22 November 2023
~3 minutes read
Galway Athletics Report
Connacht Cross Country Championships
The first day of the National Cross-Country Championships at club level including the Senior and Juvenile Even Ages championships, was held on a really muddy and testing course in Gowran Kilkenny on Sunday last.
At Senior level, Galway secured a Senior gold in the Ladies race over 4km, via a strong and astute performance by Fiona Everard of Bandon AC, who trains with the University of Galway and is coached by Matt Lockett, as she claimed her first national senior title in Kilkenny.
The women’s race saw the quartet of Everard, Mary Mulhare (Portlaoise AC), Danielle Donegan (Tullamore AC), and Fionnula Ross (Armagh AC) race clear of the field at the mid-way point before an injection of pace from Everard saw her stretch clear of the field to claim gold with almost 40 seconds to spare on second place Mulhare, and third placed Donegan.
It completes a remarkable twelve months for the talented UG athlete who only last year claimed the national novice cross country title in what was every bit as challenging as today’s muddy underfoot conditions, and she has now been selected for the Irish team to compete in Brussels next month at the European Cross-Country Championships.
Aine O’Farrell in 31st was the first home for GCH ladies, with great runs also by Olive Gleeson and Dee McCrae.
In the Men’s, best for Galway were Jamie Fallon of Craughwell and Abaas Edris of Castlegar who both secured top 60 spots in what was a stacked field, in an epic race won by Cormac Dalton of Mullingar Harriers.
At Juvenile level, Galway had another winner in a superb victory for Declan O’Connell of Craughwell AC in the U16 Boys race, as he used all his big race experience to master the testing conditions and come away with a famous victory.
Notable performances at Juvenile level also came via the girls of Tuam AC Girls in the U14 which saw Eimear Fallon finish 4th, Ruby McGuire 12th and the club team of Eimear, Ruby, Orla Newell, Cuisle O’Callaghan and Róisín Steede Duffy took a top-class 5th place. Craughwell AC U14 Boys also raced superbly taking 4th place overall in their section via Conn McCluskey, Xaime Chouse, Conor Pimlott and Cillian Connolly.
Next up is the National Novices and Uneven Ages Juvenile races on December 3rd in Navan.
Galway City Harriers ladies secured National bronze medals it has been announced following the Dublin Marathon incorporating the National Championships.
Maebh Brannigan, Deirdre Gibbons and Sinead Jordan of GCH combined superbly to take a hard earned and coveted Senior team medal.