Athletics NI host NI & Ulster Age Group Indoor Championships in Athlone!

Athletics NI host NI & Ulster Age Group Indoor Championships in Athlone:

A high level of performance was evident as Athletics Northern Ireland took their NI & Ulster Age Group Indoor Track & Field Championships on the road this weekend (Saturday 3rd and Sunday 4th February 2018).

After consultation with athletes and coaches, a decision was made to hold this year’s event at the impressive AIT Arena in Athlone, Ireland.

Anna McCauley (City of Lisburn AC), Finn O’Neill (City of Derry AC), Niamh McCorry (Annalee AC), Toby Thompson (Ballymena & Antrim AC) and Amy Jo Kierans (Oriel AC) excelled with three gold medals each; a host of other up and coming talent left Athlone as double gold medallists.

AAI National Combined Events gold medallist Anna McCauley secured the Under 18 60m hurdles title in 8.87, before recording 7.82 over 60m flat.  The Mary Peters Trust supported athlete then added a third gold medal with a winning 1.60m effort in the High Jump.

Fellow National Combined Events Champion Niamh McCorry, an Under 16 competitor, won the 60m hurdles in 9.53, before going on to win the 200m in 27.40; a 1.60m clearance secured gold in the High Jump.

Under 14 athlete Finn O’Neill won’t have minded missing the Stormont XC, the event he caught the attention of many with an excellent victory in 2017, as he topped the podium in his 800m, Long Jump and High Jump competitions.  The Spartan athlete clocked 2:16.00 for 800m, just beating his club mate Oisin Duffy (2nd place – 2:16.57), before leaping to 4.65m in the Long Jump and clearing 1.51m in the High Jump.

Amy Jo Kierans showed excellent potential with victory in the Under 13 60m, Shot Putt and 600m.  Amy covered the 60m 8.56 for top spot and stepping up in distance, completed the 600m in 1:47.71; a throw of 9.07m in the Shot Putt crowned a great weekend for the Oriel AC athlete.

Another Under 13 athlete, Toby Thompson, was in excellent form as he worked his way to three wins.  An 8.31 over 60m flat secured gold, with a 10.29 clocking over the 60m hurdles and a 4.38m effort in the Long Jump adding further silverware.

Age Category Round-Up:

Under 12

Finn Valley AC’s Riona Doherty claimed victory in the 60m (8.58) and the Long Jump (4.11m), while Tir Chonaill AC’s Sawyer Campbell collected gold in the 60m after recording 8.99 for the distance.  Cait O’Reilly (Annalee AC) and Caolan McFadden (Cranford AC) were victorious in the 600m, with Cait running 1:56.56 and Caolan 1:49.43.

In the Shot Putt competition, Ava Anderson (Tir Chonaill AC) won the girls event with an 8.59m effort (2kg), while Dean Leeper (Finn Valley AC) landed an 8.34m throw (2kg) to win the boys event.

Finn Valley AC’s Harry Gallagher jumped 3.98m to win the boys Long Jump, while in the High Jump, his club mate Amy Timoney struck gold with a 1.20m clearance.  Tir Chonaill AC’s Ethan Dewhurst and Lifford Strabane AC’s Nathan Russell both cleared 1.26m in the boy’s event, but it was Ethan who collected the gold medal.

In the Under 12 4 x 100m Relay, Finn Valley AC secured the ladies title, with Tir Chonaill AC winning the boys race in 59.86.

Under 13 –

City of Derry AC’s Veronica O’Neill led the way in the 60m hurdles, crossing the line in 10.40 for victory.  In the 600m, Willowfield Harriers’ Ben Acheson recorded 1:43.67 for the win.

Moving onto the field events, Matthew Finn (Glaslough Harriers) topped the final standings in the boy’s category after landing a 9.98m effort (2kg).  In the Long Jump, Ellie Brady of Annalee AC won, after finishing on 4.04m.  There was also wins and gold medals for Ashleigh McArdle (Lifford Strabane AC) and Eoin Boyle (Tir Chonaill AC) in the High Jump, with Ashleigh clearing 1.40m and Eoin 1.41m.

In the Under 13 4 x 100m Relay, Letterkenny AC won in 1:03.34, with Finn Valley AC clocking an impressive 57.73 for the win in the girls competition.

Under 14 –

In a closely contested girls 60m final, Aoife McGee (Rosses AC) claimed victory in 8.51 – in the boys equivalent, Elvis Okoh (Letterkenny AC) won in 8.26.  Over the 60m hurdles, Shercock AC’s Aideen Drury (9.80) and Annalee AC’s Conall Mooney (10.12) collected gold in their respective girls and boy’s event.  In the girls 800m race, Hazel Hughes of Shercock AC crossed the line first in 2:34.56.

Finn Valley AC’s Abbie McGranaghan topped the podium in the Under 14 Race Walk.  In the Shot Putt, Amber Gallagher (Rosses AC) won the girls category with a 10.14m throw (2kg), while in the boys event, Alex Anderson (Tir Chonaill AC) won after throwing his 2.72kg Shot Putt 10.39m.  Cranford AC’s Teresa Mullen won the High Jump with 4.56m and Tir Chonaill AC celebrated another win in the High Jump when Tori Murchan cleared 1.41m.

In the Under 14 4 x 200m Relay, Finn Valley AC won the girls race in 1:59.18, while City of Derry AC led the boy’s field home in 1:53.51.

Under 15 –

The Under 15 category proved to one of the closely contested of the weekend – much of this came down to the battle between three Tir Chonaill AC team mates, Rachel Gallagher, Lucy McGlynn and Niamh Moohan.  In the 60m hurdles, Rachel led the way with 9.53 – Lucy followed in 9.73, with Niamh clocking 9.78.  Then over 60m flat, the podium was turned upside down, with Niamh winning in 8.41, Lucy taking the runners up prize in 8.42 and Rachel securing bronze in 8.44. Rachel and Niamh picked up a second gold medal each, with Rachel winning the High Jump in 1.51m and Niamh winning the Long Jump with a 4.47m leap.

Another Tir Chonaill AC athlete, Ben Campbell, won the 60m hurdles in 9.68 and the 60m in 7.82. In the 800m, Yasmin O’Leary (Oriel AC) and Jamie Shanley (Shercock AC) won in 2:35.70 and 2:12.57 respectively.  Aoife Giles (Cranford AC) collected gold in the Shot Putt after throwing 10.70m (2.72kg) – in the boy’s event Finlay Stewart (City of Lisburn AC) won with a 12.00m throw (3kg); Finlay added a Long Jump gold to his medal collection after finishing on 4.96m.  In the High Jump, it was Cormac O’Donnell (Lifford Strabane AC) who impressed most, winning with a 1.54m jump.

In the Under 15 4 x 200m Relay, Tir Chonaill AC completed a clean sweep, winning the boys race in 1:57.80 and the girls race in 1:53.69.

Under 16 –

Lagan Valley AC’s Tony Craig enjoyed a successful day, with gold medals in the 60m and the 200m.  Tony covered the 60m in 7.57, before running 24.51 for 200m. Kate Monteith (City of Lisburn AC) stormed to victory in the girls 60m, winning in 7.84. In the 60m hurdles, Nathan Fitzpatrick of City of Derry AC won the boys race in 9.21.

Pre-event medal favourite Cara Laverty (City of Derry AC) lived up to expectation with victory over 1500m – Cara led the field home in 5:00.68.  Similarly talented Dylan McBride (Willowfield Harriers) won the boy’s race in 4:20.61.

Megan Briggs (North Down AC) won the 800m event in 2:26.66, while in the exceptionally close boy’s 800m, Colin Gargan (Shercock AC) emerged victorious in 2:05.59; this was just 0.10 of a second ahead of Sean M McGinley (Olympian YC), who finished in 2:05.69.  In the Under 16 Race Walk, Ava Ross (Glaslough Harriers) claimed the gold medal.

Innyvale AC’s Casey Mulvey (14.01m) and Lifford Strabane AC’s Ross Henderson (12.16m) won their respective 3kg and 4kg Shot Putt competitions, while in the Long Jump, it was Kate Donohoe (Annalee AC) and Sean Harding (Shercock AC) who topped the podium – Kate jumped 4.97m and Sean 4.80m.  Ballymena & Antrim AC’s Owen Johnston won the High Jump with 1.70m.

In the Under 16 4 x 200m Relay, Newry AC picked up the girls gold medals with a time of 2:00.26; Shercock AC won the boy’s event in 1:45.73.

Under 17 –

Four Under 17 athletes finished the day with two gold medals – they were Jordan Cunningham (City of Lisburn AC), Laoise McGonagle (Tir Chonaill AC), Alice Rodgers (Ballymena & Antrim AC) and Joshua Knox (City of Lisburn AC).

Jordan Cunningham continued his good start to 2018 with gold medals in the 60m hurdles (8.82) and the Shot Putt (5kg – 11.32m).  Laoise McGonagle struck gold in the same events, after running 10.33 in the 60m hurdles and throwing the Shot Putt 9.29m (3kg).  Alice Rodgers won the 60m in 7.95 and the 200m in 26.48, while Joshua Knox excelled in the jumping events, winning the Long Jump with a 5.74m clearance and the High Jump in 1.75m.  Aine Wilkinson (Finn Valley AC) won the girls High Jump with 1.50m and Michaela Byrne (Finn Valley AC) secured the Long Jump title in 4.96m.

Eoin Sharkey (Tir Chonaill AC) won the 200m in 23.34, and there were victories for Murphy Miller (North Down AC) and Matthew Willis (Lagan Valley AC) in the 800m.  Murphy ran 2:16.51 to win the girls race, while Matthew recorded 2:04.07 for victory in the boy’s race.  There was further success for Belfast based Lagan Valley AC in the 1500m, with Ryan Miskelly winning in 4:21.79 – Ellie Quinn of Omagh Harriers won the girls race in 5:03.52.  Rosses AC athlete Johnson Bangora won the 60m in 7.49.

In the 4 x 200m Relay, Finn Valley AC’s Under 17 Girls clocked 1:55.63, while their Under 17 Boys recorded 1:45.60

Under 18 –

Connor Crowe (Unattached) impressed over both 60m and 200m, winning both.  The Athletics NI registered athlete ran 7.25 for 60m and 23.45 for 200m.  North Down AC’s Rachel McCann also completed a track double, with victory in the 200m (26.64) and the 400m (1:00.66). There was also double gold for Finn Valley AC’s Christopher Kearns, with wins in the 60m hurdles (10.08) and the Triple Jump (11.58m).  Lagan Valley AC’s Cormac O’Rourke won the 400m in 50.74, while Ballymena & Antrim AC’s Joshua Courtney ran a personal best of 2:02.38 to win the 800m – Aine Corcoran (Shercock AC) won the girls 800m in 2:18.16.

In the 1500m, Shercock AC’s Jane Duffy broke the beam first in 5:13.97 and Jack Moore of Carmen Runners won the boy’s equivalent in 4:24.83.  In the field, Jack Murphy (Glaslough Harriers) won the Pole Vault competition with a 2.70m effort.  Jayne Drury (Shercock AC) and Ryan Henderson (Lifford Strabane AC) excelled in the Shot Putt, winning with 8.96m (3kg) and 8.76m (5kg) respectively.

City of Derry AC’s Emily Stewart won the Triple Jump with 9.46m, while her club mate Austin Hargan topped the High Jump standings with 1.55m.  In the Long Jump, Finn Valley AC celebrated a double win, with Lee Walsh (4.61m) and Denis McGinley (5.56m) walking away with gold medals.  In the Under 18 4 x 200m Relay, the Shercock AC girls led the way with 1:54.31.

Under 19 –

Abbie Sexton of Annalee AC picked up two gold medals after competing over the 60m hurdles and the 400m – in the 60m hurdles, Abbie recorded 10.42, while in the 400m, she crossed the line in 1:08.40.  Abbie’s club mate Oisin McCorry won the boy’s 60m hurdles in 9.35 and the 200m in 23.95.

Loughview AC’s Rachel Maguire also had a good, topping the podium on two occasions.  In the 200m, Rachel covered the distance in 26.53, before going on to reach 4.83m in the Long Jump.

Northern Ireland’s Enya Haigney (Derry Track Club) and Adam Hilditch (Dromore AC) claimed impressive victories in the 800m.  Enya won in 2:30.09, while Adam took top honours in 1:59.57.

Grace Carson (Mid Ulster AC) took her recent good form from cross country and trail races onto the track and won the 1500m in 5:03.03.  Ben Corr of Finn Valley AC won the men’s race in 4:22.37.  East Down AC’s Matthew McGrattan won the 400m in 56.42, while Niall Blair (North Down AC) won the 60m in 7.33.

In the Under 19 Race Walk, Glaslough Harriers’ Aimee Brennan completed the 1k distance in 10:20.67.  Meanwhile, in the field events, Isobel Doyle (Oriel AC) won the 4k Shot Putt with a 9.25m throw.  City of Lisburn AC’s Ryan Nixon-Stewart won the Long Jump with a 5.95m jump.

Finn Valley AC again excelled in the Relay event, taking the Under 19 4 x 200m title in 1:42.80; this was the fastest 4 x 200m Relay time of the day.

Full results from the event can be found HERE.

Note:  Article compiled for use by Athletics NI.