Weekly News – 20th January 2020

Indoor Combined Events: Congratulations to Yemi Talabi and Nelvin Appiah on their fine performances at the National Indoor Combined Events in Athlone IT on Saturday. Both showed great versatility and athleticism across 5 different events over a long day of competition. Highlights for Yemi was the 1st place in the long jump and a 2nd in the 800m. Her efforts earned her a superb silver medal in the junior women’s category with a total score of 3023 points. Nelvin’s highlights included 1st in the high jump as well as a 2nd place in the 1000m. An overall points total of 3324 saw him win a brilliant bronze in the junior men’s category on a very successful day for the club. Other events the duo had to take on included the shot putt and the hurdles. We wish both along with Aaron Kelly well for this weekend when they each compete at the National Junior Indoor Championships in AIT.

Cross Country: The National Juvenile B, Juvenile Relays (4 x 500m) and Masters/Intermediate cross country championships take place in Rathdrum, Co. Wicklow on Saturday February 8th. Any interested Longford AC members (registered for 2020) who wish to enter please email longfordac@gmail.com by Thursday night, January 23rd.

Annual Awards – Juveniles: Well done to all award winners at our event in the Longford Arms Hotel on Sunday evening last. Many thanks to all who attended including our club sponsor Eoin O’Boyle from O’Boyle & Co Accountants. Presentations were made to our junior members Yemi and Funmi Talabi, Cian McPhillips and Nelvin Appiah on their achievements at national level in 2019 (see separate article). We awarded some of our juveniles for their excellent achievements in 2019 – Gospel Idahor, Sarah McPhillips, Kate Hagan, Rachel Keenan, Jack Gallagher and Killian Rawle. The awards for Club Boys of the Year went to Max Gallagher and Sean Grealy. Club Girls of the Year recipients were Sian Gallagher and Aibhe Foley.

Annual Awards – Seniors: Outstanding senior member awards were presented to Adrianna Mulligan, Niamh Kiernan, Donal Mulligan, Paddy Sharkey and Barry Sheil for their performances on the roads and on cross country. Sinead Nolan and Stephen McDermott were recipients of the most improved senior member awards. Presentations were also made to Paddy McPhillips, Leslie Finnan and Michael O’Hara for their tremendous contribution to Longford AC over the past decade.

Millrose Games: Among the presentations made were to Cian McPhillips and Nelvin Appiah who have both been invited to compete at the Millrose Games in New York on February 8th. This is a fantastic honour for the two athletes and our club and is great reward for their achievements to date. Cian will compete in the mile against the top US high school athletes whilst Nelvin will compete in the high jump. We wish the two all the best in their preparation ahead of New York.

Connacht Medalists Honoured: At the awards event, presentations were made to our 24 athletes who won Connacht medals in 2019. Well done to Ruth Dennigan, Lauren McArdle, Emma Brennan, Max Gallagher, Clara Forbes, Rachel Keenan, Funmi Talabi, Sarah McPhillips, Adeyemi Talabi, Killian Rawle, Cian McPhillips, Gospel Idahor, Nelvin Appiah, Jack Gallagher, Kate Hagan, Paul Idahor, Kaela Brady, Siog Reilly, Tara Crossan, Regina Rawle, Aoife Maher, Donal Mulligan, Declan Newman and Barry Sheil. Sprinter Aaran Kelly was also recognised for his performances competing for Maynooth University.

Training: Juvenile training continues on Friday at 7pm on the astro pitch with Little Athletics taking place in the sports hall. As the Connacht Indoor Track and Field Championships are fast approaching on February 22nd / 23rd, it is important that all competing juvenile members (born in or before 2009) attend training on Friday in the Mall.

Couch to 5k: Begin the new year with the Longford AC ‘Couch to 5k’ six-week initiative. Walkers, joggers and runners are all welcome. The programme is based out of two separate locations – Longford town (The Mall) and North Longford (Moyne Community School). Join us at the Mall on Mondays at 7.30pm and Saturdays at 8am. On Thursday mornings, our Operation Transformation Beginners run group meets at the Mall at 8am. Sessions in Moyne take place on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 9.30am. The €30 per person fee includes full-year membership to Longford AC. Further details can be found on our Facebook page. Our club coach will conduct the sessions providing support and advice to help all participants in the lead up to the Longford 5k on March 1st.

Senior Members: The Tuesday evening coached sessions for members consist of 10 minutes warm up followed by a 30-40 minutes intervals workout finishing with a warm down. The session begins at 7pm at the Mall. This training is adapted to suit all levels of fitness. On Thursdays at 7pm at the Mall, the group run 5-8 miles at a comfortable pace. On Saturday morning, the group meet at the Mall at 8am for a longer run of 10+ miles. New members welcome. Club senior membership for the year remains at €30. Avail of top class coaching, have fun and benefit from training in a group environment.

Fundraiser Raffle: Thank you to all individuals and businesses who have purchased tickets so far for the draw to raise funds for our proposed indoor facility. Tickets are still available from club members and can be purchased on our website www.longfordac.com. Be in with a chance to win the €20,000 first prize! The details of the draw date and the proposed site’s location will be announced soon.

2020 Road Race: The annual Longford 5km/10km road race will take place on Sunday March 1st. The course will be the same as previous years. Registration will take place that morning in the Scouts Den building beside the Mall. Online pre-entry at a reduced rate is now available on Pop Up Races. The 5k includes a junior under 16 race and the 5k is also open to walkers. There will be cash prizes in the usual categories in the adult races with trophies on offer for the leading under 16 finishers. This year we’ve added a 2km run for Primary School children and this will take place solely in the grounds of the Mall. There will be a medal for all finishers in each distance. More information can be found on our Facebook page.