Coca Cola Rás na hÉireann Cross Country, Sunday February 16th 2014
Results Senior Men Senior Ladies
Girls U9, Girls U11, Girls U13, Girls U15, Girls U17, Boys U9, Boys U11, Boys U13, Boys U15, Boys U17
The 44th Rás na hÉireann, the Coca Cola Rás na hÉireann was hosted once again by Dunleer Athletic Club at the now famous cross country course at the Battle of the Boyne site in Oldbridge, Drogheda. Clubs from Louth, Meath, Dublin, Offaly, Kildare, Carlow, Monaghan and Cavan participated in the event amid sunshine and a friendly sporting atmosphere. The Club was delighted to receive lavish praise on their organisation and were quick to thank the OPW for their assistance in providing such a top class venue to host such a wonderful cross country event for the whole family. The day started with the Special Olympics category race and there was some great running done by the participants and great fun was had by all. The Larry Mc Guill 3k provided a fitting end to this feast of athletics.
There was Polish dominance in the senior men's 6km Coca Cola Rás na hÉireann on Sunday 16th February as Krzysztof Zebrowski who flew in from Warsaw on Saturday finished in first place in 18.40, with his compatriot Marek Skorupa in second place in 19.07, well ahead of first Irish finisher Conor Duffy from Glaslough Harriers in 19.47. Krzysztof was presented with the Larry Mc Guill Cup as the Winner of Rás na hÉireann 2014 by Bernadette Mc Guill, wife of the late Larry Mc Guill.
David Scanlon (Rathfarnham AC) was 4th in 20.35, while first local man home was Paul Smith 5th (Drogheda & District) in 20.53. First Dunleer AC man home was Aonghus Rooney in 14th place in 22.20. Aonghus Rooney received the Louis Duffin Cup, the prize for the first Dunleer AC man home in the Rás, presented by Andrew Duffin and his daughter Muireann Duffin.
The senior ladies 4km race was very exciting with a host of local ladies battling for honours, but it was Brothers Pearse runner Michelle Mc Gee who stole the show with a fine win in 13.30. Kate O Neill, a great supporter of Rás na hÉíreann these past few years finished in 2nd place in 14.39, with junior lady Emer Fitzpatrick DSD 3rd in 15.07. Local lady Nicola Welsh (Boyne AC) was first home for the Boyne side in 4th place in 15.43. Dunleer AC's first lady home in 11th place was Karen Costello showing her brilliant return to form, and led her team home to bronze.
Rás na hÉireann provides Dunleer AC with an opportunity to honour past greats, and it was with great pleasure that the Club honoured the memories of Noel Mc Guill and Sandra Floyd in the team categories. Noel died tragically in a cycling accident in Rás Tailteann 41 years ago. The Noel Mc Guill memorial cup was presented by Noel's brother Barney Mc Guill to the victorious Drogheda & District men's team who won on 40 points. Dunleer AC were 2nd on 89 points, while North East Runners were 3rd on 99 points. Sandra Floyd was a native of Tullyallen who died tragically in a car crash as a teenager. Sandra's sister Ann presented the Sandra Floyd Cup to the winning team Dundrum South Dublin who won the team section with 46 points ahead of Drogheda & District 2nd on 56 points and Dunleer AC 3rd on 75 points.
In the juvenile section, Dunleer AC showed both individual talent and team work at the Coca Cola Rás na hÉireann 2014. The juvenile programme had a golden start with the host Club Dunleer AC providing the winners of the first three races, with Erinn Leavy winning the girls under 9, Matthew Fitzpatrick winning the boys under 9 and Grace Fitzpatrick winning the girls under 11. The boys under 13 had a Dunleer AC winner in Kian Leavy, while in the boys under 15, Dunleer AC winner, the unstoppable Jack Mc Cullough ran to a clear victory.
These amazing youngsters were joined by their Club mates on the podium when the first 6 athletes were honoured with an individual Rás na hÉireann medal. In the girls under 9 race, Evie Gallen was 2nd and Lucy Sheridan was third, while Vanessa Brennan took 6th place. Team mates Leah Cunningham, Rachael Woods, Maya Rose Brennan and Zara Sweeney ran the race of their 7 and 8 year old lives to help Dunleer to first and 3rd teams!
The boys under 9 was very exciting with the diminutive veteran of cross country Matthew Fitzpatrick emerging the winner after a very close finish. Matthew's team mates ran a super 800m to get 2nd place in the team section, with Ciaran Russell in 9th, Donal Quinn 20th, Conn Bonar 27th, Dimitri Novickis 33rd, Oisín Mc Evoy 34th, Lorcan Butler 36th, Se Dinner Davies 37th, Eoin Holmes 38th, James Quinn 44th, Owain Dinner Davies 45th, Conor Doheny 46th and Jack Taggart 47th.
In the boys under 11 race, Patrick Farrell received an individual medal for a fine 5th place, leading his team home to bronze, with James Russell in 7th, Oisín Cheshire in 16th, Feargal Quinn 19th, Seán Mc Evoy 24th, Fionnan Bonar 42nd and Benny Casey 45th.
The Dunleer AC girls under 15 were delighted to receive team silver on 49 points, behind winners Na Fianna on 28 points and ahead of Tullamore Harriers on 57 points. Seaghna Campbell was first Dunleer AC girl home in 5th place, with Katie Mathews in 10th, Seoda Matthews 13th, Ciara Matthews 21st and Aoife Howard 25th. The Boys U15 went one better to win the team event on 21 points ahead of 2nd placed Réalt na Mara on 65 points. Jack Mc Cullough led the Dunleer boys home in 1st place, with Conor Matthews 3rd, TJ Doheny 7th, Neal Hodgins, 10th, Danny O Brien 11th and Kevin Ledwith 14th.
3000m – 8:07.78 (Sopot 2012)
5000m – 14:10.12 (Bielsko Biala, 2013)
10000 – 29:15,58 (Mikolow, 2012)
Represented Poland at European Cross Country Championships –Belgrade 2013
Polish different age category multi medallist:
Bronze medal 10000m – Polish Championships 2012 (Mikolow)
Gold medal 1000m – U23 Polish Championships 2012 (Paslek)
Gold medal – U23 Polish Cross Country Championships 2013 (Lublin)
800m – 1:48.43 (Gdansk, 01.06.2013)
1000m – 2:22.18 (Plizhausen, 22.05.2011)
1500 m – 3:35.07 (Rieti, 08.09.2013)
3000m – 8.06.13 (Gateshead 23.06.2013)
Member of Polish Athletic Squad:
Team European Championships – 6th position 3000m (Gateshead -
European Junior Championships – 1500m semi-
European Junior Cross Country Championships – 45 place (Dublin – 2009)
European Championships -
Dunleer AC Chairman Kevin Matthews expressed delight that two such talented International athletes will be competing at the great Oldbridge House estate (OPW) venue. The course has previously been lauded as a premier European cross country venue by visiting International athletes and is ideally suited to cross country running.
Dunleer AC looks forward to hosting the cream of local and National athletics talent on February 16th as the best athletes from all over the country compete in juvenile, junior, senior and masters races. The Rás traditionally attracts athletes from all over Ireland and the link with Armagh AC provides even more competition as athletes travel from the North of the country to compete. Armagh AC host their International Road Race on the Thursday after the Rás on February 20th.
This year's Rás will celebrate the lives of 2 Dunleer AC athletes, Sandra Floyd and Noel Mc Guill who both died tragically some years ago. They will be remembered on the day as Memorial Cups will be presented by family representatives to the winning men's and ladies' teams. Larry Mc Guill and Louis Duffin, two of Dunleer AC's finest administrators who sadly passed away in 2011 and 2010 respectively will also be remembered as memorial cups will also be presented in their memory. Larry was the driving force behind the Rás for 40 years and the Larry Mc Guill 3km will provide the final event of the day, a fun 3km for all the family
Rás na hÉireann Winner 2013 Brendan (USA) with the Larry Mc Guill Cup