Rathfarnham W.S.A.F provided a stunning finale to the 2012 Woodie’s DIY National Road Relay Championships of Ireland in Raheny. The Rathfarnham squad made up of Eoin Flynn, Paul Fleming, Barry Minnock and Sean Hehir claimed the title by one second over defending champions Raheny Shamrock AC.
Thomas Chamney (Crusaders AC) ran impressively over the first two mile leg and came in just ahead of Clonliffe Harriers, closely followed by Raheny and Rathfarnham. On the quick one mile leg Paul Fleming of Rathfarnham produced a blistering split (4:28) to hand over in first position with Feidhlim Kelly of Raheny just behind in second place. Ennis Track AC started to move through the field and were closing fast on third place.
The crucial three mile leg was next, Kevin Moriarty (14:28) of Raheny battled with Barry Minnock (14:46) of Rathfarnham for the lead over the tough three lap course. Rory Chesser (14:28) scorched around to the loop to establish Ennis Track in a clear third position. Sean Hehir and Simon Ryan took over as the final leg runners for Rathfarnham and Raheny respectively. The battle for victory was fierce and Hehir (9:33) just managed to sprint clear of Ryan (9:35) in the closing few metres. Rathfarnham were awarded the victory (38:33) by one second over Raheny Shamrock (38:34), with Ennis Track AC holding on for third in 39:21
Dundrum South Dublin AC claimed the senior women’s title from Raheny Shamrock and Clonliffe Harriers. Eleanor Alexander (5:09) of Clonliffe was the quickest on the first leg, just holding off Siobhan Eviston (5:10) with Niamh Devlin (5:21) of D.S.D AC rounding out the top three.
Olympic marathon hopeful Linda Byrne produced a fast (10:33) split for the two mile leg and this moved D.S.D AC into first place. Fiona Roche (11:01) moved Raheny into a clear second with Ailish Malone (11:23) of Clonliffe holding on for third. Another athlete who has attained the Olympic qualifying standard Maria McCambridge (Letterkenny AC) flew around the course to match Byrne’s time over the two mile leg and move her team up to sixth position.
Sarah Mulligan (5:23) ran strongly on the last leg to claim the national title for Dundrum South Dublin AC in a time of 21:17. Aoife Talty (5:14) finished like a train to claim silver for Raheny Shamrock (21:25), with Louise Reilly (5:32) securing the bronze medals for Clonliffe Harriers AC (22:04)
In the earlier races on the programme saw Raheny Shamrock AC dominate the master’s events.
In the early stages of the women’s master race Raheny battled with Na Fianna AC for the lead. On the crucial 2 mile leg Annette Kealy produced a remarkable performance (11:25) to put Raheny in a commanding lead over Mary Hanley (Na Fianna AC). Barbara O ‘Hanrahan anchored Raheny (23:22) to their fourth consecutive masters title (23:22). Bridget Clarke of Na Fianna AC held on for second spot (23:49) ahead of Rathfarnham WSAF (24:28)
Raheny were clear winner of the master men’s 40+ race, Damian Martin of the host club produced a quick (10:13) on the 2 mile leg to hand Raheny over in first place ahead of Liffey Valley AC and Finn Valley AC. James Kelly (4:58) ran strongly on the final leg to bring Raheny home the clear winners (20:19) ahead of Liffey Valley (20:43) and Finn Valley (21:01) respectively.
Tallaght AC (21:19) were victorious in the men 50+ event over Finn Valley AC (22:51) and Metro St. Brigid’s AC (23:39)
Away from road relays a number of Irish race walkers were in action in the 20km in Naumburg today. Colin Griffin was the best of the Irish finishing in 1:24.40, Jamie Costin finished in 1:25.25. Laura Reynolds set a personal best of 1:34:40 in the women’s 20k walk.
Naumburg Results here. http://www.racewalking-naumburg.de/resources/results-International2012.htm