At the opening of our track the club hosted three invitational races – 400mts for men, 800mts for ladies and 1 mile for men and all three races provided top class competition.
Three men lined up for the 400mts with Nick Ennis, Crusaders Athletic Club, Robert Bennett, Templemore Athletic Club and Adrian McGinley, Templemore Athletic Club. All three set off at a cracking pace but then had to contend with a strong headwind on the back straight and yet provided a great spectacle for the spectators. Nick finished in first place in 51.16 with Robert second in 53.81 and Adrian third in 56.92. Sponsorship of this race was provided by Maher Quarries.
Three athletes also lined up in the ladies 800mts with international athlete Ciara Everard, UCD and Kilkenny City Harriers her young cousin Fiona Everard, Bandon AC and Ciara Cummins, Nenagh AC. Again these athletes had to contend with a strong wind but nonetheless a great race ensued with Ciara E leading all the way to finish first in 2.15.18. A great battle took place between Ciara C and Fiona with Ciara finishing the stronger for second in 2.27.82 and Fiona third in 2.30.38. Sponsorship of this race was provided by Cooleeney Cheese.
Both the elite race and open race were combined into one for the men’s mile and seven athletes took to the start. National 1,500mts champion Eoin Everard, Kilkenny City Harriers, was the star of this event with Tom Hennessy, Nenagh Olympic making a huge effort to keep in contact while locals Richard Daly, Patrick Bowe, Ray Power, Cha Duggan and Simon Everard now with Crusaders all packing in behind. Eoin gave a very stylish display of running which greatly impressed all those looking on and he came home a clear winner in 4.19.27. Tom ran a very composed race to finishing very strongly for second in 4.26.81 while Simon got the better of Patrick on the finishing straight to claim third in 5.37.09 with Patrick timed at 5.40.83. Richard came through for fifth in 5.41.27 with Ray 6th in 6.39.9 and Cha 7th in 7.28.59. Centenary Thurles provided the sponsorship for this event.
The other senior race on the programme was the open ladies mile and our own club athletes came out in force with nine of them taking to the track. Louise Fogarty and Katie Harrison led the way right throughout with Louise timing her run to perfection on the last lap to come home the winner in 6.07.16. Katie finished second in 6.12.01 while Angela Fogarty came through for third in 6.28.12. Brigid Gleeson finished fourth in 6.44 with Susan Fogarty fifth in 652.32 and Lisa Quinlan sixth in 6.59.46. 7th place went to Aisling Maher in 7.23.72 with Ber Spillane 8th in 7.39.32 and Liz Power 9th in 7.4.10. Well done to all the ladies concerned. A number of juvenile races also took place with some great running by the young athletes and all are to be complimented on their efforts.