Athletics: Sperrin Harrier Pauline McGurren first at Omagh 10k

Carla Fowley, Fiona Devlin and Nicola Gillespie at Blood Sweat and Tears event
Carla Fowley, Fiona Devlin and Nicola Gillespie at Blood Sweat and Tears event

On Saturday 21 February 2015, well over three hundred athletes turned out for the 2nd annual Omagh CBS 10K (and associated 5K) road race.

Congratulations to Sperrin Harrier Pauline McGurren, who was the first woman across the finish-line in a time of 39:34.

Our male finishers were Martin Donaghy (44:54), Patsy Hughes (45:53), Barry O’Neill (46:50), John McElroy (49:16) and Michael McCrory (50:39). Well done, fellas!

Our dynamic duathlon duo, Gavin Corey and Cheryl Cardwell, were in action on Sunday at Down Royal Duathlon (part of the Irish National Duathlon Series). Gavin took 2nd place in a time of 53:06 for the 2 mile run - 10 mile bike - 2 mile run event; while Cheryl finished inside the top ten females, in 9th place, in a time of 1:09:51

Earlier in the week, on Thursday 19 February, Sperrin Harriers Gavin competed in the International Men’s 5K at the 25th annual Armagh International Road Races. In a stellar field, which included 2012 Triathlon World Champion and Olympic bronze medallist Jonny Brownlee, Gavin held his own with a superb time of 15:36. On the same evening, Pierce McCullagh went in the Men’s 3K race, clocking a super time of 9:39.

Well done to Carla Fowley, Fiona Devlin and Nicola Gillespie, who braved the inclement weather and the 10K obstacle course in Parkanaur Forest on Sunday. Fair play, also, to the intrepid Megan Reid, who took part in the BST Mucky Pups junior event.

The route at MUSA/Loughry was revised again on Saturday, due to the ongoing building works on the Loughry campus, which adversely affected times across the board. However, the changes did not deter Hannah Su (23:52), who was the 1st female to finish in a reduced field, or Toirleach Gourley (22:59), who finished 5th overall.

Sean McDaid (18:20) was 3rd overall, for the second successive weekend, but will be happy to have ran 10 seconds quicker than last Saturday; while Shay McKeown came 1st in his age category with a strong run of 25:12.

Sperrin Harriers hosted a Leadership in Running Fitness (LIRF) Course at MUSA, Cookstown, on Saturday. A few Carmen Runners and a Magherafelt Harrier joined a large group of Sperrin Harriers for what turned out to be a hugely enjoyable and educational day with our fantastic tutors Ramey Adams, Ian and Alistair. Throughout a long and challenging day, all the participants displayed a real eagerness to learn new knowledge and skills which are sure to benefit their respective clubs and communities in the future.

Junior training last weekend was cancelled due to freezing conditions but resumes on Saturday - free introductory sessions, for boys and girls aged 12-18, from 10am up to and including 14 March, at MUSA. If you come along, remember sessions are friendly, fun and free.