A very busy weekend for an Endurance Event Co-ordinator this weekend.
•Steeplechase workshop with Stuart Stokes
•Q & A session with Elite athletes and Coaches from Great Ireland Run
•Marathon Mission Squads competing in Rotterdam and Paris
•Great Ireland Run incorporating National 10k Championships.
Great introductory workshop in Santry with the help of Stuart Stokes, Olympian and Commonwealth steeplechaser with a pb of 8.23. The workshop was a balanced mixture of seasoned, developing and novice steeple chasers and their coaches.
The first session was a practical session of several group styled drills over hurdles supervised by Stuart giving each individual an opportunity to be advised on their technique. This was followed by simulated water jump technique allowing athletes that quite often don’t have water jump facilities to practice
The squad moved indoors to an “in conversation with Stuart Stokes” talk. Staurt talked openly about his pathway to the steeplechase, how he trained as a junior right the way through to now where he is preparing to run the standard for London 2012 and answered the many questions directed to him.
The group engaged well and took advantage of the opportunity making it a successful workshop.
For those unable to attend Run Assist will post videos of the session on Flotrack Ireland shortly and will be available through endurance section of AAI Website. My thanks to Peter Riley of Nova International for providing this opportunity.
Q & A session with Elite athletes and Coaches from Great Ireland Run
Endurance athletes, coaches and supporters were treated to a real insight into elite athletes and their world. A number of athletes and coaches travelling in for the Great Ireland Run made themselves available to a large turnout of the endurance fraternity. Many aspects of training, preparation, competition were openly divulged.
Ethiopian Kenenisa Bekele who clocked the fastest 10 kilometres time in the world so far this year to win the SPAR Great Ireland Run also joined the group delighted to be in Ireland and wishing everyone good luck in the Great Ireland Run. For those unable to attend Run Assist will post videos of the session on Flotrack Ireland shortly and will be available through endurance section of AAI Website. My thanks also to Dave Hooper for facilitating the Q&A and to Peter Riley of Nova International for providing this opportunity.
MARATHON MISSION SQUAD
Catriona Jennings (Rathfarnham AC) put in an outstanding performance to achieve the qualification standard for the London Olympic Games in Rotterdam Marathon, running a time of 2:36:17 (inside the Olympic A standard of 2:37 . Breege Connolly and Gladys Ganiel, both of North Belfast Harriers AC recorded times of 2:40:25 and 2:43:46 respectively. Elizabeth Lee (Leevale AC) ran 2:46:33 in her marathon debut.
Sean Connolly (Tallaght AC) was also targeting the men’s standard of 2:15 in Rotterdam today, however Connolly narrowly missed out finishing in a time of 2:16:42. Gary Thornton (Galway City Harriers AC) was next of the Irish across the line finishing in 2:17:29, followed by Thomas Frazier (St Malachy’s AC) 2:20:00.
Alan OShea (2.21) and Lorraine Manning ran in Paris Marathon.
Spar Great Ireland Run incorporating National 10k champs
The Woodie’s DIY National 10k Road Championships were incorporated into the SPAR Great Ireland Run. Olympic marathon qualifier Mark Kenneally (Clonliffe Harriers AC) won the men’s national title in a time of 29:23. Kenneally finished in seventh position overall and looked very relaxed when crossing the line. Thomas Fitzpatrick (Tallaght AC) 30:02 claimed second position followed by Barry Minnock (Rathfarnham WSAF AC) 30:32 in third.
Linda Byrne (Dundrum South Dublin AC) was an impressive winner of the women’s national 10k title. Byrne recorded a personal best time of 33:49, placing her in sixth position overall amongst the international female athletes. Fiona Roche (Raheny Shamrocks AC) and Sarah McCormack (Clonliffe Harriers AC) finished second and third respectively behind Byrne to round out the podium positions. Roche recorded a time of 35:09 which gave her a six second margin over McCormack 35:15.
The most impressive performance of the day came from Ethiopian Kenenisa Bekele who clocked the fastest 10 kilometres time in the world so far this year to win the SPAR Great Ireland Run by a huge margin in a whirlwind performance he flew to the first sub 28 minutes performance ever witnessed on Irish soil in a time of 27:49.