Springwell RC at the Northern Lights 10k
We’re in that transition period where the final races of the cross country overlap with the start of the main road running events and, just for good measure there’s a few trail races to add a bit of interest. This week has seen Springwell RC in action in the fields, trails and roads at distances from 6 to 60km, with a fair share of podium places, club records and personal bests.
Firmus Energy Northern Lights
Hosted by events management company 26 Extreme, the 2nd Firmus Energy Northern Lights event took place in Portstewart on Friday 6th March with over 250 competitors taking part across the 5 & 10k races and the challenge walk. The weather was much kinder to competitors who didn’t have to cope with the gale force winds of last year and the 10k got underway in near perfect conditions at 7.30pm.
The head torches of over 100 runners made a spectacular sight as they completed a lap of Portstewart promenade before heading out over the harbour hill, past the Herring Pond and onto the Portrush Road. Springwell RC’s Alan Nevin set the early pace closely followed by club mate, and last years winner, Barry Mullan. Alan held the lead along the Ballyreagh Road until the course turned onto the coastal path to return to Portstewart and the finish. Running in the dark by torchlight on an uneven, undulating path requires a degree of nerve and skill and Barry’s experience came to the fore as he moved into a lead that he was to maintain until he crossed the line in an impressive 38:24. David Smyth (Galbally Runners) was second in 38:53 and Richard Bradley (unattached) was third in 39:24.
In the lady’s race Springwell RC took all the podium places with Judith Buchanan first in 47:30, Carolyn Crawford second in 47:41 and Adele Tomb third in 49:11.
Springwell RC Results – 1st Barry Mullan 38:24, 6th Alan Nevin 40:13, 12th David McGaffin 44:05, 23rd (1st lady) Judith Buchanan 47:30, 24th (2nd lady) Carolyn Crawford 47:41, 30th (3rd lady) Adele Tomb 49:11, 31st Mark Neely 50:00, 33rd David Campbell 51:29, 39th Fiona Martin 51:48, 52nd Aaron McCracken 53:33, 68th Elaine Montgomery 59:48, 90th Pauline Duke 1:06:44.
Northern Lights Lady’s Podium – Carolyn Crawford, Judith Buchanan & Adele Tomb
Northern Lights Mens Podium – David Smyth, Barry Mullan & Richard Bradley
Walled City 10 Mile Road Race
The Walled City 10 Mile Road Race took place on the 7th March along the banks of the River Foyle where the near perfect running conditions of cool temperatures and light winds produced some record breaking performances for Springwell RC.
Starting in St Columbs Park, competitors did a lap of the Ebrington Estate before racing along the Greenway to the Gransha Estate and over the Foyle Bridge to a very fast few miles along the West Bank of the Foyle and across the Peace Bridge to finish on the running track in St Columbs Park.
First home for Springwell RC was Ciaran Ferris who finished 6th in a new club record of 54:56. Springwell had three other runners under the 60 minute mark with Ryan Galway 19th in 57:53, Jason Scott 20th in 58:50 and Aaron Moffatt 20th in 59:08.
Springwell RC’s Ciara Toner marked her return to form as she broke her own club record with a time of 1:00:33 to finish second lady.
Springwell RC Results – 6th Ciarán Ferris 54:56, 19th Ryan Galway 57:53, 20th Jason Scott 58:50, 23rd Aaron Moffatt 59:08, 32nd Ciara Toner 1:00:33 (2nd lady), 36th Christopher McNickle 1:01:26, 42nd Stephen Fillis 1:02:19, 87th Jeff Young 1:07:46, 94th Dave Sexton 1:08:14, 99th Paul Duffy 1:08:36, 163rd Timmy Bacon 1:12:04, 174th Michael Johnson 1:13:04, 224th Roy Buchanan 1:15:40, 228th Mandy Stewart 1:15:59, 232nd James McMullan 1:16:29, 325th Ryan Gray 1:20:00, 385th Will Colvin 1:23:13, 410th Sarah Stewart 1:24:19, 422nd Majella McAteer 1:24:25, 428th Adrian Finlay 1:24:06, 435th Andrew Wilmot 1:25:21, 439th Catherine Butcher 1:25:36, 456th Michael McKeown 1:26:12, 513th David Boorman 1:28:17, 555th Jonathan Lynch 1:29:07, 557th Paul Irwin 1:29:05, 560th Mariette Mulvenna 1:29:45, 561st Bridgeen Canning 1:29:44, 570th Betty Deighan 1:30:18, 583rd Christine O’Kane 1:30:39, 587th Lorraine Mullan 1:31:25, 593rd Conor Duffy 1:31:14, 639th Paul Dornan 1:33:25, 645th Jamie McIvor 1:33:33, 673rd Fergal Mackle 1:34:26, 677th Andrew Kincaid 1:35:12, 708th Nicola Neill 1:35:46, 753rd Roisin Walker 1:37:09, 788th Heather McLaughlin 1:38:09, 823rd Anne Marie McKenna 1:39:54, 948th Caitriona Mackle 1:46:46, 1045th Gemma Craig 1:57:27, 1047th Caroline Owen 1:57:52.
WCM 10 Mile Road Race – Stephen Fillis, Christopher McNickle, Ciara Toner, Aaron Moffatt, Ciaran Ferris & Ryan Galway
Also, on Saturday Atlas Running were hosting a day’s worth of running distances at Shane’s Castle in Antrim. The course around the Shane’s Castle estate comprised of a mix of terrain on the 13.1 mile lap.
Continuing the weekend of podium places, in the 39.3mile Ultra Marathon, Fran McFadden finished 1st lady (10th overall) in 6:40:53 while in the half marathon event, Alanna Millar finished 40th in 2:00:29 and Liz Dowey was just behind her in 41st place in a time of 2:01:00.
UK Inter Counties XC
On Saturday 7th March the UK Inter Counties Cross Country Championships were held in the grounds of Prestwold Hall in Loughborough.
Representing NI & Ulster, Springwell RC’s Niamh Carr was competing in the U20 Women’s 6km race against the counties and districts of England, Scotland and Wales. Niamh produced an excellent performance to finish 35th with a time of 27:06.
London Mini Marathon
Springwell RC’s Mairi Clements has been selected to run in the NI Team at the London Mini Marathon on April 26th. The London Mini Marathon is the official British Athletics 3 mile road championships for young athletes aged between 11-17.
The 3 mile course stretches from London’s Old Billingsgate to The Mall and runs along the Thames River, which just so happens to be the last 3 miles of the London Marathon course.
In Other News
On Saturday Peter Jack was at the Victoria Park Half Marathon in London where he finished 468th in 1:57:53 and at the first NIMRA race of the year Hugh Deighan took on the challenge of Slieve Gullion and the 4 mile course with over 1100 feet of climbing. Hugh finished 81st in a time of 59:48.