5K Club Race 2020


On Saturday July 25 we had the inaugural Club “Covid” 5k. I say inaugural, but let’s hope we’ll be renaming it next year.

The race was the brainchild of Patrick O’Reilly who came up with the idea of a virtual 5km training plan while we were still in the depths of lockdown in early May and along with Noel Ryan put in place a fantastic race. The purpose of the training plan was to allow club members follow a structured plan on their own, while also providing a race that members could work towards. Thankfully restrictions eased and we were able to resume group training quicker than anticipated. Nevertheless, the club race continued to provide us with a focus for our training, especially given that mass participation races still look uncertain.

After 10 weeks of intervals, tempos, and easy miles, 28 club runners lined up to put their training to the test. The route started on Furze road and took in just under two anti-clockwise laps of Furze road, Chesterfield avenue and Ordnance Survey road. It’s a flat route with a slight pull on Chesterfield avenue on the first lap, but which feels like a hill climb on the second lap. Participants were asked to predict their times and Gemma arranged us into groups based on those times. Our budget didn’t stretch to chip timing, instead we relied on people’s watch times which lead to some anomalies with the results…

There were some very ambitious times predicted for our first group and some who did not have confidence in their own abilities. Jason Reilly was first past the post with a blistering time of 16.02, almost 1 minute faster than predicted. Patrick O’Reilly was next in 16:46, matching his 2 week old PB although this can be considered an official race PB!. Brian Walls left everything out there to finish in 16:56. Bernard and Podge, the comeback kids, were next in 17:20 and 17:32 respectively.

In the next group we had a 3 way cat and mouse between Noel, Gareth and Paul. Gareth triumphed in the end in a time of 18:05. Paul Foran was next with a time of 18.14 (PB) with Noel Ryan just behind him with a time of 18.16. Last minute entrant Jonathan Murphy was next in a time of 18:57, with Sean Ryan not far behind in 19:05.

There was nothing to split William Beausang and Padraig Creed with both finishing in a time of 19:24. We had our first lady in this group with Brid Ryan finishing in an excellent 19:33. Next was John Meagher in 20:18. It was a tough day at the office for Nick Devery who finished in 20:28. Keith Farrell bridged the gap between groups to finish in 20:25. I was next in 20:44.

Fiona Fagan finished a PB time of 21:09. It was then a photo finish between Hannah Snowe and Maria Mellsop with times of 22.30 and 22:31 respectively.

Dermot Grogan was first finisher from the next group in a time of 22:01. Eamonn Prunty was next home in 22:43, followed by Sunil Singh in 23:33 and Ciaran Belton in 24.39.

Club newcomer Aedin Donnelly was first home from our final group in a time of 24.44, followed by Jean Neary in 25.51. Another club newcomer Michael Moloney was next in 26:09. Next was Tom Turner in 28.20.

Maria Mellsop was the winner in terms of predicted time; she was only a second out. Well done Maria. Jonathan Murphy was next (3 seconds), followed by Gareth Horgan (8 seconds), Patrick O’Reilly (9 seconds) and Bernard Duggan (10 Seconds)

Well done to everyone who raced on the day. 5K races are  notoriously hard, as some of the photos attest to. Everyone really gave their all and there were some amazing finish times.

A massive thanks to Noel Ryan for organising the race itself. Everything on the day was really well planned and the bonus drinks and medals at the finish were a nice touch.

A big thanks to Andy, Barry and Tom who took on stewarding duties on the day.

Thanks to Brendan Healy for capturing the smiles before and after the race and the painful grimaces during the race. A full selection of photos are available to members on the Facebook members page.

Thanks to Nick for leading our training sessions each week and to our “race director” Gemma for keeping on top of everything as usual! There are probably a few more who deserve a mention so just a big thanks to everybody who contributed in the build-up and on the day and of course to all those who raced.