Aoibhe Richardson (KCH) won the VHI women's mini marathon Picture: Sam Barnes/Sportsfile
There was plenty of action in this past week for Kilkenny athletes. On Friday it was the final day of the county championships, featuring the senior events.
Saturday it was time for the All-Ireland schools track and field and Sunday it was the turn of the Leinster Masters championships.
Then there was also the VHI mini marathon in Dublin. Overall it was a busy weekend of fantastic competition.
With some national champions toppled, some exciting races and a frenzy of fine performances, Kilkenny athletes from across the county took home six medals. Down the field there were some personal bests, season bests and simply put – great performances.
St Senan’s AC were having nothing but gold all day. They accumulated three gold medals and two top five placings.
Competing with Good Council, New Ross, Peter McDonald (St Senan’s AC) secured the first medal of the day – a gold in the junior boys javelin.
This was not Peter’s first national gold. He managed a 5-metre PB with over 5 meters to spare over his nearest opponent.
Throwing 48.7m, this is by all accounts a very notable performance, one that hopefully will carry him into a strong season.
Annie McEvoy (KCH), competing for Loreto secondary school, Kilkenny was in the 3,000m track. Competing against double European youth champion, Sarah Healy (Blackrock AC) was always going to be tough. From the gun, Sarah ran her own race with the field eventually coming home some 200m behind.
Annie was part of this group and managed to maintain her third place for the final two laps, recording 10.35 in the process.
Tadgh Connolly secured the first of his two gold medals with a new PB in the junior discus. Throwing 43.71m he was 3.5 meters ahead of his nearest opponent.
An hour later he stepped on to the track with the daunting task of competing in the 1500m. No one knew what Tadgh could produce or was capable of.
He had been ill the week before and could not race the counties as intended. Staying behind the leading pack for the opeening three laps, he ran cautiously, leaving St Kieran’s College man Tom Lodge (KCH), Myles Hewlett (Wexford) and Jack McCauseland (Belfast) to dictate the pace and exchange turns at leading.
With 400m to go Myles Hewlett hit the front. With 250m to go Tom Lodge decided to have a go.
With 200m to go Connolly was making his move. Tadgh came storming down the home straight, creating a gap of two seconds between himself and Myles Hewlett to take the title.
Hannah Kehoe (Gowran), competing for the Loreto, scored an easy victory in the Leinster championships over Sophie Quinn of Ratoath. However, she was not allowed create a gap on this occasion.
For the opening three laps the group was tightly knit with Hannah trying to make several breaks. Sophie pulled her in each time.
At the bell it was Hannah and Sophie locked together with the rest of the field 10 meters behind. Sophie made a break at 300m to go and Hannah got up all the energy she could muster. By the 200m mark she was running out of steam and looked like she was going to have to settle for second place.
That ankle injury that bothered her for the last few weeks was taking its toil. In the end she hung on for third place.
Shay McEvoy was not going to be the twin without a medal. He came with his eye on the gold in the senior boys 1500m.
He led for much of the race and looked strong as he retained his lead with the sound of the bell. With 250m to go Darragh McIlhenny made a move.
The blue light figure of McIlhenny powered down the back straight, making 10 meters by the 180m mark. Shay made a small clawback by the 120m mark but McIlhenny was ready and surged again.
Shay had to settle for second place but he was well pleased with his performance.
A somewhat disappointingly small crowd turned out for the county senior championship, with numbers down on last year.
There were, however, some great performances. KCH won the overall cup for the best senior club in the county with Gowran second and Brow Rangers third.
It is a great sign when some of the international athletes return to pay homage to their grass roots in county athletics.
Peter Lynch competed in the 5,000m, Ciara Deely in the 200m and Cliodhna Manning in the rather unusual choice of shot putt.
Senior athletics can be encouraged by their participation and it will hopefully see a return to the exciting and quality championships that the county experienced in the past.
Congratulations to all of the athletes who competed across all events and from the various clubs. You can fly your flags high.
Leinster senior and Masters
Yet another event over the weekend saw Kilkenny athletes on the move.
On Sunday in Tullamore, the Leinster senior and Masters championshipos were held. Athletes from St Joseph’s AC and Brow Rangers flew the Kilkenny flag and took home a lot of medals.
Brow Rangers, famous for their throwing prowess, took home 19 medals with St Joseph’s claiming 17 medals.
In the senior events Brow had three gold in the men’s with John Joe Kelly taking the shot putt, Ciaran Coady winning the hammer (in a new PB) and Sean Maher stealing the show in the weight for distance.
Patrick Darcy captured three medals; a silver in the shot and a bronze in both the weight for distance and hammer.
Meanwhile, in the ladies senior Emma Kelly won the discus with both Emma and Aoife Coady amassing four medals between them.
It was a clean sweep in the masters over 45 for Joe Kelly when he won the shot, discus, hammer and weight for distance, while his dad, Murty, who is determined never to give up athletics in appears, took two medals in the over 65 section.
The senior pole vault competition was one of the most exciting of the day.
Shane Power and Matthew Callinan were neck and neck the whole way up. Both cleared 4m very easily and just as easily cleared 4m 10.
Shane cleared 4.20, much to his joy, as he had now equalled his PB. At 4.30 he had surpassed his PB by 10cm.
But he was still embroiled in a battle for the top honours with Callinan, who had also cleared. By 4.35 both athletes were still going and again both cleared the distance.
They were now going for the record of 4.46m. This, however, halted their progress and theye had to settle for a day’s and lifetime best of 4.35m.
On countback the victory went to Matthew Callinan with Shane Power of St Joseph’s second.
Austin Lee (St Joseph’s) won everything around him, taking gold in the shot, discus, hammer and weight for distance.
He settled for third in the javelin when the strong wind just did not work in his favour. His sister Verona (Fenlon) was also having a superb day when she won the shot, discus and weight for distance.
She was also second in the hammer and third in the javelin.
Mary Breen increased the medal haul for the southern club when she won the hammer, discus and shot in the over 55 section.
The race walkers Brid Lawlor and John Joe Lawlor won their events.
Kings River participated in their first ever Leinster championships when John Barron attempted the long jump and triple jump.
While he did not medal in either, it will be a bit of encouragement for his clubmates in the near future.
Ciara Deely made it a dual outing when she not only competed in her signature event, the 400m, but she also once more attempted her early juvenile days favourite event the hurdles. This was Ciara’s second outing this season over the 400m hurdles slightly longer than the short hurdles that gave her many a gold medal in her juvenile days.
Clocking a very respectable 62.56 in windy conditions, this will give her encouragement to progress further. It was a good race with the Clonliffe pair of Leah Bergin and Lauren Carr pushing her all the way.
Her 400m time was another 57 second affair – with 57.50.
Lauren Dermody (Castlecomer) won the senior ladies 3,000m in 10.27, the wind no doubt impacting this 7.5 lap race considerably.
Clubmate James Kelly had to work hard in the 5,000m race when he pushed the pace in the final 150m to win over Ciaran Crother of Ratoath.
Women’s Mini Marathon
Aoibhe Richardson (KCH) celebrated the start of her summer home in Ireland with a great win in the VHI 10km mini marathon in Dublin.
With three of the Richardsons’ taking part, mother Niamh and sister Grace as well, it was a great family occasion.
Clocking 34.35 in windy conditions Aoibhe was pleased with her comfortable win.
All-Ireland schools junior:
Girls - 1500m 3 Hannah Kehoe (Gowran), Shot Putt 8 Tara McGuire (KCH).
Boys - javelin 1 Peter McDonald (St Senan’s), discus 1 Tadgh Connolly (St Senan’s), 1500m 1 Tadgh Connolly (St Senan’s) 4 Tom Lodge (KCH).
Inter girls - 1500m 5 Fiona Dillon (Thomastown), HJ 7 Jennifer Leahy (KCH).
Boys - 400m 4 Jordan Knight (St Joseph’s).
Senior girls - 800m 5 Sophie Jackman (St Senan’s), 1500m 4 Tara Ramsawmy (St Senan’s), 3000m 3 Annie McEvoy (KCH), hammer 7 Kate Cullen (Brow Rangers).
Boys - 1500m 2 Shay McEvoy (KCH), HJ 4 Rory McGabhann (KCH).
Leinster seniors and Masters, men’s senior - shot 1 John Joe Kelly (BR), 2 Patrick Darcy (BR), 3 Adam Kelly (BR), Wgt for distance - 1 Sean Maher (BR), 3 Patrick Darcy (BR), hammer, 1 Ciaran Coady 3 Patrick Darcy (BR), pole vault, 2 Shane Power (SJ), 5000m 1 James Kelly (CC)
Senior ladies discus - 1 Emma Kelly (BR), 3 Aoife Coady (BR), shot, 2 Emma Kelly (BR), hammer, 3 Aoife Coady (BR), 400m 1 Ciara Deely (KCH), 400m hurdles 1 Ciara Deely (KCH), 3000m 1 Lauren Dearmody (CC).
Masters men over 35 shot, 1 Austin Lee (SJ), hammer 1 Austin Lee (SJ), discus, 1 Austin Lee (SJ), weight for distance, 1 Austin Lee (SJ), javelin 3 Austin Lee (SJ).
Over 45 hammer, 1 Joe Kelly (BR), shot, 1 Joe Kelly (BR), discus, 1 Joe Kelly (BR), weight for distance, 1 Joe Kelly (BR), race walk, 1 John Joe Lawlor (SJ).
Over 70 hammer 1 shot Murty Kelly (BR), discus 1 Murty Kelly (BR), 2 Murty Kelly (BR), weight for distance, 3 Murty Kelly (BR)
Masters ladies over 45 shot, 1 Verona Fenlon (SJ), discus 1, Verona Fenlon (SJ), weight for distance, 1 Verona Fenlon (SJ), hammer 2 Verona Fenlon (SJ), javelin 3 Verona Fenlon (SJ).
Over55 shot 1 Mary Breen (SJ), hammer 1 Mary Breen (SJ), weight for distance 1 Mary Breen (SJ), javelin 3 Mary Breen (SJ).
Race walk 1 Brid Lawlor (SJ
County seniors track
Ladies 100m h, 1 Caitriona Corr (G), 2 Kate Millea (KCH).
Men 100m h, 1 Johan Muller (G), 2 John Leamy (G) 3 Adrian Cunningham (G).
Ladies 200m junior 1 Ciara Deely (KCH), 2 Eve O'Dwyer (G).
Senior 1 Caitriona Corr (G), 2 Kate Millea (KCH), 3 Caitriona Muldowney (KCH).
Men 200m senior, 1 Jack Manning (G), 2 Tom Corrigan (G), 3 John O'Donnell (KCH).
Men over 45 1 John Barron (KR), 2 John Leamy (G), 3 Tony Lauhoff (KCH).
Men over 50 1 John Phelan (KCH), 2 Denis Bergin (KCH).
Men over 55 1 Paul Earley (KCH).
Men over 60 1 Edwin Harpur (KCH).
Men over 65 1 Mick Walsh (G).
Men walk 1500m senior 1 John Joe Lawlor (SJ), 2 Simon O'Dwyer (G) 3 Tom Corrigan (G).
Ladies 400m h junior 1 Eve O'Dwyer (G).
Men 400m h senior 1 Johan Muller (G), 2 Tom Corrigan (G) 3 John Leamy (G).
Ladies 4x100m senior 1 KCH , 2 Gowran, 3 KCH.
Men 4x400m senior 1 KCH, 2 Gowran, 3 King's River.
Ladies 4x400m senior 1 KCH, 2 Gowran, 3 KCH.
Men 4x100m senior 1 KCH, 2 Gowran, 3 King’s River.
Ladies 100m junior 1 Eve O'Dwyer (G), 2 Emma Kelly (BR).
Novice 1 Caitriona Muldowney (KCH), 2 Ri-Jan Dooley (KR), 3 Lisa Brennan (KCH).
Senior 1 Caitriona Corr (G) 2 Kate Millea (KCH), 3 Aoife Coady (BR).
Men 100m senior 1 Eamon O'Connor (KCH), 2 Tom Corrigan (G), 3 John O'Donnell (KCH).
Men over 35 1 John Barron (KR), 2 John Leamy (G). 3 Graham Bourne (KCH).
Men over 50 1 John Phelan (KCH), 2 Conor Mac Gabhann (KCH), 3 Denis Bergin (KCH).
Novice 1 Padraig Ruane (KCH), 2 Derek McLoughlin (KR), 3 Adrian Cunningham (G).
Men 5000m senior 1 Peter Lynch (KCH), 2 Niall Sheehan (G) 3 James Kelly (CC).
Men over 35 1 Conor Bolger (KCH), 2 Paul Deegan (G), 3 Graham Bourne (KCH).
Field ladies long jump junior 1 Eve O'Dwyer (G), 2 Emma Kelly (BR).
Senior 1 Caitriona Corr (G), 2 Aoife Coady (BR), 3 Joya Burns (KCH).
Men long jump senior 1 Adam Kelly (BR), 2 John Barron (KR), 3 John O'Donnell (KCH).
Over 45 1 Simon O'Dwyer (G), 2 Denis Lahart (KR), 3 Decaln Walsh (KCH).
Overe 50 1 John Phelan (KCH), 2 Edwin Harpur (KCH), 3 Paul Earley (KCH).
Men: Triple Jump: Senior 1 Ciaran Coady (BR), 2 Leonard O'Farrell (KR), 3 Simon O'Dwyer (G)
Ladies: Shot Putt: Junior 1 Emma Kelly (BR), 2 Eve O'Dwyer (G)
Senior 1 Cliodhna Manning (KCH) 2 Verena Fenlon (SJ), 3 Caitriona Corr (G)
Men shot putt junior 1 Andrew Buggy (BR), senior 1 Jack Manning (KCH), 2 Patrick Darcy (BR), 3 Adam Kelly (BR).
Over 45 1 Joe Kelly (BR), 2 John Leamy (G), 3 Declan Walsh (KCH).
Over 50 1 Murty Kelly (BR), 2 John Phelan (KCH), 3 Edwin Harpur (KCH).
Ladies weight for distance junior 1 Emma Kelly (BR), 2 Eve O'Dwyer (G).
Senior 1 Verena Fenlon (SJ), 2 Aoife Coady (BR), 3 Mary Breen (SJ).
Men weight for distance junior 1 Andrew Buggy (BR).
Senior 1 Patrick Darcy (BR), 2 Jack Manning (KCH), 3 Austin Lee (SJ).
Overe 50 1 Joe Kelly (BR), 2 Murty Kelly (BR), 3 John Phelan (KCH).
For more on Kilkenny People sport read here.
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