Striders Weekly Update 13/03/2024

Posted: 13/3/2024

On Saturday Michael Burgess and Liam Rodger both took part in the We Run Wild Belfast to Derry ultra. Starting at midday at CS Lewis Square in Belfast they both set off towards the Walled City. Liam finished at 46 miles in Moneyneany in roughly 12 hours 40 minutes and Michael completed a distance PB of 63 miles finishing just outside Claudy after 18 hours.

The Walled City was the destination for Mark Arnold and Jennifer McAteer who both took part in the Walled City 10 Mile enticed by the promise of the biggest race medal ever (which certainly lived up to expectations). A slightly undulating route that crossed the Foyle Bridge before levelling out Mark crossed the line in 1:36:02 and Jennifer finished in 2:05:54.

On Sunday a total of 35 Striders travelled to Downpatrick to take part in the always popular Jimmy's 10k which often marks the beginning of the road racing calendar for the year. There were 27 runners who took part in the 10k and a further 8 who took part in the team relay. First across the line for the Striders was Curtis McCaw who finished in 15th place overall in 36.43. He was followed by Matthew Halus in 38.54, a new PB, who was very closely followed by Matt Bell running a course PB in 38.58. Norman Mawhinney was next across the line also under the 40 minute mark in 39.26, once more finishing first in his age category. Trevor Woodside was next to finish, in 40.19 with Colin Harper not far behind in 40.30. Ismail Karauzum was next across the line in 42.38 with Michael Warke finishing in 42.54 shortly after. Also coming in under the 45 minute mark were Francis Gilmore in 43.02, Michael Johnson in 43:09, and Chris Burns with a new PB of 44.21. First female Strider across the line was Heather Baron in 45.34, soon followed by George Johnston with a new PB of 47.40 being closely followed by Rachel Bell in 47.42. Also finishing under 50 minutes were Duncan McAllister in 49.14 and Lorna McMurray in 49.57. The PBs continued with Dee Patterson running a new PB in 51.32 on the anniversary of his first race, Darren Johnston finished in 51.51 and Mark Halus in 52.19. There was another PB for Karen Farrelly finishing in 55.31, closely followed by a course PB for Chris Edwards in 55.47, and a PB for Karen Wilson in 55.51. Catherine Karauzum followed in 56.30 and Catherine Lavery in 57.03 while Sarah Luce got herself a PB coming across the line in 57.24. Naomi Magowan also coming in under the hour on 59.05. Beverley McKee completed the 10k in 1.02.10, Janice McCartney crossed the line in 1.04.52 and Stephen Braniff finished off a day of PBs, finishing with a new PB of 1.10.04.

In the 10k relay there was a podium for the “Ginger Ninjas”, Willow Farrington and Luke Braniff who were the first mixed relay team and 3rd overall finishing in 44:12. Team “EL” (Eva Coey and Lauren Semple) finished in 55.03 and the “Blister Sisters” (Gillian Kerr and Jilly Coey) and the “Running Gals” (Aimee Braniff and Helen Potts) both finished together in 1.15.11.

This week 59 Striders took part in parkrun at 9 different venues. Comber was the most popular of these with 40 Striders attending and supporting the latest Couch 2 5k graduation. There were top three finishes for Curtis McCaw (17:53) first to cross the line and Matthew Halus coming in third in 18:25, while Alison Shanks was second female to cross the line in 25:41 and Gareth Davies bagging a new parkrun PB of 19:16 and Kim Cochrane picked up a course PB of 33:36. Elsewhere, Dunleath was a first time visit for Michael Warke who crossed the line in third in 21:20 while Calum McCready and Sarah Luce also carrying out some parkrun tourism finished in 29:42. Bangor was also a venue for another first timer with Emma Stewart completing her debut run at the venue in 32:45 and here John Bingham also ran a parkrun PB of 34:15. There were course PBs at Stormont for Lyla Rose Macnamara (35:03) and Ormeau for Karen Wilson (27:17). Georgia McGonigal was also a first timer at Ormeau completing it in 32:04 and Colin Verth also tried a new venue a little further afield at Livingston parkrun which he completed in 24:22

On Sunday at junior parkrun there were 3 runners who took part at Comber junior parkrun with a first place finish for Keara Simpson in 10.59, closely followed by brother Olly with a course PB of 11:05 and second female was Lydia Blair in 12:24.

This week also saw club captains Andy Haylett and Judith Boyd award the Boyd Rice Solicitors Member of the Month awards for February. The male Member of the Month award went to Graeme McGowan. A longstanding member of the club Graeme began February with a 5k PB at Knockbracken parkrun and took part in the final two cross country events of the season at Stormont on 10 February and Carndonagh on 18 February. In addition to running these he has also been instrumental and enthusiastic in organising registration of runners for all cross country events this year, and at regular training sessions, while carrying out training and coaching in his preparation for his role as Belfast Marathon pacer in May. The female Member of the Month award went to vice captain Lyndsey Blair. Another regular at training, Lyndsey has not only been dedicated to her own training sessions for Belfast Marathon but has also worked tirelessly organising long runs for all those taking part, not just by planning and posting the routes but also by taking time the previous day to organise hidden aid stations for runners on the routes and her support of all members within the club embodies the inclusiveness of the club.

Scrabo Striders Running Club has four coach led sessions every week (Monday-Thursday) and a trail run on Sunday evenings. There are also non coach led runs on Friday evenings and Sunday mornings usually followed by an obligatory coffee. To find out more information visit

By Jennifer McAteer


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