Three attractive races tomorrow in Bundoran, Belfast and Tyrone’s Lough Fea should cater for most local runners needs with the Cara Bundoran 10 mile/10k perhaps the big one of the day.
Up and running only a few years it has deservedly developed a reputation as a well run event and attracts big fields of runners and joggers, keen to test their early year endurance in advance of the upcoming Half and full Marathons later in the Spring. It has an 11 a.m. start with entries taken on the day.
The longer established Albertville 5 miler is run around Belfast’s Duncrue Industrial Estate and has a 2 p.m. start, a bit tight for anyone to contemplate a Bundoran and Belfast double!
Meanwhile in Tyrone the latest in the Sperrin Harriers Winter Trail race Series, the Lough Fea 10 miler has a 12 noon start. A testing run this but likely to get some local interest nevertheless.
Sunday’s headliner is the National Clubs Senior Cross Country championships in Dundalk. Unlikely to have much local input this year but always one worth having a look at anyway.
The Donegal clubs may have some impact in the Women’s Senior perhaps but there has been little mention of Dundalk as a serious venue for local and North West athletes who have had a protracted Cross Country season since October last year and probably want to move on to firmer terrain.
Sunday also sees the Scottish Masters Indoors championships which could well see some local input.
Local athlete, Robert Bigger collected a couple of medals at last weekend’s Inter Area Indoor Challenge at the Lee Valley Stadium.
The Derry City track club ‘s M55 claimed 200m bronze in a sub 30secs clocking and impressed with an 800m silver in a good 2m 14.73 secs.
March/April Road Races
March will be a busy month for road runners with the SSE Airtricity 10k on Sunday 9th getting locals in the mood for the June Walled City Marathon by taking them round sections of the Marathon course and then on Saturday 15th Gransha hosts the annual St Patrick’s Weekend 5K, one of the most popular early season 5Ks in these parts.
Closing the month will be the Omagh Half Marathon on Saturday 29th and into April the action continues with the annual Bay Road 5K on Wednesday evening April 9th. This top quality race hosts the NI 5K road Championships so should have some classic up front action to look forward to.
Ending the month on Sunday 27th will be the second of the Walled City Marathon warm up events, the SSE Airtricity 10 miler, which like the March 10K will start and Finish in Ebrington Square.
Sandwiched right in the middle of all this action on Sunday March 23rd will be the Sports Relief Mile Challenge, open to all comers and run along the Riverside walkway from Sainsburys. See details on sportsrelief.com
Ulster Vest for local Schools quartet
Four local students will be in the Ulster squad for the Irish Schools Cross Country championships in Cork on Saturday week, March 8th.
Lumen Christi’s Amy Jackson will go in the senior girls race after her excellent runner-up finish in the Ulster decider and she will be joined by another Lumen star Michael Melarkey who with St Joseph’s Mattt Doherty, will line up in the Senior Boys race. Clodagh Laverty of Thornhill College completes the local quartet in the Junior Girls race.