It's that time of year again where it's almost impossble to dirve anywhere in the west without coming across roads closed off for racing! The highlight event of the summer was of course last weekend in Galway City with the smashing performances all around in the 25th edition of the Streets of Galway. Being crocked I marshalled a corner and couldn't believe the size of the crowd that breezed past me. Keep an eye out also on John O'Connor's Website for his pictures which will surely appear before long. Well done to all the Craughwell athletes that took part - the mens team came a very creditable 4th with five men under 30 minutes which is a superb performance given that we are missing almost half our usual squad.
Well the races don't stop there. I attended a co.board meeting last night and couldn't believe the list of upcoming permitted races and events. If there was any doubt, this is definitely a boom time for road running.
14 August (next Saturday): Claregalway and the Connemara 100
Claregalway 10k which includes the Co.Galway championships is one of those rare opportunities for the middle aged person of average ability ot pick up an AAI medal! Actually it's not that easy to win a medal here.. The entry is online on http://runIreland.com and bear in mind that there are only T-Shirts for those that enter online. If you're planning on doing it, I might see you there!
The Connemara 100 is a smaller event with only 12 people and probably not open for any more entries. If you have sadistic tendancies you might be interested in driving out that way near the finish to see what someone looks like after thay have ran further than most of us would like to drive.
22nd August: Mick Molloy Classic 10k Oughterard
Not a race I've ever ran before but by all account a good but tough course and a scenic route. Entries on Runireland
28-29nd August: Galway Marathon Weekend
For full details on the return of the Marathon distance to Galway City check out the http://www.GalwayCityMarathon.com website. In addition to the 26.2 mile distance, there is a half marathon option and a mile series on the Saturday evening. It should have big numbers. The interesting thing about this for me is that Connaught's fastest man Gary Thornton is on all the posters, etc so I'm really hoping he gives the Marathon a crack - I would love to see what he is capable of over the distance. The mile series is pretty pricey at 20 quid but I've heard that they may have a cheaper Juvenille option... will post if I hear anything.
The organiser have also arranged a seminar which is taking place on the Saturday evening which looks to have a truly extraordinary lineup of speakers: Sonia, Marcus O'Sullivan, Frank O'Meara and John McDonnell (legendary Arkansaw coach). It's also not cheap at 25 euro but I couldn't resist that lineup so will be there with my autograph book.
11th September: Castledaly 8k and Clifden 10k
The Castledaly 8k is right on our doorsteps and is for a worthy cause. The tough out and back course which has shortend from 10k to 8 had those that ran it were raving about it last year. Craughwell AC are helping out with the organisation of this event. More info later!
The Clifden 10k is on the same date, but being over 50 miles away was still granted a permit. If you fancy a trip out west on that date then this might be the race for you.
26th September: Loughrea 10k
What? I hear you say? 10k? surely there's a mistake? No.. The historic race in Loughrea has gone metric and has decided to change things around this year. The new route will go right around the lake. I am 100% certain that this will be an awesome event - Loughrea is always my personal favourite event in the Galway calendar. It has all the quality and depth of field of the Streets of Galway combined with a country feel. I guess the extra 1.2 miles means I'll never get a new pb in Loughrea again!