Castlewellan GAC

November 8, 2018

*When you start on an outdoor venture the one thing which is always critical to its success is the weather. When the long range forecasts came out last week we only dared to believe them. Sundays Spring Lake Challenge was blessed with absolutely fantastic sunshine which brought with it a huge turnout of athletes to take on what was a most enjoyable course. The Town had an excited buzz about it from early on with a wonderful family atmosphere. Many young and eager athletes displayed a keenness to tackle the course in front of them. The finish line in front of the Lake and Castle prompted one visiting spectator to comment that it was perhaps one of the finest spots to finish a race she had seen and she had seen a few. The 5K race got off to a furious pace with perhaps the excitement of being involved in their first race burning some young athletes out of their wind. Couple this with the sapping heat which is not normally associated with March then after the first kilometre things start to settle down a little. In the end it was a visiting athlete from Enniskillen Running Club who took the honours. Winston Moran led from start to finish in the race and very much the deserved winner. In second place our own, very sporting and ever young Charlie McAlinden who has an engine Kevin Sweeney, Brian Doc, Cillian Keaveney (I could go on!) can only dream about. Third was James McAleenan who showed all the signs of being a great runner. The main event the 10K which attracted over 120 runners to the start line in the Upper Square. There will always be the serious racing side to the run and those who want to improve on times from previous events which they have participated. This provided the opportunity for a real competitive race and an attack for some on personal bests. From early on it was evident that the large Newcastle AC contingent would dominate the race. They did not have it all their own way with stiff competition from unattached runners Brian Young and Martin Willcox. The eventual winner was Newcastle AC runner David “fats” O’Flaherty who deservedly crossed the line in first place 4 seconds ahead of. second place Brian Young followed by Brendan Quail from Newcastle AC. Indeed Newcastle AC filled 7 out of the top 10 places with our own club member Audie McVeigh finishing in 7th place. The Women’s Race was won by Virginia Ervine from Mourne Runners with the runner up Elizaeth Sandford from Lagan Valley finishing 19 seconds behind Afterwards in the club Vice Chairman Kevin Sweeney thanked all the competitors who made the event what it was. He stated it would not have been possible without the large number of volunteers who turned up to make tea, sandwiches, to register athletes, to marshal and to do all the things required on the day. Finally he thanked Castlewellan GAC and runners, Frank Morgan, Marty McVeigh and Newcastle AC for their assistance on the day. No doubt this will become an annual event.

* Last Saturday saw the recommencing of the Car Wash which is proved to be another great success with the various different teams in the club on being on Saturday morning duty. This Saturday mornings line up has yet to be confirmed. Car Wash from 10am to 1pm.

* Ladies under age football continues on Tuesdays and Thursdays evenings from 5.30pm to 6.30pm at the Bann Road until the main pitch at St Malachy’s Park is available again.

* There will be Under 10 and Under 12 hurling training on Thursday evening at 6.45pm in St Malachy’s Park. The first Under 10 hurling blitz is now in Ballycran on Saturday at 1.00. We will leave the club at 11.45.

* It has been a while since we have been as well represented on the Minor Hurling Panel. Well done to Cathal óg Keown who played against Antrim last Wednesday night in a game Down lost narrowly, Pauric óg Hardy who made his debut in Saturdays win away to Donegal in Letterkenny and to dual county minor Rory Burns who missed out on playing in the Antrim game due to injury.

* Camogie training/coaching for the Under 10 girls continues in St Malachy’s Primary School on Wednesday Night from 6.00pm to 7.00pm. This will be followed from 7.00pm to 8.00pm with coaching training for the under 12 girls. All participants must ensure they bring their own bottle of water and indoor footwear.

* Training continues at the Bann Road Complex on Wednesday evening from 5.30pm for under 14 and under 16 camogs and at 6.30pm to 7.30pm for the junior camogs. Training for Under 14, Under 16 and Minor camogs will commence this Friday at 5.30pm at the Bann Road.