Google+ Running in Cork, Ireland

Friday, April 10, 2020

Notice: Easter Weekend Garden Runs - Fri 10th to Mon 13th April 2020

With the 2km lock down in force due to the COVID-19 epidemic, a number of runners in Cork are doing runs in their garden this Easter weekend.

Brian and Eilish Ahern are planning to run a half-marathon in their garden in Bweeng on Easter Monday and are raising funds for Mental Health Ireland.

There are several people in Conna planning to run 10k's in their garden on Easter Saturdayand raise funds for Feed the Heroes.

Anyone else interested in doing a run in their garden? Anything from 1km and up?

Do it for your chosen charity or just for fun. Get the kids involved.

The only rules are that it must be at home in your garden and it must be during the Easter weekend from Good Friday to Easter Monday.

Send on details of your run with any photos to johndesmond247 AT gmail DOT com and we'll stick them up on the blog and Facebook.

You can also leave your photos in the comments section of this Facebook post.

Update Thurs 9th April 2020: Pat Walsh Running has very kindly offered two donations of €50 to charity. Just submit your photo of your run in your garden and we will pick out two. Pat will then donate €50 to a charity of your choice! 

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Thursday, April 09, 2020

Fines of up to €2,500 for those breaking COVID-19 lock down restrictions

The photo above shows the UCC Farm in the last few days with plenty of cars parked outside as people drive there for a run.

New regulations just signed into law now mean that people caught traveling without an essential reason or exercising more than 2km from their home can now be faced with a fine of up to €2,500 and/or imprisonment for up to six months.

In a statement, Cork County Mayor Ian Doyle said... “Unfortunately some people continue to venture out and are not adhering to the restrictions currently in place. Closing off access to these coastal car parks sends out the message that it is not acceptable to visit places that fall outside of the 2km area of your home. We can all still get exercise and fresh air in close proximity to our homes. We have collectively been doing a great job so far in staying home and stopping the spread of COVID 19, so let’s keep working together.”

Chief Executive of Cork County Council, Tim Lucey said....“Government guidelines are clear that all citizens must limit their leisure and exercise to within 2km of their homes. Driving for non essential purposes is not permitted as part of these public health measures. With the good weather and Easter weekend approaching these closures have been put in place to make it clear that people outside the immediate 2km area should not visit public beaches or other amenities at this time.”

Wednesday, April 08, 2020

Running in Paris banned from 10am to 7pm

As the death toll from the COVID-19 epidemic in France has gone over the 10,000 mark, the authorities in Paris have banned people from running in the city from 10am in the morning to 7pm in the evening. This is usually when streets are at their busiest.

The new rules come into effect on Wednesday the 8th of April.

The Paris daytime running ban followed a sunny weekend when large groups of people were running and walking in the city's parks, despite police controls that include fines for violating the lock down.

Several hundred thousand people have been fined to date for breaking the lock down restrictions.

Saturday, April 04, 2020

Guest Post: St.Patrick wins the 2020 Ballycotton '10' ... by Pat Walsh

If you turn on the radio or TV today then it seems to be nothing but news about the Coronavirus epidemic. To get away from all the doom and gloom, here is a guest post from Pat Walsh to lighten the mood...

(Originally posted 17th March 2020 before the lock down)

Shock winner of the 2020 Ballycotton 10 was none other than St Patrick.

In news that will shock the Athletics world, he romped home in a field of 1 to win by a clear margin.

In a long and detailed interview after the race we asked him some deep thoughtful questions on what it all meant to him.

☘️ How are you feeling now?
Delighted to have won the race. Long time ambition of mine and I am glad it finally happened. I had no Parade or Pub today so I said I would have a go.

☘️ How will you celebrate?
My throat is dry for a few scoops and you would think that, I, the Patron Saint of this country could get a pint somewhere. Will just have to go home and make a crisp sandwich and see is there a bottle somewhere in the cupboard.
Might watch Netflix, I am in the mood for “Chariots of Fire” after today.

☘️ What do you think of the winning trophy?
I am over the Moon to win the specially embossed #pwr Loo-Roll. I will put it pride of place with my other stash. I have a few Velvet soft and Kitten soft left as well. Most of the stuff I hoarded last few days was the cheap hard stuff. Those things would tear the arse off of you.🤣😂

☘️ What about lack of Competition in the race?
It was well known that I was in good form recently and maybe they stayed away because they didn’t want to be beaten by a Man in a dress. I don’t know. Was hoping Aoife Cooke would be here today as I reckon I had a chance this year.

☘️ Did you find the hill hard on the way home?
What hill…

☘️ Did the lack of atmosphere affect your performance?
Yes I missed Dick O Brien classic song at the start and then DJ Mossie 🎧🎼🎤giving me abuse outside the Blackbird pub. Still once I settled there was a few ducks 🦆🦆on the Bog Road and a few Rabbits 🐇🐇and a Pheasant over by Ballybraher.

☘️ What is next on your plans?
I hoped to go for Olympic Qualification this year but the Country is in a crisis and needs me. I sorted the Snakes 🐍🐍out years ago and now I need to fix the Virus thing.😷😷🤧

Lá fhéile Pádraig sona dhuit ☘️😍
#Keeponsmiling #Staysafe

Pat Walsh Running is based in Midelton in East Cork and Pat holds running sessions during the week and at weekends. For more information on Pat and his running classes, visit his Facebook page...

Friday, April 03, 2020

Results of the UCC Staff 10k - 7th April 2002

In a recent guest post, John Walshe looked back at some of the history of races on the Lee Road / Straight Road circuit.

In this post, we look back at the results of the UCC staff 10k on the 7th of April 2002.

Full results below...

Results of the UCC Staff 5k - 27th March 1994

In a recent guest post, John Walshe looked back at some of the history of races on the Lee Road / Straight Road circuit.

This route has been used for the UCC 10k for many years but back in 1994, they used the Mardyke / Western Road loop for a 5k.

Full results below...

Thursday, April 02, 2020


The Lee Road / Straight Road circuit is a well known running route to runners in Cork and is home to one of the oldest road races on the calendar. In this guest post, John Walshe of Ballycotton looks back at some of the races on this route.


Last Sunday would have seen the 38th UCC Staff road race (now known as the Carmel Lynch Memorial) taking place over 10km on the Lee Road-Straight Road circuit. But, of course like all other events, it too has fallen victim to the dreaded COVID-19 virus. So maybe it’s an opportune time to have a look back to a few of the races that this popular route has hosted over the years.

Running out the Lee Road, turning left past the ‘Angler’s’ and then hitting the two-mile straight with the County Hall seeming like an never-ending oasis in the distance has always been a popular excursion for Corkonians.

Back before the first running boom, for two of the top Cork marathoners of that era it provided the staple diet of their weekly training. Both Jack O’Leary and Donal Burke worked in the County Hall and every lunchtime the duo would cover the hilly circuit which, along with the mandatory weekend long run, produced times in the 2:25-2:35 range.

As a regular race route, it has been used extensively for the past 30 to 40 years. But back in July of 1951, for the one and only time, a road race was part of the Cork City Sports which took in the circuit. This was over eight miles and started at the Grand Parade Monument. It proceeded out Washington Street and the Western Road, then out the Carrigrohane Straight before turning right onto the Lee Road, past St Josephs Hospital at six miles and the Mental Hospital to finish at the Gaelic Grounds.

On that occasion just 13 runners toed the line and it was a handicap race, with most of that small field starting off two to two-and-a-half minutes ahead of the scratch man, Joe West of the Rising Sun club. West was born and reared in Carrigaline and started off his athletics career with the local Owenabui club, winning the Cork senior cross-title on three occasions.

In 1947, he went to England and joined Coventry Godiva Harriers before going on to represent Ireland in the marathon at the 1952 Helsinki Olympics. This was the race famously won by Emil Zátopek after the Czech had already taken gold in the 5000m and 10,000m. On that July evening almost 70 years ago, the large attendance at the Mardyke were able to witness one of their own, an Olympian marathoner, come into the Gaelic Grounds as winner of the eight-mile race. West’s time was 45 minutes and 44 seconds and in second place was Ted Geary from Ballymore near Cobh.

The first race of the modern era was probably the Our Lady’s Hospital (Cork BHAA) promotion of 1983. This was held over six-and-a-half miles, one full circuit starting and finishing near the hospital entrance. Four years later, as the attached results show, it had been shortened to 10km with the winner, Billy Horgan, recording the impressive time of 30:35.

Around the early to mid-80s a half-marathon took place here on a number of occasions. The 1982 race saw victories going to Kerry athlete John Griffin (66:38) and Leevale’s Marie Buckley (85:33) as over 400 finished the two demanding laps.

Over two winters a women’s-only series of races – following on from the first Evening Echo Mini-Marathon – were held around the city. The March 1984 10km on the Lee Road-Straight Road was won by Carmel Lyons (now Parnell) in 38:40 from Joan Hough (38:55) and Lucy O’Donohue (39:00). Although she didn’t run on that occasion, it is recalled that a 15-year-old Sonia O’Sullivan did take part in a number of those events.

A popular final ‘blow-out’ before the Dublin Marathon as it was usually held a week or two before the big day was the Rehab 10km. This took place on a Sunday afternoon for around 12 years, starting in 1984. On another occasion, the Cork BLE 10km championship saw the runners finishing with a lap of the Mardyke track, making it slightly over distance!

The first UCC Staff 10km races started just before the recently refurbished Shakey Bridge and finished near the County Hall. One of the results attached (only first page) (shown below) is from 1992 and saw victory going to Garrett Barry in a time of 30:44. This proved to be the start of a great summer for the North Cork athlete. He would go on to win the BLE Senior 1500m that July in 3:47.30 along with ending Liam O’Brien’s decade-long winning streak in the Ballycotton five-mile races at Churchtown South with a one-second victory in 24:32.

It is also worth recalling that for a few years in the mid-1990s the UCC Staff race was held over 5km, comprising of a number of laps around the Mardyke Walk and Western Road.

Again, for interest, the results of the 1994 race are attached (results HERE) where the winners were Tommy Moloney from Tipperary – a 3:54.68 miler - who got the verdict ahead of Garrett Barrett with both given the same time of 15:04.

More results in separate posts.

UCC Staff 5k (1994) Results

UCC Staff 10k (2002) Results 

There is a list of guest posts from John Walshe HERE

Results of the 1987 10k & 1992 10k below...

First page of the BHAA UCC 10k - April 1992

Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Results of the poll for the best Half-Marathon in Munster in 2019

Finally the last of the awards.

The Cork City Half-Marathon was voted the best half-marathon in Munster in 2019!

The Waterford Half-Marathon in December was in second place while the Run Killarney Half-Marathon in July was in third.

Thanks to the almost 800 people who took the time to vote.

Monday, March 30, 2020

Results of the poll for the best 10 mile race in Munster in 2019

Finally catching up with the last of the awards.

Congratulations to West Waterford AC, the organisers of the John Treacy 10 mile road race in Dungarvan on being voted the best 10 mile race in Munster in 2019!

The Mallow 10 mile was in second place while the Cork City 10 miler was in third.

Thanks to the almost 800 people who took the time to vote.

Saturday, March 28, 2020

Man runs marathon in garden during COVID-19 lock down


With the COVID-19 lock down in England now in force, 36-year old James Page decided to run a marathon in his garden and helped raise over £3,000 for Children With Cancer UK.

James has been in training for the Marathon Des Sables Ultra in the Sahara but this had been postponed due to the COVID-19 scare.

Rather than let all of his training go to waste, James took it upon himself to run 873 laps of his garden to complete a full 26.2 mile marathon for charity.

In an interview, he said.... “It wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. In a weird way it was quite enjoyable. It was nice weather and the kids were out there watching me with my wife.”

“I wanted to go a bit quicker and get a personal best, but it’s hard to pick up speed as you’re running in such a small circle. I’m not the fastest runner, but I had to keep it at a nice comfortable speed otherwise it would be tricky at the corners.”

“You can really see the loops trodden into the grass,” he said. “My wife’s not really happy, but she knows it was for a good cause and it keeps me happy.”

The full marathon took 4 hours and 57 minutes and he switched direction every 20 minutes to protect his knees.

Friday, March 27, 2020

Government restrict all individual exercise to within 2kms of your own home for two weeks

In an effort to clamp down on the spread of the COVID-19 disease, the Government have announced that as of midnight on Friday the 27th of March, all individual exercise must be within 2kms of your own home.

This restriction lasts until the 12th of April 2020.

Note that the instruction is for BRIEF individual physical exercise. It's not for running up and down the road within 2kms of your house and clocking up a half-marathon!

Thursday, March 26, 2020

Boherbue to Kiskeam race in NW Cork cancelled

As expected, the annual Boherbue to Kiskeam 4 mile road race has been cancelled due to the COVID-19 crisis.

It is hoped that it will be held later in the year.

All parkruns cancelled worldwide until the end of April 2020

The parkrun organisation has announced that due to the COVID-19 epidemic, there will be no parkruns anywhere in the world until the end of April and it's very likely that it will go well beyond that.

*** UPDATE - 16.40 GMT Tuesday 24 March 2020 ***

Update from parkrun Global Chief Operating Officer, Tom Williams

Today’s update is to notify you that all parkrun events will now continue to be suspended until at least the end of April. This is in order to keep all parkrun countries following the same timeline for the moment, although we do expect suspensions to go beyond April.

Since deciding to close our events we have been working incredibly hard to action that decision, understand the implications of making it, and provide immediate support to parkrun communities around the world. And, with all events suspended, we are now able to begin work developing our strategy for supporting our communities during this difficult time and, one day, re-launching.

Going forward we will be publishing a global parkrun update every Tuesday (UK time).

We will get through this, together.