Archive for February, 2013

Morton Games 1st Bring Back the Mile International Partner

The Morton Games and Bring Back the Mile (BBTM) announce that they have entered into a partnership to support the storied Morton Mile, a race with a rich history going back the 1930s. The first international event partner for BBTM, the 2013 Morton Games in Dublin, Ireland will take place on Wednesday, July 17 featuring the Morton Mile and Women’s International Mile.

“BBTM’s mission is to elevate and celebrate the Mile, and our main focus is the United States, but we welcome the opportunity to grow the campaign beyond our shores by partnering with the Morton Mile, a truly historic event,” said Ryan Lamppa BBTM Founder.

“This is an exciting development for the Morton Games and is an ideal partnership,” says Noel Guiden, meet director of the Morton Games. “Both the Morton Games and BBTM are athlete focused with a particular emphasis on the blue ribbon event, The Mile.” 

 The Morton Games features at the heart of its meet the Morton Mile, an event with a history dating back to the 1930s including the original Dream Mile in August 1958, when Herb Elliot (AUS) set a World Record and for the first time in history five men in the same race broke the magical 4 minute barrier.

Over the years the Morton Mile has attracted the best milers in history including John Walker, Steve Scott, Kip Keino, Eamonn Coghlan, Marcus O’Sullivan, Ray Flynn, Steve Ovett and Frank O’Mara. In 2012 the Men’s race included Olympians Matthew Centrowtiz (USA), Nick Symmonds (USA), Ryan Gregson (AUS) and Ciaran O’Lionaird (IRL)

The Morton Games for the first time in 2012 also featured a Women’s International Mile, a race that attracted six Olympians fine-tuning their preparations for the London Olympic Games and that also produced a new Morton Stadium record from Nicole Schappert of the United States, clocking a fast 4:30.65.

Morton Games

The 2013 Morton Games takes place in the Morton Stadium Santry, Dublin, Ireland on Wednesday, July 17. This is an international track and field meeting which is promoted and hosted by Clonliffe Harriers A.C. in partnership with Athletics Ireland, the Irish Sports Council, The Irish Milers Club, Fingal County Council and the Morton Stadium.


Bring Back the Mile

BBTM’s mission is to return the Mile to prominence on the American sports and cultural landscape by elevating and celebrating the Mile to create a national movement.


Juvenile Spring Series hits the Beach for Sunday`s opener

Spring is here! The Juvenile Spring Series for Clonliffe, Skerries AC, Lusk AC, Ballyboughal AC and Portmarnack AC hits the Beach in Skerries for Round 1 on Sunday next March 3rd at 11.00am. Skerries AC always put on a superb event and the loop on the hard sand generally provides a splash or two depending on how recent the tide has gone out. Joanne Carron has also ensured sunhine the last two years and goes for a hat trick of good weather this weekend!


Starting time: 11am

Venue: South Beach, opposite Skerries Rugby Club (same as last year)

Age Groups: Uneven ages, starting with U/9’s Boys & Girls

Distances: U/9  – 500m

                U/11 – 800m

                U/13 – 1000m

                U/15 – 1200m

                U/17 – 2000m

Spot prizes for each race. Tea/coffee/sandwiches for all visitors.

Clonliffe athletes to meet there by 10.30 am. Don`t forget club singlet and/or club t shirt.

Round 2 follows on Sunday March 10th hosted by a new club to the series Portmarnack AC and will be run on the grass.  Round 3 completes the series on another surface: the track in the Morton Stadium, hosted by Clonliffe Harriers AC on Sunday March 24th.



Round up: The rest of Saturday`s action

With the exceptionally busy weekend that was in it here`s belately the round up of the rest. Saturday, the 23rd once again Athlone IT, where athletes just can`t get enough, for another indoor meet, the AIT Graded Indoors. Becky Woods had another good run in the 1500m 2nd in 4.34.37. 2nd also for National Indoor Champion Keith Pike in the 60m (7.00). In the 800m Mark McDonald ran a fast 1.54.42 to place 6th in grade A, Brian Tobin was 2nd in his race running 2.00.51.

Overseas but still indoors Eoin Pierce ran 3.59 for 1500m in England.

Back closer to home, ALSAA was the venue, also on Saturday, for the Aer Lingus BHAA cross country. In the mens 5 mile race leading Clonliffe men were: 5th Chris Muldoon, 8th Tom Sherlock, 18th Eoin “The Real Thing” Murray, 26th Conor Delaney, 27th Anthony Malone.

Heroic performance sees Clonliffe retain National CC title

A day of heroic performances in Tullamore at yesterday’s Woodies DIY National Interclub Cross Country as Sergiu Ciobanu took his first individual National Cross Country Title and in the process led the Clonliffe men’s team to an emphatic victory.

National CC 2013 (2)

With the news the previous evening of Mark Kenneally’s forced withdrawal from the team due to injury there were undoubted concerns. Kenneally’s absence, however, had the effect of galvanising the squad and as the saying (almost) goes: “cometh the hour, cometh the men” and men this team indeed are. Sergiu took the race by the scruff of the neck in that determined way of his with a tremendous display of front running tactics, indeed Sergiu in all probability led for 11,000 of the 12,000 metre race. From the off Sergiu was at the front of proceedings driving on the pace. After a couple of laps the lead group was down to Sergiu, Mick Clohessy of Raheny, Rathfarnham’s Eoin Flynn and Joe McAllister (St. Malachy’s). By halfway Sergiu’s relentless pace had whittled the pack down completely with only McAllister sticking the pace. McAllister hung on grimly and it was only over the last lap that victory was assured as Sergiu began to open a gap and in the finishing straight he had the best part of a ten second lead becoming the thirteenth Clonliffe man to win the National. A fitting reward for a true Clonliffe club man.

Behind Sergiu the rest of the team were inspired. Michael MacDiarmada running in only his second National ran the race of his life getting himself into a superb position early on in the race and then doggedly holding that position to finish second man in eighth position. Three places behind was another hero David Flynn who only arrived back in Ireland late on Friday after a disrupted flight from the US. Flynner ran an exceptionally mature race holding back at the start and then steadily working himself through the field to finish a superb 11th.

Next in was our man Gary. Once again Gary O’Hanlon stepped up to the mark to be a scorer for the third time on a Clonliffe National winning team with an 16th place finish.

The scoring four were excellently backed up by John Heneghan who placed 20th after a determined run with Pat Davoren running his first race in the Clonliffe singlet in 54th place.

With an overall points total of 36 the Clonliffe men were comfortably ahead of Raheny on 57 points and Rathfarnham on 80.

The first race in the Charleville Estate, Tullamore was the Junior Women’s race where a young Clonliffe team, four of the athletes were running their first Junior race, performed superbly to win team bronze. This bronze medal winning performance came as a result of some excellent packing by the girls who were led home by Roisin Leahy in 12th place. Roisin was chased all the way home by Hope Saunders who was a revelation in this race running strongly particularly over the second lap to make up maybe the best part of ten places on that lap. Next in was Laura Tuite in 19th place with Stephanie McCaul 21st just out-sprinting Greta Streinyte on the run in and Sally Ahern 26th.

The Clonliffe girls had a team total of 65 enough to secure magnificent National bronze for the girls behind DSD 1st and DCH 2nd.

The Junior Men’s team were also hit with bad luck on the eve of the race with the forced withdrawal of Aaron Hanlon due to illness. From the starters gun Ian Guiden was well in the hunt particularly over the first half where he, pre-race favourite Sean Tobin (Clonmel) and Hugh Armstrong (Ballina) led the field and broke away. Halfway through the second 2000 metre lap Tobin increased the pace as Ian hit a bad patch and dropped to third, however, he rallied over the final lap and finished strongly to hold on to that precious bronze medal. Cathal Doyle had an excellent race in his first Junior cross country start working himself nicely through the field and running himself to a near state of collapse to finish an excellent 17th. Owen McCullough was next home for Clonliffe in 23rd place with Liam Ashton two places behind in 25th. On the team result the Clonliffe lads placed 3rd on 68 points behind DSD 38, St. Malachy’s 49. There were excellent first National performances in this race also from Brian Flanagan who placed 31st, Ross Carney 34th and Niall Norman 36th. This is a young Clonliffe Junior team, Ian Guiden and Eoin McCullough the only ones who move on to the senior ranks next year and the team as a whole will benefit enormously from the experience and can look forward with some confidence to next years Nationals.

The Senior women also did the business in Tullamore to bag another set of team medals as the girls placed 3rd in a race which was dominated up front by Mary Cullen who had an emphatic win over Linda Byrne. Of the Clonliffe girls Sara McCormack finished just out of the individual medals in 4th place another good run also by Ailish Malone who placed 19th and Eleanor Alexander, more noted nowadays as a track runner, however, not being out of place on the country in 21st place and Emma Cooper was the 4th scorer in 24th place. Fionnuala Doherty once again put in a very solid shift in the Nationals to place 46th.

In all a superb day for Clonliffe Harriers with all four teams winning team medals, the men successfully retaining the National to win the 9th of the last ten, an individual bronze medal in the Junior men’s race for Ian Guiden and the icing on the cake the National Cross Country title for the Clonliffe Harrier of the year Sergiu Ciobanu.



4 x 200 relay win highlight of Juvenile “Indoor”

The Dublin Juvenile “Indoor” championships concluded over the weekend with days 4 and 5. Saturday`s day 4 was held in Tallaght in bitterly cold conditions and may well have been the first time competitors in an Indoor Championship had to contend with snow. It was also relay day, the highlight of which was a most impressive win from the U/18 4 x 200 team of Megan Coomber, Ciara Lynott, Seanna Reilly and Kate Hession from a full field. In the younger age groups the boys U/13s qualified for their final. Then on Sunday it was back to Santry for the conclusion of the indoors with places on the start line in the National Juvenile Indoors at Athlone IT at stake. A great win from Seanna Reilly in the u/18 400 with Ciara Lynott 2nd. In the girls U/14 800m after last week`s heats Lauren Carr ran very well in the final to take 3rd place.

Latest news from the 2013 Morton Games

Planning is well underway for this summer’s Morton Games which will take place in the Morton Stadium Santry on Wednesday the 17th of July. The organisers have put in place a very exciting programme of events which include for men: 100m, 400m, 800m, 3000m, high jump, discus, pole vault and the Morton Mile. Women: 100m, 400m, 800m, the SSC Women’s International Mile and Long Jump.

MM finish

The 2012 Morton Games provided one of the best athletic meetings seen in Dublin in many a long year before a large and appreciative crowd. Highlights in 2012 included a fantastic run by Brian Gregan in the 400 metres where he set his new PB of 45.61, Gregan of course has been in scintillating form indoors this season to date and currently leads the European rankings as he heads to Gothenburg the weekend after next. Other highlights on that July night included the rewriting of the stadium 3000m record as Ben True (USA) knocked 12 seconds off Eamonn Coghlan’s stadium record. There was also a stadium record set in the women’s mile by Nicole Schappert (USA) and of course a wonderful Morton Mile with 10 athletes running sub 4 on the night.

The 2012 Meet has set the bar at a very high level, however, the organisers are determined that the 2013 Meet will not only reach those heights but go beyond.

The revamped event website has been launched and this includes full details, prize money in each event, details of hotel and travelling contributions for overseas athletes, feedback from the 2012 Morton Games competitors and all the latest news including the SSC Women’s International Mile. For all the latest Morton Games news pay a visit to the event website .

Also why not follow the Morton Games on Twitter@mortongames.

Brian Gregan`s selection for Gothenburg confirmed

Congratulations to Brian Gregan on his selection for the European Indoor Championships in Gothenburg, Sweden on the weekend of March 1st to 3rd. Brian, currently leading the European 2013 rankings, will run the 400. Athletics Ireland have confirmed the selection of the following athletes in the Irish team:  Brian Gregan (Clonliffe Harriers AC), Ciaran O’Lionaird (Leevale AC), Derval O’Rourke (Leevale AC), Fionnuala Britton (Kilcoole AC), Ciara Everard (UCD AC), Amy Foster (City of Lisburn AC), David McCarthy (West Waterford AC) and Tori Pena (Finn Valley AC). In addition both Stephen Scullion and John Travers (Donore) have the 3,000 qualifying time, Athletics Ireland will confirm who sets the final place in this event on Sunday.

Teams named for Sunday`s National Cross Country

The Club Captains this evening released details of the four Clonliffe teams that will challenge for honours in the Nationals in Tullamore on Sunday afternoon. There are stong teams entered in all four races and it is expected that all four will be challenging for medals.

Confirmed for the senior women is European Cross Country team gold medal winner Sara McCormack. On Sara`s last visit home she placed 3rd in the National Inter Counties and will be expected to be well in the hunt on Sunday. Also confirmed are Ailish Malone, Ailish has raced sparingly since her excellent marathon debut in Dublin but warmed up with a BHAA win on Saturday, and Eleanor Alexander who was setting pbs for fun all Summer on the track.

The senior women`s team is: Sara McCormack, Ailish Malone, Eleanor Alexander, Emma Cooper, Fionnula Doherty and Marie Byrne.

Joe Cooper has confirmed that the defending men`s team have been boosted by the news that Olympians Mark Kenneally and Alistair Cragg are both named for Sunday. Also due home from the US is National 3,000 sc champion Dave Flynn, plus the ever dependable Sergiu Ciobanu and Gary O`Hanlon.

The full senior men`s team is: Sergiu Ciobanu, Gary O`Hanlon, Mark Kenneally, Alistair Cragg, Brian McMahon, Dave Flynn, John Henegan, Ernie Ramsey, Michael McDiarmada and Colm Rooney.

The Junior men will also be there or there abouts with athletes of the caliber of Aaron Hanlon and Ian Guiden leading the squad, along with the promising up and coming crop of youngsters Cathal Doyle, Brian Flanagan and Ross Kearney. The team is: Liam Ashton, Ian Guiden, Eoin McCullough, Aaron Hanlon, Brian Flanagan, Ross Kearney, Niall Norman and Cathal Doyle.

Finally a youthful women`s junior team will give it at really good go. Seasoned campaigner Roisin Leahy will be joined on the start line by Greta Stemkieyta, Stephanie McCaul, Hope Saunders, Laura Tuite and Sally Aherne.

The venue for Sunday`s Nationals is Charleville Estate, Tullamore just up the road from Tullamore Harriers. The timetable is:

1.00pm Junior Women  4,000m (2 x 2,000m laps)

1.30pm Junior Men        6,000m  (3 x 2,000m)

2.00pm Senior women   8,000m (4 x 2000m)

2.30pm Senior Men        12,000m (6 X 2000m)

The teams travel by coach from the Stadium on Sunday leaving at 10.00am sharp. Supporters most welcome.

Kris Valters second in Latvian Indoor 1500 Championship

Clonliffe man Kris Valters was back home for the Latvian Indoor Championships over the weekend. Despite a hectic schedule he doubled up with some considerable success. First off he was runner up in the 1500m at 3.00pm on Saturday running a PB, by some 6 seconds of 3.57.4 and then at 11.00am on Sunday morning he recorded an indoor 800m pb of 1.52.2 in placing just out of the medals in 4th place.

National Indoor titles for Pike, Field and Gregan (plus 60m video)

At day 2 of the Woodies DIY National Indoor Championships Clonliffe athletes excelled with another three National titles added to Dave Donegan`s pole vault title from yesterday. Story of the day was the break through performance of young Keith Pike in the 60m. After running a pb yesterday`s heats of 6.96 he won this mornings semi final with another pb of 6.93 and then in the final went even faster 6.92 to win his first National senior title. A stunning performance from the 18 year old running the 2nd fastest 60m ever by an Irish Junior athlete.

Matt Field was another Clonliffe winner in the 60m H taking the title in 8.21. Gothenburg bound 400m man Brian Gregan took the 200m title in 21.33.

There were bronze medals won by Leah Moore in the 60m (7.61) and Andrew Heney in the high jump with yet another 2.00m clearance.

Other noteable performances were Isreal Ibeanu making the 60m final where he placed 5th in 7.14, Becky Woods was 5th in the 1500m in 4.36.04 and Mark McDonald was 11th in the 1500m final (4.04.6)

So an impressive haul from the Black and Amber: 4 gold and 2 bronze. Well done to all.

To view Flotrack video of Keith Pike`s 60m final click:


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