Report by Phil Kilgannon
Photos by Naoise and Eoin
When I remember it, I think of it as dancing … Dancing as if language had surrendered to movement – as if this ritual, this wordless ceremony, was now the way to speak, to whisper private and sacred things, to be in touch with some otherness …Dancing as if language no longer existed because words were no longer necessary.’ (Brian Friel; Dancing at Lughnasa.)
Firstly to thank Conor Kenny, our Social Committee chief, who suggested the trip a few weeks back. It’s always nice to have an excuse to hit Gaillimh and the weekend proved a great success. There were new friends made, goodbyes said to old ones (sorry Trev), some great performances, craic agus ceoil, rugby to beat the band, debates with bouncers and of course Supermacs.
When hearing of the race,I sought out the most dedicated and determined crew for the trip, but however all I came up with was Eoiny, Will and Trevor. In fairness to them, despite their heroics in the Berlin marathon to endure last weekend the three stooges needed no persuasion in hitching up the wagon and rolling out on another road trip (see Footnote 1).
Anyway, the Galway Bay half marathon is well established and includes a lucrative team prize, which our own ladies team has won on a previous occasion. This was the inaugural year of the 10k as far as I recall and with a turnout of 1,500 has huge potential for bigger numbers in years to come.
Coming from the tail end of our Indian summer in Dublin, the chill of the Wild Atlantic Way was a bit of a shock, but conditions were otherwise fine. After eventually rising the two lumps I was sharing the room with from their noisy slumber half an hour before the race, we jogged down shop street and out the Claddagh, getting ready to go for 9.30 (am). The course was a tidy 5k out and back job along Salthill prom and was flat as the proverbial pancake. The half marathon didn’t get going until 11.15, so some of our clubmates kindly gave us a shout going around, before their more onerous task began mid morning.
Given the lads were on marathon wind down and Trev and I overcoming recent injuries, there were no great expectations amongst ourselves beyond running tourism. I felt a bit like an old chevvy entering a drag race as the front group eased away as I watched wistfully, chugging along behind. It gave me a good pace run in the end though as I worked into it gradually and got a good hard 5k in the middle, thanks to Siobhan O’Doherty to run along with. She showed a clean pair of heals on her way to winning the ladies race. Trev wasn’t too far off either and having exchanged trash talk as we approached each other either side of the turns, we came in 12th and 13th respectively. Good Will Hunting came in shortly afterwards with his trademark click of the heals to finish in customary style, followed by the serene Eoin O’Brien and then the resurgent Conor Kenny.
Not to be outdone, Eoiny also finished in style, being showered in glory from the sidelines with Ballygowan’s finest. It was Eoin’s first drop of water all weekend, having shown great empathy with the All Black’s the night before in sinking a few himself as we watched the game Sportsworld’s ladies also represented with Sandra, Phil eile, Roise and Sarah putting in strong runs and showing good progression from their recent training.
I didn’t see the half marathon unfortunately, as Trev and I made a beeline for the physio after breakfast. Stephen and Joe ran solidly as always and several of our ladies had excellent runs, notably Andrea with a 1.33. So pleased was she with the PB, that she told the bouncers in the quays all about it and they enjoyed a healthy debate about all things running. Claire Rowley, Maria Finnegan, Catherine Gilmore, Laura Reynolds, Caoline Galligan and Madeleine Byrne all completed the gruelling 13.1 miles and did the club proud.
All in all it was a great weekend and opportunity to give Trev a send off as he is Jamaica bound for his new job, developing the logistical network for the Lilt Man’s delivery route. Trev represented the club with distinction over the past few years, sometimes even on his way home from the night before, an impressive combination. Only for injuries, Trev would have certainly achieved even more and hopefully still will. A couple of years in the sun won’t hurt. See you soon brother…
the Lilt Man – race number 3496
I say fly away home to Zion (fly away home);
I say fly away home to Zion (fly away home).
One bright morning when my work is over,
Man will fly away home.
(Bob Marley, Rasta Man Chant).
Sportsworld 10k Results:
Phil Kilgannon 35.30
Trevor Marley (formally Sweeney) 35.53
Will Greensmyth 40.04
Eoin O’Brien 44.39
Conor Kenny 45.51
Sandra Kelly 48.21
Rosie Mulhern 52.27
Phil Daly 53.46
Sarah Lavan 56.32
Sportsworld Half Marathon Results:
Andrea McNamara 1.33.39
Joe Haugh 1.38.51
Naoise Waldron 1.40.38
Denis McCaul 1.40.39
Stephen Willoughby 1.46.12
Claire Rowley 1.49.43
Emma Barry 1.52.23
Maria Finnegan 1.52.32
Catherine Gilmore 1.53.19
Caroline Galligan 1.56.28
Madeleine Byrne 1.56.22
Footnote 1. Trevor didn’t actually race but was charged with administering the magic sponge and post race massages.
Your race reporter