Thursday, November 25, 2010

Sligo AC News: Running Shoes

The first and probably the most important cross country race of the winter will take place in Derry on Sunday next. It’s the AAI inter county National Championships for senior men and women and the juvenile championships are also held in conjunction. The road to Derry from Sligo will be busy on Sunday morning as we have athletes competing in all grades. Few will forget 2009 when our senior mens team brought home bronze medals for the first time in the history of the event. The chance to equal that or even build on it probably is beyond the team this year. The absence of David Kelly unavailable due to work commitments, Emmett Dunleavy injured, Martin Conroy who is in Australia and Paddy Brennan who has flown the nest to Donegal is a huge blow. However the addition of Thomas McBride, Seamus Somers and new recruit John Hennigan is positive for the team. Tommy Carroll is a much stronger athlete than last year so it’s not all doom and gloom around our senior mens team. Last year we also celebrated a stunning victory by Mary Cullen in the senior women’s race and unfortunately injury has ruled her out of this years race but Sligo AC athlete Eimear O’Brien makes her debut in this race and does hold an outside chance of making the team for the European cross country. Another man with serious ambitions of making that team is Tommy Casey who lines out in the junior mens race with high hopes. Anna Reddin is a starter in the ladies equivalent and will harbour similar ambitions to Tommy. Sligo juvenile athletes have been in flying form in the Connaught championships and travel to Derry in confident form. The North Sligo duo of William Crowe and Cian McBride always seem to peek in All Ireland championships and I expect it will be no different on Sunday next. Sligo AC athletes Leo Doherty, Caolinn McGonagle and Sarah McGeogh are class athletes and are expected to run well. Both Sligo clubs will also have teams in some of the age groups while a number of county teams will also declare in the juvenile section. So a fascinating day lies in store on Sunday next where teams for the European championships will be announced after the event. Let’s hope that we have a Sligo representative on one team at least.
Two interesting road races with a distinctly Christmas flavour should now go into all readers diaries. The first is the Calry Athletic club “Turkey Trot” which will take place in Calry on Saturday December 18th starting from the Marian Hall Calry. The second is “The great Sligo Santa dash” which will start from Sligo southern hotel on Wednesday December 22nd at 7pm. This promises to be a great occasion with a massive Christmas party taking place after the race with music, food and craic.

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