Quiet weekend for athletes as Leitrim pair medal in Varsities

Last weekend was a quiet one for Leitrim athletes with the only action taking place in Gransha Derry where the AAI Intermediate and Masters Championships were held along with the Juvenile Development Competition while Athlone IT hosted the Irish Universities Indoor Championships.

Last weekend was a quiet one for Leitrim athletes with the only action taking place in Gransha Derry where the AAI Intermediate and Masters Championships were held along with the Juvenile Development Competition while Athlone IT hosted the Irish Universities Indoor Championships.

Last weekend was a quiet one for Leitrim athletes with the only action taking place in Gransha Derry where the AAI Intermediate and Masters Championships were held along with the Juvenile Development Competition while Athlone IT hosted the Irish Universities Indoor Championships.

The Juvenile Development races were previously known as the “B” Championships and in the Under 11 Girls race, Ellie McDaid of North Leitrim finished 21st and Ellie O’Rourke of Ballinamore AC 22nd in a large field. Patrick Montgomery of North Leitrim finished 26th in the Boys Under 11 event. Riordan O’Rourke took 17th position in the Under 15 Boys race where he was giving away a year to many competitors.

In Athlone’s palatial new Indoor Arena last Friday, three Leitrim athletes were in action with Eanna Madden, representing the University of Limerick, just missing out on a place in the 400m final when he ran a time of 51.88 in the heats. The Carrick AC athlete later ran the opening leg for the victorious UL 4 x 200m heat.

Laura O’Dowd and Gerard O’Donnell both featured in the colours of hosts Athlone IT, with Laura in contention for a medal in the 800m before fading to sixth over the final lap while Gerard ran third leg for the 4 x 200m squad that upset a number of fancied teams to take bronze in the relay.

Next weekend the action returns to Athlone IT where the AAI Masters Championships take place on Saturday followed by the Junior and Under 23 on Sunday.

Many Schools will be on mid term break next week and those who qualified for the Aviva Connacht Schools Cross Country Championships in Sligo last week are reminded that the competition takes place in Sligo on Wednesday week, February 20. The All Ireland will be in Ballyclare on Saturday March 9.

Leitrim County Board hold their AGM this week while a Connacht Council Meeting in Claremorris on Monday night week will complete the arrangements for the Connacht indoor Championships.

PRIMARY SCHOOLS SPORTS HALL COMING UP

The time has come around again for the Leitrim Primary Schools Sports Hall Athletics competition which has been promoted very successfully by Leitrim County Board AAI and Leitrim Local Sports Partnership for the past two years.

At All Ireland level it looks as if the involvement level will be similar to last year with thirteen County and Sports Partnership units committed. This year again there will be preliminary heats but unlike last year they will not all be held in Athlone. Winning schools from Donegal, Leitrim, Galway and Roscommon will compete at Sligo Sports Complex on Thursday March 14th with similar heats fixed for Athlone and Ennis. Two qualifiers from each of the three heats will compete in the Final in Athlone IT on Wednesday March 20th.

Entries are now being sought from Leitrim Primary Schools in order to fix the Leitrim competitions. If a North Leitrim competition is necessary as was the case last year it will take place in Manorhamilton on Wednesday February 13.

A south Leitrim competition will be held, probably in Ballinamore on a date to be fixed and probably the following week . A considerable level of preparation is required in the organization of those competitions and schools which wish to take part this year are asked to ensure that they have indicated this to Leitrim Sports Partnership by tomorrow (Thursday) evening. It is not necessary to enter names for the events at this stage if they have not been decided.

This has proved to be a most enjoyable competition for the children taking part and it is hoped that last year’s level of interest will be maintained or even increased this year.

Well attended North Leitrim AC AGM

A well-attended annual general meeting of the North Leitrim Athletic Club took place in the St. Clare’s Comprehensive School Library on Wednesday night week last.

There was a long ranging debate on training at the meeting; on how best to arrange it to cater for the wide range of different athlete age groups attending; and it was also agreed a Club Committee will look at the possibility of having training on more times per week than the scheduled Monday evening session currently taking between 7pm and 8pm weekly.

It was agreed that last year had been another successful one for the Club even though the medals won and successes achieved at provincial and national level had been slightly down on some previous years due somewhat to the turnover in athletes who had passed on to other challenges for the older teenage years.

Competition was also discussed at the AGM as was the general around running of the Club, including the raising finance, the setting up of a Club Website, Facebook, Newsletter and the participation of new and regular Club coaches in upcoming AAI coaching courses training – Athlete Leader, Assistant Coach and Leader 1 Coach.

The following North Leitrim Athletic Club officers were elected at the AGM – Chairman, Tom Kelly, Secretary, Ann Mulvaney, Treasurer, Brian Kearns, Assistant Treasurer, Avril Banks, PRO, Trevor McDaid, IT Officer Dave McEvoy, Children’s Officers, Joe Giblin, Imelda McDaid and Registrar, Ann Mulvaney.

The members of the Committee, who were elected at the meeting to run the Club for the current year with the officers, were Margaret Sweeney, Stephen Montgomery, Tara McEvoy, Tony Kilbane, Paddy Croal, Paul Brady, P.J. Leddy and Mary White Hughes.

Carrick-on-Shannon AC

The club picked up the first national medals of the year last Friday and both came in the same race when Eanna Madden and Gerard O’Donnell ran in the Irish University Indoors in the fantastic new Athlone IT Indoor athletics arena. Eanna, who just missed out on the individual 400m final with a time of 51.88 in the heats, ran the opening leg for the victorious UL squad that overhauled Gerard O’Donnell’s Athlone IT team in the final 40 metres, Gerard running a superb third leg in his first race in nearly 18 months.

Up in Derry, Graham Allen was in action in the National Masters Cross-country Championships in Gransha Park in Derry, finishing 76th on a testing course and first Leitrim runner home. Well done Graham. Graham’s adult group continues to go from strength to strength as they gear up for the big 10K on Sunday, March 3.

With the mid-term break next week, there will be no training for the Primary School athletes, training will resume on Tuesday week, February 19. Training will continue as normal for the Post Primary group.