Kevin Loftus Reports: In the beautiful, lush surroundings of Ardgillan Castle the opening meet of the Dublin County Board Cross Country League took place. Though wind-swept for the majority of the proceedings; the weather was next to ideal with but one scattered shower. Both the Mourne Mountains and the misty sea were spectacles to behold on such a calm day; resulting in close to perfect conditions for both athletes and spectators, both equally weary of the dense clouds that loomed overhead.
In what was a fantastic opening to a long and winding season that lies ahead, there were too many stand out and note worthy performances of the day rendering a report of such nature too arduous; even for the likes of this budding reporter. In any event, each and every harrier is to be commended for their dedication and commitment which was unwavering throughout the course of every race, which impressed coaches most highly. Both seasoned and relatively new athletes enjoyed a terrific morning in the parklands; adding another race to their collection; both setting new personal bests and improving on results from pervious years.
It is a tremendous achievement by all of our harriers who participated today to know that they have given every last inch of their stride to their race, resting safe in the knowledge that they have proven their worth. Their determination and effort is greatly appreciated by their club. It is wonderful to note too that they conduct themselves so well, both on and off the race course with an air of professionalism and respect. The support of athletes for their fellow harriers is always an uplifting sight to see, and from what was seen today we are fully prepared mentally to go all the way to the National Championships; only a mere eight weeks away for some.
For those members who are new to the club and who may have stumbled their way through their race today, it is of utmost importance that you take positive thoughts with you away from this today, that you have competed and finished in your first ever Cross Country race. To those more experienced and learned in the field an equally celebratory well done to you. Above all else the enjoyment by all of today’s races was all any of the coaches and mentors could have asked for.
We now take this time to thank the coaches and parents of athletes who so admirably travelled from afar to the extremities of the county to support and to guide. The devotion of all our club members makes the club what it is and sets us apart with our sense of community from other clubs. So to conclude, a massive well done and thank you to all who participated, officiated and supported at today’s event; and now let us continue to make strides on this remarkable success in the days and weeks to come.