Two Wins, A Medal, Two Big PBs and Youth Cross Country – Weekend Round-Up

imageNorth Belfast runners were to the fore in a range of venues across Ireland and the UK this weekend, collecting wins, a medal, personal bests and quality performances.

Breege Connolly Runs 77.29 at the Great North Run

Breege Connolly’s 77.29 for 15th place in the ultra-competitive Great North Run in Newcastle, England on Sunday – a personal best by just over two minutes – headlined the list of accomplishments. Breege’s previous best of 79.18 was set in Omagh in April of this year, and her race in Newcastle indicates she is on track for next month’s Dublin Marathon.

imageYouth Cross Country – Conal McCambridge Wins in Musgrave

The youth cross country season got underway Saturday with a meet in Musgrave Park in Belfast. The Harriers had several athletes competing for the very first time and they all did themselves proud. Conal McCambridge impressed in winning the Under-17 race. Amie Bradley was second in the Primary 7 and Connell Brown placed fourth in the Primary 7, while Aaron McCann, Jack O’Dwyer Henry, Daire Brown, Cian McGrath and Raoisle Hoy all took part.

Northern Ireland Veterans Assocation 5k – Silver for Conor Curran

There were veterans medals up for grabs Saturday afternoon in Belfast’s Ormeau Park at the Embankment 5k Road Race. Conor Curran captured a silver medal behind perennial favourite Paul Rowan. Conor, Paul and Ben Branagh ran in a pack through the first 4k, but Paul made a decisive break at that point. Conor finished the course in 16.23. Fellow Harrier John Patience also had a solid performance, clocking 18.23 for 24th. John is coming off a year in which he has struggled with injury and illness.

Connor Magill Wins Felix McCullough 10k

Connor Magill was a comfortable winner in the Felix McCullough 10k in Dungannon on Saturday, clocking 33.30 to cross the line 35 seconds ahead of Orchard County’s Adam Magowan. It was Connor’s second straight victory, following his recent win at the Brackaville Owen Roe’s 10k.

Paul Blaney was fifth in the race, timing 35.32 and finishing third in the V35 category.

Dublin Half Marathon – Personal Best for Stevie Walker

Three Harriers travelled to the Phoenix Park on Saturday for the Dublin Half Marathon. Battling strong winds, Jim Benson posted a time of 76.38 to finish 28th overall and 4th in the V40 category. Gareth Grew clocked 77.39 and was sixth in the V40 category.

Stevie Walker smashed his personal best in the race, turning in a strong 82.32. His previous best was 85.10 in Omagh in April.

Park Run

The first Harrier home in Saturday’s Waterworks Park Run was first-time Park Runner Tony McNulty, who crossed the line 6th in 19.21. He was followed by Damien Gill (19.49), Tony Forde (20.29), Greg McClure (20.49), John Lavery (22.00), Darragh McNairney (26.56) and Jim Clinton (27.38).

Greg continues on the comeback trail after an IT band injury, which he suffered in the aftermath of his 24-hour race. He says he still plans to participate in the Berlin Marathon this coming weekend, although he may have to employ a run-walk strategy rather than try for his usual sub-3 hour time.

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