It had been quite a while since Mayo AC did not have a finisher in the top three of a Road Race League. This happened last Saturday in the fifth race in Mayo AC's 2009 Road Race League, sponsored by C & C Cellular, which took place in sunny conditions over a recognised testing course at Claremorris. The eighth DeCare International sponsored road race and walk started and finished in Main Street.
There was an good turn-out of runners and walkers, including many fundraisers in aid of Mayo Cancer Support Association. However, those Mayo AC runners who did compete in this last race before the National Half Marathon showed that they are in excellent shape. They dominated the women's categories and many ran much improved times compared to last year. Gerry Ryan (GCH ) had the race won easily by the time he hit halfway at the N17 - as usual a string of good younger athletes in his wake - second placed Robbie Matthews, winner at Balla and Swinford, clubmate Matt Lockett and Robert Malseed. A posse of other contenders led by TJ McHugh fought out the other places behind them. In the women's race, Catherine Conway and Mary Gleeson ran together in a group until the return loop off the N17 hard shoulder, when Catherine turned on the pressure and won by 30 seconds, both of them in brilliant personal best times. Breege McHale ran a well paced race for third place and will be joining Catherine and Mary in a strong senior women's team next Sunday. Other notable performances were those of Cathy Connolly, Chris Gallagher, and Caroline Conway and also a successful Gael Force quartet from the previous Saturday: Tom O'Toole, Brendan Gill, PJ Hall, and Yvonne Byrne. Ann Fahey also completed the gruelling Gael Force and was a marshal on the course during the race. Christy O'Malley ran his 40-something race of 2009 and followed up on Sunday with 4hr 04 finish in the Longford Marathon — a warm up for Dublin in less than eight weeks. Daniel Murray (Ballina AC ) won the u-19 race in a PB of 27.49 while his mother Ann won the o-45 category in 33.33. The sixth Road League race is Ballina 10k, Sunday September 13 at 3pm.
Team finalised for half marathon
Mayo AC have finalised teams for the National Half Marathon in Ballybofey on September 6. Due to injury and unavailability the squad is smaller than originally published. All participants are reminded that club singlets must be worn. Some members of the team completed the Longford Half Marathon on Sunday last as a 'warm-up' : Andrew Lynskey 79.45, Ciaran Quinn 84.21, Anne Fahey 103.30.
Mayo teams for Marathon
John Byrne, TJ McHugh, Ciaran Quinn, Sean McDonnell, Andrew Lynskey.
Masters Men 35+
Gerry Galvin, Christy O'Malley, Dave Huane, Brendan Gill.
Masters men 50+
Ronnie Naylor, Billy Gallagher, Seamus Gaughan, PJ Hall, Owen Mongan,
Tom Waldron, Chris O'Connell, Tom Hunt.
Catherine Conway, Mary Gleeson, Breege McHale, Caroline Conway.
Masters women 35+
Cathy Connolly, Chris Gallagher, Ann Murray, Anne Fahey, Mary Naylor.