of the race but following a good battle between the race leaders, it was Peter Mooney who took the spoils, crossing the finish line beside Lough Lene just seconds ahead of James in 2nd place who set a 10 mile PB of 56:30. Andrew was a comfortable 3rd and was followed by Eoin Clarke in 4th running a big PB of 60:50 and Alan Crowley in 5th place, fighting through a tough day to still pick up a 10 mile PB of 62:36. Evan McCormack was on pacing duties and used the event as a good workout, Michael Clinton knocked a large chunk off his PB and Paul Ginnell took advantage of the day to help with his comeback from injury.
In the women’s race, Michelle Bohan and Amy Mahony were in contention for a place on the podium all the way to the end but were unlucky to finish just outside the prizes in 4th and 6th place respectively in a closely fought contest. Colm Walsh, Nollaig McEntegart and Jason McCabe also took advantage of the day to test the legs after a long lockdown away from organized events.
Although the event did not consist of the full race format it was a welcome return to competitive running and race day atmosphere, and a good chance for all to re-familiarise themselves with the race day routine, something that’s been missing for many months now. Well done to the organizers from North Westmeath AC and hopefully the positive experience will ensure the race returns on an annual basis.