Paddy Hamilton burns off his rivals in Armagh
The advent of autumn put no dampener on participation levels in local running events with record fields turning up for most of the weekend races. Yesterday’s Armagh Adidas 10 Miles attracted almost 300 runners with a similar number in the ancillary four-mile fun run.
Paddy Hamilton turned in a virtuoso performance to win what has traditionally been a warm-up race for the Dublin Marathon in a speedy 51 minutes and 26 seconds. The Newry-based physiotherapist quashed the challenge of Newcastle’s Seamus Lynch early on and after that it was a one-man show from the Slieve Gullion clubman.
The rugged Lynch had no bother holding on for second in 53:18s, ahead of Omagh Harrier Stephen Duncan, who warmed up for next weekend’s Irish Masters’ cross country trial with a fine 53:43s timing.
The seemingly indefatigable Laura Graham notched up another victory in a tightly contested women’s race where the top three all finished within a minute of each other. Graham got just under the hour with a 59:30s mark and track specialist Emma Mitchell impressed with a 60:10s mark in second spot. Cathy McCourt completed the podium in 60:27s despite racing in Belfast the previous day.
On Saturday, over 800 turned up for the GR8 Dundrum Run organised by Murlough AC. David O’Flaherty was obviously in no mood for company as he quickly distanced himself from the field before going on to win by over four minutes in 44 minutes and 12 seconds.
Mountain running specialist David McKee was a distant second in 48:38s with James Trainer another 13 seconds back in third.
Amanda Perry bypassed the Masters’ cross country trial to take part and was rewarded with a clear victory in the women’s race, coming home over a minute clear in 54:09s.
Collette McCourt (55:17) and Diane Watson occupied the minor medal places.
In Belfast, debutant Allan Bogle was a convincing winner of the NIMAA trial for teams at next month’s British & Irish Masters’ Cross Country International. The City of Derry former orienteering and current mountain running international revelled in the fast
going at the Queen’s University playing fields at Upper Malone. The Eglinton man came home 26 seconds clear of training partner Chris McGuinness from the Foyle Valley club. North Belfast Harrier Eamon White nailed down third spot from early on to lead home the M45 age group runners.