Photo: ‘Teenage Girls From Mount St Michael Secondary School, Claremorris, Co. Mayo in ‘Flying Form’ for the Western People West of Ireland Women’s Mini Marathon. The event takes place 12 noon,Sunday, May 1, The Mall, Castlebar
We’re under starter’s orders for the Western People West of Ireland Women’s Mini Marathon
Hundreds of women from the Connaught Province and Nationally are expected to
be among the 4,000 + participants in this year’s Western People West of Ireland
Women’s Mini Marathon.
Preparations are now underway for the event, which takes place in Castlebar on
Sunday, May 1. The run is for fun but it’s also a big fundraiser for charities. Last year
it’s estimated more than €500,000 was raised for good causes.
“And this year we hope even more women will take part and an even bigger sum
will be raised for charity,” said Crona Esler, of the Western People, speaking at the
launch of the event on Wednesday (January 26) in the council county chamber, Áras
The event was dreamt up by the Western People last year and enthusiastically
taken up by the Mayo Sports Partnership. The intention was to create a fun day,
encouraging people to get out, get fit and enjoy the company of other women. The
10k race is open to serious athletes, fun runners and walkers. It was also hoped that it
could be used by charities to raise money.
“We were staggered: Firstly by the amount of women who wanted to take part
and then by the amount of people who were raising money for charity,” said Anne
Ronayne, of Mayo Sports Partnership.
Anne revealed that some 60 charities were represented. And she also had one other
reason for being proud. Four women took part in the mini marathon over 70 years
age. The first one to cross the finishing line in The Mall was Sister Kathleen Hunt …
her sprightly 74-year-old aunt, a Mercy nun in Westport.
Sr Kathleen’s example shows that anyone can and should take part. Entrants must be
over 15 years of age. To enter, fill in the form in the Western People or enter online at
www.westofirelandwomensminimarathon.com. Entry costs €20.
Press contact: Crona Esler, 094 9373666
Everything you wanted to know about the 2010 mini marathon
Approx 60 charities were associated with the marathon. Western Care, for
example, collected over €25,000.
A big hand to the following for helping to stage the event: Mayo County
Council, Castlebar Town Council, Community and Enterprise, Castlebar
Chamber of Commerce, Destination Castlebar, the Gardaí, the Civil Defence,
the Order of Malta, the Knights of Malta, Castlebar Mitchells, Parke
Keelogues Crimlin, Mayo AC, Swinford AC, Westport AC, Ballina AC,
Castlebar AC, Claremorris AC, Mayo’s Fit4life and Meet and Train groups,
Dr Ann Shortt (GP & Fit4life member in Claremorris).
32 men and teenage boys took part (get your wigs and dresses on if you want
to take part, lads!)
One woman took part from each of these counties: Laois, Louth, Kerry,
Wexford and Wicklow.
1938 women from Mayo participated
520 women from Castlebar
356 women from Westport
313 women from Ballina
194 Women from Claremorris, (38 students from Mount St Michael
76 women from Belmullet
53 women from Ballyhaunis
27 women from Ballinrobe
There were three women from the UK, 171 from Galway, 21 from Ballinsloe,
Galway, 228 from Sligo, 23 from Ballymote, 99 from Roscommon, 47 from
Castlerea, Roscommon, 38 from Leitrim and 46 women from Dublin
Four women over 70 years participated in the Mini Marathon. First to finish
was organiser Anne Ronayne’s aunt who is a mercy nun in Westport ‘Sr
Kathleen Hunt’ (74) who finished the mini marathon in 1:37:44
247 women were home inside 1 hour; 2,455 women were home inside 2
hours. All 2492 participants wearing timing chips were home in 2:29:46
Frank Fahey Fizzical Limited, Palmerstown, Dublin — originally from
Hollymount — was the MC for the event. Frank is a Sports Consultant and
has Senior County Medals with Hollymount GAA.
5000 bottles of water, sponsored by Connaught Gold, were used on the route during the day.
The first entrant in 2010 mini marathon was Ann Egan Fit4life Ballina.
Her husband Michael was a volunteer for the full day at the moneen
The main Event Sponsor was Connaught Gold
Among the many volunteers who helped on the day were two from Brazil,
Eduardo and Claudia Santos. They now live in Claremorris.
86 Ann/Annes took part in the mini marathon
Everyone from A to Z took part in the fun run. We had 126 Mary’s, 43
Patricias, one Zita, one Zoe and one Crona!
Top 10 winners in 2010
Luck Brennan (aged 51)
Breege Blehein Mchale
Angela O Conner