14 Aug 2022

Kilkenny athletics: no little joy as McEvoy makes the grade for Europe

Kilkenny athletics: no little joy as McEvoy makes the grade for Europe

Shay McEvoy made the qualifying time for the European Juniors

There was junior joy for Kilkenny’s Shay McEvoy as he made the European grade while on international athletics action at the weekend.
The Kilkenny City Harriers (KCH) athlete ran 8.22 for the 3,000m Trial race at the British Milers Club Grand Prix in Watford. This was a new personal best (PB) and over two and a half seconds inside the qualifying time for the European Juniors 3,000m time of 8.25.
Shay finished fifth overall in the race, which was won by Thomas Keen of Cambridge in a time of 8.18, which is inside the UK qualifying standard. The European Juniors will be held in Boras, Sweden in July. Shay will now await the time to be ratified by Athletics Ireland.
Another Irish man Shane Coffey of Naas was also competing in the same race and missed the qualifying time by 49 hundredths of a second. Darragh McIlhenny of Ratoath competed in the 3000m A race (where most of the seniors compete) and won in a time of 8.01. This makes for a very competitive Irish team that will be competing at the European Juniors this year.
Also competing in the A race was Eoin Everard (KCH) who is a senior. Eoin finished third in a time of 8.03, which is a new PB for him.
There was good news for more Kilkenny athletes when Athletics Ireland announced the team for the under-23 European Championships. Sophie Becker (St Joseph’s) and Donagh Mahon (Gowran) are among the athletes who are off to the Europeans, which will also be held in Sweden in July.
Becker has been doing well the last few years and has already qualified for international championships, juniors, under-23 and senior.
She was a member of the 4x400m relay team that competed in London at the World Championships. This year she qualified individually in the 400m for the European Indoors in Glasgow.
Sophie, who has run 53 seconds for 400m and continues to lower her time, has been selected for the 200m and 400m for Sweden.
Donagh Mahon did very well as a juvenile and, as an under-19 athlete, jumped 2.13 for the high jump in 2014. He quit athletics for a few years and wanted to study in America.
Despite being absent from athletics for over two years his 2.13 high jump still read as being impressive. When he applied to colleges they were still interested as they felt they could get him back into 2.13 shape again.
In 2016 he packed his bags for America and enrolled in Harvard for his four-year degree in film production. In December 2018 he jumped 2.18 in an indoor meeting in Cambridge, Massachusetts. In March this year outdoors he cleared 2.11 in a meeting in Texas. He will compete in the high jump in Sweden.
National Pairs
Most of the athletes competing in internationals this summer started their running careers as 11 or 12 year olds - some a little younger, as parts of pairs. The pairs competition caters for under-9, 10 and 11s with the championships starting at u12.
KCH and Gowran did very well over the weekend, taking home lots of medals in the pairs competitions. KCH put an emphasis on relays at this age group whereas Gowran’s specialty is the turbo javelin.
They had probably their best results, yet taking home a gold, two silver and a bronze, all from the turbo javelin in the u9 to u11 pairs.
Gold came from the turbo charged Anna Kelsey and Niamh Brennan when they beat all opposition to stand on the top of the podium.
There was some brotherly rivalry in the boys’ under-10 and 11 with Tomas and Darragh Carroll both seeking out medals in their respective age groups. Thankfully they both got silver.
Darragh paired with Evan Ryan to take silver in the boys’ under-10 event, while Tomas paired with Odhran Prendergast to take the silver in the boys’ under-11 turbo javelin. The girls’ under-9 duo of Heidi Ryan and Eimear Keating threw really well to take third.
KCH produced a gold medal-winning relay team when the boys’ under-10 team of Patrick Wall, Tom Henderson, Robert Cullen, Mikey Phelan and Ryan Farrell set the track alight with their blistering performance.
The boys, who won the county and Leinster championships this year, bagged the national medal needed to complete the golden collection.
The boys u11 with their brilliant silver medal. Robert Lacey, Paul Millea, Tiernan O’Brien,
Matius Qualgia and Eamonn Clune all ran really well and were only five-hundredths of a second behind Metro/St Bridget’s of Dublin.
KCH have done very well this year in the relays and with the National Relay championships to come on July 21 they should expect to get another medal or two.
In the girls’ under-10 Ellen Daly and Cara Kanavan paired up for the 60m and produced a sterling performance to claim silver. Another pair to take silver was Robert Lacey and Paul Millea in the boys’ under-11 600m. Robert had the fastest time of the day, with the pair not far off the gold.
The girls and boys under-12 and 13 had individual championships events. The start of the individual climb on track and field, it was the girls who came out on top this weekend. The only boys’ individual medal came from Isaac Carew of St Senan’s who was third in the boys’ under-13 high jump with a leap of 1.45.
Molly Daly (KCH) and Rachel Gardiner (Gowran) produced two medals for the girls. Molly was second in the under-12 60m while Rachel was third with a new PB in the under-13 shot-put.
Also worthy of mention is Ailbhe Steiger who was fourth in the under-12 high jump and Orla Brennan of Gowran, who was sixth in the under-12 shot-put.
Pink Rock
The county 10km road championship was run again this year in conjunction with the Pink Rock 10km.
The men’s race was won by Niall Sheehan of Gowran who just got the better of James Kelly of Castlecomer on this occasion. Gowran won the team event from Thomastown.
Sally Forristal headed a large contingent of St Joseph’s athletes who competed.
Sally has a string of road race successes this season at county, Leinster and National level. Caoilte Malone of Thomastown was second, while KCH won the team event from St Joseph’s.
Northern Masters
Joe Kelly and his brigade of Brow Rangers athletes continued their successful tour of Ireland when they travelled to Belfast for the Northern Ireland Master Championships. The trip proved worthwhile as they took home a total of nine medals, four of them gold.
Kieran Kelly won two gold in the over-35 shot and discus while Joe Kelly won a gold in the over-50 hammer. Brow Rangers have been doing really well at the throwing events and will be looking to add national success in the coming weeks.
(Club Code: BH = Barrow Harriers, BR = Brow Rangers, CC = Castlecomer, GB = Graigue Ballycallan, G = Gowran, KCH =Kilkenny City Harriers, KR = Kings River, SJ = St Joseph’s, SS=St Senan’s, TT = Thomastown)
All-Ireland Pairs and u12/13
Pairs: Relay - 1 KCH (Patrick Wall, Tom Henderson, Robert Cullen, Mikey Phelan & Ryan Farrell). Under-10 Turbo Javelin - 2 Evan Ryan & Darragh Carroll (G). Under-11 turbo javelin - 2 Thomas Carroll & Odhran Prendergast (G). Under-11 600m - 2 Robert Lacey & Paul Millea (KCH). Relay: 2 KCH (Robert Lacey, Paul Millea, Tiernan O’Brien, Matius Qualgia & Eamonn Clune)
Under-12 shot: Rian McDonald.
Under-13 high jump: 3 Isaac Carew (SS)
Pairs: Under-9 turbo javelin - 3 Heidi Ryan and Eimear Keating (G). Under-10 turbo javelin - 1 Anna Kelsey & Niamh Brennan. 60m - 2 Ellen Daly & Cara Kanavan (KCH).
Under-12 60m - 2 Molly Daly (KCH). Under-12 high jump - 4 Ailbhe Steiger (G).
Under-13 shot - 3 Rachel Gardiner (G). Under-13 high jump - 5 Eve Dunphy (SS).
Northern Ireland Masters
Over-35 shot: 1 Kieran Kelly. Over-35 discus: 1 Kieran Kelly.
Over-50 hammer: 1 Joe Kelly. Over-50 shot: 2 Joe Kelly. Over-50 discus: 2 Joe Kelly.
Over-70 hammer: 2 Murty Kelly. Over-70 discus: 2 Murty Kelly. Over-70 shot: 3 Murty Kelly.
County 10k Results
Men: 1 Niall Sheehan (G), 2 James Kelly (CC), 3 David McPherson (TT), 4 Trust Mtinsi (KCH), 5 Conor Rochford (SS), 6 Paul Deegan (G), 7 Danny Shanahan (TT), 8 Dean Rowe (G), 9 John Phelan (KCH), 10 Tom Walsh (TT), 11 Johan Muller (G), 12 Neil Shanahan (TT), 13 Vivian Fennelly (KR), 14 Gerry Walsh (TT), 15 David Lanigan (SJ), 16 Warren Deacon (GB), 17 Denis Lahart (KR), 18 Brian Walton (GB), 19 John Davis (TT), 20 Bill Carrroll (TT), 21 Martin O’Sullivan (SJ), 22 John Barron (KCH), 23 Paul Kinsella (SJ), 24 Kristian Lenz (SJ), 25 Shane Sutton (KCH), 26 Pat Hayden (G), 27 John Joe Lawlor (SJ).
Team: 1 Gowran, 2 Thomastown, 3 KCH, 4 St Joseph’s.
Women: 1 Sally Forristal (SJ), 2 Caoilte Malone (TT), 3 Jacinta Malone (KCH), 4 Cathy Millett (KCH), 5 Aine Kinsella (SS), 6 Claire Dermody (KCH), 7 Maria Griffin (SJ), 8 Katie O’Brien (G), 9 Ann Watkins (SJ), 10 Mary Doolan (SJ), 11 Emer Hickey (KR), 13 Roisin Fennelly (KCH), 14 Sinead Croke (SJ), 15 Susan Lanigan (SJ), 16 Aoife Cleary (TT), 17 Kami Lenz (SJ), 18 Shauna Power (SJ), 19 Anita Barry (SJ), 20 Gretta Kennedy (G), 21 Bridget Dobbyn (KCH), 22 Axelle Lambert (G), 23 Hanora O’Connor (SJ), 24 Patsy Foskin (SS), 25 Alma Barron (SJ), 26 Brid Lawlor (SJ), 27 Denise Doyle (SJ), 28 Ursula Murphy (SJ), 29 Helen Walsh (SJ), 30 Ellen Brennan (BH), 31 Norah Deacon (GB), 32 Susan Bolger (SJ), 33 Catherine Hennessy (SJ), 34 Katie Kinsella (SJ), 35 Tracey Malone (SJ).
Team: 1 KCH, 2 St Joseph’s A, 3 St Joseph’s B, 4 Gowran, 5 St Joseph’s C, 6 St Joseph’s D.

For more on Kilkenny People sport ready here.

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