Virtual Cross Country Challenge Team Results (23rd Dec)
Virtual Cross Country Challenge Team Results
On a more positive note, in response to the total lack of competition opportunities for juvenile athletes in Ireland due to the challenge of Covid-19, Athletics Ireland had organised a Virtual Cross Country Challenge last November and more than 4,600 Juveniles took on the Challenge, including more than 100 from Mullingar Harriers. The Certificates of Participation were presented just before Christmas and they were greatly appreciated by the athletes, coaches and parents.
On Wednesday 23rd December, Athletics Ireland published the team results. It took much longer than expected to standardise the various time formats sent in, as the event was much more popular than expected, with well over 4,600 individual results to rank from more than 120 different Clubs! This was a fantastic celebration of running and congratulations to all who took part.
Mullingar had girls and boys teams in the combined under 9 and 10, under 11, under 13 and under 15 events and they all featured well in the results, though team prizes were extremely hard to win, as expected in a National event. We had no team prizes in the under 9 and 10, or under 11 but Cillian Galvin excelled in the under 9 and 10 boys with a fine eight place finish overall. In the under 13 boys event, Matthew Molloy finished well up in ninth place, and in the corresponding under13 girls race, Tianna O’Leary raced into a top-20 place in sixteenth, a very noteworthy performance as she was giving away a year. The under 15 boys team of Conor Sherwin (6th), Pablo Lozano, David Burke and Criostoir Ormsby came close, finishing 5th Club, only four seconds off third but the drought of team prizes was finally ended by the under 15 girls team, led home by Grace Byrne (7th) and supported strongly by Adele Geoghegan (9th), Leah Geoghegan (14th) and Caoimhe Kilmurray (15th) to finish 3rd Club.
As Athletics Ireland noted in their report on the event, there is sure to be some reflections from coaches and athletes on how they could squeeze an extra second or two, perhaps by improved pacing, technique, tactics, concentration or finishing speed. This is what is great about athletics – there are so many areas to develop and we know the coaches of our juvenile members will continue to work towards this in 2021.