In one of the most competitive races, Ennis Track star Damien Landers claimed the honours in the 34th edition of the famous Streets of Galway 8k.
Held on Saturday night, the race once again attracted a huge crowd of top Irish athletes, club runners, and thousands of local local and visiting runners. And despite the inclement weather, it proved one of the most exciting events with a lead group of four athletes breaking away early on.
Eventual winner Landers, Alan O'Shea of Bantry, Sean Hehir of Rathfarnham, and Kenny Rodgers of St John’s in Clare set a hot pace, crossing half-way in 12 minutes flat. When O'Shea dropped back shortly after, international marathon runner Hehir took over the lead through Salthill.
After Rodgers fell off the pace at 6k, it left just Hehir and Landers to battle it out. The last kilometre produced a great duel between the two Irish internationals, with Landers eventually getting a few yards' lead on his rival to take an epic victory in a time of 24.07. Hehir was five seconds back in second, with Rodgers making it a Clare cleansweep, coming home third.
The women's section saw a superb display of front running from Irish cross country international Ann Marie Mcglynn of Letterkenny AC. She led from the gun to take the honours in 26.41, and in doing so dethroned reigning champion Siobhan O'Doherty of Borrisokane AC. O'Doherty ran a strong race to place second in 28.11, with Regina Casey of local club GCH finishing in third place.
Almost 2,600 finished the race despite some heavy rain.
European Team Championships
Nicole Walsh of Galway City Harriers competed for Ireland at the European Team Track and Field Championships held in Norway at the weekend. Talented sprinter Walsh ran on the Irish 4x400m relay squad, helping them to fourth place overall on her senior
National Masters track and field
This weekend sees the finals of the National Masters Track and field championships in Tullamore stadium on Sunday from 11am. Many of Galway’s top masters athletes will compete, including Ian Egan,and Sean McDermott of Castlegar, Mary Barrett of Loughrea, and Sinead Foran and Niamh Hennelly of GCH .