Springwell athletes welcome spring weather with terrific performances

Happy Springwell Runners at the Benone Beach 5k.
Happy Springwell Runners at the Benone Beach 5k.

Another weekend came and went all too quickly, as we roll relentlessly towards the spring/summer and the longer evenings, heralding the onset of the full racing season.

So now would be a good time to remind Springwell members to re-register for the club, to ensure your membership continues and that your N.I.Athletics Registration is renewed, to get the benefit of the discounted rates in races. Forms can be found on-line on the club website/Facebook page or picked up from the Area Reps at each of the various Centres of Excellence.

Katherine Woods, who finished 4th Lady at the St Pat's Gransha 5k.

Katherine Woods, who finished 4th Lady at the St Pat's Gransha 5k.

Once again Springwell had representation in races on both Saturday and Sunday, with a number of fine individual performances.

On Saturday well over100 athletes turned out to support the annual St Paddy’s 5k road race in Derry/Londonderry. The event, which took place within Gransha Grounds, was hosted by City of Derry AC in aid of local charity Foyle Hospice.

In a close race at the front, Gary Slevin (City of Derry AC), Chris McGuinness (Foyle Valley AC) and Noel Logan (City of Derry AC) all featured, but in the end it was Gary who edged it, beating Chris in a sprint finish for top spot. Gary crossed the line in 15:47 (1st place), with Chris clocking 15:48 for 2nd place. Dermot McElhinney (City of Derry AC) came through well to take 3rd place in 16:03.

For Springwell, Katherine Woods, although first and fore-most a Triathlon specialist, is also a fantastic runner in her own right and displayed her great running talent once more with an excellent 33rd Overall, finishing 4th Lady in a time of 20:41.

Aiden Devine, the lone wolf at the Feeny 10k.

Aiden Devine, the lone wolf at the Feeny 10k.

This is well below Katherine’s personal PB at this distance so I would suspect that Katherine probably cycled to and from this event, as part of her Triathlon training! They are as tough as teak these Triathletes! Well done nonetheless to Katherine.

Meanwhile two rising young superstars Aine McKinney and Ryan Cullen were in action at the AIT Indoor arena on Sunday, at the Glohealth Irish Indoor track and Fields, alongside the cream of Irish athletic talent.

Ryan ran a great heat in the U19 200m, recording a scorching 23.03 PB, qualifying for the final where he finished a terrific 6th.

Aine, who is the current Ulster Indoor Champion over 800m was less fortunate, missing out on the final of the U17 800m by 0.3 of a second. Well done to both.

Catherine Pinkerton-Moore - 3rd Lady at the Addiction NI 10K.

Catherine Pinkerton-Moore - 3rd Lady at the Addiction NI 10K.

This was the first outing for both athletes on a 200m indoor track and was a great experience for them to be running at such a high level, so well done both.

Also on Sunday in Belfast hundreds of runners turned out in support of the annual Addiction NI 10k road race, which takes places in the area around Ormeau Park.

Catherine Pinkerton-Moore, along with husband Gary, made the long trip up to take part in this race, basically as a final preparation for the Larne Half marathon and despite having run a massive 18 miles on the previous Thursday evening, Catherine still finished a superb 3rd Lady Overall in a time of 46:59 in 29th place, with Gary coming in 30th,a second later, using this as a training run rather than racing it.

Also on Sunday, the Valley Running Club held the second of their three part 5k run series, this time on the beach at Benone Strand, where the competitors were met with excellent conditions for running, in an event won by former Springwell runner Chris Millar, now running for City Of Derry AC in 18:25.

Happy Springwell Runners at the Benone Beach 5k.

Happy Springwell Runners at the Benone Beach 5k.

Springwell had a good turnout of runners at this event with the in-form Kerrie McIlmoyle producing the outstanding result of the day by winning the Ladies race and finishing 7th Overall in an impressive time of 20:29, for a beach run.

Great stuff Kerrie and a good confidence booster for Larne Half hopefully. A great run also by Kevin McLean, which saw him finish a sterling fifth overall.

Kerrie, reported: “There was a good turnout at this, the second race of the Valley challenge series.

“There was a lovely fun atmosphere, plenty of great support and lots of couch to 5k runners there so it was great to cheer everyone in. Really well organised by Valley Running Club and highly recommend supporting their events as there are still two races remaining in the series.

“There were few personal bests but I have to mention how well young Connor McGowan is running. He shaved around five minutes off his time from this race last year. He also got a PB today. He is in great form.”

Kerrie’sother half Warren, rather unusually did not run, but instead provided some excellent photos. Warren appeared to be suffering from some sort of flu-like virus, whose symptoms were remarkably like those of a severe hangover. Let’s hope the poor boy recovers in time for Larne....

Springwell results were:

5th Kevin McLean 20:11, 7th Kerrie McIlymoyle 20:29, 10th Conor McGowan 21:06 PB, 12th Davy McNicol 21:10, 16th Thomas McNeill 22:39, 22nd Peter Jack 23:42

Finally, on Sunday, local resident Aiden Devine was the lone wolf participant for Springwell in the Feeny Fast and Furious 10k on what was a tough and challenging course. Aiden ran well, being on the recovery from a recent calf strain, recording a 41:58 unofficial time but, like many others at present, is focusing on the Larne Half and using these races as training/preparation. Well done sir!

Parkrun News

The conditions were drier than forecast for Saturdays Portrush parkrun and there was very little wind however, unfortunately, the tide was as high as it has been for some time, forcing the alternate route starting and finishing at the estuary, with the resultant soft sand impacting heavily on everyone’s time. Not a personal best today...

The wise old heads enjoyed a couple of extra hours in bed including himself, aka Segei.

First finisher was David O’Neill in 21.54 and first lady was Karen Alexander of Acorns AC in 22.30 ( 3rd overall), with former Club Captains Bryan Edgar in 2nd Overall and Karen McLaughlin 2nd Lady in 10th Overall. Fabulous!

This week there were 112 runners, of whom 12 were first timers and 1 recorded a new Personal Best. Representatives of 11 different athletics clubs took part. Good to see Robert Workman putting in an all too rae appearance these days.


Portrush: Bryan EDGAR 21:59 Nigel ARMSTRONG 23:40 Karen MCLAUGHLIN 23:56 Gary KENDALL 26:53 Robert WORKMAN 27:04 Bob MCLAUGHLIN 27:48 Melanie MILLAR 31:27 Jack BLEE 32:05 Rachel BLEE 33:04 Judith MCLAUGHLIN 34:13 Emma BIRRELL 36:23 Elaine MONTGOMERY 36:23 Jennifer PATTERSON 37:54 Kay HACK 38:35 Zara HUNTER 40:29 Liadhan MCANENA 40:52

Waterworks- Stephen Smyth 27.12

Derry City - Noel McAllister 23.52

Victoria- Davy Patterson 24.48

Ormeau- Alistair Shaw 18.40, Jim Platt 23.56, Chris Denton 29.42

Limavady - Aaron Craig 19.26, Owen Anderson 23.47

Elgin - Lindsay Holden 27.45 PB