West Waterford Athletic ClubWest Waterford Athletic Club

Are you fit4life yet ?



The Minnie’s League is well and truly underway and now that we are almost at the halfway stage, it is certainly taking shape with people reaching new heights each week. We still have newcomers arriving each night with plenty of room for many more. The league is certainly achieving its goal of getting as many as possible to take up running as a means of improving health and fitness levels, and truly many who started from a non fitness base are now certainly becoming Fit4life, all the newcomers so far that have joined have been delighted with the system and the ease at which it can be done. It really is very simple and straightforward, why not come along on Tuesday and find out for yourself just how easy it is.  People are welcome on any night of the league for as many nights as you are able to come and why not bring a friend or two to join in the fun. You may decide yourself on the distance to do on the night, the choice being one, two, three or four laps of the Friary, with each lap being 1.2 miles in distance. If you feel that the distance is too long, you are most welcome to walk a bit and to run a bit, that’s how we all started off and there will be no looking back after a few weeks. In fact, there are some that have noticed a significant change already with many doing the lap without stopping already. The league continues every Tuesday night in the grounds of the Friary College. All participants are asked to park at the back of the college. The entry fee is €2 per night and water is provided at the finish for all. Let the Minnie’s Fit4Life Summer Running League be your goal for this summer. See you out there.


They say that consistency is the key to success and in the case of Sandra Ellard this is certainly the case. Sandra began the league on the first night and has taken part every night so far and has made huge strides running wise in such a short space of time. For round one she recorded 11.33 and for round four she recorded exactly 10.00 for the same distance. To run a lap of the Friary in ten minutes equates to an eight minute mile which is a goal for many and from there on the sky’s the limit. At this stage it’s time to be thinking of doing two laps in the next league and progressing from they’re to three laps in the following league. There is no shortage of leagues provided and hosted by West Waterford with many of them following the same format as the Minnie’s League. Sandra was not on her own in reaching this milestone at the Friary. Declan Hayes was the first of the one lappers home in a time of 9.42, Diana Chizhikova in 9.55 and Helen O’ Brien is ever so close in reaching 10.00 having clocked 10.06. Well done to Majella Walsh, Paula Early and Siobhain McCormack who all reached home around the 11-minute mark. Keep up the good work.


The two lappers are also experiencing the same success and improvement as the one lappers. This is all down to their level of commitment and consistency and is certainly well deserved. Two laps of the Friary is 2.4 miles in total and all are well up for the challenge. Deb Tudbury is one whose consistency has reaped rewards and she is now completing the two laps in a time of 21.37 and no doubt will have this whittled down to 21 minutes before the conclusion of the league. Andrea Gaffney is really enjoying the two laps at the moment and was delighted to dip under 19 minutes for the distance. In fact, all of the two lap participants have been showing steady improvement throughout and should they continue with this trend we will have some fine capable runners by the end of the league. Carolyn Byrne and Nikki McKenna worked hard to break 21 minutes and should be well pleased with themselves for doing so. Between 21 and 22 minutes it was getting fast and furious at the finishing tunnel with runner after runner passing through, only a second or two between each runner. It’s great to be running as part of a group as it really keeps you going especially on the home straight in to the finish.


Congratulations to Tom Byrne on being the first of the three lap runners to cross the finishing line in a great time of 23.45, a huge improvement on his time for round one of 26.24. Tom is another regular member of our leagues and it certainly shows in his times. Another regular, Tomas Coleman was the second person home and will be well pleased with his time of 24.43 with Colm O’ Brien filling third position in a time of 25.43. Three laps of the Friary is a distance of 3.6 miles so this is a fair achievement for all participants. Geoff Bullen did really well to dip under 27 minutes, recording 26.53 exactly, just under 9 minutes per lap. Onra Power and Linda Bradfield ran together and encouraged each other right through to the end and recorded 29.22 and 29.23 respectively which is great running indeed and likewise for Michael Horgan and Brigid Coffey who were both clear at 29 and a half minutes apiece.

Sean Stilwell was well clear of the pack in the four-lap league and was literally in a league of his own, covering the four laps in a time of 26.44 well clear of second placed Alan Lyons in 28.41. This is super running from Sean with all his commitment and dedication to training showing through. Des Feeney is also experiencing a great season’s running at the minute and dipped under 30 minutes with a bit to spare.
Gary McCormack and Pat Dunford had their own battle going on with Gary getting in just ahead of Pat and Raivis. Gerry O’ Connor and Dermot Dwyer have certainly settles down to the task in hand and are now really taking the four laps in their stride, both were just over 32 and a half minutes. They were followed closely by the ever improving Hugh Walsh and Tom Moroney, there seems to be no stopping these two lately. Earl Navin is starting to make his presence known again in the four-lap league and his time of 33.01 for round four will be improved on over and over again before the last night no doubt. Brendan Kent, Ann Dunford and Tommie Moore had only a second between each of them in the run up to the finish. Albert and Amanda also had a fine run and are improving with each outing. Well done to all.


A quick reminder to all that you must run six out of the nine nights to feature in the league and these six nights must be all the same distance.
You are more than welcome to change the distance any night you want as long as you have six of the same distance.


A sincere thanks once again to the O’ Brien family of Minnie’s Bar, Abbeyside, for their generous sponsorship of the league again this year. It’s great to have them on board again and their help and support is greatly appreciated by one and all. Many thanks



The 13th Annual Hallahan Coaches sponsored Touraneena Racquetball club organised 5k race and walk takes place this Bank Holiday Monday June 2nd. The race gets under way at 7.30 PM.The race is number 4 of this years Ger Wyley/Nike Summer Road Racing Series. As per usual in Touraneena all will be catered for on the night, and all are welcome to come along and participate in either the walk which gets under way at 6.30 pm and if you’re over 16 the 5k run at 7.30 pm. The walk begins from outside the Community Centre while the run will begins one hour later from the back road at Dunford pub. A full array of the usual Senior and Masters prizes will be on offer for both Men and Women on the night, The first three Senior Ladies and Men will be awarded cash prizes.1st Male finishers over Junior-40-45-50-60 and Ladies over Junior-35-40-45-50.Entries will be taken at the Community centre where changing and shower facilities are also available by kind permission, The entry fee is 8 euro for the run and 5 euro for the walk. The presentation of prizes will take place after the race at the community centre where we will be treated to “and that’s despite the recent inclement weather”, with the traditional ice cream and strawberries. Not to be missed!.


The walk which is now part and parcel of the event is getting more and more popular each year and especially now for the fourth year the winner will receive the Ann Power Memorial Trophy for there efforts. Entry to the walk is 5 Euro and this usually brings out the local and visiting walkers in abundance. It’s a walk with a slight difference too, as your task is to predict your finishing time for the 5k distance and the person who finishes the nearest to that predicted time without of course going faster than that predicted time will be the fourth winner of the memorial shield which is in memory of one of the founder members of the race back in 1996 Ann Power. No watches are allowed of course, all are welcome so do come along and be part of what promises to be a great event, The race organisers Touraneena Racquet ball club will kindly donated a sum of money from the race to this years chosen charity Cystic Fibrosis.


The very active Touraneena Racquetball club which caters for a large local and surrounding areas membership of young players, is a club which holds a proud tradition among the Racquetball fraternity with players from the fledging club holding many Irish titles, they also have a proud tradition nationally and indeed internationally having played tournaments and world championship events all over the globe. Like all clubs it takes plenty of financial resources to keep the show on the road and in conjunction with Monday’s race they have devised a unique fundraising event, which has caught the support of the local community. Six local personalities will take part in the 5k event and the club have been actively selling the 720 possible finishing order positions of the six runners, Each combination will cost you 10 Euro to buy and the person with the winning combination will receive a handsome sum of 1.000 Euro, If you haven’t bought a combination yet there is still time to do so on the night of the race, A simple but novel ideal indeed. This will add greatly to the race on the night and should bring much post race banter to the event.



 The first race in the 2008 Ballycotton summer series got under way last Thursday evening with the Ballyandreen 5 mile road race,
A record entry of 278 athletes took part. For West Waterford’s Raivis Zakis it was a case of three, two one. As in 2006 he was third in this race, last year 2007 he finished second and this year 2008 he yet again went one better when he captured that top spot with a winning time of 26.15 from local man running with East Cork AC Sean McGrath who was second in 26.52 with Paul Gibbins of Sliabh Buidhe Rovers AC in Wexford third in 27.30. The Ladies race was won by Rhona Lynch Eagle AC in a time of 29.52,second Lady was Sinead Kevany also of Eagle AC 32.20 and third was West Waterford AC’s and Stragglers Phyllis Flynn who is currently back on home turf on holidays along with her Husband Deckie and four daughters, Don’t know where they find the time for running in that house, however the Lady in question is running as well as ever finishing in a time of 32.43 in Ballyandreen, Other to impress on the night were Joe Kelly breaking the 30 minute barrier with a time of 29.46 in 19th place, Joe Gough winner of the over 55 category in 30.22 Joe finished in 24th place, Declan Flynn ( he of the busy house hold) was 29th overall with a solid time of 30.37,Another regular at this event Tony O’Mahony finished 106th clocking a time of 35.26,Jim Fleming took the race steady and finished 125th in 36.25,Brigid Coffey a Lady showing huge improvement with ever outing was 147th in 37.18,Michael Hennessey finished in 172nd with a time faster by seven seconds from that recorded last year, Michael clocked 38.23,Ray Curran 182nd in 38.57,Ray was 27 seconds faster than his finishing time of last year, John Fennell 191st 39.43,Likewise John was also faster that last years time by 23 seconds, and Michael McCarthy 201st 40.12
Well done to all. Next race in series Shanagarry 5 on Thursday June 26th 8 PM.



The Annual Poulmucka 8k road race was held last Friday evening and once again West Waterford athletes were dominant. Sandis Bralitis continued his recent winning streak with another flawless performance to clinch first place in a time of 24.53,Winner of our Dunphy Vivas Health Dungarvan 10 miler back in February Sergiu Turea running with Clonliffe Harriers finished second and Raivis Zakis west Waterford was third in a time of 26.44.A full set of results are not at hand yet but we also know that Diane Behan was also in action in the Tipperary venue and finished among the Ladies prizes. Brigid Coffey took the over 35 ladies prize and also competing were Pat and Ann Dunford. hopefully we will have the full results for next weeks notes.


The 2nd Annual Emer Casey memorial 10k race took place around the town of Youghal last Sunday afternoon on quite a windy day, which certainly affected the runner’s times somewhat. An entry of 254 runners with many hundred walkers participated, first home for the club was Sandis Bralitis who finished 3rd in time of 32.24,Sandis won the inaugural race last year here but an upset tummy put paid to his chances this year and third was his lot. The race winner was Alan O’Shea of Bantry in a time of 30.49 from Sergiu Turea Clonliffe Harriers 31.28.West Waterford’s men took the team honours with Sean Stilwell 6th Philip Harty 7th Joe Kelly 16th and Michael Dunford 17th,A totals of 46 points. Brigid Coffey continued her run of success with another win in the over 35 section finishing 71st in a time of 45.45,Rhona Lynch Eagle AC won the Ladies race finishing 14th in a time of 37.30.


3.Sandis Bralitis 32.24
6,Sean Stilwell 34.55
7,Philip Harty 35.17
16,Joe Kelly 37.42
17,Michael Dunford 37.46
27,Eamon Phelan 40.07
36,Kenneth O’Donnell 41.44

39,Paul Brunnock 42.18
48,Thomas Coleman 43.12
58th Richie Kelly  44.29
70,Inese Melne 45.43
71,Brigid Coffey 45.45
80,Michael Hennessey 46.51
85,Eamon Flavin 47.33
133,Ray Murray 52.46


Our West Waterford Athletic Club’s Annual Sunrise challenge takes place this year on Sunday morning June 22nd departing at 4 AM. Yes that’s 4 AM in the morning folks; a large turn out is expected again this year for the 4th Annual watch the sunrise challenge event with all proceeds going to a very worthy cause. West Waterford athletic club are delighted to be involved with this year’s chosen charity the Niall Mellon Township Trust. Local volunteers Berti Hallahan, Christopher Dee and Peter Cuna will be part of 1.300 builders who will take on the challenge of building 300 houses for the less well off in the town of Khayelitsha which is Situated on the outskirts of Cape Town in South Africa, The three Men are sending out an invitation to all to join them and West Waterford Athletic Club by take up our own challenge to watch the sunrise over the Déise with all proceeds going to the Niall Mellon Trust fund, Entry is 20 Euro which includes a post race breakfast. We will meet at Euro spar car park Abbeyside at 4 AM and travel by car to the mountain base before walking the mile or so to the top of Cruchán Mountain. Where will watch the sun rise over the famed Déise, Pat and Ann Dunford’s traditional breakfast run takes place from the base of Crúchan to the breakfast in Minnie’s at the usual handy pace to round off the morning in style.



The club had three athletes who made the long trip to Castleisland Co.Kerry last Sunday for the Munster Senior Track amnd Filed championships and all three made the medal rostrum.In the 800 meters army man James Lednigham tooom on the might of the 800 meters and came haome with a silver medal after clocking 1.59.34 for the event,The winner here was Liam Reale of Limerick 1.54.02.Our two polevaulters Liam and Thomas Houlihan were both in good form when they both cleraed the 4 meter mark.On this occasion the younger Thomas toook the honours on a count back as he cleard the 4 meters on his second attempt and Liam on his third so Thomas is declared the gold medakl winner with Liam taking the silver.Bragging rights go ot Thomas for the this year at least.Well done to all three.

800m. 1. Liam Reale Limerick 1:54.02; 2. James Ledingham West Waterford 1:59.34; 3. Pat McCartan West Limerick 1:59.37.

Pole Vault. 1. Thomas Houlihan West Waterford 4.00m; 2. Liam Houlihan West Waterford 4.00m.


The marathon, you see, is my benchmark. It is the status symbol in my community, the running community.


As we go to print Albert informs us that there are still a couple of places remaining on the club’s trip to the Budapest Marathon on Sunday 5th October next. This trip will be one of the highlights of the year for all involved and a great weekend is assured, Any one interested in going are asked to contact court travel A.S.A.P.as the closing date is soon approaching.


After the club’s appeal to all road runners that are using water out on their regular training runs to return and collect empty water bottles. We remind those who might have missed last weeks notes not leave empties strewn on the roads.


The Senior clubs monthly committee meeting will be held on Thursday June 5th in Minnie’s Bar, please note that the meetings for the summer months will start at the later time of 9PM.


All at the club send best wishes to popular club member Liam Budds who we are glad to report is on the road back to a full recovery. We hope it won’t be too long before Liam will be strutting his stuff again.


Congratulations to club member Eoin and Lynn O’Riordan on the birth of a baby daughter last week. Health and happiness to all.


St Senans AC will hold their Little South Run 4 Mile road race in aid of Hospice on Sun 8th June at 1.00pm in Kilmacow, Co Kilkenny.  The race is over a fast Jones counter measured course, which last year produced some of the fastest times for the distance with Joe Sweeney of DSD winning in 18.39.
Cash prizes on offer include 500 euro to winner plus 300 euro bonus for a sub 18.30 clocking. There are also top prizes in all categories for male/female. It will also have a fun run and walk with sponsorship cards available from local Hospice Movement. Specially commissioned medallions to all finishers, T-shirts, spot prizes and a free draw for a Breakaway Holiday. Thanks to their sponsors Kelly & Dollard Ltd.
Full details from Bill Lacey 086 8100299.


The good news form the Costin camp is that Jamie is in splendid from with just a few short months now to go to the Beijing Olympics. Jamie as we know is taking part in the gruelling 50k event in Beijing and his training throughout the last year and more has been geared towards this event. Last Saturday Jamie was in Krakow Poland at the IAAF Race walking challenge event and took part in the much shorter distance of 20k which is vital to sharpen a race walker who participates over the 50k distance, Jamie’s seasons best time of 1.25 42 was inside his previous best time set some weeks earlier in Russia, the Ring man will be home for a time this week getting in some training around the roads of Ring and Old Parish before heading off again on his final preparation’s for Beijing. Another plus from an Irish race walking point of view in Krakow was the performance once again of the little man from Cork Robbie Heffernan who once again gave an outstanding performance in the same 20 k race which realistically installs him as an Irish medal possibility at the fore coming Beijing Olympics, Robbie finished 5th in a time of 1.20.34 behind winner Mexican Sanchez who won in a time of 1:19:34, 13 seconds ahead of Spaniard Fernandez who was second, with another Spanish athlete Juan-Manuel Molina another 30 seconds behind in third. The 2008 IAAF World Race Walking Challenge continues with two more competitions, both in Spain: Gran Premio Cantones de La Coruña and the series final in Murcia, on 21 September.


Race 1-Auto Power Rathgormack 5-7:30 p.m. Friday 6th June (walk starts at 7 p.m.)

The organisers of the Rathgormack 5 mile race are again delighted to welcome Auto Power on board with their very generous sponsorship which has ensured that with an overall prize fund of €1500 and €150 for the first man and woman that this will be a very popular race for all levels of runners from beginners to more experienced campaigners. Last years ladies and gents winners were Adele Walsh and Ravis Zakis respectively. Race HQ will again be the wonderful Rathgormack Hiking and Community Centre where expectations are high amongst runners after the high standard of last year’s post race refreshments! One of the most interesting features of this race (besides its very scenic course) is the fact that once again sponsorship cards are available for the Irish Cancer Society. Last Year €6400 was raised for this very worthy cause with thanks to all the walkers, runners and race supporters who donated to this cause. A specially commissioned perpetual trophy will also be presented to the overall winner in memory of Joanne O’Donoghue (nee Brunnock) a popular, Rathgormack woman who sadly passed away in 2001 at the age of 32 after living with cancer for some months beforehand. Race entry fee is €8 with registration starting at 6 p.m., a limited number of Irish Cancer Society T-Shirts will also be available on a first come first served basis. For race details and sponsorship cards contact Johnny Brunnock @ 086-8483210 or Maura Brunnock @ 087-9911982. Runners can also pre enter on line at www.runireland.com Make a date in your diary to come to ‘The Village’ on Friday 6th June where a great night’s running and more besides is guaranteed!


Congratulations from all at the Senior club to Elma Nugent on her recent Waterford Credit Union monthly award.A deserving accolade for a dedicated athlete.

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