Carraig na bhFear AC

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Carraig Na Bhfear Junior Men retain their County title in Carrigadrohid

Typically fine conditions heralded day one of the County Cross country races with the staging of the Juvenile even-age, Junior, U-23 and Senior races in Carrigadrohid, hosted by West Muskerry. A familiar location but a new course layout. With a maximum lap size of 1.5k with some hilly switchbacks always making for easier viewing with the athletes in sight but possibly a tougher course for the older groups contending with several hills on each lap.

First off were our under 10 Girls, the team were Sarah Nyhan, Siofra Nott, Caoimhe Browne and Ruth O’Sullivan. All 4 girls ran really well, especially on the hilly section in the second half of the race finishing a very credible eight team in a packed field. Next up were the under 10 boys, we had 7 athletes in this team who were Cathal Walsh, Finn Dunne, Eoin Cafferkey, Sean Hughes, Sean Ryan, Royce Bangura and Eoin Cashman. Again, this was a packed field, and all the team ran exceptionally well and were seventh team overall. We did get an individual medal where Cathal Walsh charged home in the final third of the race to finish 5th in a pack of 10. Credit to our under 10 squad who all performed extremely well on the day, and for many it was their first county championships.

Our Under 12 girls team of Hannah Coffey, Mary-Kate Dawson, Aoibhe Dunlea, Allie Phillips and Emma Johnson packed together well, all finishing well up the field of 86 runners as they crossed the finish line as 7th team. Paul Colbert was our sole representative in the U12 boys race but did himself proud finishing in the top half of the field in 30th place overall.

Our 14 girls continue to improve with Anna Mullins, Robyn Maher and Lucy Davis all running fine races but unfortunately were short a 4th scorer on the day but great credit to these girls for their efforts. The U14 boys had a good 6th place finish, Cian Ryan winning an individual medal with little separating the finishing pack. Sam Dunne had a good run finishing in 28th place well supported by Sam and harry Dunne who are a great addition to the squad this year, Harry showing a quick turn of pace to take some places in the finishing straight. More to come from this group.

Just 2 runners for Carraig in the U16 girls but Faye O’Riordan (8th) and Laura Moore (9th) showing they will be a threat in the coming races as they are getting stronger week by week.

The combined U18 and Junior womens race was a very competitive affair over 4k. Carraig won team bronze in Junior and Silver U18 with Rebecca Kelleher (12th), Aine Sheridan (13th), Mary Dorgan (16th) and Leah Dunne (22nd) getting their season off to a solid start.

In the final juvenile race of the day Carraig fielded a team of 9 athletes, an incredible turn-out in a total field of 22 athletes in the combined U18 and Junior mens race. A typically high standard of racing in what is one of the strongest counties in the country at these ages. Eoin Quirke returning to form after a long injury winning an individual medal in 5th place and leading the team in retaining the John Hegarty Memorial Junior mens cup and U18 title. Aidan Maher continuing to show good form in 7th place with Timmy Hawkins (8th) and David Maher (11th) completing the Junior team scorers. Some great pacing on show in this race also, Carraig were 2 places down to Leevale going into the last lap but with Timmy Hawkins taking 2 Leevale scalps and Cathal Whooley taking another 2 (almost 3!) it turned the race on its head with Carraig Na Bhfear AC having a 4-point gap in the end. Cathal was also 4th scorer on the U18 team and was ably supported by Bobby O’Riordan, Timmy Colbert, Rian O’ Luasa and Luke Mullins, all taking home some bling! Brilliant lads. Thanks as always to Michelle Whooley who was our on-duty photographer capturing the day so well and the coaches for their hard work and feedback for the report.

Other activities: A busy weekend for our adult members with a diverse variety of activities on show. In the Quest Killarney adventure race, we had 3 participants. Liam Aherne finished first overall in the 65k dual race (Cycling and mountain running) in a very impressive 2hrs 40mins for the 65k distance with almost 8 minutes to spare from his nearest rival despite being in 3rd place going in to the final run. Darragh O’Keeffe took on the Kayak also in the 55k Sport race finishing 269th from 496 starters in 3hrs 38mins. Finally, Colm Crowley featured strongly in the 83k expert race, some excellent cycling and kayaking but unfortunately injury prevented Colm taking on the run legs. Very impressive endurance shown by the 3 lads, well done!

London Virtual Marathon: Another marathon clocked up for Caroline O’Donovan, although walking this one, a time of 5hrs 42mins an incredible time for the distance!

Glen River Parkrun: In the most challenging of the city parkrun courses, this week saw the battle of the Chairmen, current Chairman Willie Walsh gearing up for an untypically late start to his cross- country season next week by clocking a solid 19:15 to finish in second place overall, nicely poised for the upcoming Novice XC. Former Chairman Philip Coffey running a very solid 24:55 for 15th place overall, great running by both men.

Janssen BHAA 6k: Two of our members assuming leadership roles in this race early race on Sunday morning in beautiful sunny conditions in little Island. Michael Mulcahy finished in 12th place overall in a fast 22:54, holding off his Dell Technologies team-mate Stephen Geoghegan to lead the team to 1st place in the mens ‘A’ Team race. Richard Hawkins led his Janssen team-mates to 1st place in the ‘C’ mens race and taking 2nd individual place in the M50 category.

Report by Richard Hawkins


Running with .......

Running with ... are a series of short interviews that give you the opportunity to get to know some of our club members. This month we meet talented middle distance runner Timmy Hawkins. A class act across distances from 800m to 5 miles and over road, grass and track, the sky is the limit for Timmy and we are excited to see what the season ahead holds for him.

Tell us why you run?

I run because I really enjoy it and have made a lot of good friends while running.

Who are your running tribe?

The boys and girls xc squads at my age are very strong and are a great group to train with!

Cross, track or road?

Love cross country the most, it’s great travelling to a variety of different courses every year

Favourite race?

The east cork road race this year was very special, winning the team gold and running as a pack the whole way.

Music or podcasts?

I like any running or sports podcast I would say coffee club would be my favourite great insight into professional running life!

On your feet?

Really like the Nike zoom fly 4s comfy and bouncy

Your proudest athletics moment?

My proudest running moment would be coming 3rd in the Tailteann games steeplechase, everything went right on the day and it was a day I’ll never forget

And when the work is done?

Coming home from training in the winter I love to watch any soccer on the tv or watch some Netflix as well


Upcoming Events

So many top events taking place this month across all terrains. Members will be focusing on the Cork County XC Championships spread across 3 dates 2nd, 9th and 31st October. Our road runners will also be busy this month with the Stone Mad Blarney Half-Marathon on Sunday 16th, the popular Rebel Run 5K and 10K on Sunday 23rd and of course the big one the Dublin Marathon on Sunday 30th. Something for our trail runners too this month, you can tackle the Halloween Half Marathon or go for the shorter Spooky 5K on Saturday 29th. Best of luck to all members competing over the coming month.

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Photography by Michelle Whooley and Garry Geoghegan.

Carraig na bhFear Athletics Club. Founded 1980.