Striders Weekly Update 10/08/2022

Posted: 10/8/2022

Another Busy Week for Scrabo Striders

Scrabo Striders runners have gone strength to strength in the past week competing at no less than 5 different races across Northern Ireland.

Racing began on Wednesday 3rd August in Ardglass. Julie Longridge and Leanne Butler travelled to the small village of Ardglass to take on the 10km race. The route which started at the Primary School took in the undulating country rounds around the village. Julie achieved a new Personal best in an impressive 52:19. Leanne also achieved a new PB and for the first time in Leanne’s running career, got in below the 1hr threshold in 59:31. Congratulations ladies!

Also, on Wednesday 3rd, North Down AC hosted the annual Crawfordsburn 5k Race. The race which was open to 13 yrs. and older was a mixture of undulating trail route consisting of gravel, tarmac, and grassy paths that weaved around the scenic Crawfordsburn Country Park and along the coastal path. Scrabo had no less than 21 athletes take part in the challenging 5k. First across the line were the husband and wife team of Justin & Shannon Clegg in 22:35 and 23:14 respectively. The next three striders breaking the 25-minute mark were Mark Arnold, Matthew Harris and Michael Burgess. Jenny Taylor was the 2nd place strider finishing in 25:22 followed by John Brown in 26:48, Christopher Murdock in 27.02. Hector Adair finished in 27:21 followed by Gayle Malaugh 27:29, Caroline Dwyer 28:58, Carl Harris 29:26 with Steven Pearson rounding out the sub 30 minute runners in 29:30. Beverley McKee was the next to finish followed by Gavin McDonnell, Louise Barnes all just over 30 minutes. Kathryn Chesney and Hannah Robinson crossed the line together in 34:28 and completing the line up was mother and daughter duo of Cheryl and Eva Alexander in 38:29. Congratulations to all, a great showing of purple!

The striders returned to training on Thursday before getting ready for a busy few day of even more racing.

On Friday night, Mallusk Harriers returned with their infamous Mallusk 5-mile challenge. The race which starts on the main street in Mallusk sees runners make the climb up the Sealstown Road and Boghill road which is considered one of the toughest starts to a road race due to the gruelling, never ending climbing. The Gentlemen’s Captain, Paul Blair was the only strider in attendance completing the course in an impressive 41:55.

Friday Night was the stage for the County Down 5km Championship which was hosted in Downpatrick by Tels Fitness and Championchip Ireland. The race which is split into predicted finishing times is a flat but mentally challenging 7 ½ loops in the centre of Downpatrick. The fastest male around the route was Brhane Gebrebrhan of Annadale Striders in a flat 15.00 mins with the fastest lady and junior sensation Emer McKee of Willowfield Harriers in 16:23. Scrabo had three athletes take on the race. First Across the line was Norman Mawhinney in an incredible 18:10 followed by Andrea Thompson in 22:54 and George McGonigle in 22:57. George achieved a new PB taking a massive 2+ minutes off his previous 5k best. Well Done to the 3 amigos!

On Saturday, it was Scrabo Striders turn to host another event at the scenic Mount Stewart Grounds on the Portaferry Road. Run the Trails, organised by the club Chairperson, Hannah Robinson and a large team of helpers put on 4 races which included a kids 2km, an open 5k, 10k and half marathon (13.1 miles).

In the 2k Race, Riley Hanna continued excellent form as first junior to cross the line in 08.06 followed by Adam Haylett in 08:40 and Joe Brown in 08:42. The first female junior was Isabella Haylett in 09:13 followed by Scarlett Thompson in 09:51 and Lydia Blair in 11:21. Phenomenal running from Scrabo Junior athletes. Also completing the 2km trail race were Lucas Thompson, Rory Braniff, Belle McGhee, Lexie Brown, Phoebe Coey, Ellie Barnes, William Murphy, Aimee Braniff, Rachel Brown, Dylan Graham and Daniel Barnes.

In the 5K Race, 19 Striders completed the race with the first finisher, a junior strider, Luke Braniff coming across the line in 23:16. Johnny Wray (25:40) Dean McGhee (27:12), Eva Coey (27:26), Ewan Creighton (27:27), Caroline Dwyer (27:37) and Louise Barnes (29:50) rounded off the sub 30 minute 5k Runners. Just over 30 mins were Mariead Curran, Cathy Dobbin, Faye Alexander, and Kathryn Chesney. Just under the 35 mins were Saoirse Collins and Helen Potts. Rebecca Townley, Cathy Allen, Stephen Braniff and Paul Magee completed the Strider contingent in the 5km race. Well done!

In the 10k race, 23 striders completed the 1 loop course around the beautiful grounds of Mount Stewart. Vice Chair, Peter McGonigal was the first home in 48:22 followed quite closely by the first female strider, Emma Clements in 49:53. Andrea Thompson was next in 51:16 followed by Chris Millar in 57:27 and Ken Rodgers in 58:55. Beverly McKee completed the sub 1 hr contingent in a great 59:02. Next up just over the hour mark was Michelle Ennis, Stephen Campbell, Judith Boyd, and Sonya Summersgill. Coming in under 1hr 10 was Gavin McDonnell and Angie Crone. Just outside the 1hr 10 mark was Emma McCracken, Jenna Lavery, Cheryl Alexander Elaine McGonigal, Kathleen Henderson, Natasha Graham and Kim Cochrane. Completing a fabulous line up of athletes were Donna Dougan, Cheryl Macartney, Sharon Gamble and Karen Thompson. Congratulations to all.

Lastly, in the Half Marathon Race, 5 hearty striders took on the 2-loop version of the race. Abrar Hossain came 4th overall in an impressive 1hr 37 and Abrar was followed by Peter Briggs in 2hrs, Michael Burgess in 2hrs 1 min, Heath Graham in 2hrs 4 mins. Clare McIlveen and Graeme McGowan continued good form coming across the line in 2 hrs 9 mins. Impressive running and congratulations to Hannah and team for another successful Striders open race.

On Saturday Scrabo Striders had 1 lucky member that travelled all the way to Perth in Australia to compete in the Perth Half Marathon hosted by West Australian Marathon Club. George Johnston completed the Half Marathon in 2 hrs and 3 minutes. George now holds the club record for travelling the furthest for both half marathon and 10k. Congratulations George.

Saturday was busy in terms of Parkruns with 56 Striders taking on the 5km run (reminded that parkrun is not a race) in 14 different venues. 14 Striders tried out a new venue and celebrated a 50th & 100th Milestone at Bangor. Daniel Clarke (19:32) got a new PB at Bangor, Jenna Lavery (30:05) improved with an impressive run at Craigavon, Ben McCracken (24:13) smashed his PB at Stormont and Gillian Pearson (30:30) got an awesome PB in Enniskillen. Norman Mawhinney once again set a new age graded record at comber parkrun in 18:24 which now sees the percentage graded record reach into the 90% range. Well done Norman.

Sunday morning saw the usual strong crowd take the roads and trails to complete their weekly long runs (meeting every Sunday at 9am in Conway square and open to members and non-members alike). Lyla Rose McNamara tried out Portrush junior parkrun for the first time and Bobby McGonigal tried out Bangor Junior Parkrun. Always great to see the juniors running!

On Sunday, Feile 10k took place at Malone Integrated College on Finaghy Road North and was hosted by West Belfast Coolers as part of Feile an Phobail. Norman Mawhinney continued an excellent weekend of running completing the 10k in 38:52. Michael Johnston was next Strider in 43:51 and Jennifer McAteer was the third Strider to complete the race in 68:44. Congratulations!


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