Babs Connors Cup comes back to West Waterford
What a great day of cross country running we had in the Friary last Sunday. The weather was ideal. Bro Lennon and his crew had the course in tip top condition and juvenile club chairperson Antoinette had all her troops in place to make sure of the smooth running of the event. West Waterford had over seventy athletes in action which was a big jump up from the numbers competing in Waterford the week before. The Babs Connors Cup is awarded to the best overall club based on team placings over the two days of the championships. After day 1 Waterford AC were in the lead with 18pts, six points ahead of West Waterford. However a superb second day performance by the West Waterford athletes in which they claimed ten team prizes saw them score 24pts to Waterford’s 9pts meant they won the overall by 9pts and the Babs Connors Cup came back to West Waterford after an absence of three years. West Waterford had previously won it seven years in a row between 2011 and 2017. Waterford AC won it in 2018 and 2019 and our cross country season was curtailed in 2020 with only one day of the championships held. Well done to all who competed today and brought the cup home.
Team Gold for Girls under 9
Our girls under 9 have been training for the past few weeks and this was their first competitive outing. Leah Kiely and Eile de Paor were in superb form and took home individual medals with Leah 2nd and Eile 3rd. They were well supported by Sinead Houlihan 11th and Alannah Pope 13th to win first team prize. Also competing were Aisling Hickey 14th and Neasa McGovern 17th.
First County Title for Jarleth Hurney in Boys under 9
West Waterford’s first individual title was won by Jarleth Hurney who had a great race to win the boys under 9. Jarleth has been showing great form since he joined us last May so it was no surprise to see him cross the line first. Tiernan Hogan who only joined in the last few weeks also showed great promise in finishing 4th. Jack Barry got up to finish 11th and Oran Murray came home in 17th place to complete the scoring four on the team and finish second in the team race. Next home was Sebastian Byrne in 21st just one place ahead of Shane Power 22nd and Rex Radley not far behind in 29th.
Bronze Medals for Girls under 11
Ava Kiely led home the West Waterford girl’s under 11 team. Ava finished 3rd in her first county championship to win an individual bronze and also lead her team to the bronze medal position. Aimee Barry was next home in 6th place and Nicole Cullinane 13th just one place ahead of newcomer Anna Rochford. These four made up the scoring members of the team. Next home was Clodagh Lattimore 16th , and then close together Natalie Barry 24th, Ciara O’Donovan 25th and Ruth Walsh 26th. They were followed by Siobhan Hickey 28th, Clodagh Mills 29th and Matilda Mattuzzi 31st.
County Team Title for Boys under 11
With their scoring four in the top eight the boys under 11 gave a really good team performance to take home the gold medals. Charlie Curran was first across the line for West Waterford finishing 3rd for an individual bronze medal. Not far behind was Fergus Donnelly in 5th and Callum Curran just back after winning the National Community Games last weekend finished 6th. Conor McCarthy finished strongly taking 8th place and the fourth scoring place on the team. Patrick Mullaney was next home in 11th with Peter Aherne 16th, Lochlann Hurney 19th and David Dempsey who moved up an age 20th. Running in their first race Conor McGovern finished 28th and Mark McLouglann was just behind in 29th with Nathan Butler in 30th place.
Gold and Bronze Team Medals for under 13 Girls as Kyla Flavin takes the Individual Title
We had some great individual and team running from the girls under 13. Kyla Flavin had a much better race this week. Running side by side with Isabelle Gaffney for much of the race Kyle surged ahead at the end of the race to claim the individual title with Isabelle just behind in 2nd place. Rosie Berryman ran strongly to finish 8th and there was a big jump in performance from Sarah Hallissey to finish 9th and take the fourth scoring place on the team. Our second team was led home by Isabelle Mattuzzi in 12th place followed by Luisne de Paor in 13th Ciara Flavin 15th and Siuin Cunningham and they took the bronze medals. Next home was Aoife Doyle 20th, Amy O’Riordan 21st and Leah Wall 22nd.
Second County Title for Eoin Prendergast
Eoin Prendergast added to the county under 14 title he won last week with a win this week in the boys under 13 race. Eoin led all the way from the gun and came home a clear winner. Owen Morrissey finished 5th just ahead of Rian Cliffe in 6th and Rory Donnelly finished 10th for the fourth scoring place and first place in the team race. Cathal McKenna running a year out of age finished 10th.
County Team Title for Girls under 15
It is clear from the last two weeks that we have very strong girls teams under 13,14 and 15 and we look forward to seeing them in action at the Munster Championships at the end of the month. Sarah Gaffney who missed last week’s race put in a great individual performance to finish 3rd and claim the bronze medal.
There was a great battle for the scoring team place with Fia de Paor the winner of the under 14 race in 5th closely tracked by Aoife O’Donovan in 6th . Lauren Cliffe finished very strongly to take 9th place just ahead of Ami Flavin 11th . Sarah O’ Riordan was next home in 14th just ahead of Claudia O’Halloran in 15th and Clodagh Cunningham and Eabha Hickey completing the West Waterford team.
Clean Sweep for WWAC under 15 Boys
It was a clean sweep for the boys under 15 team with West Waterford taking all three individual medals and the team title. The gold and silver looked assured from shortly after the start with David Gaffney leading all the way and Naoise Mac Murchada, in his first cross country season running well in second spot. The real battle was for the bronze medal and with 1,000m to go Liam Broderick was in 4th place. He put in a very strong last 1000m to move in to 3rd place. When Ben Qualter crossed the line in 5th place the team title was also West Waterfords.
Team Title for Girls under 17
Last week in Waterford our under 16 and 18 girls missed out on the team titles as they were missing one athlete in each age group. On home soil this week they had a full team and claimed the individual and team title. Caoimhe Prendergast in her first race of the season won the individual title. Grainne Moore was unlucky to miss out on an individual medal finishing 4th. Cathy Ní Sheanlaoich was next home in 7th just ahead of Crea Frisby 8th and Fiona O’Riordan 9th to collect another team title for West Waterford.
Silver for Mark Blackwell
Mark Blackwell moved back to compete with the juvenile club this week in the boys under 19 race. He was the only representative from West Waterford in the event. He ran strongly throughout the 6000m to finish 2nd for an individual bronze medal.
There are some great action photos from last Sunday on the West Waterford website. Thanks to Michele for all the great shots.
Tony’s League to Start on the 16th of October
Because of the covid restrictions in place last year we had to forgo Tony’s League which is the highlight of the cross country season for many of our athletes. This year the league is back again and will start on October 16th. The first two Wednesdays will be an individual event with the younger athletes running 1000m and the older athletes 2000m (one lap of the Friary) and you must run in one of these races to be on a team. Everyone is trying to get a good base line time and then Tony will have the difficult job of sorting out the teams. The teams will be made up of athletes of all ages and abilities. The team race will run over 4 weeks starting on Wed 3rd and the final run which is run in reverse order will be on Dec 1st after which the prizes will be presented. The league will run hail rain or shine and it is important that all team members turn up each week as a missing team member can change the standing of the team very quickly.