Galway athletes had a successful day of cross country running at the All-Ireland Juvenile Championships for uneven ages and the novice championships for men and women in Ballyhaise, Co Cavan, on Sunday.
Individual gold went to Colm Hughes of GCH , while Jack Fitzpatrick of Athenry, Alanna Lally of GCH, Laura Shaugnessy of Loughrea, and Mathew Lockett of GCH were also medal winners. Galway also claimed a set of inter-county team gold medals in the u-11 boys, while GCH claimed two sets of team medals in inter-club competition,
Pride of place went to Colm Hughes of GCH with an outstanding individual gold medal in the u-13 boys, repeating his feat of 12 months ago when he captured the u-12 title. Conor Gillen of Craughwell AC also put in a superb performance in sixth place.
Rachel O’Brien of Athenry AC ran a superb race in the u-11 girls 800m finishing in fourth place. Grainne McDaid of Craughwell AC, Grace Cahill of Athenry, Ballinasloe’s Aoife Greene, Athenry’s Niamh Keane, and Craughwell’s Tara McNally combined to place the Galway county team in eighth place, while Athenry AC and Craughwell AC finished ninth and 13th respectively.
The Galway lads performed remarkably well in the boys’ u-11 race with Athenry’s Jack Fitzpatrick earning his first All-Ireland medal with third place and leading Galway to inter-county gold in the team competition. John Maher of Galway City Harriers was only a few strides behind Fitzpatrick in fifth place and had the honour of leading his club to silver medals in the inter-club team competition. Maher and Fitzpatrick combined with Liam Costello, Bronson Kelly, David Carter, and Fiachra O’Clochain, all of GCH on the victorious Galway team, while the GCH lads were all part of their club team’s silver medal performance. Ballinasloe & District finished in 12th place in the inter-club competition and were led home by Jack Dillon.
The u-13 girl’s race proved just as fruitful for Galway athletes with Alanna Lally of GCH taking individual silver and leading both her club and Galway county teams to silver medals. Ballinasloe & District were only five points away, finishing fourth. Annie Tynan Daly of Ballinasloe & District finished seventh, while Maebh Brannigan of GCH, Michelle Burke and Ciara Greene of Ballinasloe, and Roisin Dobey and Katey Carter of GCH were all scorers on the victorious Galway county team. Lally, Brannigan, Dobey, and Carter were the scorers on the GCH silver medal winning team.
Mathew Lockett of GCH put in a stormer to finish third in the novice men race, while leading Galway to fourth place in the inter-county competition. Martin Corcoran, Mark Davis, Johnny Lane, Robert Staunton, and Darragh O’Brien were the remaining Galway scorers.