Norah wins Achill Half, weekend updates*

l-r  Achill Women's Half Marathon Emma Grimes (Illinois) 2nd, Norah Newcombe (Mayo AC) 1st, with Sean Brophy Mayo AC newcomer 8th in 10k

l-r Achill Women’s Half Marathon Emma Grimes (Illinois) 2nd, Norah Newcombe (Mayo AC) 1st, with Sean Brophy Mayo AC newcomer 8th in 10k (pic John Geraghty)

*Updates now include Achill, Headford, Queensland, Ballina.

Sat 4 July, 10th Achill Half Marathon and 10k (total 1204 finishers, results:  The race organisers reported ‘near perfect running conditions’. Runners said it was windy, lots of hills. It’s a tough course, ok. Norah Newcombe had another excellent Half win in 83:06, adding to her victory in Cork last month where she ran 81:12 chip time over very different terrain and in wet conditions. In Achill she finished 13th overall in 83:06 and was led home by our first finisher 12th placed Brendan Gill. Norah had a good battle with American visitor Emma Grimes and made numerous attempts to get away up to the 11 mile mark, where she started to pull away and claim the win by 45 seconds. Emma came home second in 83:51.

Our Half Marathon finishers: 12th Brendan Gill 82:55, 13th and first woman Norah Newcombe 83:06. Other Mayo AC included Padraic McVann 1:39.21, Pauline Moran 1:40.12 2/o55, Donal Tighe 1:42.40, Jimmy Feeney 1:47.47,  Monica Joyce 1:55.00, Finian Joyce 1:59.29, Katie Concannon 2:06.39, Karen Davitt 2:06.52, Patricia Waldron 2:17.00, Elaine Patterson 2:17.29. In the 10k race Mayo AC newcomer Sean Brophy finished 8th in 40:30. Sean was in great form in the recent 5k series with a number of top 3 finishes. A number of pacers from local clubs including Mayo AC helped in both races. Look out for more pics on

11th Headford 8k (239 finishers, results 1 Matt Bidwell (GCH) 26:28, his third win in this race. As reported by Sean Murphy Headford was a tough but fair course with a strong breeze for the first 3k. There was a lovely cooling shower near the end. We had nine runners and there was a mixed reaction to the course following on from Irishtown last week – some finding it easy, others finding the hills hard. Five of our nine runners ran personal best times – many of them have worked hard in recent months at our weekly track sessions. Well done to all.

This charity event now in its 11th year  – all proceeds from the race go to charities supporting children with disabilities. To date the race has raised over €35,000 and provides valuable additional funds to support children in their own communities by providing short breaks, respite and in-home supports.

Sean Murphy 29.19 PB
Laura Heneghan 34.58 PB
Tracy Durkan 36.39
Mairead Cafferkey 36.52
Joan Walsh 37.30
Trisha Carty 38.48 PB
Maria Kneafsey 39.58 PB
Ann Marie Lyons 40.55
Geraldine Heneghan 44.12 PB.

In Queensland Sinéad Diver continued her preparation for the World Championships with a 7th place finish at the Gold Coast Half Marathon. She said afterwards: “Bit of a tough day in the office today at the GC half marathon. Managed to pull off a PB (1:13:58), but not the time I was hoping for. Just one of those days and a lot of lessons learnt!  Now time to knuckle down and focus on the big one in Beijing!” Sinéad went through the first 10k in 34:29, and completed the second in 35:32. The women’s race winner finished in 70:10.

Paula Prendergast is also in preparation mode for the National Half Marathon in Dublin in four weeks time. Last weekend she finished fifth woman in the Humbert Triathlon at Swinford in 2hrs 56.

Well done to Mel Casserly of Sligo AC who won today’s Ballina Marathon in 3:13.  And fair play to John Geraghty on his 4:12 finish – the quest goes on. Thanks John for all those pics from Achill yesterday – now on our facebook pages. Looks like it was an enjoyable day for all our racers and pacers.


Upcoming Events