Scrabo Striders Celebrate 3rd Club Anniversary

Posted: 15/6/2019

Scrabo Striders Running Club marked their 3rd anniversary with a private race in the beautiful grounds of Mount Stewart on the evening of Saturday 8th June. With the kind permission of the National Trust and Lady Rose 152 club members took to the gravel paths, trails and hill up to the Temple of the Winds to complete a 4 mile (6.4 km) course in glorious sunshine, until a massive shower cooled everyone down towards the end of the race!

First to finish was Curtis McCaw in a phenomenal 23 minutes 38 seconds, 20 seconds faster than last year followed by Ricky Jordan in 24:44 and James Lappin in 25:41. First for the ladies was Lesley Semple in 30:32 followed by Emma Clements in 32:27 and Barabara McKechnie in 32:55. Congratulations to those on the podium! Time isn’t everything at Scrabo Striders and it was great to see all entrants complete the course and have fun along the way, with numbers up on last year.

The evening continued with a delicious burger, a prize raffle and disco at Romas in the town centre. Striders filled the upstairs venue and partied to the small hours. The committee would like to thank all our runners, marshals, organisers and Mount Stewart for coming together to create a brilliant event. Particular thanks to first-time race director Dawn Ross who did an outstanding job.

Earlier in the day Striders were busy clocking up personal best times at the ever popular Saturday morning Parkruns. At Ward Park in Bangor Thomas Steele completed the 5 km in 19 minutes 57 seconds, Nicola Cameron in 25:21 and Gordon McEwan in 26:01 while at Comber Joe Brown recorded a new personal best of 28:45.

All the way to Enniskillen next where the annual 10K took place. Travelling to represent Scrabo Striders were Norman Mawhinney who took 19th place in a field of 600 runners, completing the distance in 39 minutes 29 seconds. Phenomenal running. Also there for Scrabo were Scot and Denise Knight, Nikki Keery and Rhonda Magowan.

The 2019 Hill and Dale mountain running series continued with race number 8, Loughshannagh. James Lappin was placed 29th in a field of 176 competitors completing in a time of 52:10 while Stephen Gargan completed the distance in just under 1 hour 21 minutes. Hill running is particularly challenging so a big congratulations to these guys.

The 2nd annual “Taking the Tower” 10K took place on Friday night. Known as one of the toughest courses taking runners the hills of Killynether Forest and Scrabo the event is organised by SEAL Fitness and Training. Of the 14 Scrabo Striders who rose to the challenge Thomas Steel was first across the line in 52 minutes 50 seconds followed by David Parkinson in 55:20, Tim McEwan 58:02 and  Graeme McGowan 58:14 after running to the event from home!

Next in for Scrabo was Chris Green in 1 hour 2 minutes followed by Mark Arnold, Olli Seeger, Steven McCormick, Jonathan Keenan and Ross Caughers. Scrabo’s first lady was Amanda Martin completing in 1 hour 14 minutes, followed by George Cash, Janice Scott and Wendy Thompson. Well done all!

Finally to Fairhill Ballymena for a midweek 5 mile run. Norman Mawhinney took 37th place in a field of 470 runners to complete in a time of 30 minutes 45 seconds,  followed in for Scrabo by David Turton in 37:26 and Liz Turton in 40:28. Fantastic times.

The Ards Half Marathon returns to the streets of Newtownards and Comber on 28th June, start time 6:30 pm. This year the race is being organised by Scrabo Striders running club with assistance from Ards Borough Council and Uhire, the equipment rental company on Jubilee Road. Place are filling up fast so get registered via the Athletics NI website today. If not running why not come out and watch the spectacle of hundreds of brave runners passing by!

by George McGonigal, Vice-Chair


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