Castlewellan Christmas Cracker 2016

The Newcastle Athletics Club Annual Castlewellan Christmas Cracker Pairs Race took place on Tuesday with usual race colours abandoned in favour of much more varied and colourful fancy dress.

The race covers a distance of approximately 8.5 miles of road and forest tracks in and around Castlewellan and is suitable for all hill, cross country and road runners. Competitors take part in two-person teams (capped at 600 teams) with prizes for male, female and mixed teams and best fancy dress. I suspect that the costumes may have led to some debate regarding category qualification!

Newcastle AC report that the race has grown exponentially since it was taken over by Newcastle AC and relocated to Castlewellan in the early ‘noughties’ and remains one of the most unique and popular races in the annual ANI calendar… in 2004 a total of 54 teams crossed the line.

Whether a result of competing in teams, fancy dress, or both, participation is enthusiastic.

Pos Time Category
109 1:10:03 Eric Fairfield & Colin Simpson Male 80-99
247 1:21:49 Andrew Allen & Ian Millgate Male 80-99
281 1:24:59 Brian Todd & Emma McWilliams Mixed 100-119
379 1:36:00 Verity Cornford & Kerris Hamilton Female U 80
386 1:36:49 Fintan Hurl & Louise Browne Mixed U 80
387 1:36:54 Liz Leitch & Zdzislaw Malkinski Mixed 100-119
394 1:38:31 Sarah Malcolmson & Jane Holland Female 80-99
401 1:39:25 Anna Rankin & Keith Patterson Mixed 80-99
412 1:40:22 Jenny Powell & Alison Hall-Thompson Female 80-99
467 1:50:25 Ian Wilson & Mary Magill Mixed U 80
468 1:50:29 Patricia Magill & David Magill Mixed 80-99
495 1:55:08 Sharon Corken & Melinda Wilkinson Female 80-99
506 1:57:40 Linda Craig & Lauren Craig Female 80-99
511 1:59:28 Sharon McFarland & Karen Russell Female 80-99
514 2:01:28 Reg Sanlon & Mairead Napier Mixed 100-119

1st Male Team: Mark McKinstry (North Belfast Harriers) & Seamus Lynch (Newcastle AC) – 49:47
1st Mixed Team: William McKee (Mourne Runners) & Laura Graham (Mourne Runners) – 57:53
1st Female Team: Amanda Perry (Ballydrain Harriers) & Denise Logue (Ballydrain Harriers) – 1:05:32

More importantly, Orangegrove brought home a collection of prizes. Sharon and Karen, Liz and Zdzislaw, Reg and Mairead, and Ian and Mary collected some of the headline prizes – for fancy dress.

Liz, Zdzislaw, Louise and Fintan even made it to the Irish News.

Thanks to Mairead Napier, Greg McClure, Colm Mcmullan, Mark Kelly, Mal McCann and Laurence McAlinden for the photos