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Reports - January 2008

30 January » 23 January » 16 January » 9 January » 2 January »

30 January 2008

Last Saturday saw the 2008 indoor athletics season start on a winning note for St Peter’s AC. Newcomer to the Dromiskin-based club, Emily Rogers, jumped a personal best of 1.55m to win the Under 15 Girls’ High Jump at the Ulster Juvenile Open Championships in Belfast’s Odyssey Arena.

Next Saturday and Sunday several of the club’s juvenile athletes will make the long journey to Nenagh for the first weekend of the Leinster Indoor Championships. These championships are being held at the County Tipperary venue as there is no indoor athletics arena in Leinster, and, due to the high costs involved, the multi-purpose Odyssey Arena is only set up for athletics one weekend a year.

On Friday night Bellingham Castle hosted the annual awards ceremony for athletics in County Louth. The county Junior athlete of the year awards both went to St Peter’s athletes. Olivia McDonald, who was celebrating her 18th birthday on the night, won the Junior Women’s award, while Kevin McManus, who missed the ceremony due to his training commitments, won the Junior Men’s award.

Club secretary, Angela McDonald, also made club athlete of the year presentations to two of St Peter’s younger athletes on Friday night. These well-deserved awards went to Pádraic McGinn and Niamh Fussey for their competitive achievements and commitment to training during 2007.

The club’s younger athletes (8 to 11 years old) have been enjoying a break from training since the week before Christmas. However their training sessions will resume next Tuesday evening at St Joseph’s GFC facilities in Dromiskin.

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23 January 2008

This coming Saturday (26th January) marks the start of the 2008 indoor athletics season for St Peter’s AC. Newcomer to the Dromiskin-based club, Emily Rogers, will compete in the Under 15 High Jump at the Ulster Juvenile Open Championships in the Odyssey Arena. These championships are being held at the Belfast venue in conjunction with the Irish Senior Championships. The multi-purpose arena is also used regularly for concerts and other sports such as ice hockey and boxing. This is the only weekend in the year when it is set up for athletics. All other indoor athletics competitions in Ireland take place in Nenagh, County Tipperary.

The Ulster Championships will be Emily’s first outing in the colours of St Peter’s. However the young Togher girl is already an accomplished athlete, having won last year’s Irish Under 14 High Jump titles both indoors and out while representing her previous club. Last Wednesday Emily competed in the schools’ cross country meet at DCU. There she was representing Our Lady’s College, Greenhills, whose team finished 2nd in the Junior (Under 15) Girls’ race.

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16 January 2008

The athletes of Dromiskin-based St Peter’s AC are now training for the rapidly approaching indoor track and field season. Over four consecutive weekends from late January to mid-February the club’s athletes are expected to compete in Ulster, Leinster, Scottish and Irish Championships.

First up is the Ulster Championships for the Under 14 to Under 17 age groups at the Odyssey Arena in Belfast on Saturday 26th January. The following weekend (2nd and 3rd February) the Leinster Championships for the Under 12 to Under 19 age groups will be held in Nenagh, Co Tipperary. These are being held at the Munster venue, as unfortunately there is no indoor track within the province of Leinster. On Sunday 10th February St Peter’s AC should be represented at the Scottish Under 17 and Under 20 Championships in Glasgow’s Kelvin Hall. The following Saturday the club’s over-35 athletes will have their opportunity to shine at the Irish Masters’ Championships in Nenagh.

Club training sessions are now being held between 6:30 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. on Tuesday and Thursday evenings at St Joseph’s GFC facilities in Dromiskin. These are for athletes from the Under 12 age group upwards. The younger athletes are currently taking a break from training, as there are no indoor competitions for them.

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9 January 2008

Last Saturday night two athletes from Dromiskin’s St Peter’s AC were honoured at a function in the Seven Oaks Hotel, Carlow. Kevin McManus won the Athletics Leinster Star Award as the best juvenile male athlete in County Louth in 2007, while Hilary Kerr won the corresponding female award. Hilary had also won this award for her performances in 2006, but it was Kevin’s first time to be thus honoured by the provincial body.

Since the formation of the Athletic Association of Ireland in 2000, following the amalgamation of BLÉ and the NACAI, Athletics Leinster has being honouring the leading male and female juvenile athletes in each county annually. St Peter’s AC has now won 9 of the 16 awards for County Louth to date – more than all the other clubs in the county combined.

Hilary Kerr has also been further honoured by her province this week, as she has been selected to represent Leinster at the Scottish Indoor Championships in the Kelvin Hall on Sunday 10th February. She is due to compete in the Under 17 Long Jump and 60 metres at the famous Glasgow venue, and is the only athlete from County Louth on the Leinster team.

St Peter’s AC had one of its oldest and one of its youngest athletes in action in the New Year’s Day handicap 5 km road race in Dundalk, which was organised by the North East Runners club. These were Tom McGrane and Michael Mullen. Tom improved significantly on his previous performances in this event with an actual time of 24:07, which saw him cross the line in 10th place. Young Michael also did well, as he completed the distance in a time of 38:49.

The regular club training sessions in Dromiskin have now resumed after the Christmas and New Year break. Athletes who have not yet paid their 2008 registration fee of 20 euro should endeavour to do so as soon as possible.

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2 January 2008

St Peter’s AC from Dromiskin had one athlete in action in the St Stephen’s Day handicap 5 km road race in Dundalk. This was Tom McGrane, who is better known as a sprinter. He crossed the line in 53rd place out of almost 80 runners. Tom’s actual time of 25 minutes 36 seconds added to his handicap of 5 minutes gave him an overall time of 30 minutes 36 seconds.

The regular club training sessions in Dromiskin will resume after the Christmas and New Year break on Tuesday 8th January. Athletes who have not yet paid their 2008 registration fee of 20 euro should endeavour to do so as soon as possible.

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