A fantastic day of cross country running at St Mary’s College, Galway for the Aviva All Ireland Schools’ Cross Country Championships.
As expected Kevin Dooney (C.B.C Monkstown) and Sean Tobin (High School Clonmel) provided a thrilling conclusion to the 2012 Aviva All Ireland Schools’ Cross Country Championships. Both athletes battled fiercely over the fast and undulating course. Dooney made the break with a lap to go opening up a gap of 15m over Tobin. Coming up the finishing straight Tobin challenged Dooney in a thrilling sprint finish to the line. Dooney just had enough to hold on to claim his first All Ireland Schools’ Cross Country title. Commenting after the race Dooney mentioned “I have been waiting 6 years to win my first title, it was a tough race but I found the strength in the end to hold off Sean”
Ryan Holt (Methodist College, Belfast) battled all the way to the finish to claim the bronze medal. St. Coleman’s Newry (55) were the winners of the senior boys’ team title from St. Malachy’s College (76) and High School Clonmel (122).
Clar NicCarthaigh (Colaiste Iosagain) claimed the senior girls’ race from Lorna Fitzpatrick (Sacred Heart, Newry) and Mary Mulhare (Scoil Criost Ri, Portlaise). NicCarthaigh also had the added satisfaction of leading her school Colaiste Iosagain to the team title over Dublin rivals St. Dominic’s Cabra.
Siofra Cleirigh Buttner (Colaiste Iosagain) was a clear winner of the intermediate girls’ race from Sarah NiMhaolmhuire (Colaiste Iosagain) and Jessica Coyne (Crescent Col. Comp. Limerick). This was Buttner’s fourth All Ireland Schools’ Cross Country Title in a row, becoming the first athlete ever to do so. Commenting after the race Buttner mentioned “This was my last cross country race of the season and I wanted to finish off the season with a confident run. I will take a short break now and then start training for the track season, where I will target the 800m.” Colaiste Iosagain again won the team title from Ballyclare H.S
Kyle Larkin (Ard Scoil Ris, Limerick) was barely out of breath as he impressively won the intermediate boys’ race from Ryan Sharkey (Methodist College, Belfast) and Conall Kirk (Sullivan’s Upper). St Finnian’s Sutton won the team title from Sullivan’s Upper.
The biggest cheer of the day came when local man Padraig Creavan (St. Mary’s College, Galway) won the junior boys’ race from Cathal Doyle (Colaiste Choilm, Swords) and Jack O’Leary (Clongowes). Colaiste Mhuire Mullingar won the team title from Colaiste Criost Ri, Cork. Clodagh O’Reilly (Loreto College Cavan) impressed when cruising to victory in the junior girls’ race from Zoe Carruthers (Friends School Lisburn) and Carla Sweeney (St Macdara’s CC). St Macdara’s CC won the team title from Skerriers CC.
Fergal Curtain (Middleton C.B.S) sprinted to victory in the minor boys’ race from Pat Shaw (St Finnian’s, Mullingar) and Eoin Looney (St Joseph’s Spanish Point). Middleton C.B.S won the team race from St Aidan’s C.B.S. Siofra O’Flaherty (St Leo’s Carlow) impressively won the minor girls’ race from Emer Fitzpatrick (Our Lady’s School) and Rose Finnegan (Eureka Kells). Colaiste Iosagain won the team race from Eureka Kells.