Tattersalls hosted this years Even All Ireland’s earlier today. Renowned for selling top class National Hunt and Flat horses it was the turn of some of Ireland’s leading Juvenile athletes to take centre stage.
In what was always going to be a tough day out, it was made all the more demanding when atrocious overnight conditions had a major impact on the course and in particular the underfoot conditions.
We’ll start with the boys Under 12 race where both Will Hickey & Luke Reynolds were making their first appearances in a XC All Ireland final. Will continued his fine recent form with a 18th place finish and in doing so helped Dublin to second place overall in the County team event. A fitting reward for one of our brightest young prospects and Will has had a fantastic 6 months since joining the club in May of this year. Luke ran a solid race for the Dublin County team and in the process gained some valuable experience for future opportunities. Well done to both Luke and Will.
Mark Dignam stormed home to an excellent performance in the boys Under 14 3000 metres. Whilst his overall result wasn’t know at the time of this article going to press he was definitely one of Dublin’s leading athletes. Mark has shown continuous improvement since his return from injury and it was a gutsy run with some of Ireland’s top young male athletes in the field. Well done Mark.
And so to the Girls Under 12 2000 metres. It was the first race of the day with over 180 athletes in the field. Leinster athlete, Petra Reilly set a blistering early pace as she made light of the “mud paths” and with only 500 metres gone had already put 15 yards on the chasing group including Sarah and some of Munster’s leading athletes.
Back in the main pack, our team of Lina, Claire, Julie, Aoife and Ellen were coping admirably with the conditions and in all cases this was either the team’s first XC All Ireland race or first run at this distance.
As we entered the inner loop with 800 metres to go, Sarah had dropped the other chasers as she began to make inroads on the leader. The gap was closing all the time and then the defining moment!!
With 400 metres to go and as they moved back into the main arena Sarah made her move putting 40 yards on her challenger and unleashing a fantastic sprint finish which had the large crowd acknowledging a truly majestic performance. Once again her ability to seize the moment gave her the cutting edge and she also led the Dublin County team to a winning Gold team medal and a Bronze in the Inter Regional team event.
The girls finished well and whilst they weren’t in the hunt for team honours they celebrated in Sarah’s victory. The team was Sarah Healy, Lina Kyne, Claire Doyle, Julie Ringrose, Aoife Linnane and Ellen Cheung.
Just a special mention to all of those who were out today and supporting our athletes. Thank you.
Also, It was also great to see our club supporting and congratulating all other Dublin teams on the day including MSB, DSD, Celtic, Tallaght AC, Dublin Striders and Brothers Pearse.
So as we edge towards the end of the season it is worth remembering that this time last year we had two athletes in the All Ireland’s.
This year we have 13 athletes between today and Sunday 9th in Wexford.
Well done to everyone involved.