With the nights beginning to draw in and, the first real signs of autumn in the air, members of the North Belfast Harriers kept the heat up at the first Cross Country Race of the season, as well as 10k and 5k races, marathons and ultra edurance events throughout Ireland, the UK and Europe.
Bangor 10k, Saturday 24th September
On Saturday morning over 650 runners took to the streets of Bangor, for the NI and Ulster Bangor 10k Championships, and as usual North Belfast Harriers were well represented. Andrew Milligan ran a great race, finishing 4th in 30 min: 33 sec, a mere 4 secs from a podium place. Peter McGarry finished strong in 32 min: 01 secs, placing 10th overall, and 2nd in the M35 category. Gareth Lyons finished 22nd overall in 33 min: 29 secs, coming 1st in the M45 category, whilst Lawrence Johnston, finished in an impressive 38 min: 10 secs, and was also 2nd in his age category of M60. Congratulations also to Brian Stewart who finished 1st in the M70 category in 44 min: 32 secs, coming 156th overall.
The Bangor 10k started in Castle Park, opposite to the railway station and took runners on a descent along Main Street, towards the marina, before continuing along the coast towards Groomsport, and then looping back to the finish, at Hamilton Road, Bangor. Well done to all the runners, who took part in the 10k, on what turned out on a pleasant autumn morning for a race.
At the finish of the Bangor 10k. Photo courtesy of Sonia Millar.
|Position||Bib||Name||Category||Gun Time||Chip Time||5k Split|
Andrew Milligan wins the first Senior Men’s Race of the Cross Country Season, at the TJ McElmeel Cup at Armagh. Photo by Joe Gallagher.
It’s Gold in the Men’s Race for North Belfast Harriers, in the McElmeel Cup Cross Country, at Armagh, on Sunday 25th September
As a consequence of a strong performance by all of the runners from the club, the Men’s Team lifted first place overall, and the Women’s Team came fourth.
Andrew Milligan ran yet another superb race, to finish first in the men’s 7.5k course, crossing the line, in a sprint finish, some 3 seconds ahead of his nearest rival, with the third-place runner nowhere in sight. Sarah-Jane McFadden ran yet another great race for the women’s team, coming first in the F35 category, over the 5k course. In addition, Eamon White put in a strong performance to come 1st in the M50 category, whilst a great run by Philip Goss saw him finish 2nd in the M35.
There was a good turnout of runners in both the men’s and women’s races at the first cross country meet of the 2022-23 season. The Palace Demesne, Armagh was the venue, with runners challenged by the undulating, hilly terrain and varied conditions underfoot. However, most of the circuit was reasonably firm and fast.
TJ McElmeel Cup, Men’s 7.5k Course
TJ McElmeel Cup, Men’s Vet 5k Course
TJ McElmeel Cup, Women’s 5k Course
TJ McElmeel Cup. Photos courtesy of Matthew Carleton, Seamus Leheny, and Joe Gallagher.
Berlin Marathon Saturday, 24th September
Greg McClure completed the Berlin Marathon on Saturday in a commendable time of 3 hours: 44 min: 20 sec. Amazingly, Greg, one of North Belfast Harriers’ veteran endurance athletes, was running in his 16th Berlin Marathon. Having successfully completed literally hundreds of marathons and ultra marathons, at different venues around the world, Greg took the occasion in his stride. Pictured outside the Reichstag, with yet another medal to add to his comprehensive collection, Greg happily and modestly commented that the conditions on the day were good for running. Well done Greg.
Greg McClure upon finishing the Berlin Marathon. Photo courtesy of Greg.
The Great Bristol Run, Saturday 24th September
Gillian Roden was the sole representative in the 10k race in the Great Bristol Run. Completing the course in 57 min: 23 sec, Gillian was 2156th overall. In the pleasant autumnal sunshine, thousands of runners took to the streets of Bristol to cover either the 10k, or half marathon distance. All runners started in the city centre before traversing the vibrant waterfront and the old city, before culminating at a grandstand finish, on Anchor Road. Well done Gillian on a good performance at another iconic event.
Gillian Roden at the finish of the Great Bristol Run. Photo courtesy of Gillian.
FEAR Fermanagh Endurance Adventure Race, Saturday 24th September
Paul Manton was the sole brave representative from North Belfast Harriers, to participate in this multi disciplinary, endurance event. Paul finished the long course version in 4 hours: 40 min: 33 sec, in a commendable 68th place. The venue for the event was the beautiful, but rugged and wild terrain of rural Fermanagh. The course encompassed a wide mix of terrain, in an area between Derrygonnelly and Garrison. The event required athletes to cover 74km, by alternating between cycling, running and kyaking, over roads, hills and lakes, with climbs of 304m that were breath-taking both literally and metaphorically. Well done to Paul, and all those who completed the event.
Rathfarnham 5k, Sunday 25th September
On Sunday over 1,100 runners took to the roads around Rathfarhnam, on the southern suburbs of Dublin, where North Belfast Harriers were represented by father and daughter team of David and April Clarke. Having previously set a world record in late August, at the Antrim Coast Half Marathon, David and April continued a year of great achievements. Running in the M60 category, David finished in a superb time of 17 min: 15 sec, and was placed 118th overall, whilst April, running in the FO category, set a new PB, with a great time of 17 min: 48 sec, finishing 157th overall. With British Titles, World Silver Medals and World Records already achieved this year, it’s intreaguing to speculate how they are going to finish the year. Well done April and David!
David and April Clarke at Rathfarnham. Photo courtesy of April.
ParkRuns, Saturday 24th September
Those who ventured out early on Saturday morning may have noticed an autumnal feel in the air. However it did not deter members of the North Belfast Harriers from turning out in force to partake in their weekly commune with friends and fellow runners, for the camaraderie, craic and conviviality, that goes hand in hand with every 5k ParkRun. Worthy of a special mention are Aaron Rush and Colin McDowell who were first finishers on their respective courses, as well as Alex Reid and Conor O’Rawe, who were both third finishers on their courses. Fionnuala O’Hare was a first female finisher on her course. Congratulations to Paddy Coyle, Aaron Rush, Alex Reid, Clare Corey and Conor O’Rawe, who all achieved new PBs on their respective courses. Well done everyone who participated in the ParkRun nearest to them on Saturday, whether locally, in Ireland, in England, Italy or Germany.
|1||Aaron Rush||74.95%||17:28||New PB, First Finisher|
|33||Fionnuala O’Hare||65.01%||22:46||First Female|
|3||Alex Reid||74.69%||20:29||Third Finisher and New PB|
|20||Nicky Hagan||55.63%||23:51||First Timer|
|58||Phoebe Reid||53.95%||31:38||First Timer|
Colin Glen ParkRun
Belfast Victoria ParkRun
Ecos Ballymena ParkRun
|100||Sonya Gorman||36.57%||40:31||First Timer|
Citypark Craigavon ParkRun
|1||Colin McDowell||88.83%||17:01||First Finisher|
|46||Clare Corey||55.94%||31:08||New PB|
|25||Tony Reid||65.75%||24:11||First Timer|
Edgbaston Reservoir ParkRun
|3||Conor O’Rawe||73.57%||17:32||Third Finisher and New PB|
Mura di Lucca ParkRun
|55||Paul Lavery||44.69%||37:31||First Timer|