Gary just can't wait to get his slice of Barm Brack
Athenry AC put on another exceptional display of race organisation yesterday. Despite two unavoidable reschedules they still got over 500 runners to line up. This race has something for everyone – top quality, friendly atmosphere, safety and I am still trying to clear the fuzzy feeling from my teeth after all the buns, biscuits and cakes I demolished after the event! I woke up thirsty this morning! The provisional results are on the athenry website here. Unfortutunately they don't mention club so I can't filter by club to display the Craughwell results just yet but there was a huge representation from the club.
Supremely talented Gary Thornton of GCH (left) won the race in record-breaking fashion – finally achieving his goal of being the first man under 30 minutes on the Athenry course. Having set this time, Gary can now safely relax and enjoy his Christmas puddings guilt-free in the future. According to one bystander who watched the race, breaking the time seemed in doubt but Gary put in a blistering home straight to beat his target time by 3 seconds.
Special mention should also be given to the Womens race – won in an incredible 35:17 by Teresa McGloin ahead of last year's winner Catherine Conway who herself ran an awesome PB of 36:03.
The course itself was not the traditional one – they avoided the scenic arch finish this year, to give the roomier and probably safer finish area of the National 10k in 2008. I think this route is actually quite a bit faster too – the twists and turns are a lot less on the home straight and there is more downhill.
Whether for this reason or the ideal conditions, there were PBs all through the field yesterday. Craughwell came home with lots of crystal – with Val, Kathleen, Dervella, Pat Reidy all claiming category prizes (I hope I didn't miss anyone). The senior mens team came second in a tight 3-way affair with GCH and Ennis Track.
Well done to all of the Craughwell athletes who took part – it was great to see so many clubmates out wearing their singlets and at the end in the very nice Top 50 finisher T-Shirts.
(picture taken by