Athletics: Gleeson’s glorious day at Games

IT MIGHT HAVE been a small group of athletes that travelled to the Community Games finals in Athlone, but the Kilkenny contingent produced some big results.

IT MIGHT HAVE been a small group of athletes that travelled to the Community Games finals in Athlone, but the Kilkenny contingent produced some big results.

Shane McGeary and Lauren Gleeson from the St John’s area represented the county in their respective long jump competitions. Shane gave his usual good performance but Lauren excelled, winning the under-14 event. Most of Lauren’s jumps were beyond the five-metre mark, including one of 5.34m which was a new personal best (PB).

Callan Byrne (Aghaviller) ran well in the 100m under-16 heats to qualify for the semi-finals. Johnnie Collins, Dicksboro, had a good run in the hurdles.

Aoibhe O’Shea (Ballingarry) and Annie O’Connor (Dicksboro) were both involved the under-14 800m event. Each finished second in their respective semi-finals, lining up against each other in the final. Aoibhe put in a superb run to take first place while setting herself a new PB of 2 mins 19 secs. Annie, who is still young enough to compete at under-14 level again in 2013, finished sixth.

Season starts

September is the time of the year when the focus switches from track and field to cross-country. The new season will open in Kilkenny with the St Senan’s open races, which will be held in Kilmacow on Sunday, September 30.

The juvenile and masters cross-country championships will be held in October with the novice, intermediate and senior championships taking place later in the year. For juveniles there will be championship races from under-11 to under-19 categories.

Cross-country running is held over natural terrain across a variety of distances depending on the age group and category. For senior athletes the distances vary from 4km up to 10km. It is both an individual and team event, presenting a different challenge to that of running on the roads.

Athletes interested in cross-country running are invited to contact their local clubs and sign up for the forthcoming season. Contact details and training information for athletic clubs can be found on kilkennyathletics.net.

Road run

Peter Duggan (St Joseph’s AC) had a fine run in the Ardmore five mile race recently. He finished sixth overall and was first in the M40 category. The result means that Peter finished fifth overall and was the top M40 athlete in the Ger Wyley Summer Series. This was a great achievement for an athlete who modestly claims in his own words that he is “just trying to keep fit”.

The Tinryland Autumn League, a series of three road races, will start this evening (Wednesday). The club welcomes athletes of all grades, from elite to participation. There will be prizes for those who complete all stages.

Further information is available from Sean Doyle, tel 087-2509520.

Fixtures

Today (Wednesday): Tinryland Autumn Road League, 7pm.

September 12/19: Tinryland Autumn Road League, 7pm.

September 23: County road championships (Men 10 miles, Women 5 miles), 11am.

September 30: St Senan’s Open cross-country, Kilmacow Sports Complex.