On Wednesday of this wk Round 3 of the Dublin Athletics Graded Track & Field series was staged at Morton Stadium, Santry. It was a nice bright evening.

There were six athletes representing Sportsworld AC at the meet. The first competitor was Margaret, who was one of many debutants in the 400m Grade B, and did very well to post a 70 second lap. I have no doubt but it will be one of many future successes on the track for Margaret.

Next, our club had competitors in each of the next individual five mile races, with each person taking on their equally matched competitors from clubs predominantly around Dublin or surrounding counties.

For the Women’s mile race, Grades A and B were combine. Catherine, who was a debutant, produced a fine 05:54. She is learning the craft of track running, having raced the half-mile a fortnight ago, and will no doubt be back for more this year and keep improving. Well done Catherine.

Next up was Packie (your author) in Grade D of the men’s mile, running a similar styled race to Catherine, finishing mid-pack also, this time in 05:39. I must say I’m happy with that!

Then we had Will in Grade C. Will closed very well, overtaking two lads from rival clubs in the final 95m to finish in a fine 05:02. Well done Will!

Next it was Gareth in Grade B, in one of the proudest Sportsworld performances of the night. Looking to add to his tremendous but realistic improvements in fitness over the past 2/3 yrs, Gareth arrived with a plan – to run under 04:35. He ended up running under 04:30, closing with a 63 second final quarter to almost win the race, losing by only a foot. A Personal Best for Gareth, can’t ask for more than that.

Finally in the Grade A Basil Clifford Mile, Karol had a good 04:32 to finish on an equal keel to many of his compatriots. Within this race, former sub-4 miler John Coughlan (son of two time Olympian Eamonn) had an easy victory to take the cash along with the inaugural Basil Clifford Mile trophy. Well done John.

To conclude, well done to our athletes for confronting the mythical and invalid fears of track running. Also, many thanks to our two stewards the club provided to Dublin Athletics at the meet (Stephen Willoughby and Myles, the latter gratefully providing us with our lap times); and last but not least our head coach Emily who provided guidance and inspiration to her athletes as they circumnavigated the track.

Full results on http://www.dublinathletics.com/