Streets of Athboy 5k
Congratulations to Brid Ryan and Nick Devery who achieved some blistering times in the Streets of Athboy 5k last Friday.
Brid finished in 19:35, seventh female overall and second in her age category. Nick came home in 19:31, third in his age category. Fantastic running guys!
Rock n Roll Half Marathon and 10K
This has been a target race for those of us training for the marathon. Given the course profile there weren’t going to be too many PBs but would be a good way of seeing our progression and testing paces. Keith had us in great shape from all of the sessions around the high hills and Kyber (not to mention the ab crunches!) so we were ready to tackle those hills.
So, the course. Yes, it’s hilly, and we knew that going into it but it’s one thing looking at a course map, another actually running it. The race started in the Royal Hospital Kilmainham. There were a few minutes delay while we waited for roads to clear and were treated to a few motivational words from Kevin “Zinedine” Kilbane. The first couple of miles are fast as you come down James St and Thomas St before turning down by Christchurch and onto the quays. Handy for banking a bit of time because by god you’ll need it.
The fun started at mile 6 when we hit the infamous Knockmaroon Hill. Yes, it’s steep, but as they say in running circles “it’s a hill, get over it.” I had been dreading this hill all through the first 5 miles but when we actually reached it I didn’t find it all too bad. The steep bit is reasonably short and the legs were still fresh at that stage. The climbing continued for a good mile up Tower road.
There was a bit of respite when we turned into Castleknock College. I kind of relaxed a bit at this point thinking the hard work was done. There was a nice meander down the Strawberry Beds until the hellscape of the hill at the Anglers Rest appeared. 10 miles of hard running took its toll here – it was like a scene from Saving Private Ryan! Then it was back down Knockmaroon hill which is so steep that all of your energy is spent trying to stay upright. My thighs were screaming out for mercy at that point.
There was more fun still to come with the climb out of the underpass on Laurence’s road at mile 12. I have never heard so many expletives during a race. It was a case of head down, pump the arms and get through it. I got a final surge of speed as we passed by Kilmainham Gaol (was it for this etc), before entering grounds of the Royal Hospital and the sweet release of the finish line.
Despite the challenge of the course there were some great times:
Brian Walls 1:25:23
Tony Garvin 1:36:48
Orla Cox 1:45:11
Kevin Laide 1:45:25
Alan Julian 1:46:34
Brian Boland 1:46:40
Maria Pozo 1:47:37
Paul Pugh 1:48:35
John Meagher 1:49:38
Sally Lynch 1:53:10
Marie Norris 1:59:27
Stephen Downey 2:11:01
Special mention has to be given to Stephen Downey. This was a warm-up for 4 half marathons in 4 days, a challenge he’s starting this Thursday for charity. Well done Stephen.
Congratulations also to Noel Ryan who ran in the Rock n Roll 10K. His time of 39:48 placed him 7th overall. Well done Noel!