As we expected a record turn out of 516 runners competed. This became apparent when earlier in the week Club Treasurer Denise Regan, who was handling the pre registration, informed all that 300 Athletes had pre-entered entered from all four corners of the country. We also had athletes who made the journey from North Wales especially to run the race they also stayed at a local hotel for the weekend as did our friends from Newry, Penbrokeshire, Germany and North Belfast Harriers. As we said we also had runners from all over the Island too as can be seen in the results below and there were a huge array of clubs represented among the prize winners which was pleasing to see.
On to the race itself, with the weather absolutely perfect for the occasion with no wind. It was a good dry day and add to that a super fast flat course all was set for a classic and that's what we got, with great times recorded by the top runners. Indeed the times in general were fast right through out the field of the 516 runners. This was the best turn out ever for a non championship road race here in Dungarvan the old record was well beaten when in this very race last year 426 went to post, and from here it will grow again wait and see.
We especially congratulate all the local runners who completed the 10-mile classic distance many for the first time and to the many who recorded personal best times well done. For the record West Waterford AC had 130 runners competing on the day, another superb number of local runners.
THE MIGHTY SANDIS RETAINS TITLE IN STYLE.
Sandis Bralitis who has been nursing an unfortunate Achilles injury these last couple of weeks faced the starters gun and was laying his title on the line after a terrific win last year. From the gun he ran his usual very fast first mile 4.45 which usually leaves him well in command of the race, but Alan O'Shea of Bandon had other ideas and was hot on his heels and by mile two was on the shoulder of Sandis.
By the 3rd mile Alan had a sizable gap opened and was 60-70 meters clear. But Sandis wasn't to relinquish his title too easily and dug deep catching the Bandon athlete by mile 6. Sandis them threw in a sub 4.50 mile to stamp his authority on the race and he came home alone a clear winner in 50.16 retaining his title in brilliant style, even if just outside his winning time of 50.08 from last year.
Feeling very sore on his Achilles after the race but non less very happy to have retained his crown we hope that Sandis will now take the necessary steps to sort out this ongoing injury worry. The young Bandon Doctor might have some advice for him, Alan O'Shea also a fine athlete was well clear when finishing 2 nd in 51.14 a time he was most pleased with.
Third place was taken by another West Waterford athlete Raivis Zakis with anther good solid run from the Rav he clipped 11seconds off his P.B.for the 10 mile distance when finishing in 52.20. Dzintars Klava finished 5th in a time of 53.44 and was pleased enough with his performance. The Men's team prizes were hotly fought out and the standard was of the highest with Eagle AC in Cork taking 1 st place with just 50 points.
In the Junior men's race a local youngster new to the running scene but mentioned elsewhere in this weeks notes for another performance over a completely different distance Rory Moloney had a fantastic debut running a time of 61.31 to claim first place in the category. We haven't heard the last of this fellow. In the local men's running scene there were many very good performances and many personal best times recorded. Des Feeney 61.48 knocking well over a minute off last years time. The Bo Tutty 66.50, what a run!! last year he just broke the 70. Michael Deegan 76.03 , Ray Moore getting under the 75-minute barrier, Pat Morrissey Sneaking under the 76 minute's with a time of 75.59.
Joe Kelly, clocked 61.52, Sean Dwyer 79.21 a first timer on this course. Hugh O'Connor had a great run clocking 92.04,and there back the Ballysaggart duo of James and Sean Bennett just over the 90 minutes. There were lots more performances of note too many to mention and I have no doubt that by the time you read these notes that another dozen or so personal bests achievements will come to light for both the Ladies and Men of West Waterford, To cover our front we say well done to all.
LADIES COURSE RECORD SMASHED.
Turning to the Ladies event it seems similarly to the men's race that personal performances were rampant. The overall winner was a Sligo athlete who is now based in Cork, Lucy Brennen. Lucy who is in the over 45 Masters category put in an outstanding performance to not alone win the race but to decimate the course record when she finished 35 th overall in a time of 58.42. Now that is class running by any Lady athlete, never mind the fact that Lucy is in the V45 category. Lucy recently won the Mallow 10 miler and here she clocked 64.52 so that's some improvement from the Sligo Woman, indicating how fast this course really is.
Ann Marie Holland, Source Cork, was second in a time of 63.24 after a great battle with Mary Sweeney. Ann Marie will be pleased with taking second ahead of Mary after she ran a time of 69.16 in the Mallow 10 some weeks ago. As we said the one and only Mary Sweeney St. Finbars AC was third an athlete in the Masters 45 category Mary is running as well as ever and her time Sunday was 63.42.
West Waterford athletes also made the winning podium, there were two outstanding performances from Sinead Crotty and Norma Wall finishing 5th and 7th respectively. Both girls had personal best times with Sinead clocking 66.38 and Norma 66.56, nothing between these two club mates. Sinead, running one of her first 10 milers, is certainly one of the most improving Female athlete around presently and is now on a training schedule which will see her improve more over the summer months. Speaking of training schedules, no one I know trains as hard as our club assistant secretary Norma. Last year she ran a P.B. on this course when battling to break the 70 minute mark this she did 69.58 no more needs to be said 3 minutes off that gives you 66.56 O.K. close enough!
Ann Dunford had a fine run to claim the over 35 prize a category which she finished 2nd in last year. Ann's time was 71.20 Its good to see Ann running so well again. A lady who put a great amount of work into this race as she was the person responsible for looking after all the prizes just rewards that she received one herself. There were so many of the clubs Ladies ran so well on Sunday an amount of Personal Best times recorded and I don't know of all of them however I do know some that stood out.
Regina Byrne ran her first 10 miler here last year clocking 73.27 well that's in the past last Sunday 70.50 goes on top of the list. Jenny Mulcahy and Claire O' Reilly 73.05. Niamh Reynolds had a great run with 81.54, Karen Ryan 82.15, Bridget Coffey had a great run too her time was 98.26.Abbeyside lady Mary Harney 92.51, Joan Navin 91.28, Olivere Crotty a personal best 88 minutes even, Ann Foley had a great run 82.53.
There were many first timers here also over the 10 mile distance Catriona O'Brien was one and she had a great run in 96.39 no more bother to her. I know I have left out some so I'd better stop. The West Waterford Ladies retained their team title with the team of Sinead Crotty Norma Wall and Regina Byrne. Well done to them.
Just to mention and thank all the local runners who made the effort to pre enter the race this year, and to Michael Tutty who collected all the club entries also. It was a big help to the Ladies on computer and it made life that little bit easier on the day. We will this week sit down and have a look at next years race and the improvements that can be made on last Sunday if any. It was a huge effort by many people and all are to congratulated, The club would love to hear from you if you have any constructive comments to help with the organising of the race as we expect this to become something really big in the future and together with all the good will out there for the club we can rise to that challenge.
OUR THANKS TO ALL.
From an organisational point of view the race went off without a hitch. This was due in no small way to the great amount of pre race work put in by club road racing co-ordinator Gerry Cantwell and his team and the many others who were involved, quite an amount of those who have no immediate involvement with our club but who gave of their time to help stage the perfect event last Sunday.
The huge record entry of 516 was in no small way due to the much appreciated sponsorship from Glaxosmithkline and special thanks to Mr Michael Tyler who was on hand on behalf of the sponsors to present all the lucky winners with their prizes.
Our thanks also to the staff of Waterford Crystal Sports Centre and the staff of Dungarvan United Football club for their help and to all those who made the sandwiches to feed the hungry runners and all who donated to and helped to pack the Goodie Bag's on Saturday night a big thank you." Many Hands make light work".
There are many other people to thank for their help on the day especially all the stewards out on the course and Tony Ryan who co-ordinated this most important function on race day.
Led by our club Treasurer Denise Regan, our thanks to all who were looking after registration, results and at the finish area, time keepers and recorders. Tony and Michael on P.A. and lead car, thanks to Skerries for the use of his super new camera for the action photos and to Ger Wyley for his photography skills at the presentation of prizes.
I must also single one individual for his work with the traffic management and practical help leading up to race day and on the day itself and that's Conor Norris. No more needs to be said here. Parking was a big issue for this race but the plan of action went without a hitch our thanks to the Business owners at Dungarvan industrial estate and to Waterford Crystal for the use of the factory car park which we are indebted to Tony Elstead for organising.
We must extend our sincere thanks to Dungarvan Garda Station under Superintendent Tom O'Grady for their continued support with this and all our events. On wards and up wards!!
A senior club committee meeting will be held this Thursday February 8th at 8.30 in Minnie's Bar, Abbeyside.
THE BALDY MAN RE-SCHEDULED FOR SUNDAY FEBRUARY 18TH.
Due to adverse weather conditions the event organisers postponed The Baldy Man Run in Tramore over the Christmas period. However the event has been re-scheduled for Sunday 18 th February next at 11 AM.
TIME RUNNING OUT FOR YOUR ARTICLE'S FOR CLUB ANNUAL.
The upcoming 4th edition of our club Annual is nearing completion and editor Dermot Dwyer is hoping to have the first copies of the 2006 Annual rolling off the presses in a short while. Dermot has been busy these last couple of weeks on this year's production as a huge amount of hours go into getting and editing and putting together the publication.
The last of the articles are coming into him presently and we urge anyone who wishes to write an article on any aspect of the club or running in general that this is the time to get it done. Anyone wishing to contribute can sent his or her finished piece to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Congratulations from all at the club to David Gaffney and Elizabeth Murray on the birth recently of a baby boy, health and happiness to all.
ALLROUNDER SPORT WINTER LEAGUE
PERSONAL BEST'S LEFT RIGHT AND CENTRE.
It proves one thing, the weather is everything. Last week's league saw an unprecedented amount of personal best times recorded on what was without doubt the best night to date for this addition of our winter league. No Rain and no wind, perfect for running and the proof of this can be seen in many of the times recorded.
First home on the 5.7 mile course was last Octobers Dublin City Marathon finisher Martin Houlihan in 47.03. 2nd was Liam Budds 36.43, a great run from the Grange man. Keeping the flag flying for the Ladies, Jenny Kirwan of Kilmacthomas, finished 3 rd on the night in a time of 48.37.
Raivis Zakis recorded the best time for the current league when clipping around in a cool 31.11 and is in the form presently to even break his old course record of 30.37 which he set on the final night last year. Eamon Phelan had a great run 37.54, Michele Durand only one second off the 50 minute barrier 50.01, Brian Kirwan 40.39, Earl Navin 42.41,Tracey Dwyer 47.15,Michael Callaghan 45.57 ,Pat Frisby 38.49, Dermot O'Neill a great run in 37.12, Caroline Russell 52.49, Jenny Mulcahy 41.51, Dave Pollack again just shy of the 50 –50.03.
Brid Veale had her best time for the current league 46.42, Billy Coleman now only a tad off the sub 40, Norma Wall arguably the performance of the night a superb run of 38.21 and Sinead Crotty how about her improvement in a couple of weeks 38.43. Ger Wyley again knocking on the sub 40 minutes after his 40.04 and no help from "Spider”.
All in all, a good night's winter league running was enjoyed by all. Having a quick glimpse at the overall situation as we go to press there has been a huge change around at the top of affairs with Michael Dunford now gone into the lead on 531 points with the absence last week of Mike Horgan who slips into 3rd place with 566 points. Previous winner of the league Tony Shalloe has come through the field nicely and is ready to pounce in second place with 558 points a lot could well depend on tonight's handicap run. The winner at this stage is most likely to come from one of these three now. More on the overall tables next week.
RICHIE HENNESSEY LEADS THEM HOME IN 2.6-MILE LEAGUE.
It was also personal best over the 2.6 mile league for many last week with Richie Hennessey leading the pack home in a very good time of 15.26. Elma Nugent was next in 16.38, excellent running from her.Third home was Libby McGinn-Murphy with a time of 23.31.Quentien Hickey had a stomer clipping around the course in 13.48 and even this superb performance was to be bettered by one of this years league sensations Rory Moloney when the youngster was clocked at 13.19 the fastest time in the league to date.
Everyone is in a battle at this stage of the league, some going for overall success, some for divisional honours and many battling against themselves. We’re all in a battle of some kind or another. To mention a few who have improved to date in the 2.6 mile league, Colin Lenehan 16.26,Gillian McNamara 22.40, Aine Kelly 20.13, Brian Curtin 18.44, Liam Crowe in flying form 22.18, Sally Ann King 19.26, Sinead Ni Mhurchadha 22.01, Seamus Casey 21.38, Don Brennan 18.45. All these and many others are having their own personal battle mentioned above at this year league and with three weeks remaining we expect to see even more improvement from all.
Angeline Drennan has consolidated her position in the quest for overall success and now leads with 467 points. In second place is Mary Riordan with 491 points. Could Mary possible do it or could Ger Howley keep the title in the male camp ??
GUESS YOUR TIME HANDICAP RUN TONIGHT.
The Second and final guess your time handicap run will take place tonight at the League, two weeks ago when we had the same type league run it certainly changed around the personal in many of the various division in both league distances and tonight's run with only two weeks left after tonight could and might decide many of the divisional winners and indeed the overall title winners could very well be decided tonight. First runners off at 7.20, best of luck to all.
The now famous mystery tour will take place on Friday 23rd February. At the winter league tonight names will take along with a 5 Euro deposit. This will secure your seat on the bus. Remember it's on a first come first served basis.
Finbar Kelly is the man in charge of the tour and I hear through the grape vines that he has a great night lined up for us. Whatever race or run you might miss this year for whatever the reason, don't miss the mystery tour, it will be talked about for month's to come. See you on the bus.
The club's eagerly awaited social is being held on Friday March 30th at the Park Hotel Dungarvan, with music by "Never Heard of them". There will also be a disco to follow. The ticket price is 30 euro per ticket and they are on sale at the All-rounder winter league tonight and for the next two Wednesday nights.
Ann Dunford is handling the ticket sales and you can also purchase them from her. Tickets will be sold on a first come first served bases, so don't leave it too late for the club's social event of the year.
”The coach's main job is 20 percent technical and 80 percent inspirational.”