Snow in the Derry Air: Sunday 28th Nov 2010

The national cross-country championships were run in a snow-covered course in Derry on Sunday. Despite the arctic conditions over the weekend a number of our athletes made the perilous journey. Understandably some did not make the trip with the result that it was left to individuals rather than teams to carry the Kilkenny colours. And some of those individuals carried the colours with distinction through the snow-covered course.

 Number one on the list has to be St Joseph’s, under 12 girl, Helen Hoynes. Helen turned in a great performance to win individual silver. Club-mate Chloe Richardson was also to the fore finishing in 11th place. Both girls collected silver medals with the second placed Leinster team.   Luke FitzPatrick, KCH, finishing 10th in the boys under 12 race, also won silver with the Leinster team. The Leinster team won gold in  boys under 14 race greatly helped by excellent running from  Sean Power, Thomastown (12th) and Cormac Buggy, Gowran (18th). James Maher, KCH, was back to the form which he has shown in previous years. Finishing 6th  at under 16 level in Leinster in October may have been a disappointment but taking individual   bronze and provincial gold in Derry on Sunday will make up for that disappointment. The final juvenile medal of the day, bronze in girls under 18, was won by Mary Ellen Doyle, Gowran. With no club, county, or provincial team to lend support this was very much a quality  individual performance.

In the senior 10K county Kilkenny were competing  in the B Division. A  genuine team effort by the men brought its reward. With Brian Maher, KCH, the top performer in 12th place and great running by Gowran men, Tommy Evans in 24th and Niall Sheehan in 29th brought the possibility of finishing in the medals. Thanks to the loyal support of veteran athletes Sean Caulfield, St Senan’s, Bill Doherty, St Joseph’s and Denis Cormack, Gowran, that possibility was realised and the team came home with the silver medals.

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