McGinley Wins Irish InterClub Cross Country Title
Eddie McGinley of Annadale Striders had the race of his life yesterday to take the Irish InterClub Cross Country title at Santry, Dublin.
The 29 year-old Belfast journalist led from the start to finish first in the 12K event but had a trio of Clonliffe Harriers runners in attendance from early on – Sergiu Ciobanu, Gary O’Hanlon and Brian McMahon.
However, with 4K remaining McGinley made his break which lengthened to a 100 metres victory over Ciobanu at the finish. This is the first win by a Northern Ireland athlete in this event since Gary Murray’s triumph 5 years ago.
A jubilant McGinley said, “While I knew I was in good shape I never believed I could win. I have been inconsistent lately but today everything just came together.”
McGinley now plans to race in the English Inter Counties Championships.
In the Women’s Senior 8k event North Belfast made a concentrated effort to capture the team title which they last held in 2007. Marathon specialists Breege Connolly, Sharon Trimble and Gladys Ganiel worked closely together for much of the race and were rewarded with high individual places.
NI Champion Connolly finished fifth, followed by Trimble (6th) and Ganiel (8th). Cathy McCourt completed the team in 20th position, for a total of 39 points. This was a mere 5 points behind winners DSD with Clonliffe taking third on 53 points.
Ganiel and Connolly are now planning to race in the Rotterdam Marathon in 2 months’ time.
In the 8k Men’s Junior race Armagh’s Steven Kerr made a gallant effort to stay in contact with Raheny’s Kevin Dooney who took silver a year ago. However, Dooney cut loose with two laps to go and finished 25 secs ahead of Kerr, who got the better of bronze medallist Jake O’Regan of St John’s.
There was a major upset in the Junior Women’s 6k event where Finn Valley’s Sarah Mary Collins decimated the opposition for a comfortable 25 secs winning margin over last year’s winner Siofra Buttner of DSD.
Seventeen year-old Collins, who is based in Switzerland, admitted she had no expectation of winning in what was her first race on Irish soil. She plans to compete in this weekend’s Swiss Championships before concentrating on the 3000 metres for the coming track season.
Results Link (Photo- Keith McClure)
AAI Inter-Clubs Cross Country Championships, Santry Demesne, Dublin
Senior Men: 1 Eddie McGinley (Annadale) 35:09, 2 Sergiu Ciobanu (Clonliffe) 35:24, 3 Gary O’Hanlon (Clonliffe) 35:35, 4 Brian McMahon (Clonliffe) 36:02, 5 Michael Clohisey (Raheny) 36:06, 6 Cillian O’Leary (Raheny) 36:12, 7 Thos Fitzpatrick (Tallaght) 36:28, 8 Martin Quinn (Dunleer) 36:32, 9 Declan Reed (City of Derry) 36:36, 10 Emmet Jennings (DSD) 36:40, 11 David Morwood (Annadale) 36:41. Team: 1 Clonliffe 25, Raheny Shamrocks 45, 3 DSD 78.
Senior Women: 1 Linda Byrne (DSD) 25:54, 2 Una English (DCH) 26:16, 3 Ava Hutchinson (DSD) 26:38, 4 Sarah McCormick (Clonliffe) 27:12, 5 Breege Connolly (NBH) 27:20, 6 Sharon Bird (NBH) 27:37, 7 Fiona Roche (Raheny) 27:42, 8 Gladys Ganiel (NBH) 27:57 Team: 1 DSD 34, 2 NBH 39, 3 Clonliffe Hrs 53.
Junior Men: 1 Kevin Dooney (Raheny) 24:08, 2 Stephen Kerr (Armagh) 24:33, 3 Jake O’Regan (Clare) 24:40; Team: 1 Raheny 41.
Junior Women: 1 Sarah Mary Collins (Finn Valley) 19:34, 2 Siofra Cléirigh-Buttner (DSD) 20:00, 3 Clare McCarthy (DSD) 20:22. Team: DSD 14.
Elsewhere Ben Reynolds (North Down) continued his build up to the World Indoor Championshiops by racing in Sheffield at the BUCS Indoor Championships. He finished second in 7.83s behind Andy Pozzi who won in 7.64s.
NI Civil Service XC
The final race in the Athletics NI Cross Country League was held at Stormont on Saturday. Paul Carroll of Annadale Striders was the overall winner followed by Ulster Schools champion Ryan Holt (Willowfield). The thirs spot was claimed by Emmet McGinty of City of Derry.
Patricia O'Hagan (St. Peter's Lurgan) took the Womens title ahead of a trio of North Down ladies, namely Roberta Dornan, Julie Balmer and Jessica Craig.
The league rankings are being updated and checked and will be posted soon with full details of winners.