The 24th Balla 10k took place on Saturday evening in good running conditions- a slight breeze with temperatures in the mid teens.
The traditional one lap course always proves a tough test for competitors.The clear winner was Hugh Armstrong (Ballina AC) in an excellent time 31:59 – though over half a minute outside Freddie Sittuk’s 2013 course record. He led from the start and at 7k was a minute up on second placed Eamonn Staunton (Westport AC) who finished in 33:49. Anto Devaney (Mayo AC) ran strongly for third in 36:55. Mayo AC won the o40 men’s category with Sean Murphy first again this year, and Brendan Murphy second – just outside his target sub 40 minutes.
Norah Newcombe (Mayo AC) was also the clear winner of the women’s for the third successive year, and sixth overall in 38:26. Ann Lennon (39:21) and Kathy Gleeson were together as they went over Hooper’s Hills at 6k, but Ann showed her competitive strength over the final kilometres to finish thirteen seconds ahead at the finish line. Mayo AC won the o50 women’s section with Angela O”Connor and Pauline Moran posting good times. Mayo AC also won both the men’s and women’s team prizes
Event organiser Brendan Conwell thanked the Gardai, Order of Malta, the timekeepers led by John Timothy, Ronnie, Mary and Colm Naylor who compiled the results, those who helped on the course and at the finish line, and the team who provided refreshments at the local Secondary School race HQ.
The race was part of the 2016 Mayo AC Vodafone C&C Cellular Club League and points will be assessed and included in the women’s and men’s tables during next week.
The next Club League event is the Streets of Galway 8k on August 6.
Prizewinners 24th Annual Balla 10k:
1 Hugh Armstrong (Ballina AC) 31:59
2 Eamonn Staunton (Westport AC) 33:49
3 Anto Devaney (Mayo AC) 36:55
o40 1 Sean Murphy (Mayo AC) 37:14, Brendan Murphy (Mayo AC) 40:01
M50: 1 Russell Burton (Basingstoke & Mid Hants AC) 40:26; 2 Tommy Joe Whyte (Tuam AC) 41:07.
under 23 Men: Tarek Sallba 47:49
Men Team 1 Mayo AC – Anto Devaney, Sean Murphy, Brendan Hession
1 Norah Newcombe (Mayo AC) 38:26,
2 Ann Lennon (Mayo AC) 39.21,
3 ) Kathy Gleeson (Claremorris) 39:34
F40 1 Siobhan Lennon (Ennis Track Club) 44:53; 2 Sandra Cater, 46:04,
F50 : 1 Angela O’Connor (Mayo AC) 42:00; 2 Pauline Moran (Mayo AC) 46:22
Women Team 1: Mayo AC – Norah Newcombe, Ann Lennon, Angela O’Connor
results: Balla 10k results 2016