By Terenure 5 Race Director Michael Cunningham

Michael Cunningham

The 32nd Sportsworld 5 mile race did not get off to a great start. In February we found out we could not get the venue we had used for the last few years and we quickly had to find a new one. So we had no sponsor, no money, no entries, no venue, a new online payment system to set up and a huge amount of work to do.

Four months later we had a sold out event, 2 main sponsors, a top class athletic field, a drone and a samba band!!! Personally in February I wasn’t sure we were going to have a race this year but thanks to a huge amount of work from a lot people we put on one the best races in the racing calendar.

There are a large amount of people to thank who worked on the race and our main sponsors Spar and Lisney but I just want to highlight a few of them.

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Mick Dowling for quickly getting our new race venue and at the same time getting our main sponsor and the samba band.

Sandra Gorwan for seamlessly slipping into her role of Chairperson of the club and doing an amazing job of introducing the race and doing the prize giving.

Conor Kenny put in a massive amount of work generating interest in the race and working with sponsors to make sure we had a sold out event and money to pay the bills.

Eoin O’Brien not just for the lightning bolt idea of novelty pacer balloons but all the steward lists, rounding up of volunteers, new members desk with Naoise and nearly two slabs of caramel slices.

Crona Brady who did a great job working with the charity and getting the message across of what the money was being raised for and paced the race as well.

Anthony Gillen along with Stephen Willoughby took on one of the toughest jobs as course director which involves working heavily with the Gardai and stewards.

Ronan Murray for moving a few tonnes of equipment for the race and pacing it at the same time.

Sean O Byrne for doing all the Health Safety statements and event licence work.

Maria Finnegan again took on the role of organising the accounts and will be busy over the next weeks getting all the bills paid and getting the accounts ready for the main committee.

Laurence and Niamh Cunningham (future member) organised the food and tea and coffee for after the race and the work that goes into it before the race.

Olivier Privat for doing one of the many unseen jobs of putting out and collecting the 400 plus traffic cones and barriers which he has done for the last 3 years.

Orla Jordan for organising and getting the lead cyclists for the race which keeps the race safe.

James Brady for roping his girlfriend into massively increasing our race Facebook likes.

Michael O’Grady donated his time on Sunday to give massages to needy runners and also donated vouchers. Some stewards had some serious Hi- Vis jacket strain and had to get treated too.

We had a number of new committee members this year. Lucia Prihodova, Jose Chapa, Phil Kilgannon and Claire Rowley  It’s not easy putting yourself forward to go onto a committee but the only way the race can grow with new ideas, and people willing to work on them, is for people to volunteer.

There are many more people to thank who got race donations, spot prizes, put up poster signs, got water, got PA systems, did leaflet drops, got Portaloo’s, baked for the race, website video’s, stewarding the list goes on and on but without those jobs being done by people the race could not happen.

We did a lot of things right for the race this year but there are things we definitely can improve on for next year. Unfortunately there will be a tax on people doing the pacing job next year as people are enjoying it way too much but if anyone wants to get more involved with the race and wants to go on the committee to make improvements and take on jobs then please put your name forward when the 2017 Sportsworld 5 mile race planning starts in October.

I think for a race organised and run by volunteers we put on a high standard race but we can’t take the success of the race for granted. The race is a great way to get new members, raise money for the club and for charities and we need every single person in the club getting behind it.