Main pic: Rosses AC U3 boys team of Evan Ward, Eli Duffy, Ben McGee and Micheal Breathnach.
Last weekend saw athletes from Rosses AC competing in Belfast, Navan, Waterford and closer to home in Letterkenny.
Sunday saw the All Ireland Uneven Ages with all roads leading towards the Navan Race Course. It was to prove another good day for the club with 3 medals coming to the club.
The u15 Boys was to be the highlight of the day with Odhran Rodgers (above) going with the early pace and over the 3.5k distance race toe to toe with the best in the country and as the closing stages came and the pace increased it looked like his medal might just slip away but the determined nature of Odhran ensured he dug deep and found the gear that meant he passed two competitors on the uphill finish to secure his place on the podium and claim his All Ireland medal. Odhran was also part of the Ulster team who won Regional bronze medals to have him secure two All Ireland Medals on the day. A great run!
The day started with the u11 girls with this being the first experience of an All Ireland race and with over 200 competitors it was a great atmosphere which the girls relished and did really well. Enya Logue was suffering from a cold all week but led the team home. She was closely followed by Caitlin Sweeney, Tamara Parker, Rosie Breslin and Eveney Greene. This is a great group of girls and the experience gained will set them up for more days ahead.
In the u13 Boys another large field saw Evan Ward start brightly in the top three for the first kilometer and stayed in the lead pack as they tackled the hilly course. As they entered the closing stages Evan battled hard but just missed out on a podium medal as his strong performance was enough for him to make the Ulster team who won Regional All Ireland bronze medals – well done Evan. Eli Duffy has had a super season and developed into a strong tough endurance athlete and was right with the front end of the pack and will be happy with where he finished knowing this is his first real taste of action at this level and will be back. Micheal Breathnach and Ben McGee have both trained hard over the past few weeks and it was to show on the day as they helped ensure the boys secured a top 8 club team finish. Well done boys!
In the u15 girls Aoife McGonagle was to take on the challenge of the 3.5k distance in a race that she earned her place through her hard training and performances during the season and she came away knowing and showing that with additional consistent training she can become very competitive.
In the u17 girls there was an equally impressive display by Hannah McGee who continues to improve and race her best race to date with a really strong gutsy display to help ensure she claimed a few scalps for the first time and will come away happy that she is on the right path and her dedication is paying off. A super run Hannah!. A huge thanks to all the athletes, parents and coaches who travelled and it’s always nice to see club officials on duty with a friendly face. That concluded the ‘A’ cross country season and its been very successful for the club.
The Donegal Short Course Championships are this Sunday in Carndonagh and the All Ireland B Championships are in early February. In Letterkenny the annual Turkey Trot 5k saw a number of Rosses athletes compete with turkey wins for Charlie O’Donnell and Bernie Boyle (19:03) finishing 4 seconds away from their predicted times. Paul McKelvey ran 17:25, Patrick Trimble 17:56 and Declan Gallagher 18:16. On Saturday in Belfast the prestigious Seeley Cup 10k saw Fionnuala Diver, who was carrying a small injury, had a strong outing running a strong time of 39:1. Down at the Waterford Half Marathon Keith O’Connell ran 1:25:30 while Martina Mulhern ran a great time of 1:32:07.