Munster Senior and Masters T&F:
The main event at the weekend was the Munster Senior/Masters T&F. Unfortunately the less said about this event the better... Low numbers and poor organisation made it a bit of a torrid affair.
We had 5 athletes competing. Fiona was the only senior female so by default won the Munster Title. In a solo race, with the start over an hour delayed, she ran a very respectable 18.02 in the circumstances.
Tim Crowley was the sole representative in the M35 category and ran a strong race to finish in 9.43, the same time as the Counties last week. Frank O'Carroll who was back from Denmark for the weekend togged out in the club colours and took silver in the M40 category in 10.01. Frank Hayes won the silver M45 medal in 9.51 and Denis on tired legs from a 5k the night before was 3rd in 12.25 in the M55's. Well done all for competing and representing the club in such good numbers.
Hopefully next year some lessons will be learned and decisions made in the few days leading up to the event to clarify the distances being run and the timings of these.
Old club stalwart Dave O'Dwyer made a welcome return to racing at the Touraneena 5k in Waterford. Dave ran a promising 20.09 and hopefully there will be plenty more to come for the rest of the summer. It appears his training around Ballymaloe is paying off. Denis also ran and finished 61st in 22.14.
The East Cork T&F that was postponed in April is being held on Bank Holiday Monday at 11am. There is a 1500m for mens starting at 11am and an 800m for women with an unknown start time.
Cork Marathon - We have a few club members running the full and half marathons on Sunday. Best of luck to them all. Lots of training will have gone in for the last 6 months for this so hopefully conditions will be kind on the day!
Also we have both a mens and womens team competing on Sunday:
Mens: Shane Harrington, Donogh Wall, Donal Giltnan (C), Graham Swords and Stephen O'Brien
Womens: Annalese Hutch, Lorna Santry, Eadaoin O'Neill (C), Michelle Ahearn and Lavinia Swords
John Buckley showed his continued support for Cork athletics this week, sponsoring both the very successful BHAA 5k on the marina Tuesday night and the Graded T&F league on Thursday.
John Buckley 5k:
We had good numbers competing in both with a number of PB's set. Starting with the 5k we had Graham Swords lead home the charge of the East Cork brigade, smashing hs PB in the process to run 16.21 and 16th overall. A full 22 seconds faster than Emer Casey last month. Brian Harty continued his rich vein of form also with a PB of 16.27 (a full 71 seconds faster than Emer Casey!! In track terms that would be about 400m).
Shane, running his 4th race in May, ran a solid 16.43. Donal on a mission these days came with a game plan and executed it perfectly. He now is part of a very exclusive sub 17 mins club. Hopefully a few more will join him here sooner rather than later..
Stephen O'Brien literally running in his own back yard followed up his County Track 1500m gold with another impressive outing and PB, finishing 41st in 17.04. Fireman Finn improved on his Cheetah run by 40+ seconds with a 17.31 and Donogh knocked 29 seconds off his PB with 17.36. Lavinia targeted a sub 25 min 5k as a goal at the start of the year and delivered with style in 24.22. Great to see such a large club contingent running.
John Buckely Graded League - Rd 2:
In the graded league then the middle distance events on offer were the 800m and the 3000m. East Corks newest member Norah O'Brien made her much anticipated debut. In a touching moment Norah and Fiona shared a lane for the start of the first 800m of the night. Fiona ran a brilliant 2.24, coming through the field with a very strong last lap and Norah broke her targeted 3 minutes with a bit to spare in 2.51. Stephen ran his first 800m ever in an impressive 2.14. Kevin was 4th in the 800m A race in 2.02, having set up Frank nicely to win in 1.59. Surely the favour will be returned later in the summer...
Kevin doubled up and ran the 3k as well. In a ding dong battle with Dundrums Eamon Morrissey Kevin came out on top in 9.17. But the real race of the night was the showdown between Eadaoin and Michelle. With a target of 11.45 the girls knew 94 seconds a lap was the required pace and you could tell during the strides and at the start line both meant business. As we now know from Fiona's track and field strategy book, pacing is very important in all aspects of racing and even 2 to 3 seconds out from target pace could have disastrous consequences. This did not deter Eadaoin or Michelle, who blasted off to run the first 400m in 84 seconds flat.. However the girls recovered nicely and set into a good rhythm with Eadaoin setting the tempo and Michelle tucked in behind, the tactical battle had begun. With all the recent Wednesday night runs with Denis and Liam one wonders did Michelle learn a few racing tricks from the older section of the club as with 400m to go it looked like it would go down right to the wire but Michelle unleashed a devastating (for Eadaoin) kick to come through very strong and crossed the line in 11.30. Eadaoin was just behind in 11.41. Both excellent times with a long summer of racing left for revenge. Annalesse running her first track race ever ran a great 12.55 too.
Norah also doubled up and ran a mighty 32 seconds for the 200m, finishing 2nd in her race and holding off a large pack in the final few meters. With dodgy record keeping in the 80' and 90's this is currently a new club record! What a way to start your East Cork career!
Ballymacoda and Buttevant 4 Milers:
On Friday night we had 1st and 2nd in Ballymacoda 5k. Brian and Shane literally duked it out for the win from the start . With Martin Drakes live commentary stoking up the fires Brian made a bold dash with 200m to go and outsprinted his training partner to take the glory in 21.54. Shane was only 2 seconds back in 21.56.
Donogh was 7th in 23.32, Jens was 27th in 25.31 and Conor was 32nd in 25.57. Well done all, a great race for a great cause.
At the same time the Buttevant 4 mile was taking place and in a showing of our new extended reach around the county we had 2 runners competing. Eadaoin had a storming last 800m to grab the 3rd spot on the podium in a great 26.30. Donal was 4th overall in 23.07, which should set him up nicely for John Buckley 5k on Tuesday night.
County Masters T&F
We had a 100% hit rate at the county masters in CIT on Sunday. Every single East Cork athlete who ran won a medal. This can only be down to diligent training and superb racing ability!
Stephen O'Brien on his track championship debut won the 1500m overall and took out the M35 title with an imposing performance in 4.41. Frank Hayes was seen with two medals around his neck in the car park after winning the M50 3k in 10.01 then afterwards coming 2nd M50 in the 1500m in 4.54. Tim Crowley won the M35 3000m in 9.43 which is an 11 second improvement on his Leevale Open Sports time from a few weeks back. Denis scooped silver in the M55 3000m and Eric was 3rd in the M50 3000m. Excellent stuff.
National League and Irish Milers Club:
We had three amigos driving all over the county at the weekend. They were in the search for quality track races that are run to an accurate timetable, and they found them.
Firstly on Saturday at the Irish Milers Club in Iirshtown the two Kevins raced the "GV Ryan fastest 5ks". The name lived up to expectations with both running PB's. Kevin O'Brien ran sub 15mins for the first time with a 14.54 and Kevin O'Leary on his 5k track debut ran 15.35 knocking another 5 seconds off his already impressive PB. Fiona, sick of winning all the local road races by a country mile, went in the search of a challenge. She ran an excellent 4.57 for the 1500m which placed her last overall, exactly what she was looking for.
On Sunday then in Templemore, round 1 of the National League was on. East Cork Division (a combination of all clubs in East Cork) have entered a team in Division 1 and to count you need to have athletes competing in 15 out of approx 20 events. Kevin O'Brien ran the 1500m and the 800m and picked up 12 points for the team with 3rd placings in both races in 4.08 and 2.04. Kevin O'Leary had the tougher task of following up his 5k PB from 24 hours earlier to race 5k again. He looked at it as a good test of his strength for the upcoming Cork marathon. Kevin ran 15.45 with a huge last lap to pip Nenagh AC athlete in home straight. This got him 1st place and 9 points for the team.
Fiona having studied track and field racing strategies overnight brought a new game plan to the race. She tucked in wisely to the main pack for 800m then went to the front and wound it up for the last 700m to neutralise the finishing kicks of her crop-top wearing competitors. With a storming last 300m Fiona won her race 6 seconds faster than the day before in 4.51 and got 9 points for the team.
The team results have not been posted yet but it looks likely that the womens team is 1st or 2nd at the moment going into Round 2 and the mens team is in 4th place. Round 2 is set for June 30th in Athlone IT.
The summer season of racing is in full flow with multiple races each week week to choose from. In the last few days we had Brian and Shane running in Bweeng. Brian was back to his old self running a decent 16.42 for 13th overall with Shane just behind dipping under the 17 min barrier by the slimiest of margins for 14th.
Yesterday evening then was the unique annual Cheetah 5k run in Fota Island. We had 4 running. First home and continuing his comeback trail was Kenneth in 17.18 for 7th. Next was Jonathon in 13th with 18.15. Jens switched back from the orienteering for a 5k blast and ran a PB of 19.32 and Niamh ran a great 21.21 for 14th female.
*Race Date Amendments:*
Please note that the County Senior T&F had been deferred to May 26th in CIT. However the County Masters T&F is going ahead as planned this Sunday May 19th. There are no timetables or event listing for these races yet.... These will be posted if available before the day.
National League Round 1; Templemore May 19th:
We have three athletes representing the East Cork division in the National League on Sunday. Fiona is running the 1500m, Kevin O'Leary is running the 5000m and Kevin O'Brien is also doing the 1500m race. Best of luck to the whole divisional team.
Club Gear - Jackets:
There will be one last order of the current club jackets in the coming weeks so if you do not have one already and would like to fit in with the crowd then please let Kevin O'Brien know. The cost is approx €65.
We had three competing in the Munster Half Marathon Championships last weekend. Niall finished 21st overall in 80.06, Frank was 12th in 89.50. This was one second different than last year so looks suspiciously like a he had a balloon attached to him with 90 written on it. Lavinia improved on her Charleville time from September by 3 minutes to finish in 2:04.26. Well done to all for representing the club at the Munster championships.
- Ballymacoda 4 MIle, Friday May 17th
- Irish Milers Club 1500m and 5000m, Saturday May 18th; Irishtown, Dublin
- County Senior and Masters T&F, Sunday May 19th, CIT
- National League Rd 1, Sunday May 19th, Templemore
- John Buckley 5k, Tuesday May 21st, Marina
- John Buckley Graded League 800m and 3000m, Wednesday 23rd, CIT
- Cork Marathon, Half Marathon and Relay, Sunday June 2nd, Cork
We are looking to have both a male and female teams for the Cork City marathon. It is 5 people per team. Most slots are filled now from training regulars but we are looking for one or two more. So if you have any interest make yourself know to the right people.
Fiona regains title:
Congrats to Fiona on winning the Midleton 5 mile again for the 3rd time in 4 years. Fittingly she was wearing the Number 1 bib and most importantly it was run with a new PB too of 29.44. Her recent track racing exploits must be paying off. Michelle was 13th lady and also had a big PB getting around in 34.11 almost a full 6 minutes faster than last years race. Girl Power!
In the mens race Kevin and James renewed their recent rivalry in the final chapter of their East Cork Road Racing trilogy! Kevin came out on top in Ballintotis, James gained revenge, and history, as the first 6 time winner of the East Cork Roads and it was all on the line again last night in Midleton. James had a 20m gap on Kevin at halfway but the marathon man in his Nike Vapour Fly 4% racers regained contact with 2k to go and closed with a sub 5 minute mile (again, like Fiona, no doubt seeing the benefits of recent track racing...) to finish 2nd overall in 25.52. The raider from An Bru, Niall Shanahan, upset the local favourites and took out a fine win in 25.17.
Shane Harrington was back racing again and showed he is still in great form running a swift 28.19 for 9th overall. Stephen O'Brien who is going from strength to strength ran a super race to finish 12th overall with a monster PB of 28.47. Donal was close behind and improved on his Ballynoe time by 45 seconds for 14th in 29.11. Brian Harty went out hard and paid the price a little bit in the latter stages finished in 19th in 29.22. Donogh provided the perfect pacer for Fiona in the last 500m finished on 29.44 too. Denis who is still recovering forma injured knee rounded off the East Cork representation on the night with 35.18.
Well done to all who competed and well done to Midleton AC on organising another fantastic race. It really is one of the highlights of the Summer Road racing circuit.
Munster Marathon and Half Marathon Championships - Limerick, May 5th:
The Munster Marathon and half marathon championships are on Sunday May 5th in Limerick. Best of luck to all taking part.