Ballydrain Weekly Roundup 13th October

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(Amanda Perry, Debbie Matchett, Colin Stevenson, Denise Logue at the NIMAA Cross Country)

There was plenty of activity from the athletes at Ballydrain this week.

On the 12th October Ballydrain’s SSgt Kyle Ross was representing Northern Ireland at the Army Cadet Force’s National Cross Country Championships in Altcar near Liverpool.  Kyle ran a strong race, showing his strength at this discipline and brought home the bronze medal!

Closer to home also on the 12th October was the NIMAA Cross Country trial and championships held at QUB playing fields.  This race enables team selection for the NI Masters XC championships in Aintree, England on the 17th November.  There were 4 Ballydrain athletes competing on the day. In the ladies race, Denise Logue finished 6th in the F40 in 24:55, Amanda Perry was 2nd in F45 in 25:23 and Debbie Matchett was 4th in F50 in 25:40.  All 4 ladies were successful in qualifying for the championships!  Colin Stevenson was also competing in the Men’s race in the M50 category and finished in a time of 31:36.

On Saturday 12th October, Run Groomsport hosted the annual half marathon and 10k.  This event is a charity race which raises funds to support the work of the MS Society.  The races started on the Springwell Road and followed an undulating route towards the Stockbridge Road to meet the coast and climb up the Warren Road past Orlock.  The half marathon took in a second loop while the 10k finished through Cove Avenue and along Groomsport Beach.  The 10k race was won by Jack McFarland in 39:16 and Clair Quigley (NDAC) in 42:09.  Ballydrain’s Ladies captain Claire Ingram finished 2nd place in the ladies race and 7th overall.  The club were also represented by 4 athletes in the half marathon – Karen Dempster, Valerie Gibson, Violet Davidson and Stephanie Smith.

Claire Ingram 2nd place at Groomsport 10k,         Kyle Ross

On Sunday 13th October the annual Saintfield 10k hosted by Saintfield Striders took place.  The race is part of the Novosco Series and attracted a large field of athletes despite the miserable weather conditions.  The challenging and hilly course was won by Gareth Lyons of NB Harriers in 33:14 and Amy Bullman of Willowfield Harriers in 40:26. First home for Ballydrain running a strong race despite the challenging terrain was Evan Boyce in 43:04.  Amanda Perry, fresh from qualifying at the Master’s XC the previous day was the first lady home for the club in 43:52.  Nigel Martin finished in 48:29 and Catherine Lavery in 59:46.

Susan McKnight from Ballydrain was running in the Royal Parks Half Marathon.  She completed her race in 2hr13 and was raising vital funds for the Ellen McArthur Cancer Trust.

Gary Adams was Ballydrain’s sole representative at this year’s Chicago Marathon completing the course in 3hrs and 43 minutes, well done Gary!

4 athletes from Ballydrain were enjoying the Sunshine in Palma this week whilst taking part in the half marathon and 10k event.  Club secretary Valerie Martin, Lesley Moreland, Sandra Grimason and Julie McMinn took place in the 10k while Heather Gyle completed the half marathon – no mean feat in 30 degree heat!