Brother, what a day!

It was one of those days to savour. The enthusiasm of youth hit Santry today like a tidal wave. A tidal wave of joy, endeavour and yes that three letter word fun. The Brother schools XC brought young athletes in their droves to Santry Demesne on a beautiful autumnal day. As the event continues to expand 2019 saw the introduction of an additional two races both for fourth class primary schools, the schools and athletes responded with huge numbers taking part in the primary schools section. It was also particularly pleasing to see not only our old friends but also new schools coming to Santry and giving their youngsters a fantastic introduction to the sport of cross-country running. Once again Santry Park was in excellent condition, the fact that buckets of rain had fallen on the venue most of last week was a well-kept secret as perfect underfoot conditions greeted the athletes.

The first event of the day was the fourth class girls primary school race with almost 100 starters. These young girls many of whom had never raced, yet alone raced on the country, previously and all tackled the 1000m course like veterans with the pack led home by Rosie Stafford of Mount Anville.Second-placed Megan O’Leary led her Mary help of Christians team to a fine win. Mary help of Christians also took the team win in the fifth class girls race, this race was won by Evie Hayes of Lios Na NOg. Mary help of Christians made it a primary school girls clean sweep winning the sixth class race led home by race winner Niamh Bergin.

In the primary school boys races the team competition was much more evenly spread, there were huge numbers in these races, in particular the six class race which had over 250 starters. The fourth class race was won by Darragh Murphy of Scoil Mhuire as he led his school to victory. Victor in the fifth class race was Bill Donovan of St Mary’s BNS, Bill leading his team to a fine win. The six class race was won by William Breathnach with St Malachy’s from Belfast taking the team win from St Patrick’s of Armagh, first time visitors to the Brother schools XC taking second place.

On then to the secondary school programme which was led off by the minor girls also running over 1000, there was a one two in this race for Lucan community college with Saoirse Fitzgerald taking the win from Maggie Jez, Ella  Carey of Loretto Foxrock was third. Needless to say Lucan took the team win. In the junior girls race Castleknock’s Madeline Buckley was first home with Loretto Dalkey taking the team when. The inter-girls race was another fine race with the girls running over 2000m led home by Eimer Maher as Dominic’s Cabra took the team win. The final girls race of the day was the senior race and it was a classy affair led home by Holly Brennan, second was Faye Dervan with Roisin Treacy taking third. Dominic’s Cabra were again the victors in the team competition.

Moving on then to the boys races where there were huge fields in both the minor and junior races. Sean Cronin was a most convincing winner of the minor race winning by a cross country mile. St Colman’s of Newry won the team competition. Oliver Hopkins of St Declan’s won the junior boys race as brother schools newcomers Wesley College took the team win. The inter-boys race was won by Matthew Lavery of St Malachy’s leaving the Malachy’s team home to a fine win. Malachy is also recorded the win in the team event in the senior boys race by a substantial margin with Oisin Kelly a winner in a close finish as the top three could almost be covered by the proverbial blanket.

Primary school girls:
fourth class: 1  Rosie Stafford, 2 Megan O’Leary, 3 Sonia Vilkyu. Teams: 1 Mary help of Christians 21, 2 Mount Anville 40, 3 Scoil San Carlo 70.
Fifth class: 1 Evie Hayes, 2 Erin Byrne, 3 Sofia Corbett. Teams: 1 Mary help of Christians 30, 2 Mount Anville 35, 3 Vincent de Paul 60.
Sixth class: 1 Niamh Bergin, 2 Ella Moynahan, 3 Charlotte Croke. Teams: 1 Mary help of Christians 29, 2 Vincent de Paul 41, 3 Mount Anville 42.
Best girls primary school: Mary help of Christians.

Primary school boys:
Fourth class: 1 Darragh Murphy, 2 Myles McMahon, 3 Connor Tynan. Teams: 1 Scoil Mhuire Marino 39, 2 St Brigids 50, 3 St Michaels 58.
Fifth class: 1 Bill Donovan, 2 Lucas Ryan, 3 Charlie Mooney. Teams: 1 St Mary’s BNS 19, 2 John Bosco 60, 3 St Joseph BNS 91.
Sixth class: 1 William Breathnach, 2 Billy Cosgrove, 3 Eoin McConnell. Teams: 1 St Malachy’s 43, 2 St Patrick’s Armagh 52, 3 St Bridget’s BNS 70.
Best boys primary school: St. Brigids BNS

Secondary schools girls:
minor: 1 Saoirse Fitzgerald, 2 Maggie Jez, 3 Ella Carey. Teams: 1 Lucan community college 48, 2 Loreto Foxrock 62, 3 Dominic’s Cabra 64.
Junior: 1 Madeline Buckley, 2 Isabella Tdmkina Beddy, 3 Zoie Richie. Teams 1 Loreto Dalkey 31, 2 Holy Child 80, 3 Muckross Park 84.
Inter: 1 Eimer Maher, 2 Saoirse Ni Bhriain, 3 Roisin Kennedy. Teams: 1 Dominic’s Cabra 67, 2 Dominicins Griffith Ave 77, 3 Muckross Park 87.
Senior: 1 Holly Brennan, 2 Faye Dervan, 3 Roisin Treacy. Teams: 1 Dominic’s Cabra 38, 2. Santa Sabina 77, 3 Muckross Park 96.
Best girls secondary school Dominic’s Cabra.

Secondary school boys:
minor: 1 Sean Cronin, 2 Dirmuid McCoy, 3 Don Ring. Teams: 1 St Colman’s 39, 2 St Aidan’s 57, 3 St Declan’s 72.
Junior: 1 Oliver Hopkins, 2 Jamie Byrne, 3 Liam Fitzgerald. Teams: 1 Wesley 46, 2 Belvedere 62, 3 St Malachy’s 64.
Inter-: 1 Matthew Lavery, 2 Alex VBW, 3 Dara Donoghue. Teams: 1 St Malachy’s 23, 2 Belvedere 61, St Aidan’s 64.
Senior: 1 Oisin Kelly, 2 Adam Ferris, 3 Michael McCaul. Teams: 1 St Malachy’s 40, 2. St Aidan’s 61, 3 BlackRock 78.
Best boys secondary school St Malachy’s.

Best overall Secondary School and winners of the Lar O’Byrne Shield: St. Malachy’s.

Clonliffe Harriers would like to thank sincerely our wonderful sponsor Brother for their outstanding generosity and support. Clonliffe also like to thank Fingal County Council for the use of Santry Demesne Park, Morton Stadium, St John’s ambulance and the Gardai. We would also like to thank all the schools and the athletes for participating in today’s event we hope you enjoyed your time in Santry. We look forward to seeing you all back here again in 2020.

To view photos from today’s event click: