Athletics in your Backyard
As we are all practising social distancing all in quiet on the athletics scene with more events being cancelled each day. The Waterford Schools on April 29th, the Munster junior and under 23 championships and the West Waterford Primary schools sports have all at this stage been cancelled. However we are encouraging all our young athletes to stay active within their own family setting. The Waterford Sports Partnership has pressed ahead with their sportshall athletics at home event which is aimed at those aged 4-12. They have almost 200 families signed up to take part in this 10 day challenge which can be done in the garden or living room. If you haven’t signed up yet you can still sign up on the Waterford Sports Partnership website. For secondary school athletes there are lots of activities to do at home on the Athletics Ireland website and facebook page.
Another Look Down Memory Lane Munster Schools Track and Field 1977-82
The success for local schools continued in the late seventies and early eighties.
Denis Mc Sweeney a boarder in the Friary from Tralee won the inter discus and finished second in the senior discus. B. Lannigan won the inter high jump and JJ Barry was 2nd in the inter 400m and P Devaney was 3rd in the minor boys 100m all competing with St Augustine’s.
Also that year Paul Sheehan competing for De La Salle won the senior triple jump and was second in the long jump. Paul later qualified as a PE teacher and went back to teach in De La Salle before taking up his present post as Principal of Dungarvan CBS.
Frank O’Brien puts Dungarvan CBS on the Map
In 1978 Frank O’Brien Dungarvan CBS won the first of his many Munster Schools titles. He first won the minor shot followed by the junior discus and for good measure he was second in the junior shot. Denis Mc Sweeney won the first of three senior discus titles. In 78 he competed for St Augustine’s but the following two titles were won while wearing the colours of Tralee CBS. JJ Barry St Augustine’s was 3rd in the senior 400m hurdles, R. Lannigan was 3rd in the inter high jump and R Kirwan won the minor long jump,
In 79 Frank O’Brien won three titles the junior shot, discus, and hammer setting record in both the shot and discus. His record of 15.11 in the shot and 58.24 in the discus still stand today. D.O’Shea St Augustine’s won the inter boys pole vault and JJ Barry finally won his first Munster title when he took gold in the senior 400m.
In 1980 Rosemarie Queally won the inter 1500m and finished 2nd in the 800m. Rosemarie now Rosemarie O’Riordan coaches the 8 and 9 year olds in West Waterford. Susan Dukes of Presentation Dungarvan was 3rd in the minor 100m. Michael O’Brien Dungarvan CBS was 2nd in the minor shot and W Power St Augustine’s was 2nd in the junior discus as was D O’Shea in the senior pole vault. Frank O’Brien had another treble winning the inter shot, discus and hammer. He threw the discus 49.42 to break Joe Brice’s record and this is another mark that still stands today.
In 1981 Frank O’Brien again had a treble winning the inter shot discus and hammer and setting a record of 15.61 in the shot his younger brother Mike was second in the minor shot and 3rd in the junior discus and L Fennel Mercy Dungarvan was third in the minor 100m.
1982 was a very successful day for the O’Brien brother who between them won 5 Munster titles. Mike won the junior shot, discus and hammer and Frank won the senior shot and discus. He also finished 2nd in the hammer where Garry Halpin had to produce a record breaking throw to beat him. Garry later went on to represent Ireland in rugby and is now back coaching in Cistercian College Roscrea. Frank ended his school’s career with 13 Munster schools titles and 5 records three of which still stand today.