Springwell Running Club - Press Release – 18th November 2018

Recent events have seen Springwell RC members in action at distances from 5k to Ultramarathon in Cookstown, Monaghan, Swansea, Tenerife and Athens. We’ve even been running Stormont, well, someone has to.

Athens Marathon

The Athens Marathon on Sunday 11th November saw Springwell RC members David McGaffin and Alison McAllister in Greece for the event. To say that the Greeks are enthusiastic about the Marathon would be an understatement, there are literally hundreds of opportunities every year to run ‘a’ marathon but the locals, especially those in the actual town of Marathon, will soon let you know that there is only one opportunity to run ‘the’ marathon and that this was it.

It was a very early start with buses leaving Athens from 5.30am to transport over 19,000 runners to the start line in Marathon. Starting at 9.00 am from the stadium marking the start of the Marathon at the 1st modern Olympiad in 1896, the course commemorates the run from the battlefield of Marathon to proclaim victory over the invading Persian army in 490 BC, and as all Marathon enthusiasts know the beginning of the Marathon legend.

The first half course took the runners through the villages of Nea Makri and Rafina, areas which had been devastated by wildfire during the summer months when 99 people lost their lives and many others their homes, businesses and livelihoods. Despite such tragedy the locals were out in force to demonstrate their very vocal support for the Marathon and to encourage the runners as the temperatures began to creep over 20c.

From mile 13 to 20 the course steadily climbed towards Athens and the frequent and well stocked feeding stations were much needed as the temperatures continued to rise. For the final six miles the crowds grew and as runners entered Athens both pavements were full, with the crowd spilling onto the road. The final mile to the stunning finish in the Panathenaic Stadium saw the runners going through a cheering corridor of spectators into a cauldron of noise to cross the finish line.

19085 runners completed this epic event with David 756th in 3.25.44 and Alison 11815th in 5.24.18.

 David McGaffin finishing the Athens Marathon

David McGaffin finishing the Athens Marathon

Maraton De Tenerife

Sunday 11th November was to be a day of Marathons in hot and sunny conditions with Springwell RC members John Butcher, Nigel McNeill and Bob Purcell in Tenerife for the Maraton De Tenerife. Once again the temperature was in excess of 20c with the runners in Tenerife also contending with strong winds as they ran two 13.1 mile laps to complete the Marathon. John finished 112th in 3.58.01, Bob was 125th in 4.02.14 while Nigel crossed the line 235th in 5.03.09.

 John Butcher at the Maraton De Tenerife

John Butcher at the Maraton De Tenerife


Tollymore Trail Marathon

Continuing the Marathon theme, but a little closer to home a larger contingent of Springwell RC members made their way to County Down on Saturday 10th November for the Tollymore Trail Marathon hosted by events management company 26 Extreme. Taking place in the stunning scenery of Tollymore Forest Park this event offered runners distances of 10k, Half Marathon, Marathon and a 40 mile Ultra Marathon.

Starting at 8.00 am the Ultra Marathon was the first event onto the course with 3 Springwell RC members, from opposing ends of the experience spectrum taking on the challenge. The very experienced Helena Dornan had another good performance and finished 25th (4th lady) in 7.30.30, while in only his second Ultra event Dale Corbett was 19th, improving his previous time by 40 minutes, finishing in 6.47.01. Springwell’s third member James Evans was taking on the Ultra for the first time and proved that age is just a number to finish 41st in 7.46.24.


 Mark Walker, Chris Denton and Drew Fowler at the TTM 2018 (photo 26 Extreme)

Mark Walker, Chris Denton and Drew Fowler at the TTM 2018 (photo 26 Extreme)

In the Marathon Springwell RC had only one member, but it was the ever reliable Chris Denton who produced another fantastic performance to win the race with a time of 3.07.02.

 Springwell RC at the Tollymore Trail Marathon 2018

Springwell RC at the Tollymore Trail Marathon 2018

The Half Marathon has 11 Springwell RC representatives finishing as follows, 13th Jeff Young 1.37.28, 28th Ryan Kennedy 1.42.06, 71st Barry McCluskey 1.52.15, 72nd Paul Campbell 1.52.16, 77th Stephen McLaughlin 1.52.51, 111th Davy MacNicol 1.57.21, 118th Pauline Mullan 1.58.28, 128th Will Colvin 1.59.59, 142nd Kenny Coulter 2.02.15, 182nd Ryan Gray 2.07.24, and 283rd Jim O’Hara 2.34.04

Run in the Dark

This year’s Run in the Dark took place on Wednesday 14th November through a floodlit Stormont Estate. Running in support of the Mark Pollock Trust, competitors were raising funds for research to find a cure for spinal cord injury. Over 2000 runners, wearing day-glo shirts and flashing armbands, took part in the 5 & 10k events producing a stream of light through the estate. Springwell RC had 24 members at the event.

5k - 76th Clive Bradberry 25.14, 295th Antoinette Conway 31.00, 296th Janet McNicholl 30.19, 317th Margaret Kearney 30.44, 604th Grainne Moore 34.30, 605th Fergal Mackle 34.31, 606th Aidan Mooney 35.05

10k - 85th Jude Moore 47.04, 90th Mervyn Thompson 47.12, 125th Jim Bradley 48.11 PB, 265th Thomas Cassidy 51.27, 289th Paula Mc Nicholl 52.43, 299th Majella Mcateer 52.39, 311th Claire Ramsey 53.18, 390th Paul Moore 55.03, 400th Paul Dornan 55.10, 431st Mariette Mulvenna 56.40, 505th Kate McNicholl 58.04, 646th Bridgeen Canning 1.01.52, 647th Rosemary Mellon 1.01.51, 648th Anita McCullagh 1.01.53, 669th BA O'Kane 1.02.34, 770th Colin Connolly 1.03.28, 809th Emer Thompson 1.06.00

NI & Ulster Uneven Age Group Championships

This year’s NI & Ulster Uneven Age Group Championships took place at Scotstown in County Monaghan. Stepping up an age group this year Niamh Carr produced an excellent performance to win the U19 age category with a time of 17.10.

Springwell RC Results

BU15 - 5th Ryan Smith 11.19, 19th Cormac Carr 12.10

GU15 - 22nd Niamh McGarry 13.42, 33rd Poppy Given 14.10

BU17 - 13th Matthew Beveridge 18.02, 24th Jack Culbertson 18.56

GU19 - 1st Niamh Carr 17.10, 7th Hermione Skuce 18.59

BU19 - 14th Andrew Gordon 24.35

Sperrin Harriers Winter League Trail Series

The first event in this seasons Winter League Trails Series took place in Davagh Forest on Saturday 10th November. This very popular event attracted over 160 runners to take part in the 10k Trail run. Springwell RC had six members at the event - 35th Darren Walsh 43.29, 54th Karen McLaughlin 46.59, 60th Alison Rankin 47.50, 127th Sarah Dickinson 56.50, 131st Paul Dornan 57.26, 144th Michael Rankin 1.00.37

Drum Manor 5 & 10k

In the ‘Run Forest Run’ series of races, hosted by events management company Born2Run, the second race took place in Drum Manor Forest Park on Saturday 17th November. Over 450 runners took part in this very popular event with six Springwell RC members amongst them.

 Roisin Walker, Lorraine Abernethy and Deborah Archibald at the Drum Manor 10k

Roisin Walker, Lorraine Abernethy and Deborah Archibald at the Drum Manor 10k

5k - 150th Stacey Lyttle 46.10

10k - 109th Paul Humphreys 52.23, 137th Andrew Kincaid 54.39, 227th Deborah Archibald 1.02.43, 278th Roisin Walker 1.10.12, 291st Lorraine Abernethy 1.17.33

British & Irish Masters XC Championships

Springwell RC’s Bryan Edgar, having qualified for an international vest, travelled to Swansea to represent Northern Ireland at the British & Irish Masters Cross Country Championships on Saturday 17th November. Racing in the M55 age category Bryan finished 17th in a time of 32.25 and, along with David Clarke, 5th in 29.42, James Wallace, 6th in 29.44 and Noel Connor, 8th 29.55 won the silver medal for N. Ireland at this prestigious championship.

 Springwell RC’s Bryan Edgar representing N.I. at the British & Irish Masters XC

Springwell RC’s Bryan Edgar representing N.I. at the British & Irish Masters XC

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