Cathal Doyle and Carla Sweeney were the winners at the 132nd Clonliffe 2-Mile – the oldest continuous road race in Ireland – and maybe even in the world!
For a second year, the race was back on the roads of Glasnevin on a course which started at Old Finglas Road, and then looped around the Botanical Gardens before finishing outside Kavanagh’s Gravediggers pub in Prospect Square, sponsors of the race since 1986.
Doyle, the current Irish 1500m champion, made it a home win for race organisers Clonliffe Harriers finishing in 8 min 46 secs. It was a first win for the host club since 2014.
Behind him, Mitchell Byrne of Rathfarnham WSAF AC and Shane Bracken of Swinford AC were battling it out for the minor places, with Byrne breaking away in the chase for the line and finishing second in 8:55. Bracken finished two seconds behind in 8:57.
Sweeney was a comfortable winner of women’s race finishing in 10:34. Áine Cotter of North East Runners was second in 10:45 and Emma Mitchell of Clonliffe Harriers third in 11:03.
Other good runs came from Sean Cronin fifth and first junior in 9:26 and Shane Healy of Metro St Brigid’s AC, who although he’s in the M55 class, still finished eighth and first master overall in 9:31.
First master woman was Michelle Cox of Newbridge AC in 11:25. First junior woman was Mya O’Reilly of Clonliffe Harriers.
New club Ballymun A, made its first major outing with around fifty finishers. Leading them home was Eoin Hayes. Watch out for them at the Dublin Cross-Country Championships next Sunday at Santry!
Also on Sunday, James Hayes and Michelle Kenny were the winners of the Cork Rebel Run 10km held at MTU, Bishopstown, Cork. Their times were 33:23 and 37:55 respectively.
Winners of the 5km were Matthew Crowley in 17:28 and Aoife Delargy in 19:35.
McCormack in fine form in Valencia
A world class field is always present at the Valencia Half Marathon and this year was no different. Fionnuala McCormack ran 70:13, which is less than a minute off her PB set in 2021 in the build-up to her marathon best in the same city.
The time was good enough for 13th position in the race won by Margaret Chelimo Kipkemboi in 64:46, but hopefully is a sign of another excellent marathon to come from McCormack in December.
Amy Pollman Daamen of An Riocht was the winner of the women’s race at the Munster Novice, and U23 Cross- Country Championships, held in Clooraclare, Co Clare on Sunday (October 22).
Daamen, who was also first U23, finished well clear of the chasers in 19 mins 39 Second was Noémie Leduc of Grange Fermoy AC in 19:52, while third and second U23 was Niamh Cunneen of Nenagh Olympic AC in 29:55.
Ennis TC, led by Dee Grady in fourth place, was first team ahead of Leevale AC and Cork Track Club. Cork took the county title ahead of Clare.
Winning the men’s title was Darragh Mulcahy of St Finbarr’s AC in 20 mins 3 secs. Second and first U23 was James Tanner of Nenagh Olympic AC in 20:57 with Denis Hegarty of Leevale AC third in 21:03.
Leevale proved best of the teams ahead of East Cork AC and Ennis TC. As in the women’s race, Cork won the county title ahead of Clare.
Winning the junior men’s title was Sean Lawton of Durrus AC, with Togher AC best of the teams. In the junior women’s race, Neasa Ní Ainifein of Ennis TC was the winner, and also led Ennis to team victory.
Irish talent versus international elites
A day earlier, Irish junior international Nick Griggs finished a fighting third and first local athlete at the Bobby Rea Cross-Country International, held at Billy Neill Country Park, just outside Dundonald in Co Down.
Ethiopian visitor Yohanes Asmare was a clear winner of the race in 25 mins 26 secs. In the race for second place, Griggs lost out to Ilias Fifa of Spain who finished in 25 mins 34 secs, with Griggs two seconds behind. Fourth and first M35 was Conor Bradley of City of Derry AC in 25:45.
Eighth and first U23 was Matthew Lavery of North Belfast Harriers in 26:51. One place behind him was Seamus Murphy of City of Derry Spartans who was first U20. A total of 244 athletes from clubs all over Ulster completed the race.
The women’s race attracted an even larger entry with British visitor Izzy Fry leading home 253 finishers in 21 mins 18 mins. First local athlete was Hannah Gilliland of Annadale Striders, who finished fifth in 22:38.
Just behind her in sixth place with a time of 22:44 was Amy Greenan of Finn Valley AC who was also first U20. Seventh and second U20 was Roise Roberts of North Belfast Harriers in 22:59. First W35 was Catherine O’Connor of East Down AC, who finished eleventh overall in 23:33.
Annadale Striders was the winning team; North Belfast Harriers finished second and North Down AC third.
Belfast-based CNDR Track beat North Belfast Harriers on count-back to take the men’s title. Annadale Striders was third.
In the under 18 races, Anna Gardiner of East Down AC won the girls’ race, with Caolan McFadden of Cranford AC in Donegal best of the boys.
A busy weekend in the mud
Also on Saturday, Michael Murphy of Tullamore Harriers won the men’s novice 6km race at the Leinster Junior and Novice Cross-Country Championships held at Ballyhale, Co Kilkenny.
Murphy’s time of 20 min 25 secs put him him well clear of Seamus Anderson from Trim AC who finished in 20:46 with Eanna Ó Bradaigh of Dundrum South Dublin AC third in 20:54. In a closely fought team competition, Mullingar Harriers were the winners, relegating Dublin City Harriers and Newbridge AC to the minor placings.
With four finishers in the top seven, Dublin City Harriers dominated the women’s 4km race, taking individual and team honours. Faye Dervan was the winner in 15:22, followed by her team mate Orla Duffy in 15:26 and Emma O’Brien of Slí Cualann AC third in 15:31. A distant second in the team competition was Crusaders, with St Senan’s AC third.
Billy Coogan (Kilkenny City Harriers) was the winner of the junior men’s race in 16 mins 57 secs. Diarmuid Fagan (Mullingar Harriers) was second in 17:06 and Jack Fenlon (St Abban’s AC) third in 17:19. Fourth and first U18 in 17:21 was Cillian Gleeson who was leading his club, Celbridge AC to U18 team victory. First junior team was Mullingar Harriers.
Dearbhla Allen (St Peter’s AC) was first home and also first U18 in the junior women’s race in a time of 20:18. Second and also second U18 was Eimear Cooney ( Drogheda Ace AC) in 20:29, while third and first junior was Meabh Eakin (Dunleer AC) in 30:51. First U18 team was St Senan’s who won on count-back from Mullingar Harriers. Mullingar Harriers was the winning junior team.
Winners at the Fighting Blindness Glendalough 15km Trail Run, were Fran Morales in 64 mins 47 secs and Karen Crean in 82 mins 38 secs.