The Winter season of racing well and truly arrived last weekend, as NBH tackled cross country and trail events in the seasonably cold weather.
82nd McConnell Shield Cross Country, Sixmilewater Park, Ballyclare, Co. Antrim
The highlight of the racing weekend was the 82nd running of the McConnell Shield XC event, in Sixemilewater Park. The park regularly hosts cross country races and is a popular location due to its tight loop course, challenging terrain and ample spectator viewpoints.
The five mile men’s race was won by Conor Duffy from Glaslough Harriers (25:38). NBH had great success with Mark McKinstry claiming a podium position for 3rd place overall. NBH mens teams claimed 1st place, 3rd place and 7th place in the team event, demonstrating great depth and strength in numbers of the club. Additionally, out of the eight male age categories, three were won by NBH athletes (Eamon White, Conor Curran and James Wallace).
The ladies and veterans race was a 3 mile loop of the course and it also involved strong NBH participation.
The ladies race was won by Catherine Whoriskey from City of Derry AC (17:11), Carol Clarke braved the terrain for NBH to secure 36th position (21:16).
The Veterans race was won by Eric Montgomery from Lagan Valley AC (19:11). There were three NBH in this race, Jim Newbury took 3rd place (19:46), Greg Mc Clure finished close behind him in 6th position (20:43) and Freddie Murdock finished in 17th (23:35)
Born2Run, Minnowburn 5km & 10km, Belfast, Co. Antrim
Also on Saturday, Born2Run organised a popular multi-distance event around Mary Peters track, Barnetts Demense and Minnowburn forest. This race is run amongst the leafy forests and River Lagan’s edge in the Shaws Bridge area of Belfast, with both flat and undulating trails.
In the 5km event just shy of one hundred runners participated. NBH runner Kent Swann (17:57) and Roisin Hughes (19:40) represented the club on the top step of the podium, taking the win in the men’s and women’s race respectively. Padraigin Bingham also took part in this race and secured 81st position (40:03).
The 10km event was a considerably larger affair with over six hundred runners competing. This was won by Tim Johnston (37:20) with Judith Lonnen from City of Lisburn AC taking the top place in the women’s race (39:44). Three other NBH runners competed here, Louise Smith was the second lady across the line clinching 7th overall (40:32). Gordon Glenn finished in 79th (48:12) and John Johnston finished in 344th position (58:57).
Athletics NI XC League 2016/17
After the first two events of the 2016/2017 NI XC league, NBH was sitting comfortably in second place in the official league results (50 points), sandwiched between leaders Newcastle AC (52 points) and Foyle Valley AC (42 points). The strong performance at Ballyclare this weekend will help to solidify that strong position in the early stages of this league competition (updated results to be released).
Parkrun results to follow asap