Race Reports by Shona Keane and Peter Knaggs

Full results at bottom of page. Photos by Anna Delaney, Naoise Waldron & Eoin O’Brien. For a full Gallery click here: Gallery


Report by Shona Keane

Shona in action Sunday

The venue for today’s Leinster cross country was adjacent to Moyvalley Hotel & Golf Club and hosted by Na Fianna. The course consisted of one wide field with good underfoot conditions, a few short uphills and a couple of tight corners roped in for good measure.
I didn’t run any cross country last Winter and I’m not that long back training regularly so today was to be a personal test and you are always nervous when you haven’t raced in a while. We took off hard and fast and on the first tight corner I got a spike in the shin and the reality hit that cross country is always a tough game! The first small lap flew by as did the first longer lap and the final lap is when you try to dig deep and finish as strong as you can.
Fellow Shannon sider Noreen Brouder had another great race and I managed to hold on as close as I could and keep her in my sights. Tara Rhattigan followed close behind and celebrated her birthday in style today! Naoise Waldron has shown great improvement in recent months and was next woman home. Margaret Crowley and Catherine Mulleady worked well together throughout. Next home were Gemma, Eimear and Aggie to complete the line up.
Sometimes we rave about all the up front experienced racers that do this week in and out but today I took admiration in the bravery of new racers; Gemma White, Eimear Casey and Anna Carrigan. Not being afraid to have a go is up there as fundamental to cross country and these girls gave it their all today.
The women’s masters team followed with excellent runs from Ruth, Stephanie, Sandra Gowran (who will out sprint anyone on the final stretch!) Ann Higgins, Aileen Melody, and Ellen Lavin.


The standard in both women’s races was high with all the Leinster clubs being represented. On the back of today I am certainly looking forward to the next race with a great bunch of girls that worked hard and teamed so well out there today.

Thank you to all our supporters, every cheer helps!
Maith sibh go léir
Ps: I am reliably informed by the editor that the “lads” report will follow separately.

Report by Peter Knaggs
Peter in action Sunday 

On Sunday 25th October Sportsworld athletes swapped the comfort of a lazy Sunday bank holiday afternoon for an energy sapping but ultimately exhilarating cross country romp around a field in Co.Meath with not a sheep in sight for miles.


Any possible confusion with a certain well known chicken farm was laid (no pun intended) aside and upon arrival we could see that this was a thoroughly well organised affair, set in the grounds around the Moyvalley Hotel, near Enfield Co.Meath. Rather than heading straight to the running field, the team chose first to inspect the Hotel in order to see how the post run refreshments were going to shape up. Having sussed out the hotel, a patch of ground was identified near the running field, kit bags were flung down and a Sportsworld base camp was declared. Other teams had quite sophisticated set ups, including tents and flags, it was an almost tribal-like affair. Aside from the Seniors races, there were various Junior races. It was a packed timetable but the organisers managed to keep things flowing nicely and kept very strictly to the planned start times which was appreciated.


The weather was generally kind, with fairly firm conditions underfoot. In keeping with Sportsworld thoroughness of preparation, a number of us chose to walk the course and get a sense of the battle to come. Generally it was a flat course, however there was one tough hill at the end of each lap which tested all and sundry.

Having never experienced running in a Cross country race before I was taken by a lot of the similarities between XC (as Cross Country appears sometimes to be abbreviated to) and Horse racing – the numerous races, the use of the word Novice, the starting pen like stalls at the start, the inspecting of the course beforehand and even the false starts.

Then the battles commenced.


From a personal point of view, as a person who has never run XC, I found the whole experience hugely rewarding, the friendly camaraderie of my team colleagues and also the support from the sidelines. Even though as a new member I wouldn’t be the most familiar of faces, the shouts of “c’mon Sportsworld” when the red and white singlet came into view was tremendously uplifting and it felt like Sportsworld was disproportionately well represented in the supporting stakes among the onlookers.


Sportsworld entered large teams in four races, mens and ladies Novice and mens and ladies Masters. The ladies masters took the field and performed heroically, particularly Ruth Kelly who came in 6th place with a storming 4k run of 15.29 and who also kept the Dublin flag flying in the county result. The Ladies Sportsworld team came in a very creditable eighth place (out of 19).

Noreen Brouder led the Ladies Novice team home in an impressive 12th place in 15.52 and the Sportsworld team came 6th in that race.

The Novice men had some very stiff competition and performed heroically in the circumstances, coming in sixth position. Kevin Curran led the Sportsworld men home in 21st place (21.53) and special mention to John Flaherty who gamely stepped into the Novice race at the last minute from the Masters race. Sportsworld came 6th out of 9 in this most competitive of races
In the men’s masters (6k) race, Phil Kilgannon ran barefoot and came 9th out of 159 runners in a time of 20.51, a very fine performance. The team came 9th out of 20.All in all, a very creditable showing by Sportsworld against very competitive opposition in all categories. Spikes were duly packed away and replaced by runners and the competitors retired to the comfort of the hotel bar for some well deserved refreshments plus some lovely homemade Sportsworld sandwiches (psst…don’t tell the hotel).
Some watched the rugby world cup semi-final whilst musing on ‘what if Ireland had been there?’ question. Thanks to all those who drove down to Moyvalley and gave a lift to others (I for one am grateful) and here’s to the next Sportsworld XC adventure. Somehow I think, the muckiness factor will rise but who cares about that, it’s all part of the unique experience that is Cross Country.

Full Sportsworld results below, 33 finishers from the club in 4 races! 
County Medals Won
  • Gold – Kevin Curran Dublin Novice Team
  • Silver – Ann Higgins Dublin Masters O50 Team
  • Silver – Ruth kelly Dublin Masters Team
  • Silver – Phil Killgannon Dublin Masters Team
  • Novice Women finished 6th with Noreen Brouder coming 12th in the overall standings
  • Masters Women finished  8th with Ruth Kelly coming 6th in the overall standings
  • Masters Women 50+ came 3rd! Team: Ann Higgins, Aileen Melody, Ellen Lavin, congratulations!
  • Novice Men finished 6th
  • Masters Men finished 9th with Phil Kilgannon coming 9th in the overall standings
  • Masters Men 50+ finished 6th

Get involved and join in, sign up for the weekend training email (bottom of website homepage) and try the Saturday cross country training sessions. Also have a read of Michael’s piece explaining the cross country set up, click here: Cross Country I Love You

Novice Women 4k
Noreen Brouder 15:52
Shona keane 16:22
Tara Rathigan 17:27
Naoise Waldron 17.31
Margaret Crowley 17:51
Catherine Mulleady 17:52
Emer Casey 18:52
Gemma White 19:09
Aggie Buckley 19:56

Novice Men 6k
Conor McCarthy 22:17
John Flaherty 26:14
Kevin Curran 21:53
Sadanand McGee 22:41

Masters Women 4k
Ruth Kelly 15:29
Stephanie Bergin 16:52
Ann Higgins 18:04
Sandra Gowran 18:35
Aileen Melody 18:56
Anna Carrigan 19:21
Ellen Lavin 20:06

Masters Men 6k
Phil Killgannon 20:51
Paul O’Connell 22:25
Michael Cunninham 22:44
Packie Enright 23:13
Martin Keenan 23:22
Anthony Gillen 23:38
Jim Browne 24:59
Brian Conway 25:26
Eoin O’Brien 26:10
Peter Knaggs 26:27
Jose Chappa 26:35
Philip Kerr 27:24
Ray Carpenter 27:44

Upcoming dates for your diary!

November 1st Sunday – Dublin Senior – Tymon Park

Womens Start 14.15 – Men Start 15.00

November 8th Sunday – Leinster Intermediate – Kennedy Park, Wexford

November 14th Saturday – British & Irish Masters – Santry

November 22nd Sunday – Inter County Cross Country – Santry

November 29th Sunday – Dublin intermediate –  Tymon Park

Womens Start 14.00 – Men Start 14.20

December 6th Sunday – National Novice – St.Augustine’s College, Dungarvan, Co.Waterford

January 10th Sunday – Dublin Masters – St Annes Park Rahney

Womens Start 13.00 – Men Start 13.30

February 14th Sunday –  Intercounties – The Curragh