Archive for December, 2009

Mark Kenneally is the star of the European cross country in Santry

Dec 14, 2009 [Noel Guiden] The Spar European Cross Country Championships came to Santry yesterday providing a wonderful spectacle for the estimated 6000 plus crowd in attendance. The star of the show was undoubtedly from an Irish perspective Clonliffe’s Mark Kenneally with a magnificent eighth place equalling the previous best Irish performance at these championships by Alistair Cragg in 2002.

Santry Demesne looked simply stunning. The running was better then expected after the record November rainfall and although there was ankle-deep mud in places there were some areas of good ground for these world class athletes. The in-field area, however, was a different story – it was like a 2009 version of Woodstock!

First race of the day was the Junior Women’s race where Lisburn’s Ciara Mageehan ran an excellent race to finish in 9th place. Overall the Irish girls finished in 9th place. The Irish Junior Men’s team placed 11th with the highest Irish finisher being Ryan Creech of Leavale in 41st place.

On the U/23 Women there was a good performance from Newbridge’s Roseanne Galligan best of the Irish in 15th place with the team placing fifth. In the U/23 Men’s race the Clonliffe interest was provided by David Flynn who in all fairness looked like the exertions of the U.S. Collegiate Cross Country season had taken its toll, David ultimately placing 54th. First Irish home in that race was Michael Mulhare of North Laois in 18th place. On a team perspective the Irish placed 6th.

On then to the Senior Women where there was great expectation of potential Irish success with Mary Cullen in particular shouldering the burden of a nation’s expectation. This race was blown open from the start with Great Britain’s Hayley Yelling grabbing the race by the scruff of the neck from the gun with an unbelievable display of front running as she opened a ten metre gap right from the start and then extended this throughout the course of the race to win in emphatic style. Of the Irish Fionnuala Britain ran a superb race coming good on the day to place 11th overall just in front of Mary Cullen 12th, Linda Byrne 25th and Ava Hutchinson 34th. There was heartbreak for the Irish who ultimately placed 4th having been second in the early stages and slipping down to 3rd and then as poor Deirdre Byrne imploded over the final lap after superb opening finished looking exceptionally tired in 48th place, the team medal slipped away.

The Senior Men’s race provided a superb race up front between Spain’s Ethiopian born Alemayehu Bezabeh and Mo Farah battled out taking a 100 yard lead from the defending champion Sergey Lebid. The Spaniard prevailed in an absorbing final 400 metres as Farah collapsed yards over the line. Mark Kenneally undoubtedly ran the race of his life. From the off he showed his intentions as with great determination he got himself into the top ten a position from which he never fell back. He was in simply inspired form as the large crowd got behind him cheering him on to a superb eighth place; a performance with which Kenneally was clearly thrilled post race. Alistair Cragg battled on gamely the mud clearly not suiting his smooth style, Cragg ultimately finished third scorer in 40th place, Mullingar’s Martin Fagan was 26th and Andrew Ledwith in 41st made up the scoring four with the Irish placing sixth.

Although from an Irish perspective that chunk of metal still alludes us the performance of Mark Kenneally certainly lifted spirits. The event itself was superbly organised and went off smoothly. Great credit is due to all who assisted in the organisation of the event and who turned out to volunteer their services over the course of the weekend and indeed the week, the army involved is just to numerous to name but each and everyone played their part in
delivering a wonderful athletics occasion.

Joe`s golden boys do it again

Dec 6, 2009 [Noel Guiden] A truely awesome performance from the Clonliffe U/19 boys in the Nationals in Colerain today saw a repeat of last year with the guys winning gold. The winning margin was by an unbelieveable 98 points. First man home was Jamie Rossister in 6th, Eric McCann was 11th, man of day day according to Club Captain and squad coach Joe Cooper was next in 13th place Jordan Logue, by all accounts having run his best race to date. 15th was Conor McGuinness and Larry Brady was next home in 25th. A clearly delighted Joe Cooper expressed himself to be “very very proud of the lads” and not unsurprisingly singled out Jordan for particular praise on his superb run today “considering the amount of work he doesn`t put in!”

Also in action in the juvenile championships was Fintan Doherty in the U/17 running for Dublin, Fintan was very clearly off form and was unwell immeadiately after the race.

In the men`s National Novice the team came away with silver finishing behind City of Derry with Brett Paine 7th, Eoin Pearse 9th, Mark McDonald 18th and Lorcan Cronin 20th making up the scoring 4 for a total of 54 points. Other placings to follow soon.

Due to injury the ladies were unable to field a team and decided not to travel North.

On other news: The Jingle Bells 5k promoted by Donore Harriers took place in the Phoenix Park yesterday morning. First Clonliffe man was Aidan Bailey 5th in 14.40, Michael McDiarmada was 15th (15.18), Terry McLoughlin 53rd (17.23), Becky Woods was 3rd woman 54th overall (17.28) and Louise Reilly (17.54) 8th woman and 71st overall.

Clonliffe 2009 AGM

Dec 2, 2009 [Noel Guiden ] The Clonliffe Harriers 124th Annual General Meeting took place in the club gymnasium last night. There was an excellent attendance involving a cross section of club members, both young and old and from sprinters to marathon runners and everything in between, in fact its fair to say that this was probably the best attended AGM in maybe the last 20 years.

The club captain, ladies captain and juvenile captain reported on the club’s athletic successes over the past year, the highlights of which included the Junior Men and Senior Men’s winning of the National Cross Country Title, the winning of the National League Premier title, the club’s performance in the European Club’s Cross Country and European Club’s Track and Field, the winning by the club’s athletes of eleven medals at the National Track and Field Championships, the growth in our ladies section and the successes of the ladies section in finishing third in Division 1 of the National League and the wining of medals by the ladies team in Dublin Cross Country at novice, intermediate and senior level. The juvenile captain reported on the continued growth of the juvenile section and the successes of the juvenile athletes and their progression into the junior and senior ranks and appealed to the those senior and master members who may have some time available to assist with the coaching of the juvenile athletes. The Honorary Secretary in his report provided an overview of the year, congratulated the club’s athletes and coaches on their successes and provided the meeting with an update on the current status regarding the management of the Morton Stadium. The club Treasurer presented a very favourable set of accounts which demonstrated that the club was in a healthy financial position, however, cautioned that going forward with the expense which the club would be incurring particularly with competing in the European Club Championships that there would be requirement for a concerted effort by the club and its members to assist in fundraising for all of these ventures and particularly encouraged all members to become involved in the club lotto scheme.

The President in his address outlined the fantastic achievements of the club over the previous twelve months congratulating the athletes, coaches and club’s administrators, he highlighted the continued growth of the juvenile and ladies section of the club and the thriving club section via the club’s Grand Prix Series, he also congratulated the Treasurer and Assistant Treasurer on their handling of the club’s finances, he provided the meeting with an update on the club’s involvement in the European Cross Country Championships and the good news that work was now commencing courtesy of Dominic Brannigan and John Bourke on the long awaited history of Clonliffe Harriers book.

The meeting elected the following Officers and Committee members for 2010:

Club President – Paddy Marley

Honorary Secretary – Noel Guiden

Honorary Treasurer – Paddy Tuite

Club Captain – Joe Cooper

Ladies Captain – Pamela Cooper

Three Committee members – Tom Monks, Mick Kearney and Noreen Keane

Trustees – Maurice Ahern, Tommy Griffin and Sean O’Neill

The following Motions were passed:

1. ‘that the financial year of the club commence on the 1st of October and end on the 30th of September’

2. ‘that participation by clubs as National Champions in European Club competition as National Champions be recognised by Athletics Ireland under the category of high performance and that an appropriate level of funding be made available by Athletics Ireland to the participating club’

3. ‘that the club hold an annual awards presentation to recognise the achievements of the club’s athletes, coaches and adminstrators’

Various matters discussed under Any Other Business including a suggestion that the club provide for ice baths for post training, a fundraising initiative courtesy of Larry Brady and the ‘younger’ members of the club and that any club member with an idea as to how to appropriately mark the club’s 125th anniversary in 2011 put their suggestions either in writing or by email to the Committee.

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