To coincide with the Dublin Clubs Juvenile Track and Field League, the Leinster Schools Track and Field Day Two took place today, Saturday, in a sunny yet blustery Morton Stadium, Santry. Fine rays of sunshine spilled over the track in the early hours of the competition, only to be followed by brief and intermittent showers. None of this threatened or hampered times of races, thankfully. On offer, once again, was a prestigious place in the All-Ireland Championships to be held in Tullamore in two week’s time.
The first scheduled event of the day was the Intermediate Boys 2000m Walk, where Greg Hosseny cruised comfortably into a qualifying position, coming home in a commendable 3rd. The circumstances were similar in the Senior Boys 3000m Walk, where Niall Norman fought hard and achieved a great 3rd place (both lads running in the red and white of St. Aidan’s CBS, Whitehall).
Moving briefly down in distance Joseph Hession felt the heat of the track in a particularly fast Intermediate Boys 800m race, however Joseph remained persistent and battled home in 6th place.
Undoubtedly the highlight of the day’s proceedings for any Black ’n’ Amber fan was Hope Saunder’s terrific triumph in the Senior Girls 3000m. Hope produced a stellar performance to lead from gun to tape, despite the miscalculation of laps, this leaving Hope undeterred as she finished six and a half laps in 8:34.5.
Around this time rain bearing clouds brushed over the sky bringing a strong, heavy breeze with it in the process. Therefore the Senior Boys struggled in the 5000m particularly coming into the final laps. However, Cathal Doyle proved yet again that he is returning to his former winning ways finishing in an outstanding 3rd place, Adam O’Brien following very close behind storming home in 5th, Adam finishing very fast indeed.
Alannah Cooley had an encouraging run in the Intermediate Girls 1500m to finish a fine 7th. Alannah, although fading slightly on the last lap, maintained her form to finish just behind the leading pack. Unfortunately, due to pre-race soreness, Sean Carrigg was forced to retire from the Intermediate Boys 1500m.
In the inter girls Pole Vault Orla Barry vaulted to a best of 2.40m, enough to take silver and secure her place in the All Ireland finals.
Finally, Megan Comber had a brilliant 2nd in the Long Jump, and following this Megan competed in the Senior Girls 4x100m relay, as was the case with Amy Connolly and Kate Howlett.
All in all another enlightening day in the eyes of young Irish Athletics, well done to all involved and indeed to the organisers. We go onwards now to the All-Irelands on the 1st of June.
Report & photos by Kevin Loftus