(Jared Martin & Matthew Carville at the Bobby Rea XC 2019)
The Bobby Rea International Cross-Country race was held on Saturday 9th November at Billy Neill Centre of Excellence, Dundonald on what proved to be the wettest and most challenging conditions for running so far this season. The heavy rain that had fallen steadily overnight caused the already wet course to quickly turn into a quagmire. Athletes travelled from all over Ireland and Great Britain, as well as from Germany and Poland to take part. Ballydrain Harriers were well represented with 17 ladies and 19 men taking part.
The ladies’ event was run over a distance of 5k and was won by Michelle Finn representing Ireland in a time of 19:11. First home for the club was Alison Stocks in a time of 23:30, followed by Denise Logue (24:15) and Claire Ingram (24:25).
In the 8k men’s race Adam Craig, representing GBR came in first with a time of 29:56. Nathan Beattie was first home for Ballydrain in a time of 38:20, William Brown was 2nd in 38:45 and Daniel Burns 3rd in 40:18.
Jared Martin and Matthew Carville represented Ballydrain in the Ulster U19 boys 6000m race. Jared finish in 9th overall in a fantastic time of 23:07 with Matthew close behind in 14th position in 23:46. The winner on the day was Adam Ferris from St Malachy’s in a time of 21:18. Jared and Matthew have now qualified for the Athletics Ireland National Juvenile Uneven-Age XC championships in Cork in December. In the County Championship the Ballydrain boys, together with Jack Logan and Thomas Patterson of North Down, took 2nd place behind Antrim. Well done Jared and Matthew and good luck in the All Ireland champs.
Dovydas Pliauga of BHAC navigates through the mud at the Bobby Rea XC
Also, on Saturday was the Run to Remember 5k organised by Atlas running and held around the undulating back roads of Ballynahinch. The tough conditions and floods didn’t deter four Ballydrain club members – Steven Watterson, James Lyons, Val Gibson and Michael Gibson from taking part. The race was won by Lawrence O’Hare of North Belfast Harriers in a time of 18:10. Stephen Watterson was the first of the four Harriers to cross the line, finishing in 24:29. Well done to all those braving the conditions.
Stephen Watterson at the Run to Remember 5K
By Denise Davison