Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Running Shoes: Sligo Athletic Club News

The Antrim IAAF International cross country which takes place on Saturday next in Greenmount campus Antrim this year takes on added significance. Among the star studded field in the women’s international race is the recent surprise winner of the European cross country Hayley Yelling from England, Kate Avery a medallist in the junior girls race in Dublin and Ana Dule-Felix a class Portuguese athlete. Throw in North Sligo athlete Mary Cullen who goes into the race with revenge on her mind for her below par performance in Dublin and you have a fascinating race in prospect. Mary has spent the last couple of weeks away from the snow and ice warm weather training in Portugal and all reports coming from there indicate that she’s in flying form and I would expect her to turn the tables on Yelling and record a famous victory.
The first national medal of 2010 to come to Sligo was won by Anna Reddin on Saturday last when she won a brilliant silver medal in the AAI indoor championships in Nenagh. Anna recorded a time of 5mins7secs to win a silver medal behind Tara Jameson of Wicklow. I would confidently expect that this will only be the first of many medals that Anna will win in 2010. Martin Conroy’s 5th position and Emmett Dunleaveys 6th position in their respective races in the AAI games in Nenagh on Sunday probably did not reflect their good performances. Emmett ran 2mins30secs for 1000mts some 5secs faster than in the corresponding race last year. Martin Conroy posted a respectable 8mins38secs in the 3000mts.
Also next Weekend we have to go back to Nenagh for the AAI masters championships and the AAI indoor relay championships. Sligo masters will be out in force for the championships while Sligo Athletic Club have entered strong teams in the 3X800mts and 3000mts team race. Last year Martin Conroy won that team individual title and he will be aiming to do the same this year in his build up to the senior indoor championships.
Finally this week I want to say that my running shoes article last week about weak athletes resorting to running on treadmills in bad weather conditions caused a bit of controversy. Coincidently Ian O’Riordan writing his athletics column in the Irish Times wrote on the same subject. Ian posed the question “Has anybody seen a Kenyan athlete on a treadmill?” Think about it!!

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