Eimear and Chris take the wins at AIIF Cross Country

Chris Denton winner of the first race in East Antrim Marathon Series with Ali Shaw who finished third.
Chris Denton winner of the first race in East Antrim Marathon Series with Ali Shaw who finished third.

Springwell Running Club travelled to CAFRE Greenmount Campus on Saturday for the Antrim AIIF International Cross Country.

The event also included the NI & Ulster Senior Cross Country Championships, the Celtic Cross Country Challenge and the British Cross Challenge.

Results: Primary School Girls (1100m): Tuloupe Jide-Ojo 6:01, Erin Bratten 7:13.

Girls Under 13 (1800m): Hermione Skuce 7:20, Ellie McBroom 7:25, Niamh Carr 7:45, Amy Fountain. Team finished third.

Boys Under 13 (1800m): Andrew Gordon 6:37, Eoughan Gromley 7:17.

Girls Under 15 (3600m): Abigail McBroom 14:50, Rebekah Hunter 15:35, Molly Brennan 16:04, Aine McKinney 16:08, Aiofe Carr 16:47. Team finished third.

Boys Under 15 (3600m): Oisin Brennan 14:08.

Girls Under 17 (3600m): Aife McSheffrey 14:32.

Boys Under 17 (5600m): Luke Dinsmore 19:37, John Gordon 19:53, Dale Corbett 22:13

Boys Under 20 (5600m): Conor Christie 17:15, Ryan Murray 20:33, Brian Tweedie 20:46.

NI & Ulster Championship Ladies: 1st Eimear Mullan (Springwell Running Club) 19:42, 2nd Gladys Ganiel O’Neill (North Belfast Harriers) 20:13, 3rd Danielle Fegan (Armagh AC) 20:23. Eimear’s victory along with some solid performances from the Springwell ladies led to the team winning a silver medal in the team event.

Eimear Mullan 19:42, Gemma Turley 21:44, Sonia Knox 22:34, Alison Rankin 22:36, Karen Mclaughlin 24:00, Deborah Gilliland 24:40, Catherine Bell-Allen 26:08, Linda Gillen 26:25, Lindsay Holden 27:34, Sarah Chestnutt 27:56, Alison McAllister 28:01, Lynn Montgomery 28:01, Ursula Harper 30:13, Debbie Tutty 30:48, Caroline Taylor 30:59, Angela Calderwood 34:08, Shirley Jackson 35:07, Rozzy Skuce 29:18, Julie Clark 29:32.

The final race of the day was the International Men’s 10,000m race (which also included the NI & Ulster Senior XC and the Celtic XC Challenge) was also an exciting affair.

International Men (10,000m):  1st Japhet Korir (Kenya) 28:40, 2nd Thomas Akeyo (Uganda) 28:42, 3rd Emmanuel Bett (Kenya) 28:43.

NI & Ulster Championship Men (10,000m): 1st Paul Pollock (Annadale Striders) 30:08, 2nd Stephen Scullion (Clonliffe Harriers) 30:54, 3rd Gary Murray (St Malachy’s AC) 31:26.

Springwell Times: Neil Johnston 34:31, Philip Tweedie 35:01, David Jackson 39:09, Stephen Joyce 38:37, Bryan Edgar 39:25, Bryan Edgar 39:25, James McMullan 41:12, Glen Millar 41:27, Thomas Moore 42:32, Nigel Armstrong 44:13, Johnny Goldie 44:13, Jean-Claude Bourgeois 44:39, Robert Workman 44:42 and Darren Alexander.

Springwell’s Neil Johnston was a member of the Ulster Team who won a bronze medal in the U-23 Celtic Challenge event.

On New Year’s Day, Ballymena Runners welcomed a record number of runners to their annual Race over the Glens trail race in Glenariff Forest. In torrential rain, the athletes set off on the tough 6 mile course.

Jarlath Falls (Ballymena & Antrim AC) claimed the ‘King of the Glen’ title for the eighth time after breaking the tape in 38:44. Justin Maxwell finished strongly taking second place in 39:28, just eleven seconds ahead of Newcastle AC’s Seamus Lynch, who crossed the line in 39:39.

Lagan Valley’s Shileen O’Kane secured a well-deserved victory, and the prestigious ‘Queen of the Glen’ title in 46:27.  Trudy Brown (Orangegrove AC) looked strong as she crossed the line in 49:19 for second place and Penny Lindsay (East Coast AC) ran an excellent second half to finish third in 50:44.

Springwell Times: Thomas Moore 47:04, Gary Moore 55:40, Catherine Pinkerton-Moore 58:51, David Patterson 1:00:59, Johny Moore 1:01:03, Debbie Tutty 1:08:15, Rebecca Clarke 1:08:15, Caroline Taylor 1:08:49, Sarah Doherty 01:24:30

On New Year’s Eve, eighteen hardy marathon specialists took on the inaugural East Antrim Marathon Series 26.2 mile event, which started and finished at Loughshore Park, Jordanstown.

In very wet conditions, the athletes set off on the ‘out and back’ course, which saw them cover the coastal route between Jordanstown and Cultra Yacht Club, close to Holywood.  In the end, it was respected marathon pacer Chris Denton (Springwell Running Club) who claimed victory. Accompanied by the lead cyclist/marshall, Chris cruised along the final stretch towards the finish line, which he crossed in 3:16:53.

Portrush parkrun 

Sixty-five runners started 2014 with a 5K run along East Strand beach in Portrush. With high tide at 06:09 it had over three hours to make its way back out, leaving the sand surprisingly firm for the time of year. There was a bit of a headwind on the outward journey but once you turned the flag it was head down and go for it.

There were seven first timers and 12 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of five different athletics clubs took part.

First home was Keith Dawson (18:34) and first lady home was Julie Murphy (20:33) of Lagan Valley AC.

Springwell results: Glenn Miller 19:57, Robert Simpson 20:19 (PB), Sonia Knox 20:35 (PB), Karen McLaughlin 21:29, Johnny Goldie 21:39, Robert Workman 22:10, Mervyn Thompson 22:23, Jean-Claude Bourgeois 24.29, Catherine Bell-Allen 24:44, Graeme Montgomery 25.32, Sarah Chestnutt 25.54, Rozzy Skuce 26:29, Lynn Montgomery 26:39, Michael Rankin 26:48 Alison Rankin 26:49, Connor Kendall 29:22, Gary Kendall 29:24, Tracey Mitchell 30:44, Shirley Jackson 32:48, Ruairi Kendall 42:08, Kay Hack 42:16.

Afterwards a small number of brave souls did a Santa splash and had a dip in the sea.

The conditions for Saturday’s Parkrun were reminiscent of conditions on 21 December, with high tide at 8.21am there was very little (and in some cases no) sand to run on.

Nonetheless, 45 runners turned out to take on the course, and apart from getting their feet wet, conditions were fine. There were 5 first timers and 3 runners recorded new Personal Bests with representatives from seven different athletics clubs

David Stewart (20:27) of Sheffield University Cross Country & AC and Donna Hughes (27:26) was first lady.

Springwell Times: Robert Simpson 21:16, Mervyn Thompson 23.32, Andrew Parkhill 24.53, Peter Jack 25.47, Kay Hack 29.20.

Patricia McNally completed her 50th parkrun, that’s 4 runners at the Portrush event who have earned their red T-shirt and with a number of runners on 40 plus runs, more presentations are expected soon.

Jim and Agnes Platt completed the Waterworks parkrun on Saturday. Jim running 24:47 and Agnes 36:55.