Club Report 28th May – 3rd June, 2018

Written by Gerald

Run when you can, walk if you have to, crawl if you must’ (Dean Karnazes).


For some it was not a walk in the park on Wednesday at Ormeau. Though it was very warm, the clock was ticking and there was hard running to be done on a course that included all of the upslopes of the parkrun route plus a few more (30m of ascent). The summer series has been devised by Glenn Grant of ChampionChip Ireland with sponsorship from Forestside Shopping Centre and good prize money is on offer – Liz Robinson won £100 for the best age graded performance of the day, 22:07, 80.86% and Conor McMullan won a total of £90 for the fastest time of the day and the second best age graded performance, 17:39, 79.93%.
Orangegrove AC runners were there of course, David Montgomery being fastest and 2nd overall out of 137 runners, in 19:12. Des Fahy was 4th in 19:21. Jacqui Maxwell was 28th in 24:43 and Gerald Harvey was 29th in 24:59.

LAGAN VALLEY AC FIRMUS FAB 5, Day 3, 31st May, 2018.

The OAC juniors ran very well at MPT to post a number of podium finishes:

U11 Girls 100m, Heat 2, Sarah Van Der Linden won in 15.44 seconds;
U13 Boys Mile, Jacob McKittrick won in 5 minutes 27.03 seconds;
U17 Mens, 100m, Aaron McCord was second in 11.95 seconds;
U11 Girls, 100m, Heat 1, Katie McKittrick was third in 16.40 seconds;
U15 Boys Mile, Ronan McPeake was third in 5 minutes 22.46 seconds.


It was a warm and humid night down in the Mournes, but at least there was shade along the forest trails. Andrew Tees ran well to finish first OAC male in 42:16, 11th overall out of 241 runners. Verity Cornford was first OAC female to finish in 1:01:30, 175th overall. The race was won by Seamus Lynch (Newcastle AC) in 36:38 and first lady was Esther Dickson (Newry AC) in 43:32, 18th overall.

OAC Results: Andrew Tees, 42:16; Robin Montgomery, 51:49; Michael O’Donoghue, 56:29; Verity Cornford, 1:01:30; Edwina Ternan, 1:08:19; Lisa Fleming, 1:08:25; David Doey, 1:13:12; Judith Dalzell, 1:22:13; Selina Myles, 1:25:52.

TAKING THE TOWER 10K, Friday 1st June, 2018. [Report by Brian Todd]

It is always good to get your main weekend run over and done with on the Friday evening, leaving you the rest of the weekend to luxuriate, or recover as it was in this case. This was a lovely and very well organized little race in support of Action Cancer. However, it was not one for the faint-hearted. As the name suggests that magnificent volcanic extrusion we all know and love as Scrabo, overlooking Newtownards and Strangford Lough below, was very much in contention!

The race began and finished in Killynether Wood and the course took in many of those lovely little roads that those of us familiar with the Ards Half Marathon know so well. However, what goes down must come up again and the final three miles involved a lot of up. Parts of it were un-runnable in true Hill and Dale style. A nice little touch was the jazz band that played beautifully as we struggled to the summit of the hill for our circuit of Scrabo Tower before the very fast descent to the finish back in the semi-darkness of Killynether Wood. What a lovely way to spend a Friday evening! Temperatures were high, the rain stayed away and the crash of thunder in the west added to the atmosphere.

Thanks to Michael Barton of Seal Training Fitness, Newtownards, and all at Action Cancer and, in particular, the many volunteers, for a great and innovative multi-terrain race. Hopefully this one will be on the calendar for many years to come. Nice medal too! Times reflect the difficulty of the gradients in many places: Brian Todd, 50.49 (27/138). Taking of the Tower 10K was won by Glen Taylor (Ballydrain Harriers) in 37.51 and Amanda Perry (Ballydrain Harriers) was first lady in 45.17.

ALL-IRELAND SCHOOLS ATHLETICS CHAMPIONSHIPS, 2nd June, 2018. [Report by Gillian Sykes]

Our Ulster Schools medallists made the long 3.5hr trip to Tullamore on Saturday for the All-Ireland Schools Athletics Finals…..and what a day…! Amazing competitors didn’t stop Rory Carson from bringing home a Bronze Medal in 100m Junior Boys….and a Silver in 200m Junior Boys…..PB’s of 11.51 and 23.48 were squeezed out of Rory in what were incredibly tight races. Fantastic racing as always from Rory.

The end of a long day waiting and watching saw the turn of Adam Sykes, Nathan Stewart and Lewis Hamilton in their Inter Boys School 4 x 100m Relay team. This turned out to be a record breaking race seeing Mercy Mount Hawk (Tralee) smashing the Inter Boys Irish Schools Record. The Orangegrove boys ran the race of their lives to bring the baton home safely in 5th place….in a PB time of 45.24….smashing their target of 46 sec that they had set earlier in the season. Not at all disappointed in this position as they will surely be back next year, as their whole team is a year young in this age group. Such a fantastic experience for this young team.

The future is bright for the Junior Sprinters in Orangegrove.

PARKRUN, 2nd June, 2018.

This week there was a good turnout of OAC runners at Belfast Victoria Park and Stormont. Reg Sanlon was at Comber. Lisa Fleming was at Portrush. Furthest travelled was Catherine Fearon at Gladstone Park, London. Well done to the two runners who achieved a personal best time: Danny Bradley, 18:48 (Belfast Victoria Park) and Jake Dalzell, 22:08 (Ormeau Park). Brian Mc Farland and Ben Magee were first timers at Carrickfergus.
Remember to help out at least three times a year by contacting Gerry Ward at:


David Gribben and Michael O’Donoghue were on the start line at the Everglades Hotel on the Prehen Road. David reached the finish in Guildhall Square in 3:29:43, 155th out of 1036 and Michael in 4:11:10, 467th. The race was won by Dan Tanui (Project Africa) in 2:19:44. Running her first marathon and finishing first lady was Heather Noone (unattached) in 3:05:33, 46th overall.

Photos by Gerald Harvey, Brian Todd, Michael O’Donoghue, Gillian Sykes & Newcastle AC