St. Joseph's A.C: Club members travelled to the National Sports Campus in Dublin for the All-Ireland cross-country even age and Senior championships recently.
Eight athletes were representing St. Joseph's against the best in the country and they all did the club proud.
The girls' Under-12 race over 2,000 metres saw Grace Glennon finish 91st, Áine Purcell 99th and Maeve Bookle 118th from 155 finishers.
Three St. Joseph's athletes stood on the crowded start line in a massive field of 166 runners representing the 32 counties in the girls' Under-14 race over 3,000 metres. Danielle Griffin led the club home in 106th position, followed by Erin Foley (120th) and Katie Bookle (133rd).
The St. Joseph's singlet in the boys' Under-14 race was worn by Jamie O'Connor and he had a fine run in his first All-Ireland, finishing 136th from 162 finishers.
The club's Senior athletes were represented by Sally Forristal who finished in a fine 52th position in the women's race against athletes of the calibre of track star Ciara Mageean. Simply qualifying for the All-Irelands from the ultra-competitive Leinster championships is a fantastic achievement, so well done to everyone who did the club proud.
Good luck to Grace Glennon, Maeve Bookle, Erin Foley, Katie Bookle and Jamie O'Connor who will represent the club and county on the second day of the All-Irelands when the uneven age cross-country championships will be run in Dundalk on Sunday, December 11.
On the same day the Stook ten-mile race incorporating the county ten-mile championship took place in Dungarvan, Co. Kilkenny. David Lanigan was first home for the club in a superb time of 1.06.17, and Paul Sheehan was next across the finish line in 1.13.29.
John Joe Lawlor finished in 1.25.49, followed by Mary McDonald (1.39.14) and Helen Walsh (1.48.20).
In the Stook 5k race, St. Joseph's had a strong representation from Susan, Aoife and Conor Lanigan, Nora O'Mahony and Lulu Walsh-Lawlor.
All roads will lead to the Pink Rock on St. Stephen's Day for the annual St. Joseph's festive fun run over 5k. The fun run and walk will start at 12 noon with a huge crowd, young and old, guaranteed.
Come along with all the family, enjoy the great atmosphere, and get in a little post-Christmas day exercise. Fancy dress is optional and there will be prizes for best adult and children's costume. Lots of refreshments will be served afterwards.
St. Joseph's Athletic club Christmas vouchers are now available. A multiple member family voucher costs €100, and the cost is €30 for an adult and €20 for children. Contact Maggie on 087-6242017 for more information.
The ladies' final on Wednesday was a pulsating affair between Liz Byrne and Sinéad Fox. Liz drew first blood but Sinéad hit straight back and won the next two legs to lead 2-1.
Liz, who had won once this year already, was in good form in the fourth leg to level things up, and she sealed her second win of the year by taking the fifth and deciding leg.
Sinéad was in her third final in a row and is really throwing consistently this season and might go all the way to the title this year.
Jeff Nolan and Tom O'Connor were in the first of the night's semi-finals and it's good to see Tom back this season as he always challenges the leader board. Jeff was looking to make it three wins in a row and he kept the dream alive by beating Tom 2-0 to make the final.
David Murphy and P.J. Byrne were next up and P.J. was really in fine form, and in a close match he beat David 2-1 to set up a mouth-watering clash with Jeff.
The final was one of the best matches seen in the club and both players brought the best out of each other. Jeff won the first leg with an eleven-darter which included a 180, and the second leg went his way also.
P.J., who was rolling back the years with his darts, hit a flawless 90 finish to claw back Jeff's lead, and if he continues to play like this he will be well up the leader board very soon.
Jeff was not to be denied though and he won 3-1. To highlight the standard of the final, there were 15 throws of 100 or more in the four legs played.
P.J. would have won on any other night with the quality of darts he threw but Jeff in fairness was awesome and he deserves his top spot in the league.
The other players know they have a real battle on their hands to stop Jeff, but it is early days yet and we have a lot of points to play for still.
Remember, it's double points night on week four and it's a big opportunity to move up the league. Paul Cooper was the spot the dart winner. See you all on Wednesday.
UNITED STRIDERS A.C.
The Striders had an amazing ten athletes competing in the All-Ireland even ages cross-country championship at the new course at the National Sports Centre in Abbotstown. Getting this far has been a real achievement for these athletes, as qualification for the All-Ireland is earned through the provincial events.
Myles Hewlett was the Striders' star man, earning an Under-12 individual medal and helping Leinster win gold in the provincial competition. In a field of nearly 200, Myles got a quick start and set off with the leaders.
Over the testing 2k course, Myles showed real courage and determination to record a fantastic top ten finish. With four athletes to score, Eoin Shannon, Finn Kelly and Caolan Costello were the next three over the line.
They were well supported by out-of-age Seán Lennon and Ben Myers, to help the Striders to a fourth place finish in the team event, which is our best finishing place in decades.
Myles, Eoin and Finn were also part of the six-man Wexford scoring team which finished an impressive eighth place.
In the Under-14 boys' event, Aidan Shannon was first Strider and second Wexford athlete home, despite being a year out of age. Solid runs by Adam O'Connor, Darragh Flannelly and Owen Lennon helped Wexford to another eighth place finish in the county competition.
Not many athletes get to compete at this level, so well done to all our boys who were fantastic.
Wexford Gymnastics Club brought 24 gymnasts to the University of Limerick recently to compete in the women's artistic regional and national apparatus finals where over 800 gymnasts from across the country were participating.
The club made history by winning its first-ever national medal, not once but twice by Saoirse Crosbie in the level two Under-9 vault and Caithlyn Kelly in the level two Under-10 vault.
We also brought home a total of 27 regional medals which broke down into eleven bronze, ten silver and four gold medals.
This competition awarded both regional and national medals in all four pieces of the artistic discipline - floor, vault, bar and beam.
The girls were competing in their region against clubs from Waterford, Dungarvan, Kilbarry, Cobra and Sugarloaf. All of these clubs are exclusively artistic clubs and as you may know Wexford has historically been an acrobatic club, having only recently branched out into artistic gymnastics.
The club had gymnasts competing in two levels - level two and, for the first time ever, level four.
The girls competing were - level two Under-8: Aoife Gough (silver regional medal, bar); Laura Breen (silver regional medal, beam); Sara Cullen (silver regional medal, beam; silver regional medal, floor); Bríann Carlyle (bronze regional medal, beam).
Level two Under-9: Saoirse Crosbie (gold regional medal, vault; bronze national medal, vault).
Level two Under-10: Caithlyn Kelly (gold regional medal, vault; bronze national medal, vault; bronze regional medal, bar); Ellie Whelan (bronze regional medal, vault; gold regional medal, bar).
Level two Over-10: Katie Cullen (bronze regional medal, beam); Maria Fortune (silver regional medal, beam).
Level four Under-9: Lily Stewart (silver regional medal, vault; bronze regional medal, bar; bronze regional medal, beam; gold regional medal, floor); Veda Hanley-O'Leary (silver regional medal, bar); Ciara Roche (bronze regional medal, vault; silver regional medal, beam; bronze regional medal, floor).
Level four Under-11: Becky Duggan (bronze regional medal, bar); Somer Penwell (gold regional medal, beam; gold regional medal, floor).
Level four Under-13: Katie Whelan (silver regional medal, beam); Willow Hayes (silver regional medal, floor); Aoibh Webster (bronze regional medal, beam).
We would also like to wish the following gymnasts who competed a special mention as although they didn't secure any medals they all performed to their best: level four Under-11, Caitlin Finnegan; level four Under-13, Fiona Doyle; level two Under-8, Sophie Dempsey, Evelyn Dunne, Lien Campbell; level two Over-10, Chloe Fortune, Annabel Whitty.
The club is extremely proud of all the gymnasts who competed and know that it's onwards and upwards from here!
ST. KILLIAN'S A.C.
If you are looking for a scenic race with breathtaking views meandering along quiet country roads for over 21 kilometres along the Wild Atlantic Way, you are going to find it hard to beat the Clonakilty half-marathon which was held on Sunday in perfect conditions.
This race has gone from strength to strength over the years and is a favourite for those who have competed.
Niall Sheil of St. Killian's made the trip to Clonakilty and his efforts were rewarded as he took the title with a winning margin of nearly seven minutes. It's great to see a St. Killian's athlete winning such a prestigious race.
Closer to home, St. Killian's were well represented in the Waterford half-marathon. Again the conditions were perfect which resulted in a fast race with great times.
This race is another local favourite with over 1,700 competitors. Brian O'Shaughnessy has been training really well and putting in the miles, so it was great to see this effort being rewarded by finishing 41st in a P.B. time.
It was also great to see Jay Kehoe back racing and in good shape, and he was rewarded with a sub 90-minute finish. Well done all for doing yourselves and the club proud.
The focus now turns to the county Senior cross-country championships in two weeks. We hope to have a Senior team competing.
Niall goes into the race in good form and as the Senior road champion. He will have to be in top form if he is to prevail in what promises to be a competitive race.
Everyone at S.B.R. is thrilled to have Paul Lynch back racing after eleven months. Congratulations on his victory at the second Gorey Park Run on Saturday in a time of 18:12 for 5k to win in a field of 61. Well done Paul and welcome back!
S.B.R. was out in force Saturday at the Waterford half-marathon, with some fantastic performances for both the women and the men.
Pedro Calvo led home the men in an outstanding 1:13:20 which was good for ninth place overall, and he was followed by Tomás Kavanagh in a P.B. of 1:23:03 for 50th place.
On the women's side, Belinda Kehoe led home the S.B.R. contingent in a brilliant time of 1:43:35. Ciara Bowe was the next S.B.R. woman across the line in an equally brilliant 1:47:35.
Other strong performances included a three-minute P.B. for Annette Guinan, and Tom Kavanagh finishing well in the Over-60 age category. A total of 16 runners finished the 13.1 mile course for S.B.R. out of 1,735 finishers.
S.B.R. results: Pedro Calvo 1:13:20, Tomás Kavanagh 1:23:03, Pa Cronin 1:36:26, Michael Breen 1:41:31, Belinda Kehoe 1:43:35, Tim O'Neill 1:45:54, Ciara Bowe 1:47:35, Shea O'Neill 1:50:04, Ryan Gleeson 1:52:51, Pat Crean 1:53:27, Orla Furlong 1:54:42, Lorcan Murphy 1:54:42, Eilish Kehoe 1:55:11, Lisa Murphy 1:59:26, Annette Guinan 2:08:10, Tom Kavanagh 2:12:28.
Training continues for cross-country with the Wexford Senior championships to take place on December 18. Runners are meeting in Ferns on Tuesday and Thursday nights. For more information contact Lukie Kehoe (087-3222914).
SLANEY OLYMPIC A.C.
Good running conditions made for fast times for the large contingent of Slaney Olympic runners who took part in the Waterford half-marathon on Saturday hosted by Waterford A.C. First home for the club was Billy Reck in 1.20.06, and first lady home was Annemarie Nolan in a P.B. of 1.43.43.
Full club results: Billy Reck 1.20.06, Paul Browne 1.27.14, John Roban 1.27.22, Will Doyle 1.27.30, Mick Morrissey 1.28.09, Brian Murphy 1.28.41, Malo Roban 1.29.07, Brendan Dillon 1.32.33, Tom O'Shea 1.34.08, Pat Codd 1.36.52, Pat Hennessy 1.41.50, Mick Quigley 1.42.55, Annemarie Nolan 1.43.43, Garry Rooney 1.44.05, Maura Nevlle 1.52.04, Michael Coughlan 1.53.03, Seamus Jordan 1.57.15, Vincent Byrne 1.58.18, Stephanie McKenna 1.59.16, Jim Kehoe 2.03.03, Tracy Kavanagh 2.12.56, Siobhán Fenlon 2.21.16, Mary Murphy 2.21.17, Joanne Murphy 2.23.31, Valerie Murphy 2.23.25, Diane Breslin 2.25.22, Samanatha Brady 2.25.22, Angela McDonald 2.28.12, Annis Kehoe 2.30.25, Jennie Frizelle 2.32.57.