A MAINLY sunny day in Magherafelt provided perfect conditions for the annual Sperrin Harriers 5 mile road race. Whilst the host club enjoyed unprecedented success in the event, both the male and female open titles were claimed by visiting athletes.
Adam Boyd set a new course record with his winning time of 26:31 in a keenly contested race with Sperrin’s Christopher McPeake who finished in second place in 26:37. North Belfast’s Thomas Hughes ran in third place, with Delfim Pimantel following behind and picking up the over 45s title.
Sperrin Harriers Niall Higgins and Dermot McElhinney, won the over 35 and over 40 sections respectively, both with comfortable winning margins. Springwell’s Leslie Ashe crossed the line in a time of 31:36 to see off any competition from other Over 50s whilst his fellow clubman Jim Breen enjoyed an emphatic victory in the Over 55 section. Francis Boal of Lagan Valley and Ballymena’s James Galbraith strode to victory in the over 60 and 65 categories.
In the female race, City of Derry’s Anne Paul set a course record of 29:55 and claimed the female open title. She was closely followed by North Down’s Julie Balmer and Julie Murphy from Lagan Valley. Geraldine Quigley took home the prize in the O35 whilst Dolores Mulholland stormed to victory in the O40 in 41 minutes.
Ballymena Runners Mabel McFall & Bridget Quinn both finished strongly to win their sections while Sperrin’s Bernie McNally won the Over 55 in a time of 47:39.
Sperrin Harriers dominated the team events with Karen McElroy, Tanya Black and Fiona Crozier leading the ladies and an impressive line-up of Christopher McPeake, Glenn Donnelly and Dermot McElhinney comfortably gaining victory in the male section.
Sperrin Harriers would like to thank the main race sponsors Sportique and all those who sponsored or helped out at the event in any way. In addition, thanks to all those who participated in this keenly contested and enjoyable race, and hope for similar interest in their upcoming inaugural ladies-only race in Magherafelt on June 2 sponsored by DC Contracts.
This unique event includes a Health & Beauty Expo in the Meadowbank Sports Arena with great cash prizes for category winners. The Harriers are also hosting their annual 5 mile classic in Cookstown on Friday 3rd August at 7:30pm sponsored by Performance Nutrition Plus.