A great day for Clonliffe Harriers in the Lions Den today. The senior men and women took double gold and the junior women took silver at the Dublin Cross Country Championships in St. Anne`s Park, Raheny.
The performance of the senior women was exceptional in taking an unexpected team title. The star of the team today was undoubtedly Emer O`Brien who ran out of her skin in leading the team home in 6th place with Eleanor Alexander, battling a head cold, only a place or two behind her in 9th, a solid run today from Ailish Malone 11th and super run by Marie Byrne 21st and Bernadette Kiernan 22nd the girls took a superb Dublin team title. This was the first senior title by the women for more than a decade.
The senior men were expected, in fairness, to push hard for the Dublin title and win they did, but not without drama, things looked very bright after two laps, however, drama as Colm Rooney went over on his ankle and pulled ashore leaving the guys in a right battle with Raheny. Stephen Scullion was in a great race long battle for the individual title win Donore`s John Travers in the end Travers was the faster with Scullion 2nd. Brian MacMahon ran a particularly strong race and was rewarded with 3rd place. Next in for Clonliffe in 6th place in a “man of the match” performance was Jamie Rossister with his best run since returning from injury and the foundations were set. Edgars Sumkis, 3rd in the Novice at the same venue a couple of weeks back, put in a very fine shift to come in next in 9th, followed in 17th by Tudor Mircea and 18th Eoin Pierce completing the scoring six. Good runs also by Declan Fahy, Tom Sherlock and Dave Brady. the men matching their female counterparts to take the Dublin title.
A piece of athletics history perhaps: father and daughter captains of Dublin cross country winning teams?
Medals also in the junior womens`s race. First off the junior women over 4,000. Roisin Leahy leading the girls home in 4th place with Hope Saunders a fantastic 5th, and 3rd U/18, and then the two Lauras, Tuite 9th and Brennan 10th with Sally Ahern 20th providing solid back up to claim team silver.
The junior men lead in by Cathal Doyle (9th), Josh Stubbs (12th), both also U/18, next in was Eoin Taggart (16th), Brian Flanagan (23rd), Ross Kearney (30th), Niall Norman (31st)Mario Bowden (47th) and Paul Courtney (49th), all bar Eoin Taggart are also U/18, in the end, did not medal. There was a mix up in original results with the team originally being awarded 2nd but subsequently corrected to 4th. There was, however, a silver lining as the U/18 guys took silver.