Report by Stephen Willoughby

Full Sportsworld results at bottom of page

The Barringtons Hospital Great Limerick Run is an event I have taken part in over the last few years. You have an option of either the marathon, half marathon or 6 mile and over a coffee a few months ago myself and a few others from club decided to head down again this year.


Race reporter Stephen (on left)

Due to various commitments we were all travelling down at different times and days so busy time was had having to pick up race numbers for others and arrange to meet at various different hotels around the city centre to hand over goodie bags and teeshirts day before.

This event is a huge boost for Limerick City as between the three races over 14,000 take part. The day before 3,500 kids from Limerick Primary Schools took part in waved starts over different distances around UL finishing on the running track. Was nice to bump into Shona who was there supporting her nephews Kevin and Eoin (future of Irish Athletics I have no doubt).

The logistics of race day are marathon starts at 9.00am so we went to the 2 mile mark to see if we could spot any Sportsworld Runners. First to pass was Neil Purdy looking good on his way to a Sub 4 hour marathon. Not too far behind were Ronan Murray, fresh from his marathon week before and Shay Brady who had ran 36 miles day before and was doing marathon as warm up to Belfast marathon the next day !!. Although raining we soon noticed conditions would be warm as both lads proceeded to strip off infront of us as they were wearing layers and felt a singlet would be enough to wear.


Catherine Gilmore, Emma Barry and myself were doing the half marathon which started at 11.45am. I would need Will Greensmyth to give the guided tour of the course as starts in city centre heads out around the surrounding areas and back into city centre and then out again for a 10k loop passing Thomond Park back into city centre again.


As the marathon course was changed this year we came across Neil, Ronan and Shay at different points on the other side of the road running towards us which was nice opportunity to high five them and shout encouragement.

I had agreed to try and help Emma and Catherine to get under 1.50 and we were all together up to half way and as Emma was running very strongly myself and Emma pushed on and Catherine tried to hang onto the official 1.50 pacers.


I will admit that I struggled to keep up with Emma near the end as she took off heading over the bridge which brings you to O’Connell Street and probably one of the best finishing straights you will ever experience in any race as there is a huge crowd line both sides of the street so I made the most of it with high fiving the crowd as would have been rude to finish ahead of Emma.

Some improvement in her half marathon times as smashed the 1.50 target with 1.47.08. Rosie Mulhern had a very good run finishing in 1.55.32 and more to come from Rosie in next few months. Catherine not too far behind in 1.56.22 and Caroline Galligan not too far behind Catherine in 1.58.10.


Missed seeing Noreen Brouder beforehand as she ran a great race finishing 2nd in her age category in a time of 1.25.56 – a 5min PB!!!

Didn’t get to see any of the 6 mile race at 1.30pm but believe Helen Brouder ran really well to finish 2nd overall female in a time of 37.09 with Will Greensmyth not too far behind in 38.16 although rumour has it he was with Helen turning into O’Connell Street but did his customary finish showboating to his beloved fans hence the difference in time between the two.


Great event, great weekend and will be back next year.

Ps. If you staying in the Savoy and wondering how to turn off the lights beside your bed, the switch is located under the lampshade just under the bulb !!

Sportsworld Results:

Neil Purdy 3.58.12
Ronan Murray 4.16.31
Shay Brady 4.16.31

Half Marathon
Noreen Brouder 1.25.56
Emma Barry 1.47.08
Stephen Willoughby 1.47.15
Rosie Mulhern 1.55.32
Catherine Gilmore 1.56.22
Caroline Galligan 1.58.10

6 Mile
Helen Brouder 37.09
Will Greensmyth 38.16