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Novice and Uneven Age XC set for customary cavalry charge

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Waterford to play host to cavalry charge

The customary cavalry charge at the Irish Life Health National Novice and Juvenile Uneven Age Cross Country Championships will take place this Sunday (December 17) at the WIT Arena, Carriganore in Waterford.

Huge numbers will toe the line – in particular the novice women’s and men’s races. You can view all event information including entry lists HERE

Lauren Dermody (Castlecomer) looks to be one of the leading lights having finished second U23 at the Irish Life Health National Cross Country Championships in Abbotstown a few weeks ago. Avril Deegan (Ballyroan, Abbeyleix and District) should also be another in contention.

There are big team entries including Crusaders, Finn Valley, Leevale, Raheny Shamrock, Clonliffe Harriers, Kilkenny City Harriers and Sportsworld.

It sees a whole mix of age and abilities as they compete en masse in a good atmosphere. It’s sport for all in its most natural form.

Alannah Cooley (Clonliffe Harriers), Orna Muray (Ferrybank) and Niamh Corry (Raheny Shamrock) are among some of the younger entrants while Rosaleen McKeown (Leevale) and Denise Toner (Clones) show no signs of ageing and will be in the top section of the field.

Another interesting entry is Kate Veale (West Waterford) who came second in the national 20km race walk in St Anne’s Park last week – she has shown cross country pedigree in the past winning a national juvenile title and will be looking to help West Waterford to a good team placing.

On the men’s side DSD look strong. They have a good trio of Paul O’Donnell and the MacGabhann brothers – Patrick and Jack MacGabhann.

Keith Fallon (Galway City Harriers) and Tom O’Keeffe (Kilkenny City Harriers) are listed to race. Should they compete, they will be strong contenders. O’Keeffe ran for Ireland in the U23 race at the European Cross Country Championships last week on a fast course in Slovakia.

Michael Carey will be looking to draw inspiration from his Clonmel teammates Sean Tobin and Kevin Maunsell performances at the European cross. They finished 15 and 24 in Slovakia and scored on the senior men’s team that finished 5. Carey was there to greet them on their return at Dublin airport.

Another athlete to watch will be JP Carty (Sligo) who has been in good form. He sharpened up by winning the 3,000m comfortably in 8:43 at the NIA live series at the Sport Ireland National Indoor Arena.

Of course the juvenile Uneven age races will be hotly contested from U11 up to U19 where many of them have already competed in the Even age championships in Abbotstown. There should be some intriguing races and plenty of excitement as they run with blissful abandon. Pace judgement will only be an afterthought if even.  

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