Kilmovee 10k starts summer season

Athletics

Running for victory: Mayo AC athletes competing in the Kilmovee 10k recently: Timmie Glavey, Andrew Lynskey, Kevin Mellett, and Anto Devaney.

Running for victory: Mayo AC athletes competing in the Kilmovee 10k recently: Timmie Glavey, Andrew Lynskey, Kevin Mellett, and Anto Devaney.

Conditions were good for the second annual Kilmovee 10k last Saturday afternoon. Some said it was very hot, but nobody among the record turnout of runners and walkers — 335 finishers — was really complaining. There were entries from 16 counties also. This year the event was the first race in the 2011 Mayo AC C&C Cellular

Road League. John Roddy and his community team at Kilmovee Shamrocks put on an excellently organised race with the help of John Fitzsimons and Pat Hooper from Raheny Shamrock AC.

The course was mainly on single track road, flat with gentle undulations and a short but tough uphill section after the 9k mark to test tired legs. "It's a hill, get over it" read the supportive roadside notice at the beginning of the climb. Race winner Martin Conroy (Sligo AC ) led from the start and finished in a time of 32.40, the same time as his 2010 victory, A Mayo AC quartet ran together for most of the race before Timmie Glavey broke away to finish third (34.37 ) ahead of Anto Devaney (35.02 ), Kevin Mellett (35.11 ) and Andrew Lynskey (35.37 ) The women's race saw Mary Gleeson set the pace from the start and she ran a great race to finish first in 37.20. Westport native Niamh Richardson (Kilkenny City Harriers ) finished second in 38.41 closely followed by Colette Tuohy (Mayo AC ) in 38.57, her best time of the three 10k races she has run in the past two weeks.

Mayo AC athletes won both women's age category races. Angela O'Connor (41.01 ) winning the o-45 title and Ann Lennon the o-40 section in 41.22. The second road league race is at Carramore near Claremorris on Saturday evening May 21.

Ballina athletes perform well at Boston Marathon

The Ballina AC trio of Roger Barrett, Michael Canty and Sean Gallagher made the 3,000-mile trip to Boston for the 115th running of the historic Boston marathon on April 14. With a qualifying time of 3:10 to gain entitlement to enter, this is a tough race with many inclines and declines to be overcome on the 26.2 mile route.

Marathon running has a lot to do with steady pacing and mental control. The temptation in this marathon is to go out hard as there is a downhill start. However, that could mean disaster later as 'Heartbreak hill' and a series of other uphills lie between miles 19.5 and 21.5 of the race. The Ballina trio plotted their preferred pace and stuck to it. In order for all three to finish inside their 2:50 pre-race target, the average mile pace had to be under six and a half minutes. Roger Barrett was the first Ballina athlete to emerge onto the finishing straight and crossed the line in 392nd place in a personal best time of 2:46:22. He was also the first Irishman to cross the line in this year’s race. Michael Canty crossed the line two minutes later in 481st place in a time of 2:48:27 - basking in the support he received from the crowds at the finish. He can now justifiably lay claim to the title of 'Fastest man from Lahardane’. Nineteen seconds later, Sean Gallagher crossed the line in 502nd place in a time of 2:48:46 with both Michael and Sean knocking five minutes off their marathon personal bests and they were also the fourth and fifth Irishmen to complete the race.

All go for 2011 Achill Half-Marathon

Now in its sixth year, the 2011 Achill Half-Marathon takes place on the spectacular west Mayo island course on Saturday, July 2. Mayo’s new Junior Minister for Sport and Tourism, Michael Ring, started the countdown to one of the fastest-growing fixtures on the running calendar, when he officially launched the 2011 Achill Half-Marathon in St Stephen’s Green recently.

As always with the Achill Half-Marathon, the proceeds of the race will be donated to charity and this year’s worthy recipients will be Croí, the West of Ireland Heart Charity, and St Colman’s Care Centre in Achill Island. The numbers of runners wanting to compete in the Achill Half-Marathon continue to grow every year and this year the number of entries is capped at 2,500 runners. The Achill Half-Marathon is open to competitive runners, joggers, walkers, people with disabilities — and is guaranteed to provide both a keen physical challenge and a breathtakingly scenic journey. For further details about the Achill Half-Marathon, or to register for the event, visit www.achillmarathon.com

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