The National finals of the 4x100m outdoor relays took place last Sunday in Tullamore and served up their usual share of excitement, with both the U14 boys and girls medalling and the U16 girls narrowly missing out on a podium place.
There was heartbreak for the U16 girls when they finished fourth in their final with their squad of Orla McDaid, Claire Ryder, Jessica Heneghan, Mairead McCan, Maria McNamara and Sinead Gaffney. This is the 2nd time that some of these girls have occupied 4th place in the National relay finals, having been 4th as U11s in 2005 with Sinead, Mairead and Orla featuring on the team. The girls put in an exceptional performance to run a new club record of 53.46 in their heat with Jessica, Maria, Sinead and Claire and followed this up by breaking the record again in the final when recording a time of 53.02 with Jessica, Mairead, Maria and Claire. Due to illness, Orla didn't run on this occasion. This is the first time that the club have fielded a relay team at National level in the U16 girls’ age group. They are a talented group of girls and success will come their way in the years ahead.
Earlier in the day the U12 girls 4x100m team just missed out on making their final, finishing 5th in their heat in a time of 61.4 with their team of Eimear Loughnane, Ashling Keady-Cummins, Emma Gaffney, Michelle Duggan and Mary Dunphy.
But the performances of the day came from the U14 boys and girls with both medalling. The U14 boys retained their National crown with a super time of 52.34 to win the 4x100m relay by a fraction of a second from our friends and rivals Nenagh Olympic. Nenagh had beaten us in the indoors so it was one back for Craughwell on this occasion. Both teams are looking forward to renewing their battle for the best at the indoor relays in 2011! The Craughwell team in the final was Jamie Spellman, Kelvin Olayemi, Gavin O’Toole and Aidan Conneely, with Damien O’Boyle replacing Gavin in the semi-final.
The U14 girls were even more impressive when taking the bronze medals in their final with an incredible 53.51 time, over 4 seconds faster than their time from last year. The girls were Dandy Murray, Sinead Treacy, Ellen Fitzpatrick, Tara McNally and Ellen Treacy. Their time is pretty exceptional and they will definitely be chasing the club record for the 4x100m next year!