As Sperrin Harriers prepared for their upcoming Winter League members ran both at home and abroad. On Thursday the club attended the MAD for the Road 5k and 10k, and on Saturday competed at the NI & Ulster Championship Bangor 10k, Annaghmore Running Festival 2019, The School Run 19, and Monaghan Phoenix Marathon Festival. In addition Harriers also enjoyed considerable Parkrun success. Sunday saw the continuation of the Monaghan Phoenix Marathon Festival, with members also tackling the Donegal East Half and 3/4 Marathon, along with the much anticipated Berlin Marathon and Great Scottish Run.
MAD for the Road 5k and 10k
On Thursday 26th the inaugural MAD for the Road 5k and 10k was held by Moneyglass & District Runners. Both distances wound around the village of Moneyglass, County Antrim, the routes beginning and ending at the local community centre. Harrier Barry O’Neill took to the 10k, finishing in 55:14.
NI & Ulster Championship Bangor 10k
Part of the Novosco 10k Grand Prix race series, the NI & Ulster Championship Bangor 10k took place on Saturday 28th, an event with a history of attracting high quality athletes. The course was quite flat and fast, starting in Castle Park and making its way through Bangor town centre before proceeding along the coast to Groomsport, ultimately looping back to Bangor’s Ward Park.
Harrier Andrew Newell more than held his own in very talented company, finishing with a marvellous time of 37:23.
Annaghmore Running Festival 2019
The Annaghmore Running Festival took place on Saturday, including a 18M road race, Half Marathon, 10k, 5k and 1K Fun Run or Walk. Located in the rural surroundings of Annaghmore village in County Armagh, this year saw an alteration to the 18M and half marathon routes in order to provide some small respite from the hilly terrain.
Amanda Donnelly led the Harrier team home in the 18M, with James Hepburn representing the club in the half marathon, and Terri McWilliams distinguishing herself on taking 2nd Female in the 5k.
Amanda Donnelly 2:20:01
Richard Fox 2:31:17
Karen McGuigan 2:34:47
Niall Devlin 2:40:24
Patricia Boyle 2:40:30
Catherine Farley 2:51:04
Gerard Jones 2:51:05
James Hepburn 1:56:19
Terri McWilliams 23:17 (2nd Female)
The School Run 19
The School Run 19 was held on Saturday, representing the third outing of this annual event. It was hosted by St. Brigid’s Primary School, who kindly provided a very wide range of welcome refreshments to participants at the finish line. Consisting of a 5k and 10k, with a walk also available, proceedings took place under sunny skies and followed the undulating roads around the village of Brockagh, on the western shore of Lough Neagh.
Harrier Brian O’Donnell had a great run to place third overall in the 10k with a time of 45:33; followed by Malcolm McCullough (46:03); Patsy Hughes (46:39); Maureen Mallon (60:18); Jacinta Morgan (67:56); and Melissa Glasgow (68:21).
Monaghan Phoenix Marathon Festival 2019
The fifth Monaghan Phoenix Marathon Festival took place just across the border on Saturday and Sunday, consisting of marathon, half marathon, and 10k distances. Of particular note was the ability to do two marathons during the course of the weekend. The routes included Monaghan Town, the Ulster Greenway Canal Path and Rossmore Forest Trails, with all events starting and finishing at the Monaghan United Grounds.
Harrier Deirdre Conway showed incredible endurance yet again, completing her 84th and 85th marathons on Saturday and Sunday. This also represented her third back to back set of marathons in the space of five weeks, which makes her achievement all the more outstanding.
Berlin Marathon 2019
On Sunday 29th the globally recognised Berlin Marathon took place in Germany’s capital city. The event is part of the prestigious World Marathon Majors, and has the distinction of having played host to the marathon world record set in 2018.
The occasion attracted a field of 40,000, including many elite athletes from across the world, to its scenic, flat, and fast course. It was a route which took in many sights throughout the city, including the Reichstag and Berlin Cathedral, ultimately finishing under the Brandenburg Gate.
Harrier Brian Taggart shone on the day to register a tremendous personal best of 2:41:09. This was additionally impressive as it sliced a minute and a half from his previous fastest time set in London this year.
Bank of Scotland Great Scottish Run 2019
A field of thousands descended upon the centre of Glasgow for Sunday’s Great Scottish Run. The event consisted of 10k and half marathon races, both of which started in George Square, crossed the River Clyde, and passed many famous landmarks to ultimately finish in Glasgow Green.
Congratulations to Mark Reid who took on the half marathon, finishing in 1:30:26.
Donegal East Half and 3/4 Marathon 2019
On Sunday the Donegal East Half and 3/4 Marathon took place alongside the river Finn on the roads of Ballybofey, County Donegal.
A variety of Harriers took to the 3/4 Marathon, with Paul McLaughlin securing a fine new personal best in 2:16:29; Jarleth Loughran finishing in 2:46:20; Karen Devlin in 2:51:06; Cheryl Cardwell in 2:51:07; Norman Fuller in 2:54:49; and Kevin McCullagh in 2:58:25.
Sperrin Harriers enjoyed great success at Saturday’s Parkruns. Ryan Treanor and Brendan Gildernew took first and second respectively at MUSA, with Hannah and Ellen Glasgow placing as second and third ladies overall. Meanwhile Karen Devlin marked her inaugural run at Dungannon by finishing as first lady.
Ryan Treanor 18:11 (1st overall)
Brendan Gildernew 18:17 (2nd overall)
Jason O’Neill 20:59
Hannah Glasgow 23:00 (2nd lady)
Ellen Glasgow 23:13 (3rd lady)
Paul O’Gara 23:44
Ellie Robinson 24:14
Roddy McIvor 26:08
Joanne Corey 56:30 (Tail Walker)
Karen Devlin 23:27 (1st lady)
Sperrin Harriers Winter League 2019/20
On 9th November the Davagh Forest 10k marks the beginning of the 11th Sperrin Harriers Winter League, an event which has grown into one of Northern Ireland’s best loved set of trail races, attracting all types of runners from beginners to top athletes. Its popularity is testament to the picturesque venues, great atmosphere, and warm welcome that make the League so unique.
The 5 races comprising the Winter League are:
- Davagh Forest 10k, on 9th November 2019
- Lough Fea 5k, on 14th December 2019
- An Creagan 5M, on 11th January 2020
- Drum Manor 10k, on 1st February 2020
- Parkanaur Forest 10M, on 15th February 2020
Entry to each race is £7 affiliated and £9 unaffiliated, with tea, coffee and refreshments served to all runners taking part.
Our first event, the Davagh Forest 10k, starts at 12 noon, and involves a chip timed, scenic and testing trail route through the beautiful rolling landscape outside Cookstown. Many thanks to ‘Outsource’ who are sponsoring the race.
We look forward to seeing you there!