There was a blustery breeze around the 8k course as over 100 runners lined up at the start outside Caulfield’s shop in Ballyhaunis on Saturday afternoon. for the 5th Annual 8k Run West race. It was also the 7th race in 2012 Mayo AC C&C Cellular Road League. The road was dry as they raced down main street and turned out Clare road. The pace dropped for many as they came on a tough hill section as they approached Gorteen after 4k . By then Con Doherty (Westport) who led out from the start had a few seconds lead over Matt Bidwell (GCH). He maintained that to the finish to win by over ten seconds in 26:11. Doherty is a member of the Irish Junior triathlon high performance squad and finished 7th in a field of over 70 top juniors at the ETU Triathlon Junior European Cup in July, and has a 5k best of 15:10. Bidwell’s splits tell the story of the outward section wind and the mid-race hill: 3:02, 3:21, 3:35, 4km 3:13, (13:11) 5k 3:40, 3:13, 3:12, 8km 3:06 (13:11) = 26:22. Although as he said afterwards a good race and well worth the trip from Galway, it was a pity the field was so small given the lull in race calendar locally. Many used the race as a speed session in preparation for the Dublin Marathon, such as Martin Conroy (Ballina AC) in 3rd and Fergal Whitty (Donore Harriers) in 4th 27:12.
Mayo AC’s Mary Gleeson continued her domination of the league races to finish first woman in 29:22, a few seconds outside her pb. Catherine Conway showed she is returning to form finishing a minute behind in second place. She held off Dervila Holmes (Donore Harriers) 3rd in 30:26, who was second in the West of Ireland 10k and won the Half Marathon in her native Ballina in May. Among a number of visitors, Michael O’Connor (Farranfore AC) returned to win the o60 race, he was 2nd last year.Runners from ten clubs shared the 24 prizes. Martin Fitzmaurice and his team did a great job organising the event, with the support of many local sponsors.
Road League points from 7 races so far will be updated and available later in the week.
Race 8 in the Road League is the Ballina 4 Mile on Sunday October 14th at 3pm.
Ballyhaunis 8k summary results plus results file attached below
1 Con Doherty u19 (Westport AC) 26:11
2 Matt Bidwell (GCH) 26:22
2 Martin Conroy (Ballina AC) 26:53
1 Dave Morley 30:30
2 Sean Murphy (Mayo AC) 30:31
1 Hugh Duffy (Mayo AC) 30:10
2 Sean Webb 35:30
1 Michael O’Connor (Farranfore AC) 34:31
2 Padraig Keane (Clonliffe Harriers) 40:26
1 Tadgh McGinty (Swinford AC) 30:16
1 Mary Gleeson (Mayo AC) 29:22
2 Catherine Conway (Mayo AC) 30.20
3 Dervile Holmes (Donore Harriers) 30:26
1 Colette Tuohy (Mayo AC) 31:46
2 Monica Henry (South Sligo AC) 34:30
1 Angela O’Connor (Mayo AC) 32:07
2 Ann Phillips 42:45
1 Una McGrath (Mayo AC) 43:51
2 Laura Bourke 44:29
1 Andrea Ridge (Tuam AC) 45:54
2 Mary Keane 48:31
1 Dawn Regan (Mayo AC) 40:09
Some race action…..