Some of the participants in the Galway Senior Men’s 8000m Cross Country race
being snapped by the legendary John O’Connor
Day 1 of the Galway club cross country took place today in the Palace Grounds in Tuam on what turned out to be a pleasant day for cross country in somewhat muddy conditions! Well done to Tuam AC on expertly preparing the course to avoid the worst of the wet ground and to South Galway AC and Iain Shaw on coordinating the entries and results. And great to see large numbers from up and coming clubs taking part including Tuam AC and Clare River Harriers. I’ve been keeping stats on number of finishers in Galway juvenile cross country since 2006 and today was the largest participation in those 11 years with 269 finishers, 30 more than last year and over 100 more than in 2007 – so great work being done by all the clubs to promote cross country amongst the juvenile ages. Keep an eye on John O’Connor’s flickr page for his customary great set of race photos.
The races got underway at 1pm with the U10 Girls 1000m. New recruit to the club Saoirse Mullins from Ardrahan put in a fantastic run to take the victory and still has the U9s to look forward to next week – an incredible achievement in her first club race to become Galway Champion! Saoirse was followed in by Kelly Hallinan in 5th, Lauren Morgan 11th, Kaelyn Walsh 12th, Ciara O’Connor 14th, Amelie Bocquet 15th, Emma O’Donovan 20th, Erin Dillon 22nd, Caoilin Corban 23rd, Jessica McGlynn 27th, Chloe Keane 28th, Katie Ross 32nd, Lillian Walsh 33rd, Alison Canavan 35th, Shauna Killeen 52nd and Maria Gorman 53rd. A strong team performance saw Craughwell take the silver medals with a total of 29 points.
Craughwell AC’s U10 squad prior to their 1000m race
Up next the U10 Boys 1000m where Keelan Moorhead is following in the footsteps of his older siblings Kyle and Jade and proceeded to take 3rd place with a strong finish and led his team to team gold with a score of 33 points. Keelan was followed home by Riley Stenson in 4th, Declan O’Connell 12th, Ben Moran 14th, Iarlaith Leen 15th, Jason Greaney 16th, Paul Barry 17th, Alex Ryan 20th, Gavin Clarke 25th and Cathal Gallagher 30th.
The U12 Girls were in action next in their 2000m and just missed out on a team medal with a 4th place finish and a points’ score of 110. The team were led home by Muireann Leen in 23rd place, followed by Erin Doyle 24th, Jessica Ross 31st, Claudia McGuinness 32nd, Niamh O’Connor 35th, Holly O’Boyle 42nd and Catherine Gorman 44th.
Mathys Bocquet had a stormer of a race in the U12 Boys 2000m, taking an early lead and increasing that throughout the race to take the Galway title in style. Mathys was followed in by Liam O’Connell in 16th, Eamon Corban 18th, Darragh Kelly 21st, Alan Connaughton 22nd, Sean Lavan 25th and Eoin Spellman 26th. The team claimed the bronze medals with a score of 56 points.
Craughwell AC’s U14 Girls – Galway silver medallists 2017
A large field of 29 athletes took to the slippery slopes of the Palace Grounds for the U14 Girls 3000m where Clodagh O’Meara and Fauve Aylmer put in super runs to take 5th and 6th place and were followed swiftly by Aoibhinn Keane in 14th, Jade Moorhead 16th, Siofra Davis 19th and Siena Greaney 20th. Great running all around and for most the first time to race over this distance and for Siena, a great debut in her first cross country race. The team raced to the silver medals with a strong score of 41 points.
In the U14 Boys 3000m, Ross McGuinness and Darragh McCartin battled incredibly hard at the front of the race holding 1st and 2nd place at many stages throughout the 2-mile distance and eventually settling for 2nd and 3rd – great running from both athletes. They were followed in by Evan Hallinan and Cian Lavan in 8th and 9th to take the Galway team title with a low score of 22 points.
Craughwell AC’S U14 Boys – Galway Champions 2017
The U16 4000m got underway next with the girls and boys running at the same time. It’s a tough distance – particularly for the girls as it’s the same distance that adult women run. The club had 2 girls in action and both had fine runs with Ailbhe Miskella taking the individual silver and Ciara Sheppard just missing out on silverware with a 4th place finish. In the boys race, Sean Cotter again demonstrated his remarkable talents for distance running with a fine victory to add to his victory last weekend in the Castlegar 3000m. Kyle Moorhead also had a fine run to take individual bronze with Finbar McFadden hot on his heels in 4th place, Liam Leen 6th and Oisin Davis 8th – with the team coasting to team gold with a low score of 14 points.
Craughwell AC’S U16 Boys – Galway Champions 2017
Finbar McFadden, Liam Leen, Kyle Moorhead, Sean Cotter, Oisin Davis
In the U18 Boys 6000m, Ben Ryan had a fine run to take the individual bronze medal and lead his team to the silver medals with 23 points, with William Fitzpatrick 4th, Patrick Noonan 7th and Luke Evans 9th in his first cross country race for the club. Caron Ryan powered to victory in the U20 Women’s 4000m, establishing an early lead and running out a comfortable winner of both the U20 and Senior races. Jack Miskella was also in fine form when taking the silver medal in the U20 Men’s 6000m with a strong run.
Craughwell AC’s U18 Boys – Galway silver medallists 2017
Ben Ryan, Luke Evans, Patrick Noonan, William Fitzpatrick
And in the final race of the day, Gavin Cooney was the club’s sole representative in the Senior Men’s 8000m. 800m is Gavin’s forte so this race was 10 times his normal racing distance – but the challenge posed by the 8k cross country race is great for middle-distance runners in the off-season and Gavin rose to the challenge, placing 12th overall and taking the Galway Novice Men’s title.
Next up on the cross-county scene is day 2 of the club championships next Sunday which will be held in Kilcornan. With U9s to U19s in action and a local venue, the club will have a large number of participants who are eagerly looking forward to the day.
Well done to all of the participants today and roll on next week!
Provisional results of day 1 are here:- 2017_Galway_XC_Even_Ages_Results_v2.pdf
Craughwell AC’s Jack Miskella – Galway Junior Men’s silver medallist 2017
and siblings Ben and Caron Ryan, Galway U18 bronze medallist 2017 and
Galway Junior Women’s Champion 2017