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!