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25 May 2022

Athletics- County awards laud a galaxy of stars

Athletics- County awards laud a galaxy of stars

Sophie Jackman (Trinity, right) set a new 800m record for Trinity College at the Intervarsities.

The Kilkenny County Board have announced the 2021 county athletics star awards.

These awards honour the achievements of athletes across the county. Included in this year’s list are one-off awards honouring those officials who contributed so much to their respective clubs during the covid pandemic.

The recipients are:

County Star Awards

International: Cliodhna Manning (Kilkenny City Harriers). Cliodhna was second in the All-Ireland Senior 400m, from which her selection on the Olympic 4x400m relay team was secured.

International: Aoibhe Richardson (KCH). Aoife was fourth in the National Senior Cross-Country and was selected for the Irish senior women’s team to compete in the European Cross-Country.

Senior Cross-Country: Bronagh Kearns (St Senan’s). Bronagh was fifth in the National Senior 1,500m, first in the Leinster Novice and 14th in her first ever All-Ireland Cross-Country.

Senior Track and Field: Emma Kelly (Brow Rangers). Emma won large selection of Leinster medals across shot, discus, and weight for distance. She also secured a silver in the National under-23 weight for distance.

Senior Road: James Morrissey (Castlecomer). An adventurer extraordinaire, James has competed in the Greenland marathon and is currently running across the Sahara Desert.

Masters: Mary Breen (St Joseph’s). Mary has a range of Leinster and All-Ireland masters medals for the throwing events.

Walks: Maggie O’Connor (St Joseph’s). A national silver medal winner in the women’s walk, Maggie has also competed at the European Master Indoors and secured silver as part of Team Ireland in race walking.

Junior: Cathal O’Reilly (KCH). A fifth place finish in the National Junior Cross Country secured Cathal’s selection for the European Junior Cross-Country team and the Celtic International.

Juvenile Track and Field: Cathal O’Reilly (KCH). Cathal was first in the 3,000m, second in the steeplechase and third in the 1,500m at the national under-19 track and field championships.

Juvenile Cross-Country: Billy Coogan (Gowran). Billy was seventh in the All-Ireland Cross-Country under-18 and was ninth in the All-Ireland under-17 cross-country. Billy was also first in the under-17 steeplechase and secured a schools international selection.

Special Recognition: Mary Fitzgerald (Gowran). Mary competed at the Para Olympics in the shot and finished sixth .

Club Recognition Awards

St Senan’s: Perri Williams

KCH: May Hutt

St Joseph’s: Susan Lanigan

Kings River: John Kennedy

Brow Rangers: Joe and Murty Kelly

Gowran: Michelle Ryan

Castlecomer: The club leaders.

Irish University Track and Field

The Irish University Track and Field (IUAA) kickstarted the track and field season last weekend. Held at the IT Carlow facilities, this event offered a full range of track and field events, with plenty of high calibre competition throughout the two days of competition.

Sophie Jackman (St Senan’s) representing Trinity College, finished second in the 800m and in doing so set a new Trinity College 800m record.

The race was won by Sara Lane, who was just a few hundredths of a second ahead of Sophie. It was a very similar finish to the indoor competition, where a photo finish had to separate the two athletes.

Sophie was also on the Trinity College 4x400m relay team that finished second behind DCU. This is the first time since the 1990s that Trinity has made the top three in this event.

Another athlete who secured silver was Shane Power. Shane, competing for DCU, finished in second place in the pole vault in what will be his final year of eligibility for the IUAA championships. Over the years Shane has done extraordinarily well at this competition and has been a major contributor to the DCU points accumulation.

In the combined events, Jordan Knight (St Joseph’s) represented DCU as he finished in third place. Jordan is no stranger to the combined events, having competed at this event at juvenile level and secured several victories.

Ciara Deely (KCH) competed in the 400m for DCU finishing in sixth place. She also raced in the hurdles, one of the events she was so good at during her juvenile year. She finished fourth in 67 seconds.

Ciara has, in the past, represented Ireland at the world juniors over 400m. Last year she stepped up to the 800m for the first time, making her mark on the distance. An athlete with enormous talent she was in her juvenile days a very talented multi eventer, winning several All-Ireland titles.

Emma Kelly (Brow Rangers) was competing for UL and finished ninth in the discus and seventh in the weight for distance. Another member of the Kelly family from Coon, Emma is flying that Brow Rangers flag high in UL.

St Senan’s Open

St Senan’s AC open track and field will be held on Easter Monday with a start time of 1pm.

This annual event covers sprints, middle distance, relays, throws, jumps and race walking for all ages from under-9 to juniors, seniors and masters.

The event is held at the St Senan’s AC track in the Kilmacow Sports Complex. As usual it promises to attract a large crowd, thus ensuring some good competitive races and field event competitions

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