The County Longford Primary Schools Cross Country Championships were held on Saturday 22nd September on an excellent cross country course at Moyne Community School where Killoe National School retained the Harry Farrell Shield. A good turn out of athletes competed on the day in excellent weather conditions on a challenging course which tested both strength and speed and there were numerous impressive performances.
The first race of the day was the 3rd/4th class girl’s race over 800 meters which Aoife Nolan from Fermoyle National School ran impressively to win. Second home was Anna Moorehead from Killoe National School and third home was Aoibhe Molloy from Ballymahon National School. Fermoyle National School won the team race with all four scoring athletes finishing in the top 6 positions, if they can replicate this team performance, they will be strong medal contenders in the Connaught Championships. Second team was Killoe National School and only 2 schools had complete teams in this competition.
Next race was boys 3rd/4th class boy’s race over 800 meters which pitted Cian Mc Phillips and Daire McManus in what would be an exciting tussle, both athletes brought excellent form into the race, Daire recently won silver in the sprints and Cian just finished outside the medals over 600 meters at the recently held national community games finals. This was a fast exciting race with Cian taking control of the race from the start and finished a very impressive winner; he should be in contention for medals at the Connaught finals. Daire ran strongly to finish second and can be well pleased with his race and showed excellent finishing speed. Fergal Keane from Ardagh National School finished third.
Ardagh National School had an impressive win in the team event with three of their scoring team members in the top four positions, Killoe National School were second and Stonepark National School finished third.
Maeve Dervin from Newtowncashel National School was a very impressive winner in the 5th/6th class girl’s 1000 meters race and lead from start to finish giving an excellent display of front running, no doubt Maeve will be in the shake up for a medal in the Connaught Championships. Sarah Sloane from Melview National School ran a strong race to finish second and can be really satisfied with her performance. Dearbhaile Rooney from Killoe National School finished third and is an excellent prospect for the future as she has a great middle distance running style. Killoe National School ran well as a team to win the team prize from a strong Melview National while new comers Colmcille National School finished third.
The final race of the day was the 5th/6th class boy’s 1000 meters race where Cian O Nullan from Stonepark National School was an impressive winner and Cian is an excellent prospect for the future. Killoe National School had a number of strong runners in this event and they certainly didn’t disappoint on the day. Thomas Ivel continues to improve and finished an excellent second and Evan Farrelly finish third. As expected Killoe National School won the team event and such was their numbers and strength in depth, their second team picked up the silver medals. Third team home was Kenagh National School.
Killoe National School retained the Harry Farrell Shield as the top performing school on the day where their teams won medals in all four races and this shows the strength in depth and numbers which they have and the commitment of their teachers and supporters to the sport. Eileen Farrell presented the shield to a jubilant team. The club would like to thank Eileen for attending this event. While there were excellent numbers of competitors in each event, it was noted that some of the larger schools did not attend this event which was disappointing. This is an excellent competition which is open to all schools in the county and provides a great opportunity to promote health and fitness. The club hopes to identify the reasons for these schools not attending and ways to address this going forward and would appreciate the cooperation of the schools over the next couple of weeks in helping address these issues.
The top ten finishers and the top three teams qualify for the Connaught finals which will be held on Saturday 13th October in Calry, Sligo. The club wishes all the individuals and teams the very best of luck in the finals. The club would like to thank Moyne Community School for allowing access to their fine facilities and the excellent cross country course; the course certainly challenged the athletes and provided excellent viewing points for the supporters to view the competitors in each race. Thanks to everyone who was involved from car parking, course layout, registration, race start & finish and results and the public address system, ye all contributed to an excellent day of competition.