THE weather took a turn for the better as the final round of the county road race championship series was held in mild and humid conditions in Gowran on Sunday. The excellent course, a combination of good running along with some testing hills, provided a testing challenge to the athletes.
In the women’s 8k race Ann Doyle (Gowran AC) was the clear winner, crossing the line in a time of 35.44. She had one minute and 11 seconds to spare over Maria Murphy (Kilkenny City Harriers - KCH) who finished in a time of 36.55 to grab the silver ahead of Ciara Martin (KCH), who took bronze in a time of 38.16.
Gowran also took team gold also with Martina Prendergast (42.30), Lisa Hennessy (43.40) and Annette Fitzpatrick (46.02) completing the team.
The men’s ten mile road race also produced a clearcut winner when David McPherson (KCH) powered to an impressive victory. In a gun to tape run, McPherson posted a top class time of 54.44 as he opened a gap on the field right from the off before he maintained and built on his lead throughout the race.
McPherson finished almost five minutes ahead of second placed Paul Deegan (Gowran) who also had an excellent sub 60 minute run. Val Gunner (Gowran) was the bronze medallist with a finishing time of 61 minutes.
The Gowran ‘A’ team of Paul Deegan (2), Val Gunner (3), Lyndon Barcoe (4) and Gary Farrell (5) won gold with Gowran ‘B’ team of Muiris Bric (6), Derek Deevey (8), Brendan Kavanagh (9) and Mick Walsh (10) taking silver. Other athletes who competed were Eoin Molloy (KCH), Willie McTiernan (KCH) and Gerry Fogarty (Gowran).
Post-race refreshments, bananas, apples, oranges and drinks were provided by Gary Farrell of The Aubergine.
One of the sporting highlights on the school calendar drew hundreds of young runners to the Castle Park for the annual schools cross-country championships.
This year’s event, held in the wonderful setting of the grounds of Kilkenny Castle, proved a resounding success as 400 children, decked out in their school colours, cheered on their respective teams from fourth, fifth and sixth classes. Thanks to the great co-operative work of the transition year students from St Kieran’s College everything moved speedily along.
From the start of the first race (fourth class girls), until the presentation of the medals the cheering was relentless. The running was top quality and extremely competitive, with the athletes giving their all in their endeavour to gain points for the perpetual shields.
When the scores were tallied it was Gael Scoil Osrai who won the Kilkenny City Harriers Shield for best Girls’ School with 16 points. They finished just four points ahead of St Canice’s and St John of God, both sharing second place with 12 points each.
St Canice’s, with 24 points from the boys’ races, were the winners of the Boys’ Shield. Kilkenny CBS were second with Urlingford third.
Ms Jackie Kealy, representing St Canice’s Kilkenny Credit Union, presented the Credit Union Shield for the best overall school to St Canice’s School who finished the day with a grand total of 36 points, some 12 points ahead of their nearest rivals Gael Scoil Osrai. Enda Keane, Kilkenny City Harriers, presented the medals to the individual and team winners.
Fourth Class Girls - 1 Rachel Butler, Urlingford; 2 Sharon Fogarty, Gael Scoil; 3 Jess Kelly, Model School. Fourth Class Boys - 1 Eoin Guilfoyle, Gael Scoil; 2 Cillian Fitzpatrick, Model School; 3 Luke Morrissey, St Canice’s.
Fifth Class Girls - 1 Rebecca Keane, Gael Scoil; 2 Ella Richardson, Gael Scoil; 3 Ruth Kent, St Canice’s. Fifth Class Boys - 1 Jack Hickey, Urlingford; 2 Colm Murphy, Gael Scoil; 3 Gavin Blanchfield, St Patrick’s.
Sixth Class Girls - 1 Lauren Gleeson, Presentation; 2 Annie O’Connor, St Canice’s; 3 Sarah Jane McCormack, Urlingford. Sixth Class Boys - 1 John Nolan, Gael Scoil; 2 Michael Butler, CBS; 3 Liam Grant, Urlingford.
Fourth Class Girls - 1 Gael Scoil Osrai, 2 Kilkenny School Project, 3 St John of God. Fourth Class Boys - 1 St Canice’s, 2 Kilkenny CBS, 3 Gael Scoil Osrai.
Fifth Class Girls - 1 Gael Scoil Osrai, 2 Presentation, 3 St Canice’s. Fifth Class Boys - 1 St Patrick’s, 2 Urlingford, 3 St Canice’s.
Sixth Class Girls - 1 St John of God, 2 St Canice’s, 3 Gael Scoil Osrai. Sixth Class Boys - 1 St Canice’s, 2 Kilkenny CBS, 3 St Canice’s.
Sunday - County cross-country championships (even ages under-8 to under-18 and over-40s), Ballycurran Cross, 11am.
Sunday, October 16 - County cross-country championships (uneven ages under-7 to under-19 and over-45s), Castlecomer 11am.