What a good start to this years Walker Bros.
sponsored league. We were very lucky to have beautiful sunny weather all
afternoon and a good field of 43 runners including three juniors and four
females. There was a number of regulars missing due to some competing in Mondays
Dublin Marathon and others at next weeks New York race ( including event host
James Coulson who makes his marathon debut in the "Big Apple" ).
The view from Glen Ruy Farm is stunning and enables
a good part of the course to be viewed from near the start area. A sizeable
crowd seemed to enjoy watching the race and they must be thanked for all their
shouts of encouragement, or in Graham Davies case all the stick he dished out to
just about everyone.
The course was probably a bit tougher than we all
expected making Tony`s winning time even more outstanding. He had to really go
for it though as he was pushed hard all the way by Brian Osbourne and Wayne
Smith who I would think had his best ever race. Ozzie reckons he hasn`t done
much training so who knows how much quicker he can go when fully fit. The first
six finishers had less then one minute between them making it one of the most
competitive races yet in this eighth edition of the re-introduced Winter
Marie Noon showed her talents are not restricted to
cycling and road running as she finished a excellent 13th overall in a sub 20
minute time. It was very encouraging to see three other lady runners having a
go. Rose Hooton ran very well as did Kerry Clarke and Anne Cain. Talking of the
Cains, Ann's hubby Phil " Eddy Munster " Cain enjoyed his best run in a long
time and looks like he could well be on his way back to the form he enjoyed a
few years ago when he was overall champion on two occasions.
Three juniors took up the challenge and all
performed impressively in a discipline of athletics that they have very little
experience at.Ben Brand was first in a excellent 20th overall, followed by
Andrew Cowley ( whose father Brian also ran his first hill race in 30 years
) and the youngest competitor on the day Mathew Brand third.
Many thanks to the Coulsons for allowing us to run
on their land again and for the welcome they give us. Also a very big thank you
to Margaret Quirk for the refreshments which were greatly enjoyed and to Walter
and Doug for officiating.