All posts in Cross Country races

Emma wins Northern Ireland Cross, Jayme 13th in English National

Clonliffe’s Emma Mitchell won the Northern Ireland and Ulster cross country championships at the University of Ulster Coleraine today over 6,000m.

Jayme Rossister had a superb run in the English national cross country in Nottingham today to finish an excellent 13th. Former Harrier Edgar’s Sumskiss was 55th and Liam Roarty was 215th.

Also today the latest BHAA took place the Central Bank 4 mile cross country at Wesley College where Sean Doran was 2nd.

Jayme takes BUC Cross Bronze plus xc round up

Jayme Rossiter had a fine run in today’s British university cross country championships held in Holyrood, Edinburgh to take bronze. Running for Aston University Jayme covered the 10k distance in an impressive 32.50. Competing in the men’s B race over 8000 M was Liam Roarty for Loughborough placing 81st (from 630 plus starters) in 28.47.

Meanwhile in Malahide Castle David Dunwoody won the Dylan Ahern Memorial 5k Cross Country in 19.26 with Aimee Ahern fastest women 22.19.

After a couple of 2nd places already this BHAA season Sean Doran went one better in today’s Garda 4 mile to take the win with David Brady 17th.

The inside story: “Italica or bust”

Laura Tuite reports from inside the camp:  On 17th January a group of 30 athletes and 10 coaches headed to Seville to compete in the XXXVIII Cross Internacional de Itálica, IAAF recognised race.

As the plane touched down in the warm south of Spain everyone was bursting with excitement and anticipation of the 16+ degree heat we had awaiting us! Once we all checked in, we headed to the restaurant for the buffet dinner, which was mediocre at best. Things picked up though when we realised who was sitting at the table beside us eating the same food; Hellen Obriri (5000m world champion) and Paul Chelimo (Olympic 5000m silver medalist)!!

Our hotel was situated 20 minutes from the center of Seville but as Daniel Lacey liked to describe it, “we were in the ghetto”. There was not much around except a small bowling alley, Lidl and a few small local bars, which the coaches put to good use.

Saturday we woke to a dull grey sky, we were not one bit impressed. A bus was organised to bring us out to the course. Upon arrival, the rain began to fall but that did not stop us. We ran around the course and to our surprise it contained no grass or muck, which is what we have been used to all season! It was a hard red clay trail with some parts of the 3k loop containing concrete. There was two gradual inclines followed by two nice downhills and many sharp corners. The consensus was good but the burning question everyone had “Spikes or flats?”
Saturday evening was spent relaxing in the hotel and resting our legs for the main event.

Bright and early Sunday morning the junior women were first awake as they were first to race at 9:30am. As they arrived to the course the sun began to rise. It was a beautiful day! Weather was perfect for running. The rain on Saturday had no effect on the course so most athletes chose to run in flats rather than spikes. It was around 16 degrees with a slight breeze. The Spanish were wrapped up in their hats and scarfs but us Irish rocked up in shorts and t-shirts.  Hourly shuttle buses from the hotel brought the athletes to the course.
The atmosphere was electric! The crowds were amazing shouting “VAMOS” (GO)  throughout the entire race.
Junior women and men all had a great run, everyone was smiling ear to ear which encouraged us older ones to relax and just go out and run.
Stephen Cashen showed us how it’s done by leading out the men’s popular race; containing 1000 participants. As soon as we saw him come around the first corner, the Clonliffe tent erupted!
The men and women’s international races were filled with top class athletes who set an unbelievably fast pace from the start. It was inspiring to watch Efrem stick in and tough it out against the best of the best.

After a hugely successful day at the office, everyone headed back to the hotel on a high. Showered and famished we went and got a well-deserved Mc Donald’s.
Sunday evening was spent in the local pub playing pool and watching the football.  Which progressed into dancing, and singing to ABBA and Bruce Springsteen. The night ended by a solo performance of Amhran na bhFiann from Gerry Cullen.

Monday morning 8:15 wakeup call was tough for some but tougher for others. Fed and packed we all made it onto the bus only 15minutes behind schedule.  The weekend was a huge success; everyone had a great time and already looking forward to our next trip!

Hugely positive trip to Seville as Efrem places 14th at IAAF International XC

The weekend trip by the Clonliffe cross country teams to Seville for the Cross Country Internacionel de Italica was an outstanding success. A hugely enjoyable event brought positives all round for every single athlete competing. Efrem Gidey put in yet another five-star showing in the feature IAAF men’s international over 9,975m as he lined up with a world-class field including Olympic silver medallist Paul Chelimo (USA). As usual Efrem showed no fear in going out fast with the field and indeed in the early stages featured in the lead pack of six athletes. The course is however a pretty testing course. It is unique in that it is run through the ancient Roman city of Italica over compressed red clay, sand, stone and in some places concrete, several athletes ran in flats while others took a chance with spikes. The course features a lot of hills but then very fast downhill sections and therefore the pace was extremely hot from the off.

Huge crowds attend the event making for an electric noisy atmosphere. The crowds cheered on as Ethiopia’s 17 year old Tadese Worku upset the form book stealing a march on the rest of his rivals to come home the winner in 27.32 with prerace favourite Chelimo 2nd (27.48). Efrem obviously tired over the latter stages but never gave up finishing an excellent 14th position in a time of 29.34. A superb run from Jayme Rossiter saw him keep a steady pace throughout meaning that as other athletes tired he was going through them like a knife through butter gaining place after place finishing up in a superb 25th (30.16), next in was Cathal Doyle who on the surface suffered a recurrence of blisters but still hung in to finish 32nd (30.36) and with Eoin Taggart also having an excellent day to place 49th (32.16) it proved to be an extremely satisfactory day for the team.

In addition to the senior team there was a large travelling party of Clonliffe athletes competing in the ‘undercard’. First into the fray, literally at sunrise, where the 18 girls getting the Clonliffe Day off to an excellent start with a brilliant run from Aoife Hession placing 13th with Katie Halpin next in placing 19th and Alana Fitzsimons 24th. Interestingly enough the 18 girls race with the 14 boys and the feedback from the Clonliffe athletes was that this kept them running stronger throughout the whole race as there was always an athlete in striking distance.

The 18 boys raced with the U 20 girls, again the feedback from the girls was that it was positive. Niall Carbery was excellent in this race, he got himself into the mix from the start despite a fall on the start line battling his way through the field and remained undeterred when believe it or not he suffered a second fall and again was straight up onto was feet to push himself to a highly impressive 20th place. Very positive runs also from Alex Neuroth 44th and John Lawrence 46th.

Sarah Bateson continued her recent good racing form with another determined run to finish in a brilliant 8th position with Abbie Sheehy also breaking into the top 10, placing 10th. Tess Loftus despite missing several weeks through illness got stuck into the race to finish 18th U/20.

Eighth and ninth places were filled by Clonliffe athletes in the men’s U/20 race. Aaron Cullen ran another quality race to place eighth with the fast finishing Callum Simpson, who had made up so much ground finishing in an excellent 9th position. After months of injury frustration Evan Foster announced that he is back! A fantastic 19th. Next in was another athlete just out of sickbay, Ben Guiden placing 22nd (although the official results described him as ‘retired’ he certainly is not and finished the race!) Alex Murray was next in 27th, a place further back Ian McAlweeney after a race long battle with Thomas Balthazar, Ian 28th and Thomas 30th and 43rd was Dermot Buckley, again in his comeback race after recent injury.

The day’s proceedings also included ‘popular race’, these were basically open races for men and women. Hugely successful they are too with the men’s open race having a field capped at its limit of 1000 starters. The huge army of athletes snaked to cover almost half of the lap and leading the field on lap one (for approximately 200m of glory) was the black and amber vest of Stephen Cashin. Stephen however was swallowed up but finished up very credible 25th, next in was master athlete Declan Power in 36th position (17th master and second M/45), 39th Ryan Sheridan, 46th Daniel Lacey and 53rd (gaining 10 places over the last 100) Jordan Byrne.

The women’s ‘popular race’ was a slightly smaller affair with only 400 starters! At the sharp end of the field were the Clonliffe Quartet with the girls having an outstanding race: Laura Tuite 12th, Alannah Cooley 14th, Clodagh Galvin 32nd and Hannah Browne 59th.

It was a brilliant weekend for the athletes all of whom will benefit hugely from the experience of attending a top-class overseas events like this. All supported their clubmates and did themselves and Clonliffe Harriers proud. (The athletes view of the weekend will be posted in a day or so)

To see photos click:

Clonliffe heading to Seville for Cross Internacional de Italica

With the cancellation of this year’s European Clubs Cross Country a large travelling party of Clonliffe Harriers will on Friday head Seville for the IAAF  Cross Internacional de Itálica.  This is an annual cross country competition that is held every January in Santiponce, near Seville, Spain. Inaugurated in 1982, the race course is set in the ruins of the ancient Roman city of Italica. As one of only two Spanish competitions to hold IAAF permit meeting status, it is one of the more prestigious races on the Spanish cross country circuit.

The competition comprises three general categories of race: children’s and junior races, the mass participation (“popular”) race, and the professional international races. The men’s international race was a 10km race until 1999 when it was increased to roughly 11km.The course of the race loops through the ancient streets of Itálica, passing alongside ruins throughout.The red clay ground usually makes for a dry running surface, although rain has occasionally made this a particularly difficult, muddy course in previous editions.

The senior men will compete in the international race, the team is Jayme Rossister, Cathal Doyle, Efrem Gidey and Eoin Taggart (although entered Ian Guiden is currently injured, but will travel as part of the team).

The senior women travelling are Alannah Cooley, Clodagh Galvin, Hannah Browne and Laura Tuite and the will compete in the “popular” race.

The U/20 men’s team is Aaron Cullen, Ben Guiden, Thomas Baltzar, Ian McAlweeney, Callum Simpson, Evan Foster, Alex Murray

U/20 Women: Sarah Bateson, Abbie Sheehy, Tess Loftus, Aimee Warren

U/18 women: Aoife Hession, Alana Fitzsimons, Katie Halpin

U/18 men: Niall Carberry, Alex Neuroth, John Lawrence.

Men “Popular” race: Stephen Cashin, Daniel Lacey, Jordan Byrne, Ryan Sheridan, also as an individual Declan Power.

See offical web site:



Shay Byrne wins O’Rourke Shield

It was a quiet weekend on the racing front, the only details to hand are of Shay Byrne winning the annual “mafia” 5k Christmas race in Malahide Castle on Saturday the 21st.


(Pictured: M. Ahern, P. Marley President, S. Byrne winner, J. O’Leary)

Dublin inter xc and Juvenile league xc on Sunday

The beat goes on! After the drama and excitement of last weekend’s Nationals thing get slightly calmer with the Dublin Intermediate Cross Country and the final Juvenile cross country league race in Tymon Park, Tallaght this Sunday, December 1st.

Once again it’s great to have a full women’s team competing with a trio who braved all of 8000 for the cause in Abbotstown back for more: Clodagh Galvin, Alannah Cooley and Laura Tuite. The full women’s team for the 5000m distance in Tymon is Emma Harding, Yvonne McDonagh, Elaine McLoughlin, Clodagh Moriarty, Aideen O’Connor, Clare Roche, Laura Tuite, Alannah Cooley, Clodagh Galvin.

The inter men’s team is: Shane Casey, Matt McGuinness, Paul Keenan, Shaun Connaghan, Shane Caffery, Michael Devine, Dave Riley.

Preceding the intermediate championships is the Dublin Juvenile league, where Clonliffe underage athletes will compete including a number of the U/17 squad would will be racing in the uneven age nationals in Dunboyne on December 15th, and will use Sunday as their final build up race.




Keeping it Country plus more

With the Nationals now only two weeks away Clonliffe athletes continue their preparations. Yesterday Jayme Rossister was 17th in the British Cross Country Challenge in Milton Keynes and Sergiu Ciobanu 13th in the Bobby Rea International Cross Country.

The rest of the mens senior and junior squad put in another solid session on the hills in Portmarnock yesterday whilst the womens teams took to the National Cross Country course in Abbotstown this morning.

Of course theres always the exception and that was Liam Roarty making his debut in the colours of Morpeth Harriers in Newcastle this morning in the Heaton Memorial 10k running a 33.14 pb.

A muddy good day in Santry as men retain the Padraig Keane Cup

In conditions that the legendary Padraig Keane would have relished the Clonliffe senior men’s team retained Padraig Keane Cup as the winners of the Dublin senior cross-country championship. The race itself was won by the exceptional Efrem Gidey, still a junior athlete and racing in his first ever senior championship. Efrem made the telling move early in the race with only two of the six big laps under his belt to break away from the pack and then open a substantial lead to take the title at ease. Cathal Doyle also ran a brilliant race coming through to take a fine silver medal, repeating his performance of 2018. In fourth place, last year’s winner, Colm Rooney, again running a clever race to come through the field and in 6th, Ian Guiden who had a much better outing today then in Abbottstown two weeks ago, completing the scoring for for a combined total of 13 points well clear of DSD second on 31 points and Rathfarnham third on 44 points. There were good runs also from Sean Doran in 15th,  Liam Roarty 24th, Thomas Sherlock 26th, Paul Keenan 56th and Peter Bissett 62nd.

The senior men had not won the Dublin title for a number of years until 2018 and thus it was very pleasing to retain the title once again on home turf in 2019. Padraig would no doubt be happy to see Clonliffe once again top dogs in Dublin.

It was also very pleasing to see a Clonliffe senior women’s team in action in the Dublin’s. There was a good showing by the women led home by a Ailish Malone in 10th position and then very good runs from Alannah Cooley in 17th and likewise a positive run by Laura Tuite in 21st, Emma Cooper 32nd, Clodagh Galvin 35th and Maura Matthews 37th. Although the team placed fifth and out of the medals it was certainly a good performance from the team.

The junior men’s race incorporated the U/19 Dublin Championships. Again very strong Clonliffe performance from these young athletes, obviously the loss of Efrem to the senior team was always going to be a difficult handicap to overcome but the guys rolled up their sleeves and with Aaron Cullen fourth, Ben Guiden fifth, Stephen Cashin ninth and Alex Murray 14th the team finished second in the junior race on 32 points behind DSD on 22 however took U/19 Dublin gold (Aaron Cullen, Ben Guiden, Alex Murray and Ian McAlweeney). The other Clonliffe placings in the race where Daniel Lacey 16th, Ian McAlweeney18th, Thomas Baltazar 19th.

The junior women/U/19’s took bronze in both categories with a fine run by Sarah Bateson in seventh place leading home the team. A very much improved Hannah Browne was 12th, Abbie Sheedy 13th, Ella Brown 14th and Tess Loftus 16th. In the junior championship DSD took gold on 25 points, Templeogue silver on 36 and Clonliffe bronze on 46.

The day itself commence with the juvenile Championships kicking off with the U/9,, where Clonliffe did not have athletes running in accordance with our club ethos, the U/11’s all put in good showings in the Clonliffe colours and got the day off to a good battling start. The boys U/13 team took a fine team bronze with the girls U/13’s also putting in fine efforts. The boys U/15 squad continues to impress with Sean Cronin an excellent second place and being well backed up by Jonathan Fitzsimons, Cillian Keegan, Sam Murray, Lorcan Benjacar, Callum Maguire and Christian Finn as the team took a well deserved set of silver medals. There were fine performances also by the girls U/15’s led home in ninth place by Orla O’Sullivan and good runs also by Clodagh Nic Dhomhnaill, Hazel Kenny and Eva Guy.

On then to the U/17’s where the girls team again put in a most admirable shift, Aoife Hession was only metres of individual bronze taking a fine fifth place and followed home by young Naoise Cullen, just back from injury and running up an age, Katie Halpin, Alana Fitzsimons and Ella Cooley with the girls being rewarded with a set of team silver medals. The U/17 boys took team bronze led home by Niall Carbery in sixth, Sean Boyne eight and these two backed up very well by Alex Neuroth, John Lawrence, Owen Housley, Ronan Donohue, Eoin Byrne, Killian Sheridan and Andrew Gaffney.

In all it must be said an excellent performance by every single Clonliffe athlete today. The senior men and indeed women now look forward to the national seniors in Abbottstown in three weeks time. Also that day will be the national juniors and the even age juvenile Championships. Things are hotting up nicely!


Clonliffe athletes flocking to Abbotstown for Autumn XC Festival

There will be a substantial Clonliffe presence at the National Cross Country course in Abbotstown on Sunday for the Autumn Cross Country Festival. The event includes not only the Autumn Classic but also a qualifier for the Masters team for the British and Irish Masters Cross Country and the Dublin Juvenile Cross Country Championships. It is truly a day for all ages.

Competing in the men’s senior race over 7,500 are: Cathal Doyle, Sean Doran, Ian Guiden, Colm Rooney, Eoin Taggart and, back from the USA for the weekend, Dave Fitzmaurice. The senior women’s race (6,000m) includes Ailish Malone, Laura Tuite and Alannah Cooley. The junior men will race with the seniors but peel away after 6000, that team is Aaron Cullen, Ben Guiden, Efrem Gidey, Stephen Cashin, Ian McAweeney and Daniel Lacey.

The Dublin Juvenile (even ages) Cross Country Championships will see Clonliffe teams from U/12 to U/18 line up. Although not all teams are fully confirmed the Clonliffe representation looks like:

U/18 girls: Sarah Bateson, Ella Brown, Abbie Sheehy, Alana Fitzsimons, Katie Halpin, Ella Cooley and Aoife Hession.

U/18 boys: Callum Simpson, Alex Murray, Dermot Buckley, Niall Carbery, Alex Nuroth, John Lawrence and Owen Byrne

U/16 girls: Naoise Cullen, Aimee Daly, Amy Sheehy, Lara Gallagher, Orla O’Sullivan, Clodagh

U/16 boys: Sean Boyne , Owen Housley, Andrew Gaffney, Killian Sheeran , Jonathan Fitzsimmons, Killian Keegan, Callum Maguire, Ronan Donohoe, Adam Keogh and Sam Murray

U/14 girls: Sorcha O’Connor, Hazel Kenny , Kate Faherty, Rebecca Walsh , Sarah McDonnell, Ali Connolly

U/14 boys: Sean Cronin , Cian O’Hare , Lorcan Benjacar, Christian Finn, Devan Morrissey , Mark Goss-Keogh, Oran McGowan

U/12 girls: Rebecca Finn, Harriett Kenny, Niamh Cooper, Aishling Faherty, Hannah Walsh

U/12 boys: TBC


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