Google+ Running in Cork, Ireland: September 2010

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Preview of the Cork BHAA 'Cork to Cobh' 15 Mile road race - Sun 3rd Oct 2010

At last, one of the highlights on the Cork road racing calendar....the annual Cork BHAA Cork to Cobh 15 mile road race. Last year, 800 runners took part and when you consider that it is a 15 mile road race, that's an exceptional number. In terms of numbers actually running, this is the 3rd largest event in Cork after the Cork City Marathon and the Ballycotton 10.

What's the attraction?.........For some, it's at just the right time....3 weeks before the Dublin Marathon and a great way to see what condition you are in. For others, it's the novelty.....being able to start a race in Cork City and end up in Cobh, way out in the middle of Cork harbour. It is certainly the only time you can run on the Cork to Cobh road safely. This is a race organized by runners for runners and only costs €20 to enter on the day...........while the pre-entry fee was a snip at €10 and that includes a t-shirt! So, on with the preview...

How to enter.......If you have pre-entered then you should have got your race number in the post by now. If you are new to the running scene then all you have to do is to turn up at the start, no need to go to the hotel unless of course you need to get a gear bag taken to Cobh for you.

If you need to enter then you should go to the Montenotte Hotel probably well before 9am. Just pay the €20 and take your number. Don't worry about the race t-shirt, you'll get that in Cobh. If you have a gear bag then look for the desk giving out tags and put your bag in the back of the race van.

The start...........Note that the start has moved!! It is no longer on Summerhill North but down on the Lower Road outside St.Patrick's church. In fact, the start is moving back to it's old location. Keep this in mind if you need to go to the hotel. It's about 800 metres from the hotel to the start so allow plenty of time!

Course...Starting at St.Patricks Church, we run past the railway station and towards the Dunkettle roundabout. From here, there is a change. Last year, we ran inside the hard shoulder for about a mile until the slip for Little Island. This year, we will be taking a left and onto the old road which passes Glounthaune church.

Then onwards towards the main roundabout before Carrigtwohill and then take the bridge over the main road and head towards Fota, Belvelly bridge and on into Cobh. The finish is close to the main square in the centre of Cobh. Overall, there are a few small hills but nothing major, just one small pull near the 12 mile mark and another smaller one before 14 miles.

A big factor on this course can be the wind. You are basically running East for 8 miles and then South for another 6 miles before turning East again for the last mile. I remember running this many years ago when it was wet and there was a very strong Southerly wind. Miles 1 to 8 were fine but as soon as we turned South, the very wet t-shirt that I was wearing was pressed against my chest and I could really begin to feel the body temperature dropping ( the way, you should never wear a cotton t-shirt in a race! Wear a singlet and/or a thermal vest). So, watch the weather forecast closer to next weekend and keep an eye on the wind direction.

Race Options...For those of you doing the Dublin Marathon, your choice you treat Cork to Cobh as a training run or do you race it like you would a half marathon??? Some have told me that it is too close to the Marathon to race (3 weeks)....other have said it's not. What to do??? My opinion is that the Cork to Cobh race is an ideal opportunity to test out your Marathon pace. If you have a target in the Marathon, you should have a pace in mind. Say your target is 3:30 in the Marathon. That's 8 minute/mile pace. Maybe you would like a little bit of cushion to fall back on so say 7:50 per mile...that's your Marathon pace. Do a 1-2 mile warm up on Sunday and then run to Cobh at your Marathon pace. If you get to Cobh exhausted, then you need to revise your Marathon pace. If you can run the 15 miles to Cobh and you feel like you could carry on ok, then surely that's a good sign for the Marathon. Only another 11 miles to go!! ;o)
If 15 miles is the maximum distance you can run then pace yourself. Many people have ran this race before, felt great at Fota/Belvelley Bridge around the 10 mile mark and be completely exhausted by the time they reach Cobh. Keep something in the tank...take it easy until the 10 mile mark and once you cross over the bridge and onto the island, you can push for home.
The finish and afters......As in previous years, the finish is in the same spot but the location for the refreshments / prizegiving / bag collection has changed. It has always been at the scount hall behind the Catherderal. This year, it's in the community hall.
From the finish line, walk under the arch and up the hill past the multicoloured Deck of Cards houses. At the top, turn right and you will come to a crossroads. In previous years, you would have walked straight accross and into the scout hall. This year, take a left and continue up the hill. The Community Hall is up there on the left.
Other issues....
No MP3 players allowed!!!.........Now this is important. This is one busy road and it will NOT be closed for the race. It's not so bad for the first few miles when we are all bunched together and there is a hard shoulder to run in. But, it's a different story when you are passing Fota and get onto Great Island itself. There is no hard shoulder, the road is narrow enough and the field will have thinned out by then. You really need to be able to hear what's going on around you for this race. If you are thinking about wearing them, do everyone a favour....leave them at home.
Transport......Options - You probably have a few options in terms of transport...

1) Two cars...take 2 cars to Cobh, leave one in Cobh and drive up to Cork
2) Train...The train will leave the train station in Cobh for Cork City at 12:30, 1:30, 3:00 and 4:30 pm depending on long you want to stay around after the race. The fee is €4.15. Correction....Note that the first train in the morning from Cobh back up to Cork is leaving at 8:30am and arriving at 8:54am. Probably only an option if you can leave your gear in a car near the start.

Water Stations....They will have a number of water stations spaced out along the course.....supposedly near the 3.5, 7 and 13 mile marks.

...and finally - If you want to have a closer look at the course, click on this LINK

Reminder about the BHAA Cork to Cobh 15 mile road race

Just a quick reminder that the Cork to Cobh 15 mile road race is coming up next Sunday, the 3rd of October. There are some changes this year with a slight change in the start, the route and the hall after the race. More details in a full preview later.

For those of you who have not pre-entered, you can still enter on the day for €20 at the Montenotte hotel. Entry fee includes a t-shirt. If you are travelling from outside Cork then the new road network makes this race more accessible than ever. The start is now only an hour from North Tipp or two and a quarter hours from Newlands Cross in Dublin. You can enter at the hotel, get your gear bag transported to Cobh and get the train back to Cork later.

The race starts at 9:30am.

This is a well organised race and considering that the pre-entry was only €10, it must be one of the cheapest 'long' races in the country.

The race flyer is HERE

Full preview later...

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

John Hartnett plaque unveiled in Ballyhooly, Co.Cork

Approximately 30 people gathered in Ballyhooly, Co.Cork last Friday evening to attend the unveiling of the special plaque commemorating the athletic achievements of John Harnett.

Donie Walsh of Leevale AC did the honours of unveiling the plaque after a short speech recounting part of his time in the USA with John. Back in the 70's, both were running to such a high standard that they represented Ireland in the 1972 Olympics in Munich, Donie Walsh in the Marathon and John Hartnett in the 5,000 metres.

There are some photos of the plaque as well as a history of John Hartnett available HERE

Also shown on that page is a black & white photo taken of a cross-country race in the USA back in 1971. Pictured on the right is Donie Walsh, John Hartnett is in the centre and on the left in the Manhattan singlet is Mike Keogh who grew up in Midleton and then moved to the USA when he was still a child.

Mike Keogh qualified for the Irish Olympic team of 1972; he came back to Cork that summer and won the Irish 5000m championship at Banteer. He also broke the Irish three-mile record a couple of years later with a time of 13:14.7.

He is pictured (in a Midleton vest!) on page 17 of the Midleton AC book ‘Through the Ages’ published by Jim McMurtry earlier this year.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Results of the 'Evening Echo' Womens mini-marathon - Sun 26th Sept 2010

Looks like conditions were nice and cool for this huge event in Cork City. The results for the first 20 women are now available below...

Remember the times are for 3.8 miles, not 4.


1 K Harty (Newcastle) 21:20;
2 Lizzie Lee (Leevale) 21:36;
3 Emma Murphy (St Finbarrs) 22:18;
4 Niamh O’Sullivan (Riocht, F45) 22:21;
5 Carmel Crowley (Bandon, F40) 22:35;
6 O Drumm (UCC) 23:09;
7 Rhona Lynch (Eagle, F35) 23:14;
8 V Colleran (Ennis TC, F40) 23:27;
9 Carmel Parnell (Leevale, F55) 23:29;
10 Niamh Roe (Eagle) 23:54;
11 M Kiely (unatt) 23:57;
12 M-M Meade (unatt, F35) 24:12;
13 C Kiely (Gneeveguilla) 24:14;
14 Niamh Walsh (Youghal) 24:20;
15 Tracey Guilfoyle (Kilnaboy, F45) 24:42;
16 Jessica Vonhatten (Leevale) 24:47;
17 A Donnelly (St Finbarrs, F50) 24:52;
18 Angela McEvoy (St Finbarrs, F45) 25:34;
19 R O’Callaghan (St Finbarrs, F35) 25:43;
20 S Moloney (unatt) 25:52.

The full results will probably be in a special supplement in the Evening Echo some day during the week.

Nothing between the leaders at the 2.5 mile mark

Did you run in this event? What was the start like compared to previous years? Did the tag system work? Were the runners segregated from the walkers? Any issues?
Leave a comment by clicking on the comment link below.

1) There is a large gallery of 540 photos taken by John Quigley on the Eagle AC website.

2) There is a slideshow of some high quality shots by Gearoid O'Laoi HERE

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Problems with men entering womens races in the USA...

Someone sent me this story during the week and considering that the Cork Womens mini-marathon is coming up tomorrow, it might be an appropriate time to put up this post.

Everyone knows that while the mini-marathon is supposed to be a ladies only event, a number of men usually run as well often in costumes and raise some money for charity. As such, it's all done in good humour and they never run at a pace likely to threaten those running competively.

In the USA, there has been a marked increase in the number of women only races but due to discrimination laws, the organisers cannot legally exclude men. In the recent Disney Princess Half-Marathon, it was won by a man in a time of 1:16

Jonathon Mederos...The fastest Princess of them all

Needless to say when he finished, he didn't exactly get a warm welcome.

Anyway, the full story is up on the Wall Street Journal website if you want to have a look.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Preview of the 'Evening Echo' Womens mini-marathon...Sun 26th Sept 2010

Although it is advertised as Munsters Premier 4-Mile Road Race, it is in reality nothing of the sort. This event is essentially a 3.8 mile charity walk/run with a small road race at the front of it. In the past, it used to attract a lot of fast runners but in the last few years, there have been a lot of issues with runners unable to get near the front and be able to start ahead of the mass of walkers. As a result, many runners have given up on it which is a real pity when it has the potential to be a great sporting event if organised properly.

The latest news for the 2010 event is that there may be some sort of 'Tag' system whereby runners (with red number tags) will be able to start ahead of the walkers. If this is the case then it should make a huge difference. It'll be interesting to see what changes will be made for this year and if this event in future will attract back some of the runners lost over recent years.

Tag or no tag, if you intend to race it then you need to get to the start early! There are somewhere in the region of 10,000 women taking part and when there are that many people, it is going to be very crowded.

Remember it starts at 1pm.

Course...The start of this race is on the Centre Park Road.

Mile 0-1....The first mile or so is very flat with only a slight uphill around the 0.8 mile mark as the road joins the Marina. This should be a very fast mile as long as you stay clear of the mass of runners/joggers/walkers/prams....etc.

Mile 1-2.....Dead flat along the Marina. Probably the most scenic part of the run. Again, it should be a very fast mile. If you have started too fast, this is about where you should find out. Pace yourself for the first 2, you can pick it up over the last 2 if you have gone too slow.

Mile 2-3....This section includes the only real hill. There is a nasty pull from the 2 mile mark up to St.Michael's church, a distance of about 300 metres. You are going to lose some time here. After that, it's reasonably flat with a slight fall downhill into Beaumount about the 2.7 mile mark. Then past the AIB bank and Post office and take a sharp right down Maryville Road. Around the 3 mile mark, there is a very steep downhill section. By far, the hardest mile.

Mile 3-3.8....After the initial downhill section, the remainder of the mile is flat with the finish on the Monaghan Road, near Kennedy Park.

Click on the map above for a closer look. If you are not sure what part of the city the map shows above, click on this LINK
....and finally, it is worth mentioning what a significant event this is for the city of Cork. With around 10,000 taking part and many getting sponsorship, it is probably no exageration to say that several million Euro will be raised for various charities. For many of those taking part, it may be closest they ever get to any sort of road race.

Stewards required for the Womens Mini-Marathon

Sunday September 20 – Stewards Urgently Needed for Cork Ladies Mini-Marathon

The Cork AAI County Board is urgently looking for stewards for all areas for this event which takes place on Sunday next, September 26 at 1pm.  This is the chief fundraiser for the Board and without it charges for AAI events would certainly be far higher than they have been.  More importantly, it is a MAJOR fundraiser for many charities.  If you can spare a few hours please contact Pat Buckley on 085-1480725 or Noreen Murphy on 085-7157810 asap.

There will be a preview of the route here later this evening

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Unveiling of plaque to John Hartnett - Ballyhooly - Fri 24th of Sept 2010

No doubt many of you will have heard of the 'John Hartnett Challenge' race which takes place in Ballyhooly near Fermoy in N.Cork every August. The numbers attending for the last 2 years have been small but it has certainly lived up to it's name with a hilly and tough 10 mile course.

When I first heard of the race in 2009, I have to admit that I had no idea of who John Hartnett was or what he had done. I think at one stage, I had put the race up on the calendar of Cork road races as the John Hartnett Memorial race before someone pointed out that he was still alive and well and living in the USA!!

Oppps! ;o)

Prior to the event this year, one of the race organizers, Pat Nash sent on some information to me about John Hartnett. At the time, I put the info to one side and it's only recently that I have had a chance to read through it. John Hartnett from Cork was a world class runner in his day and ran some really impressive times back in the early 70's. He set new Irish records for the mile beating previous times set by Ronny Delaney. If that wasn't enough, the time he ran was also faster than the existing British record for the mile! He also represented Ireland in the 5,000 metres at the Olympic games in Munich in 1972.

When I turned to the Internet and Google for information on John Hartnett, there seemed to be very little out there. It seemed a shame that such a good Irish runner should be overlooked and forgotten about.

So to remedy that, I have put up a few webpages about John Hartnett up on a website so at least there is a small corner of the web where people can read about him and his achievements. You can see the start of the article HERE.

Towards the end of the article, there is a photo from 1971 showing John Hartnett and Donie Walsh who was a fellow team mate at the time from Villanova in the USA. Donie also went to the 1972 Olympics to represent Ireland in the Marathon and is currently a coach with Leevale AC.

On Friday the 24th of Sept at 7pm, that picture which was taken back in 1971 kind of goes full circle when 39 years later, Donie Walsh will be unveiling a special plaque in the village of Ballyhooly to commemorate John Hatnett.

This is open to the public and if you are interested in attending, you can see the exact location HERE

Ballyhooly is on the N72 main road between Fermoy and Mallow. If you are coming from Cork City, go into the centre of Fermoy, cross the bridge and take a left at the church with the statues outside. Stay on this road and you will arrive in Ballyhooly.

Refreshments will be served in the GAA hall after the unveiling.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Results of the Cork BHAA 'IPS/Garda' 5 km road race - Sun 19th Sept 2010

The results of this 5 km road race are now available. There was a turnout of 169 runners which seems very low considering that it was a BHAA race. I would have expected the number to be closer to 300 or so.

Why the low numbers?

I presume it was because Cork were playing in the GAA Football All-Ireland final later that afternoon but did that many runners travel to Dublin for the match?

The full results can now be seen HERE

Entries for the 2010 Womens mini-marathon

Just a reminder that for those of you interested, the Evening Echo Womens mini-marathon is on next Sunday, the  26th of September. According to their website, online entries are closed. The closing date for postal entries is Tuesday the 21st while the final closing date is Thursday the 23rd.

Entry details can be found HERE

Alternatively, you can also enter at the race office which is open upstairs in Debenhams on Patrick St from 10am-4pm Mon to Wed and from 2pm to 8pm on Thurs.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Alan O'Shea of Bantry AC wins the 2010 Dublin Half-Marathon

Just in! Alan O'Shea of Bantry AC has won what is the largest Half-Marathon in the country. The 2010  Dublin Half-Marathon which was on this morning (Sat 18th Sept) attracted around 8,000 entrants and no doubt had plenty of runners vying for 1st place.

He ran the 13.1 mile course in a time of 67m 06s which works out as 5m 07s per mile!

Alan is also a former winner of the Cork City Marathon in 2007 and finished 2nd in the Copenhagen Marathon last May in a time of 2h 22m.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Preview of the Cork BHAA IPS/Garda 5 km road race - Sun 19th Sept 2010

The Cork BHAA IPS/Garda race has been usually held in Ringakiddy during the Summer months. This year however, it's a few months late and it will be held on a Sunday morning rather than a mid-week evening. The course will be the same as the John Buckley 5k route.

Registration...The event centre for this race is in the Lee Rowing Club building on the Marina. This is located just alongside the Pairc Ui Chaoimh GAA stadium. There is plenty of parking in the area....outside the club house, along the quayside or outside the GAA stadium. See map below. As with all of the Cork BHAA races, the number of entries will be high and there are likely to be BIG queues. Try and arrive early (10:00-10:20) and avoid the crush.

Remember, the race starts at 11am!

Cost...As usual for BHAA events, it is €5 for registered runners and €8 for non-registered. There will be 2 queues...just make sure you get into the correct one. Just a note for those of you new to the running scene, this race is open to anyone. Just join the non-registered queue and get your race number.

Course...This is probably the flatest and fastest 5 km course in Cork. The start is on the Centre Park Road, about half a mile from the club house. With so many people running, the start will probably be a bit squashed but the road is wide enough that the field will soon thin out. Just one word of warning here...a lot of heavy vehicles use this road and the surface is a bit rough in places. It's not so easy to see what is up ahead when the field is bunched.

So, from the start, you run towards the city centre, left at the roundabout and onto the Monaghan Road. The 1 mile mark is half way down this road. For the 2nd mile, you go left at the next juction, back onto the Centre Park Road, past the start point and on to the 2 mile mark. For the 3 mile, you just retrace your footsteps as you repeat the same route except at the end when you approach the Centre Park Road again, you turn right instead of left. Here, you enter a tunnel of Green foliage as the mature trees on both sides of the road block out the light. Along here, you pass the 3 mile mark and the finish is about 150 metres later.

Overall.....Dead flat and as fast a 5 km course as you can get. If you want to try for a personal best, this is the place to try for it.

If you want to have a closer look at the course or get your bearings, I have put the route up on the MapMyRun website.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Collette O'Hagan from Dundalk to run her 200th Marathon in Dublin...

This morning, I heard the tail end of a clip on Morning Ireland  on Radio 1 about someone running a Marathon. After doing a bit of digging this evening, it turned out to be an intereview with a Collette O'Hagan from Dundalk who is getting ready to complete her 200th Marathon in the Dublin Marathon at the end of October.
The Irish Times also had the following info...
A DUNDALK runner is aiming to take the record for the most marathons completed by an Irish woman at the Dublin City Marathon this year, her 200th marathon event.

Collette O’Hagan, a 61-year-old foster mother, is looking for 200 people to walk or run with her on the day in aid of the Aurelia Trust, an Irish charity that helps children in Romanian orphanages.

Ms O’Hagan, who started running in 1990, has completed marathons in Beijing, Boston, Barbados and Belfast. This year she’s calling on 200 people to each raise €200 to join Team Collette on October 25th. 

A spokeswoman for Dublin City Marathon said: “Collette ran her 100th marathon in Dublin on the weekend her mother passed away . . . She’s an amazing woman.”

The clip on Morning Ireland can be heard if you REAL PLAYER software installed.

Entries for the 2010 Dublin City Marathon

A few weeks ago, I put up a post about the closing date for cheaper entries for the Dublin City Marathon. Now the final closing date is approaching on the 4th of October.

Details on how to enter can be seen HERE 

The cost of entry at this stage is €90 which is the late entry fee. Earlier in the year, it was €70.

The Dublin City Marathon is the national Marathon and with 10,000 runners taking part, it creates the unique atmosphere of a big city Marathon.

Video Preview........if you want to see what the course looks like at 15 second per mile pace then click HERE

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Results of the Cork Half-Marathon - Sun 12th Sept 2010

The 2010 Cork Half-Marathon in Blarney attracted a total of 610 runners which is up roughly 10% up on last years figure of 551. It looks like the weather was a bit kinder this year as well .

The full results can be seen HERE

A small selection of 55 photos of some of the faster runners finishing are available on the St.Finbarr's AC website

Did you take part? What did you think? Leave a comment by clicking on the Comment link below

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Results of the Cloyne 5k road race - Thurs 9th Sept 2010

This 5 km road race in aid of Cystic Fibrosis attracted 280 runners on a dull and overcast evening in Cloyne in East Cork. Considering that this was a new race, that is an excellent number.

It also marked the end of the summer season as it was the last evening road race. From here on, it's back to races at the least for races in daylight anyway! ;o)

The full results are now available HERE. I have highlighted the women in the top 100 so that they're a bit easier to pick out.

We have a slideshow of photos from John O'Driscoll HERE . Perhaps the photos might suggest that it was darker than what it was in reality but there is no doubt that the evenings are closing in fast.

John also has a video clip on YouTube. This shows the runners as they approach the finishing line with a few hundred metres to go.

Thursday, September 09, 2010

Preview of the Cork Half-Marathon - Sunday 12th Sept 2010 (11am)

The big event this weekend of course is the Cork Half-Marathon in Blarney on Sunday the 12th of Sept and this year yet again, the race is sponsored by John Buckley Sports.

If you have not entered yet, you can still enter on the day at the GAA grounds in Blarney for €25. Last year, this race attracted a large turnout of 551 runners and it seems likely that it will attract a similar number this year.

Directions / Start / Finish..........This race is run over the quiet roads to the North of Blarney, about 10 kms to 15 kms to the North West of Cork City. The easiest way to get there is from the N20 Cork to Limerick/Mallow road. Just take the slip road for Blarney. As you drive alongside the walkway, take the first left and then the next right after that. See map above. Entries will be taken at the GAA grounds.
(Update....Additional car parking will be available on the morning of the race at Scoil Mhuire gan Smal  the secondary school on the Hedge Road. This is just 200 metres from the race HQ at Blarney GAA complex.)

The start of the race is very close to the GAA grounds. The finish is about 800 metres away on the other side of Blarney.

Course....The course is made up of 3 seperate sections....1) the road North from Blarney, 2) the loop and 3) the road back to Blarney.

1) From the GAA grounds, you run through part of Blarney and then North towards Waterloo. After about 800 metres, you should pass the finish line of the race. You carry on for another 1.5 miles with the woods and the river on your right. At the next road junction, you cross right over the bridge and carry on along a tree covered road until you reach a road junction near the 4.7 mile mark. All the while, you will have been running alongside the main N20 road which runs parallel to this small road and climbing slowly all the way. In fact, you will have gained about 50 metres in altitude from the start (30m) to the road junction at 4.7 miles (80m).

2) This is where the loop starts and where things start getting tough. At the junction at 4.7 miles, you stay left and the road gets steeper. Past the 5 mile mark and keep climbing. It eases a bit, you veer off right at the next junction and then start climbing again until it flattens out around the 6 mile mark just as you approach the village of Grenagh. In that last 1.3 miles, you wil have gone from 80 metres to over 160 metres in far, the toughest section of the race.
Then it's through the village and take a sharp right. Here, the road drops rapidly as you lose 50 metres of altitude over the next half mile until you are near the 7 mile mark. From here, it is more or less flat or slightly downhill until you reach the road junction again near the 9 mile mark and the end of the loop.

3) This is one section where runners will pass each other....the slower runners heading towards the 4.7 mile mark as the faster runners return from the 9 mile mark. For the last 4.1 miles, you are basically retracing your footsteps. It is mostly flat or slightly downhill as far as the finish just before Blarney.  

Overall.......a reasonably hilly course with a tough 1.3 mile section near the middle. It's certainly not the fastest of Half-Marathon courses but the big turnout is a help over those hilly sections. If you keep something in reserve for the climb up to Grenagh then you may find the last 6 miles of the race very fast. On the 'must do' list for a lot of Cork runners.

If you want to have a closer look at the course, I have put it up on the MapMyRun website.

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Update on the Clonakilty Marathon & Half-Marathon routes...

So far, I have put up 2 previous posts about this on the 20th of Aug and one on the 1st of Sept and both attracted a number of comments. Some people have expressed an interest in doing one of the events, some obviously not ;o)

The race organisers have now launched their website for the event and we can put some 'meat on the bones' so to speak and see exactly what is on offer.

The full Marathon seems to be mainly on country roads to the south-west of Clonakilty and part of it takes in some coastal roads. It certainly doesn't look like a flat fast route! It would seem to be more of a scenic type Marathon with some 'challenging' hills ;o)  Indeed if you look at the route profile below, there would seem to be a good steep climb between miles 17 and 19.

How many runners is the Marathon likely to attract? It's very hard to predict. It doesn't look like a fast course so  it probably won't attract those going for personal best times. It's on in the middle of December and if the weather  is wet and windy, it will be a very exposed spot. Yet despite that, it is still a Marathon and the Marathon is the ultimate distance for a lot of people and they will travel long distances to do them. If the weather is nice....i.e. a nice cold sunny winter morning with blue skies then this Marathon has the potential to be a really stunning one.

The full Marathon route can be seen HERE

The Half-Marathon follows much the same route as the Marathon except that it doesn't get as far as the south coast. Around the 8.5 mile mark, the routes split as the Half-Marathon heads back towards Clonakilty. Again there are a few pulls but nothing as demanding as the Marathon.

The Half Marathon route can be seen HERE

10 Fun Run......With a €25 entry fee, this one is going to be a hard sell. I was telling someone today about the events coming up in Clonakilty and that the fun run will cost €25 to enter. The reply that I got was that they could think of better ways to have fun with €25 :o)

I guess people will have to see whats on offer and make up their own mind. The route map is HERE

............and finally, the website for all 3 events is HERE

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Preview of the Cloyne 5 km road race - Thurs 9th Sept 2010

There are 2 big races coming up this long, one short. Next Sunday, there is the Cork Half-Marathon  in Blarney which is sure to attract a big turnout. I'll put up a preview of that here in a day or two. In the meantime, here is a preview of a new 5 km race on the calendar.

Cloyne 5 km road race....This new road race is in aid of Cystic Fibrosis and it promises to be a flat and fast course. The entry fee is €8 and the race starts at 7:30pm.

Directions.....Cloyne is on the main Cork to Ballycotton road. Just follow the signposts for Ballycotton / Cloyne from Midleton and look for signs as you enter Cloyne. Entries will be taken at the National School which is on the right at the crossroads in the centre of the town.

Course.....The start is near the school. You run back into the town and turn right at the main crossroads. Here you pass the 30 metre high round tower which is approximately 1,000 years old and is only one of two in the county of Cork. You continue southwards on the road towards Churchtown South  and soon you hit the 1 mile mark.....a fast mile.

You continue on for a bit before turning off left onto a narrower and quieter country road. There are no real pulls as you run towards the 2 mile mark.....another fast mile.
Now the road turns back towards Cloyne and you should be able to pick out the round tower in the distance. As you approach the tower, you turn right at the junction, up a short distance to the main crossroads and then left and towards the finish line which is close to the where the race started.

Overall, the course has been accurately measured and there should be some fast times posted on the night. The entry fee is a modest €8 and all proceeds are in aid of Cystic Fibrosis and it seems likely to attract a big crowd.

I have put the course up on the MapMyRun website. Just zoom in and out to get your bearings.

A flyer for the course can be seen HERE

Saturday, September 04, 2010

Results of the Liscarroll 10 km road race - Fri 3rd Sept 2010

A few years ago in 2007, this race was advertised as having a prize fund of €2,000 and a high entry fee of €15. Despite the good reports coming from people attending the race, it only attracted 53 people.

The Liscarroll race now has an entry fee of €10 and is part of a successful race series. The result was seen on Friday evening when 126 runners took part, a huge change from the numbers in previous years.

The full race results can be see HERE

Friday, September 03, 2010

Lost & Found...Sunglasses at Ballycotton

A pair of sunglasses were lost at the recent Ballycotton 5 race....see below...

"I lost a pair of black oakley sunglasses at the last ballycotton run. I think they were on top of my head and I took of my baseball hat forgetting about them . They would have been on the ground in the first car park . I know its a long shot but I was wondering if you could put a shout out for me please ! My name is Aine Corrigan"

Closing date for cheaper Cork Half-Marathon entries....

Just a quick reminder that the closing date for the cheaper entries (€20) to the Cork Half-Marathon is Saturday, the 4th of Sept.

After that, the cost will be €25.

You will also be able to enter on the day up to 10:30am.

The entry form is HERE

Thursday, September 02, 2010

Preview of the Liscarroll 10 km road race - Fri 3rd Sept 2010

This 10km road race in Liscarroll in North Cork is the 7th and final race in the very successful Ballyhoura Active Summer Series. The race starts at 7:30pm and is likely to attract a reasonable crowd. The entry fee is €10.

Getting there....Liscarroll is a few miles west of the N20 Cork - Mallow - Limerick road. If you are driving north from the Cork / Mallow then look for the turn off left in the town of Buttevant. Look for the R578 to Liscarroll. It should be the 2nd major turn to the left on the northern end of the town. Once in Liscarroll, look for the Community Centre near the GAA pitches.

Course....It basically is in the shape of a spoon and looks likely that it will be a very flat and fast course. You start on the northern side of the town. You head north taking a left just after the 1 mile mark, complete the loop clockwise and you rejoin the road just before the 5 mile mark and run back into the town.

Allow yourself plenty of time for Friday evening traffic, finding the registration and getting to the start.

More info is available HERE

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

Results of the Cork BHAA 'PTAA' 5 km road race - Wed 1st Sep 2010

A total of 345 runners turned out for this 5 km road race in Togher. This compares to 384 last year. 

The full results are now available HERE

Thanks to Richard Cronin, we have a gallery of 258 photos of the 5k race in Togher. This post is going up less than 2 hours after the start of the race!

And from the 1 mile mark, Irene Hartigan of UCC AC has a gallery of 61 photos HERE

Another gallery of 122 photos from John O'Driscoll of the race a few hundred metres after the start.

Video Clips....
A short clip just under 4 minutes long showing the runners just after the start...

Another video clip here just before the finish...

More info on the Clonakilty Marathon & Half-Marathon

Back on Saturday the 21st of August, I put up a post about the new proposed Marathon, Half-Marathon and 10k in Clonakilty in West Cork and it attracted a fair few comments. One major issue raised was the fact that there is also a Half-Marathon in Waterford on the day in question which the 11th of December.

The entry fees have now been announced for each event.

Marathon....the entry fee for this will be €55 (€65 after the 27th of Nov). Considering that it is likely to attract small numbers, this may be seen as expensive.

Half-Marathon....the entry fee for the Half will be €45 (€55 after the 27th of Nov). This is certainly expensive and is on a par with all of the other commercial races. While a lot of locals may opt for it, runners from further afield will have a choice of events. Do they pay €45 and go to Clonakilty for the Half or do they go to Waterford for the Half there and pay €22 (late entry fee of €30)? The Waterford event is now a well established successful event and it's going to be hard to convince runners to travel to West Cork and pay twice the Waterford entry fee.

10 Fun-Run....The entry fee for this one is €25 (€30 after the 27th of Nov). Why anyone would pay €25 for a fun run is completely beyond me but to each their own I suppose ;o)

The online page for entries is HERE

What do you think now the entry fees have been announced? Will you be going? Click on the comment link below.