Fifteen parishes took part in the fifth annual North Clare versus West Clare national schools cross country championships, which were held on the lands of Maureen McGuire, Carhunagry, Mullagh, last week.
The James Sexton Perpetual Trophy went to Ennistymon parish for the second year in-a-row with 34 points and they were followed by Kilrush, with 30 points and Miltown Malbay on 29 points.
Ennistymon parish, made up of five schools, Ennistymon, Lahinch, Clouna, Furglan and Steiner, won gold in the girls’ U-10 and O-10 races and bronze in the girls’ U-8 and boys’ U-8. The James Sexton Trophy was presented by Catherine Ryan Clare Sports Partnership, to team captain Meg Brennan, Lahinch National School.
Official starters Cyril Donnellan and Michael Egan had a very busy afternoon. The first race of the day was the girls’ U-8 400m and this was a cracking contest with over 60 competitors. Keisha Attwell, Coolmeen/Cranny, got away to a great start and she had to work hard on the uphill climb to take this title from the fast-finishing Meg Brennan, Ennistymon with Holly Quinn, Kilkee behind. The team title went to Coolmeen/Cranny on 46 points, followed by Kilmurry-Ibrickane on 55 points, Ennistymon on 57 points and Miltown Malbay on 76 points.
John Murphy, Miltown Malbay, made all the early running to take the boys’ U-8 title from Ben Whelehan, Miltown Malbay, with Ronan Donnellan, Cooraclare, third. Miltown/Rineen/Rockmount/Moy won the team title on 34 points from Kilrush on 44 points, Ennistymon on 62 points and Kilmihil on 66 points.
In the girls’ U-10 600m, Chantel Burke, Kilrush, and Sharon Egan, Kilmihil, set a lively pace and with 200 metres remaining, Sharon Egan took the lead and won from Chantel Burke, with Caoimhe Harvey, Carrigaholt, storming through to take third. Ennistymon/Lahinch/Clouna/Furglan/Steiner won the team gold on 35 points, with silver medals going to Kilmihil on 62 points, followed by Kilrush in a close third on 63 points and Carrigaholt/Cross fourth on 73 points.
In the boys’ U-10 600m, over 60 athletes took part and Seán Rouine, Miltown Malbay, went out very hard for the first 300 metres. Aidan McCarthy, Inagh, closed the gap on the leader with 200 metres remaining and on the uphill stretch, he pulled away to take the gold medal from his school mate Keith White, Inagh, with Patrick O’Rourke, Liscannor, snatching the bronze medal. The team title went to Inagh/Kilnamona/Cloonanaha on 39 points from Miltown Malbay on 43 points, Kilrush on 73 points and Kilmurry Ibrickane on 87 points.
The final race of the day was the girls’ O-10 run over a distance of 900 metres. Cliodhna Blake, Doonbeg, and Áine Rouine, Miltown Malbay, set a good lively pace for the first lap and they were shoulder to shoulder until the final lap when Cliodhna Blake made a decisive move with 300 metres remaining, when she opened a slight lead to take the title, with Áine Rouine a very good second. There was a battle for third with Kayla Crowley, Kilkee, taking the bronze medal. The team title went to Ennistymon on 38 points, with Inagh/Kilnamona/Cloonanaha taking the silver medals on 63 points.
In the boys’ O-10s, Seán Malone, Kilmurry Ibrickane, set a blistering pace. Munster champion, Michéal Clancy, Doonbeg; Pierce Lillis, Cooraclare; Mark Fennell, Kilrush and Jason McCarthy, Inagh, were closely bunched with one lap remaining. Michéal Clancy raced into the lead and was always in control up front for the final 200 metres and he recorded another big win. Pierce Lillis won the silver medal ahead of last year’s runner-up, Jason McCarthy, Inagh/Kilnamona/Cloonanaha with the team title going to Kilrush on 33 points from Cooraclare on 59 points, Doonbeg on 74 points and Miltown Malbay on 80 points.
Girls’ U-8 400m: 1. Keisha Attwell, Coolmeen/Cranny; 2. Meg Brennan, Ennistymon/Lahinch/Clouna/Furglan/Steiner; 3. Holly Quinn, Kilkee.
Teams 1. Coolmeen/Cranny = 46 points; 2. Kilmurry Ibrickane = 55 points; 3. Ennistymon/Lahinch/Clouna/Furglan/Steiner = 57 points; 4. Miltown Malbay/Moy/Rineen/Rockmount = 76 points.
Provincial teams 1. West Clare = 33 points; 2. North Clare = 63 points.
Girls’ U-10 600m 1. Sharon Egan, Kilmihil; 2. Chantel Burke, Kilrush; 3. Caoimhe Harvey, Carrigaholt/Cross.
Teams 1. Ennistymon/Lahinch/Clouna/Furglan/Steiner = 35 points; 2. Kilmihil = 62 points; 3. Kilrush = 63 points; 4. Carrigaholt/Cross = 73 points.
Provincial teams 1. West Clare = 26 points; 2. North Clare = 60 points.
Girls’ O-10s 900m 1. Cliodhna Blake, Doonbeg; 2. Áine Rouine, Miltown Malbay/Moy/Rineen/Rockmount; 3. Kayla Crowley, Kilkee.
Teams 1. Ennistymon/Lahinch/Clouna/Furglan/Steiner = 38 points; 2. Inagh/Kilnamona/Cloonanaha = 63 points.
Provincial teams 1. West Clare = 37 points; 2. North Clare = 42 points.
Boys’ U-8 400m 1. John Murphy, Miltown Malbay/Moy/Rineen/Rockmount; 2. Ben Whelehan, Miltown Malbay/Moy/Rineen/Rockmount; 3. Ronan Donnellan, Cooraclare/Cree.
Teams 1.Miltown Malbay/Moy/Rineen/Rockmount = 34 points; 2. Kilrush = 44 points; 3. Ennistymon/Lahinch/Clouna/Furglan/Steiner = 62 points; 4. Kilmihil = 66 points.
Provincial teams 1. North Clare = 32 points; 2. West Clare = 46 points.
Boys’ U-10 600m 1. Aidan McCarthy, Inagh/Kilnamona/Cloonanaha; 2. Keith White, Inagh/Kilnamona/Cloonanaha; 3. Patrick O’Rourke, Liscannor.
Teams 1. Inagh/Kilnamona/Cloonanaha = 39 points; 2. Miltown Malbay/Moy/Rineen/Rockmount = 43 points; 3. Kilrush = 73 points; 4. Kilmurry Ibrickane = 87 points.
Provincial teams 1. North Clare = 23 points; 2. West Clare = 57 points.
Boys’ O-10s 900m 1. Michéal Clancy, Doonbeg; 2. Pierce Lillis, Cooraclare/Cree; 3. Jason McCarthy, Inagh/Kilnamona/Cloonanaha.
Teams 1. Kilrush = 33 points; 2. Cooraclare/Cree = 59 points; 3. Doonbeg = 74 points; 4. Miltown Malbay/Moy/Rineen/Rockmount = 80 points.
Provincial teams 1. West Clare = 25 points; 2. North Clare = 69 points.
Best overall parish 1.Ennistymon/Furglan/Lahinch/Clouna/Steiner = 34 points; 2. Kilrush = 30 points; 3. Miltown/Rineen/Rockmount/Moy = 29 points.
Clare athletes dominate
Clare schools dominated all eight races at the North Munster schools cross country championships, which were held at the Salesian Secondary College, Pallaskenry last week.
Laura Power, Coláiste Muire, Ennis, won a silver medal in the minor ladies and she was followed in fifth place by Rachel Clancy, Kilkee. Owen Tubridy, Kilmihil, finished fourth in the minor boys.
In the junior girls, it was a joint first for Jean and Niamh Clancy, St Michael’s School, Kilmihil, with Ciara Ryan, Coláiste Muire, Ennis, in fourth. Kilmihil won the team title on 12 points.
In the junior boys’ 3,000m, there was a silver medal for Jacob Loughnane, Gael Choláiste An Chláir.
Meelick’s Amy O’Donoghue, Villiers School in Limerick, running in the intermediate girls’ 2,500m, went out hard from the start and won by a very big margin.
Ten Clare athletes finished in the top 12, with Aishling Darcy, St Flannan’s, taking the silver medal and the bronze medal going to Niamh Markham, St Flannan’s. The team title went to Kilkee on 20 points.
In the intermediate boys’ 4,500m, the race was dominated up front by four Clare athletes. Darragh Lynch, St Flannan’s, won the gold medal from Eoin Brew, Kilkee and Peter Maher, St Flannan’s, with fourth position going to Noel Garry, Kilkee.
Kilkee Community School took another team title on 28 points.
In the senior boys’ 5,000m, five Clare athletes dominated from start to finish. Cathal O’Connor, St Caimin’s, was in cruise control on the last lap to win in fine style from the hard-working Darragh Chesser, CBS, with Adrian Kearney, St Flannan’s, taking the bronze medal and a very good fourth was Shane Lynch, St Caimin’s.
Five gold medals
Clare athletes took home five gold, three silver and three bronze medals from the Athletics Association of Ireland Masters Track and Field Championships, which were held at the Nenagh Indoor Arena recently, when there were many fine individual performances.
In the men’s O-45, Richard McArthur, St Cronan’s, recorded a great treble when taking the 200m, long jump and high jump and he also took a silver medal in the 60m dash.
Marie Coughlan, Kilmihil, captured gold in the masters ladies’ O-55 shot putt and silver medals in the long jump and 60m.
Michael Hayes, competing in the O-80s, took gold in the shot putt.
Hilda O’Connor, Ennis Track, came away with a bronze medal in the masters ladies’ O-40 400m. Tommy Greene, St John’s, competing in the O-40s, won a bronze medal in the shot putt and Martin Fitzpatrick, St Mary’s, won a silver medal in the O-50s shot putt.
Martin Glynn, Ennis Track, won a silver medal in the masters men O-35s 3,000m.
Munster Juvenile Championships
EIGHT Clare clubs will be represented this weekend at the Munster Juvenile Indoor Championships, which are taking place over two days, Saturday for the girls and Sunday for the boys from U-9 to U-13, at the Nenagh Indoor Arena, starting both days at 11am.
Clare clubs, St Mary’s, St John’s, Kilmihil, Marian, Ennis Track Club, St Cronan’s, Kilmurry Ibrickane/North Clare and Shannon will be represented. The athletes will be competing in a variety of events, including 60m, 300m, 600m, 60m hurdles, shot putt, long jump, high jump plus U-9, U-10, U-11, U-12 and U-13 relays 4x100m.