What better way to haze the new people than to jump in front of them at the finish line of their first club race and ask for a race report. This week that duty (guilty pleasure) fell to Michael Cunningham for the Dublin Masters 2022. That still feels weird to write.
Fresh from the fields of Raheny we have excellent reports from Darina Hynes in the Women’s race and Adam Furlong in the Men’s race. Adam was later awarded the honorary best running cravat 2021 by Raheny Shamrocks, as can be seen in the video below. First up I’ll give you a look at the two of them so you can say hello at the club. Great reports and races from the two of them.
Overall it was a great day for the club with our F35+ women taking gold and the M35+ lads getting bronze. High place finisher of the day was the ever-impressive Noureen Brouder in 4th place. Full Results with team and age group breakdowns are on MyRunResults. Thanks to Raheny for hosting an excellent race and congrats to them on winning the inagraual Pat Hooper cup. Pat was a great supporter of grassroots athletics and is sorely missed at these meets.
I agreed to be part of the entries for the Raheny Masters Cross country race which was a race into the unknown for me!
It was a full-circle moment for me as I grew up in Raheny and took me to join Sportsworld to embrace running! It brought back happy memories of my childhood like going to the annual St. Anne’s Rose Garden Festival with my granny, doing the KitKat tennis summer camps with my brothers and trying out the pitch and putt course with my friends!
A crisp morning faced all the runners but it was an amazing atmosphere to see everyone warming up together and trying out the course ground before the starting line.
Emily kindly arranged for my first pair of spikes and were worn for my first ever cross country race to match my singlet and shorts! My spikes were officially christened and were very muddy afterwards, I am still trying to clean them!
The overall winner of the women’s Masters was Barbara Clearly who dominated the race from start to finish. The women’s over 35 team winners were Sportsworld RC. Points were allocated to each club based on over all finishing place in their age team results.
Well done to all the ladies especially the gold medalists, our ever encouraging coach Emily and all our supporters. It was great to hear your name being called from the sidelines which gave you an extra push to get through the mud!
It was so inspiring to be part of the Sportsworld ladies team and thank you for your help after reaching the finish line, I was so happy to cross and take my spikes off!!
Thank you to fellow twin Mum Kimberly for treating me to a hot cuppa afterwards at the Last Lap Café J
Looking forward to coming back for the Raheny 5 mile race on Sunday, January 30th!
So it was with a frisson of excitement that I approached not only my first Dublin Masters (only just making the age grade, ahem) but my first cross country full stop. I had heard a few horror stories, getting “spiked” avoiding obstacles “tree trunks in the middle of the course” or my favourite “avoiding swans swimming on a waterlogged course”.
As it transpired it was a bright brisk afternoon when I arrived in camp & myself & John Skehan headed out for recon on our warm-up lap discovering certain sections were quite testing. We also discussed tactics & as debutants, I would tuck in behind John at the start who was keen to go quickly early but having sought Emily’s advice this was shelved in favour of finding a position & enjoying the first lap before the field began to string out.
As we lined up at the start I got a tap on the shoulder from a former primary school classmate running for Blackrock & a fellow debutant, we both agreed we hadn’t run around a field since those halcyon days and the gun was off.
Well, you may have guessed it but tactics went out the window immediately as John sped off into the distance & I took an elbow from a lad from Brothers Pearse no love lost or runners community spirit here. I did manage to find a good position & settled into a nice rhythm but having to go wide on a number of turns only meant I was lengthening the course for myself.
As I went out for the second lap I could see Paul Hamilton not too far ahead & comforted myself that after his recent heroics in Valencia I must be traveling well. It wasn’t long for the comfort to melt away as I went out on my third lap, I was really starting to hurt & to be honest the only thing that kept me going was the incredible support I was getting from the sidelines. It genuinely spurred me on. I’ve never experienced anything like it.
Now here’s where I feel a bit bad for Mick Clohessy as I got such a huge roar when I took the bell coincidentally as he was crossing the finish line…. Ahh who am I kidding I’m sure he found comfort in his individual & team gold.
I could smell home as myself & Karl Shevlin traded places going up the straight as we passed a few but his finishing kick caught me & I just missed coming in under 27 minutes clocking 27.04 which for my first attempt in heavy ground(Anthony & Brian Conway may beg to differ re ground conditions) I’m actually quite pleased. As they say in National Hunt parlance I should come on for the run.
A big congratulations to Karol, Gareth, Andrew & Gavin for taking the team bronze. I really got a big kick out of the experience but especially the comradery. I’d just like to thank Deirdre O’Connell for motivating me to train over Christmas.