Competition galore in cross country and indoor double header


Athletics Ireland cross country and indoor double header

It’s a busy weekend ahead with the Irish Life Health National Intermediate, Masters Juvenile B & Relays Cross Country Championships (February 8) and the AAI Indoor Games (February 9) taking place.

The double header sees the cross country championships taking place in Avondale and the AAI Games in Abbotstown.

Saturday sees a picturesque and challenging cross country course that the purists should be happy with at a venue that has hosted a lot of events. The timetable is HERE and provisional entries HERE 

The event starts at 11:30am with the girls U11 1,000m with individual underage races culminating in the boys U17 3,000m.

Then it’s time for the U12 and U14 girls and boys (respectively) 4x500m which always provides good excitement.

The masters section continues to grow and kicks off the afternoon programme at 14.00 with the master women (all categories) and the men over 65 as they cover 4,000m.

Names to look out for include Norah Newcombe Pieterse (Mayo AC) W35, Teresa Doherty (Finn Valley) who heads a competitive W40 section with Annette Kealy (Raheny Shamrock) W50 and Niamh O’Sullivan (An Riocht) W55, Pauline Moran (Mayo AC) W60 and Evelyn McNelis (Naas) W70 looking to continue their success in respective categories.

The masters’ men (35-64) will maraud over 7,000m at 14:30 with Mark McKinstry (North Belfast Harriers) M35, Brian Maher (Kilkenny City Harriers) M40 and Tommy Hughes (Termoneeny Running Club)  

Sarah Kelly (Inishowen) looks like one of the leading lights at 15.10 in the intermediate women’s 5,000m.

Colm Turner (Limerick) could be one to spring a surprise in the intermediate men’s 8,000m – the final race of the day at 15.40.

Speedy AAI Games in prospect

The sprints have the top billing at the AAI Games with some swift 60m in the offing at the Sport Ireland National Indoor Arena.

The women’s 60m will be one of the events of the day with the likes of Ciara Neville (Emerald), Molly Scott (SLOT), Rhasidat Adeleke (Tallaght) and Lauren Roy (City of Lisburn) part of a quality line-up. The full entry list is HERE and timetable HERE

There is a very big entry in the men’s 60m with plenty of quality including Marcus Lawler (SLOT) and Jermey Phillips (Clonliffe Harriers). Marcus Lawler is also the leading entry in the men’s 200m.

Sharlene Mawdsley (Newport) will be looking to run well in the women’s 400m while Dara Kervick (Clonliffe Harriers) is the fastest on paper in the men’s 400m.

Open middle distance entries

Sarah Healy (UCD) looks set to run in the women’s 1500m with Amy O’Donoghue (Emerald) also entered with an open men’s 1500m entry. The 800m races should also provide some good competition with athletes looking to make a good mark.

Sarah Quinn (St Colman’s South Mayo) and Kate Doherty (DSD) will look to run well in the women’s 60m hurdles.

Sommer Lecky (Finn Valley) and Daena Kealy (St Abban’s) are entered in the high jump with Saragh Buggy (St Abban’s) in the triple jump.

A number of the events are open including the shot put competitions and long jump.

Ariel Lieghio (Clonliffe Harriers) and Matthew Callinan-Keenan (SLOT) will look to go high in the pole vault.

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