Letterkenny Athletic Club Notes

Nakita Burke’s phenomenal improvement continued on Wednesday evening in Belfast in the Deep River Rock Queen’s 5K. Nakita earned a new PB of almost 20 seconds and her first sub 17 minute 5K in an excellent time of 16.45. She was the 2nd woman with only Newcastle and District AC’s Kerry O’Flaherty ahead of her. Nakita’s  excellent time is a fitting reward for her tough training programme as well as the time devoted to  her training by Sean McFadden.
There were also excellent performances from the 3 Letterkenny AC men who ran. First across the line was teenage Eoin Hughes who recorded another sub 16 minute 5K when he came home in 15.59. Raymond Birch’s fine form continued and he finished in 16.38. Ciaran McGonagle also ran well and finished in 16.42. The race winner was Neil Johnston whose time was 15.02.
Just 2 evenings later, one of Nakita  Burke’s training partners, Maria Ni Mhaolagain, emulated her by recording an impressive PB. On Friday evening, Maria was a very impressive winner of the women’s race in the Marine Harvest Milford 5K. Maria had an excellent time of 17.49. Karol Duggan’s superb  form continued and he won the race in 15.20, which left him 55 seconds clear of his nearest challenger, Mark McPaul of Finn Valley AC.
Liam Ferry finished in 19.13. Deirdre Diver had a fine run and was 3rd in the Senior Women’s category in 20.59. Marie Boyle continued her comeback and ran an excellent time of 21.55. Marie’s fiance, Gary Kearns, clocked 22.03. M60 runner, Hugh Gallagher, finished in 24.50. Pat McKenna ran around the course with her son Mark in 35.47.
The race was very well organised by Milford AC, benefitting from James Gibbons’ experience and organisational ability. It attracted more than 150 runners and was a fitting tribute to the late Hughie Gallagher, who had been  a Milford AC athlete. The results service was carried out expeditiously by North West Timing.
Ann-Marie McGlynn, on a family holiday in London, had a tremendous victory in the Hyde Park Spring 10K. She finished first in the entire field of 594,  leaving all the male runners trailing in her wake. Her time of 33.50 saw her finish 34 seconds clear of her nearest challenger, Stuart McDougall of Fulham Running Club and more than 5 minutes clear of the next woman, Olivia Sadler of Bristol and West AC.
Over 100 runners participated in Saturday morning’s Letterkenny parkrun. Michael Galvin, who finished in 20.46, was the leading Letterkenny AC runner. He was 4th overall and 1st in the M45 category. This was the fastest of Michael’s 3 parkuns to date. Eimear Gormley was the first woman across the line in 23.33. M50 runners, Noel Lynch and Cathal Roarty, were 2nd and 3rd respectively in their age group. Noel clocked 24.21 in his 16th outing and Cathal 24.37 in his 32nd outing. James McBride was the leading M65 runner in 25.07. Cliodhna Dunne recorded her best time to date and was the 2nd woman in 25.11. Peter McLean ran his 71st parkrun in 25.40.
Letterkenny AC’s annual Easter Sunday races will take place on Sunday April 1st. Runners have a choice of 2 distances on a fast, flat and accurate course. The ‘Fun Run and Walk’ is over 3K or 5K. The entry fee for the 5K  is €8 and has a generous prize list. The 3K has an entry fee of €5 and a large number of spot prizes are available. The event starts at 11.30am and entries will be taken in Diver’s Hyundai Garage, Canal Road from 10.30am. The club appreciates the generous sponsorship of the event provided by Harte Insurance.
                                    Hugh Gallagher.
                                Letterkenny AC PRO.