Galway Athletics Report (week ending 20th June 2021)

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National Junior and U23 Track and Field Championships

The Irish Life Health sponsored National Junior and U23 Track and Field Championships took place in glorious June sunshine at Morton Stadium, Santry last weekend over two days, and Galway clubs and athletes produced the goods with multiple medal winning performances.

Galway City Harriers’ rising star Robert McDonnell produced a superb time of 20.93 seconds over 200m to win the Junior Men’s race with ease.  McDonnell’stime was inside the A qualifying standard for the European U20championships, and he now has standards for both the 200m and 400m. This time of 20.93 takes the GCH sprinter to the top of the 2021 Irish Rankings ,equalling the time of the current leader Marcus Lawler.

Richard Kamsen of GCH won the U20 Triple jump by dramatically taking the lead from Joseph Gillespie of Finn Valley with a huge leap of 13.56m in the final round.

Seren O’Toole also of GCHexecuted a superb run in the 400m hurdles and was a clear winner in a time of 65.47.

Liam Shaw of Athenry AC was one of the youngest winners of the weekend when he won the Junior Men’s Shot Putt title with a huge new personalbest throw of 14.27m.

GCH thrower Chloe Casey had a successful return to the National stage,by claiming silver in the U20 Shot Putt with a big throw of 10.62m, behind competition favourite Casey Mulvey of Inny Valley

GCH secure two more bronze medals on Sunday’sschedule, as Laura Nally had an excellent run to take bronze in the U23 400m final behind Rachel McCann and Laura Crossan, finishing  in a time of 58.02 seconds. Eimear Rowe also of GCH finished 5th in the Junior 400m final in 58.93 , and both Nally and Rowe competed with the Irish relay 4 x 400m squads last night and contested heats and finals today.

Aaron Brennan of GCH put in a tremendous performance in the U23 Men’s 1500m to earn a bronze in a cracking time of 3.59.58 behind James Dunne and Donal Devane , first and second respectively

Craughwell AC athletes were very competitive in some high-quality distance races.  Kyle Moorhead clocked a new club best of 1:54.71 in the Junior Men’s 800m finalfor fifth place, while William Fitzgeraldknocked a whopping 18 seconds off his pb with a 15:03.60 in the U23 5000m to place fifth also.

There were also good performances from other Galway athletes such as Alix Joyce of Tuam who made the Junior Women’s 400 final, Ella Rafferty of Tuam, fifth in the U20 Shot Putt , and Abas Edris Adam of Castlegar, fourth in the Steeplechase at U23 level.

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Galway Children’s Games

The Galway County Board organized their first Juvenile competition of the year at Dangan last Saturday, with the U9 to U11 paired competition taking place.

The top 3 pairings for each event progress to the Connacht Children’s Games to be held on 10th July in AIT.  The top three relay teams in each age group will also be put forward to Connacht to compete on 10th July.

At U9Level, the GCH pair of Emma Barry and Ava O Brien won the Girls 60m, while Kiera Butt and Aoibheann McGowan won the 300m for Loch Lurgan AC.  Conor Mannion and Jack Hibbitt of Craughwell AC claimed a super double win in the Boys 60m sprint and 300m distance race .

The Long Jump saw victory in the Girls going to Caoife Kenny and Mila Harty of South Galway AC, with the Boys section won by Roan Lydon and Luke McLoughlin of GCH, while the Turbo Javelin event was claimed by Caoimhe Cavalieri and Emma Barry for GCH in the Girls section, with Gerard Murray and Aaron Burke of Craughwell AC winning the Boys event.

In the Relays, South Galway AC took the Girls gold, with Castlegar AC winning the Boys event.

In the U10 section, the South Galway pair of Ella O Sullivan and Roisin Bartley won the Girls 60m, with Craughwells Laoise Colleran and Ruby Maher claiming gold in the 500m race.Louis Jean Hounkponou and Rory Tauchen of GCH won the Boys 60m sprint, with Tauchen combining with Darcy Noel in   winning the 500m distance in the Boys event for GCH.

The Long Jump saw victory in the Girls going to by Lola Whitney Mangan and Cerys Johnson of Craughwell AC, with the Boys section saw Louis Jean Hounkponou and Darcy Noel of GCH pick up their second gold of the day each. Victories in the Turbo Javelin event went to Ava Conlon and Madeline Schmitt of Loch Lurgan AC,and Brian Griffin and Darragh Curran of Clare River Harriersin the Boys competition

In the U10Relays,Craughwell AC won both Boys and Girls events

At U11 Level,GCH won the Girls 60m via Aisling Tauchen and Lucy O Connor, with Sally Fahey and Cait McLaughlin of South Galwaywinning the gold in the 600m race.Sean Colleran and Lincoln King of Craughwell AC and Cathal Walsh and Theo Gantley of South Galway AC dead heated for first place in the  Boys 60m sprint.In the 600m Boys race, Ryan Scully and Patrick Lee of Clare River Harriers AC took gold.

The Turbo Javelin saw victory in the Girls going to  Katie Brogan and Saoirse McEvoy of Clare River Harriers, and the Boys section saw Dara Jacobsen and Cillian Cawley of GCHwin gold.Gold in theLong Jump event went to Daisy Griffin and Lauren Loughrey of LoughreaAC, and Ruairi McNena and Darragh O Donnell of Craughwell AC

In the Relays, South Galway AC took the Girls gold, with Craughwell AC winning the Boys event.

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National Senior Track and Field Championships

The  NationalSenior Track and Field Championships will be held over three days, next Friday to Sunday June 25th to 27th at Morton Stadium, Santry in Dublin. Many Galway athletes will compete, with among those expected to feature including the talented 400m duo of Cillin Greene and Robert McDonnell, Sinead Treacy of Craughwell over 400m, and the evergreen Sean Breathnach of GCH in the throws.