Menapians' memorable day
Menapians A.C. brought a very strong men's team to the Irish Life Health National Indoor Arena in Abbotstown on Saturday for the final of the National Indoor League.
Lying in fifth place following the two qualification rounds, they knew that they would need to seriously up their game if they were going to bother the leader board.
Up their game they did as a massive team effort saw them clinching the silver medal spot behind Clonliffe Harriers, with Donore Harriers in third.
Aaron Smith got the ball rolling with an impressive maximum points win in the 60m hurdles, clocking a speedy 8.79s.
Multi-talented Conor Gaffney had a busy day, scoring points in the pole vault, high jump and 800m. David McDonald, currently building back to full fitness, took second place in the long jump.
Paul Crowe rolled back the years as he took the runner-up spot in the shot putt with an impressive series of throws. Jack Hayden bravely stepped way outside his comfort zone in running the 1,500m and picking up valuable points.
Last year's British championships 200m bronze medalist, Leon Reid, delivered the club's second win in the 60m, clocking a speedy 6.77s. Team captain Conor Wilson ran an indoor P.B. of 50.22s to take third in the 400m.
David McDonald ran the 200m, coming a great second from a tough lane one draw. Emmanuel Ogbonna secured third place in the triple jump with a best of 12.80m.
The final event, the 4 x 200m relay, provided a fitting finale to a great day for the club with David McDonald leading out and handing over to Conor Wilson who, following a battle at the break with Clonliffe, put the team in the lead.
Aaron Smith ran a consolidating third leg to keep the team in front, and Leon Reid brought the baton home in a new national club 4 x 200m record of 1:29.10m, beating the previous record by 1.5s.
This was a great team performance by Menapians with plenty of outstanding individual performances. Full credit to the club's coaching and back-up crew for what they have achieved in a relatively short space of time.
Results: Aaron Tierney-Smith, 1, 60m hurdles (8.78m); Leon Reid, 1, 60m (6.77m); Conor Wilson, 3, 400m (50.22s); Conor Gaffney, 4, 800m (2.07.22), 5, high jump (1.70m); Jack Hayden, 6, 1,500m (4.57.10m); David McDonald, 2, 200m (22.38s), 2, long jump (6.34m); Menapians, 1, 4 x 200 relay (1.29.09m); Conor Gaffney, 5, pole vault (2.70m); Paul Crowe, 2, shot putt (12.71m); Emmanuel Ogbanna, 3, triple Jump (12.80m).
Teams: 1, Clonliffe Harriers, 61; 2, Menapians, 52; 3, Donore Harriers, 48.
The A.A.I. Indoor Games took place in the National Indoor Arena, Abbotstown, on Sunday.
Maeve Hayes of St. Paul's jumped five metres in the long jump to finish fifth.
Kilmore's Fiona Kehoe was second in the 3,000m, breaking the ten-minute barrier with a time of 9.49.60m.
Menapians sprinter Leon Reid continued his weekend winning streak with a 60m double, winning the series one race in 6.81s and the series two race in 6.79s.
His clubmate, Michael Deady, ran a best time of 7.32s over the same distance.
Leon placed second in the 400m in a time of 48.48s, just 0.01s behind the winner.
The great and the good of Wexford athletics will gather at the Riverside Park Hotel, Enniscorthy, on Friday, February 16 (7.30 p.m.) for the Wexford Athletics annual awards night.
While much of the evening is taken up with the presentation of medals and awards, the event is very much a social occasion with love of athletics the unifying bond.
With this in mind, Athletics Wexford Chairman Paddy Morgan is hoping that the recently-renovated function room at the Riverside Park Hotel will be stuffed to capacity. He promises that the prize-giving ceremonies will be as short as possible so as to allow plenty of time for convivial chat.
The main awards are: Brother Egan Cup for best Senior club, track and field; Jim Redmond Cup for best overall club, cross-country; Ann O'Keeffe Trophy, best Under-17 female in Co. track and field; Harry Keyes Trophy, best Under-17 male in Co. track and field; Mr Oil athlete of the year award; Kehoe Foods award, lifetime service to Athletics award; record breakers presentations; international honours presentations; presentations to National League-winning teams.
Fixtures: February 10, Leinster Juvenile indoor championships day one (sprints, 1,500m, walks), Athlone. The programme also includes Junior, Senior and Masters walks.
February 11, Irish Life Health Intermediate, Masters, Juvenile 'B' and Juvenile cross-country relays, Kilcornan Estate, Clarinbridge, Co. Galway.
February 11 (12 noon), Enniscorthy 10k, Clonhaston, Enniscorthy (organised by Slaney Olympic).
February 16, Wexford Athletics annual awards night, Riverside Hotel, Enniscorthy.