Galway ladies’ team to challenge for marathon title

Olive Loughnane will be the special guest at a reception in Loughrea in honour her winning the World Championship gold medal.

Olive Loughnane will be the special guest at a reception in Loughrea in honour her winning the World Championship gold medal.

Many of Galway’s top marathon runners will compete for national honours in Sunday's Dublin Marathon, which also incorporates the National Marathon Championships, and the GCH ladies squad will be challenging strongly for the senior ladies’ team prize.

The squad, which includes top athletes Grainne Ni Uallachain, Sarah Collins, and Siobhan Egan, has been putting in huge mileage over the last few months, assisted by coach Jerome Debize of GCH. Each will aim to run close to the magic three-hour barrier in what could be an historic day for the city club. Also looking to take category medals will be Gerry Carty and Martin Kearney of GCH in the Masters sections, while Gearoid Hynes of GCH will look to run sub 2.50.

In Germany, Jane Ann Meehan is looking to improve on her current best of 2.54 when she takes to the roads also on Sunday on the fast Frankfurt marathon course, along with many other local runners who will compete from Athenry AC and GCH.

Connacht Cross Country

Day two of the league will be held in South Park, the Claddagh on Sunday with women running over 4km and men over 8km, and will be held along with the juvenile even ages Connacht championships for U12, U14, U16 and U18 athletes. GCH’s Brian O'Connor and John Moroney will aim to dethrone the winner of race one of the series, Robert Malseed of Mayo AC in the men’s race, while in the ladies, reigning Connacht champion Niamh Hennelly of GCH will begin her attempt to retain her title on the fast and flat circuit at the Claddagh, but can expect to have strong competition from Ann Lennon from Mayo AC. The first race starts at 12 noon.

Olive Loughnane reception

Loughrea AC is extending an invitation to all athletes, supporters, and friend to the Loughrea Hotel and Spa to celebrate the awarding of the World Championships race walk 20km gold medal for 2009 to LAC member Olive Loughnane.

The Cork athlete originally finished second behind Olga Kaniskina, who was subsequently stripped of her medal.

The event takes place on Friday at 7.30pm.

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