Lindie Naughton reports on a whole host of cross country action and road running, as well as indoor track, for Irish athletes. 

Efrem Gidey produced the Irish performance of the day at the the European Clubs Cross-Country Championships, Oropesa del Mar, Portugal on Sunday (February 5) when he finished seventh in the men’s race.

Gidey completed the 9.1km course in 24 mins 42 secs, helping Clonliffe Harriers to eighth place, with Sean O’Leary 41st, Jayme Rossiter 45th and Ian Guiden 60th making up the team. East Cork AC, led by Timothy O’Donoghue in 42nd place, finished 18th with twenty-six teams finishing.

Nakita Burke of Letterkenny AC was first of the Irish senior women finishing 24th place with a time of 29 mins 49 secs. She was followed by Cliona Murphy of Dublin City Harriers AC, who was 32nd in 30:22. Letterkenny AC finished tenth team and Dublin City Harriers twelfth.

In the U20 women’s race, Youghal AC finished a fighting sixth, led by Avril Millerick in 11th place, while Finn Valley AC was eighth, led by Eimear McCarroll 13th.

Nenagh Olympic packed well to finish fifth in the U20 men’s race, with Cian Hodgins 13th, Luke Purcell 15th and Daniel Ryan Ellis 17th. Defending champions Ennis Track Club were fifteen points adrfit for sixth led by Niall Murphy in a fighting tenth position.

Closer to home

Locally, Aoife Byrne made a winning return at the Garda Siochana BHAA Cross-Country, held in Dublin’s Phoenix Park on Saturday (February 4).

Byrne, running for the winning Teachers team, finished the hilly two-mile course in 13 mins 22 secs, with Amy McGuinness second in 13:41 and Clasre Sullivan third in 13:48. Fourth and first W45 was Sinead Tighe in 13:56.

A clear winner of the men’s four-mile race was George Snee of Fidelity Investments Ireland in 23 mins 1 secs. John Behan of Teachers was second in 23:32 and David Fox third in 23:36. Fourth and first M50 was Des Tremble of the Dept of Employment and Social Protection in 23:44. The Teachers tewm werewinner sof grade 1 ahead of PWC; Engineering group won grade 2, and JDES Electrical grade 3.

Next BHAA race is hosted by the Central Bank at Wesley College, Dundrum on February 4. Newcomers always welcome!


Yared Derese of Carrick Aces and Ciara Hickey of Brothers Pearse AC were the winners at the Trim 10-Mile held in sunny conditions on Sunday (February 5) in Co Meath.

Derese, who was also first M40, was a clear winner of the race in 49 mins 4 secs. Mick Clohisey of Raheny Shamrock AC finished second in 49:55 and Irish marathon champion Martin Hoare of Celbridge AC third in 50:32.

Rahney took the team title from Brothers Pearse and host club Trim with a staggering eighty-five teams entered.

Hickey, like Derese an over 40 master runner, finished in 57:27. Rachel Birt of Annalee AC was second in 59:22 and Trim’s Edel Gaffney, third in 59:28. Gaffney was leading the Trim women to team victory ahead of St Coca’s and Raheny Shamrock – and seventy-five other women’s teams.

Of the masters, Patrick O’Grady of Drogehda and District, was not only first M60 andf his time of 60:09, would have won him the M50 and M55 titles as well.

Imperial and metric 10s all-round

William Maunsell of Clonmel AC proved the class of the field at the John Treacy Dungarvan 10-Mile, winning by over a minute in a time of 49 mins 52 secs. Second in 51:04 was David McCarthy of host cub West Waterford, while third in 51:26 was Conor McAuley.

First woman was Mlary Mulhare of Portlaoise AC in 55:58. Sally Forristal of St Joeeph’s AC was second in 59:34 and Aoife O’Leary of Sportsworld AC third in 60:19.

Leevale won the men’s team prize ahead of Grange Fermoy and East Cork, with seventy-three teams entered, most of them from Munster.

Best of the forty-three women’s teams were Watergrasshill, followed by Kilknenny City Harriers and Leevale. On a good day for road racing, a total of 1,655 completed the Trim 10 while as further 2,541 ran in Dungarvan. That’s over 4,000.

A day ealier, Brian Conroy of Clane AC was the winner of the Rathcoffey GAA 10km in Co Kildare in 31 mins 30 secs. First woman in 37:23 was Sharon Rynne of Kilmurry/Ibrik/N.Clare AC.


Rhasidat Adeleke from Tallaght AC continued her climb to the pinnacle of world athletics when she smashed the Irish indoor record for 400m with a time of 50.45 secs at the New Mexico Collegiate Classic in Albuquerque on Saturday (February 4).

Adeleke’s winning time was over a second faster than the existing record of 51.58 and and quicker that her own Irish outdoor record of 50.53. It comes only a fortnight after the 20-year-old Tallaght athlete broke the Irish indoor 200m record with 22.52, also in Albuquerque. At an altitude of 1600m the venue is known to produce fast times – even indoors. It will host the NCAA Indoor Championships on March 10-11.

Also at the Albuquerque meet, Stephanie Cotter of West Muskerry AC won the women’s mile in 4:47.33 with Ava O’Connor of Tullamore Harriers second in 4:48.30

In lower lands with a little more oxygen

At the New Balance Indoor Grand Prix, Boston, USA, also on Saturday, Mark English of Finn Valley AC finished an encouraging third in the men’s 800m with a time of 1:46.53, not far off his fastest indoor time ever. English’s main target raget this season is the European Indoor Championships in Istanbul from March 2-5. He already has silver and bronze medals from previous championships.

In the women’s 3000m, Roisin Flanagan of Finn Valley AC finished tenth improving her personal best time to 8:53.50. Ciara Mageean of City of Lisburn AC, who picked up an injury in December, was forced to drop out of the race. Brian Fay of Raheny Shamrock AC and UCD AC’s Darragh McElhinney finished sixth and seventh in the the men’s 3000m with times of 7:43.85 and 7:45.79 respectively, both of them personal bests.

In the men’s mile, Andrew Coscoran of Star of the Sea AC finished fourth in a time of 3:53.64, going through 1500m in 3:37.95, while Luke McCann of Dublin City Harriers AC was sixth in 3:54.91, going through 1500m in 3:38.28. In the women’s mile, Georgie Hartigan of Dundrum South Dublin AC clocked a time of 4:43.69 for thirteenth place.

At the Boston University Bruce Lehane Scarlet and White Invite, also on Saturday, Sophie O’Sullivan of Ballymore Cobh AC helped her University of Washington quartet to a new NCAA record in the distance medley, which consists of 1,200m, 400m, 800m and 1600m legs in that order.

O’Sullivan got the team off to a great start when running a time of 3:16.24 for the opening 1200m leg – the fastest ever in a college distance medley. The quartet ran a total time of 10 mins 47 62 secs knocking two seconds off the previous record. In the women’s mile, O’Sullivan finished eighth in a personal best time of 4:39.35.

Stephen Fay of Raheny Shamrock AC finished fifth in the 5000m with a personal best 14:51.73. His clubmate Daniel Stone finished 14th in 15:18.12.

Finished fourth in the 800m was Nadia Power of Dublin City Harriers in 2:03.39, with Iseult O’Donnell of Raheny Shamrock AC eighth in 2:04.81.

Eilish Flanagan was running in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, where she finished second in the 3000m with a personal best time of 8:59.16.

A large group of Irish athletes had headed to the IFAN Indoors, Ghent, Belgium, where the highlight was a fourth place in the women’s 1500m for Niamh Kearney of Raheny Shamrock ACin a personal best tiem of 4:21.30 In the men’s 800m series of races, Bohermeen AC’s Kevin McGrath ran a time of 1:51.69 and Mark Milner of UCD AC 1:52.14, while Claire Mooney Crusaders AC clocked 2:07.92 in the women’s 800m.

Photo: Provided by athlete


Fiona Kehoe of Kilmore AC clocked 4:36.56 for victory in the W40 1500m at the All Ireland Masters Indoors Championships in Athlone on Sunday (February 5). Second in 4:41.6 was Dymphna Ryan of Dundrum AC.

Winning the M35 1500m and 3000m races in style was Rory Chesser of Ennis TC. In the 1500m race, which Chesser won in 4:09.01, Clonliffe brothers Thomas and Niall Sherlock finished second and third behind him. Ray Hynes of Donore Harriers won the M40 title in 4:11.15 and Shane O’Neill of Rathfarnham WSAF the M50 title in 4:23.13, also winning the 800m in 2:06.74.

Trim AC’s Michael Counsel won both M70 1500m and 800m and Michael Cornyn of Dunboyne AC the M60 800m in 2:32.31. A impressive winer of the M40 800m in 2:02.61 was Kieran McGrath of Drogheda and District AC.

Running M70 for the first time was many times world masters champion Joe Gough of West Waterford AC who won the 800min 2:24.01. Gough also won the 200m in 28:98 and teh 400m in 63:26.

In the 3000m, held later in the afternoon, Chesser was the winner in 8:43.51. Aoghan MacDomhnaill of West Limerick AC was first M40 in 8:48.19, while in the older age groups, Francis Marsh of North Down AC was first M55, David Clarke of North Belfast Harriers first M60 and Tommy Payne of Tinryland AC first M65.

In the women’s 800m, Catriona Dowling of Rathfarnham WSAF AC won the W35 title in 2:19.23.Annette Kealy of Raheny Shamrock AC lined out in the 3000m and won the W55 title comfortably in 10:46.03.

Oldest competitor in action was the legendary Pat Naughton of Nenagh Olympic AC, sole competitor in the M90 class and winning 60m, long jump and shot titles.