The final Leinster qualifier took place early this afternoon at DCU`s sports grounds, St. Claires, Ballymun Road with places on the start line for the Leinsters in Santry next Wednesday at stake. The club had a large number of athletes in action for their schools and it`s pleasing to report on some excellent showings by the boys and girls. It was thankfully another lovely late Winter day the rain of previous days was clear and although the going was soft in places it held up superby. Our first athletes in action were two of our girls in the minor race both ran very well indeed in their first North Leinsters with Alanah Cooley making safe passage to next week`s race finshing a very credible 12th with Amy McGrath not far off qualification in 19th place. Next up was Laura Tuite in the Junior race with a very solid performace to finish 11th and also make it through to the Leinsters.
In the minor boys race there was a good number of young Harriers. Once again Joseph Hession had a very good run for St. Aidans always well up and finshing an impressive 5th. The every improving Sean Carrig was 11th with new Clonliffe Harrier Shane Merrigan not far off in 15th. Our other recent addition Gregory Hossenny finished a battling 46th in a very big field. The St. Aidans boys took team honors.
The junior boys race featured a lot of talented Clonliffe boys. After a steady start Cathal Doyle moved on very well on the 2nd 1500m lap to move from 5th to 2nd place finisher. Adam O`Brien was also impressive in 3rd place with a very fast final 600 while David O`Hanlon had one of his best runs to date in 7th. Not far off David was the St. Aidans man of the race the one shoed Brian Flanagan 13th. It was great to see these three Aidans lads work so well together, the three of them were tightly bunched until the final quater of the race. Great also to see Paddy O`Hanlon working his was back to fitness with a battling 14th and the reward of a place on the line next week. Great runs also by the St. Aidans clad Alex Gibbons 28th and Philip Keenan 38th. The St. Aidans lads placing 2nd and getting through to the Leinsters.
In the Inter boys race Aaron O`Hanlon was a class apart looking relaxed and controlled in taking a comfortable win. A good solid run also by Liam Ashton, after a serious injury scare last weekend in 6th with Craig McCourt 24th.
Roisin Leahy continues to get better and better. In the senior race she ran a very mature race to take 3rd place, just reward for the hard work she`s being putting in under the guidance of Gerry Carr.
Ian Guiden made a welcome return to racing after injury and came through his first race in two months without a hitch. After a couple of slow opening laps he injected pace to pull away and record a comfortable win. Conor King had a good run also in 10th with Johnny Bradley Ward 11th. Second place for the St. Aidans seniors and a starting berth next Wednesday. A mention also of Thomas Bradley who was 10th in the open race.
So next Wednesday the Leinster Schools in Santry Demesne, hosted by Clonliffe, it will be a good one.