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Reports - January 2013

29 January » 22 January » 15 January » 8 January » 1 January »

29 January 2013

No fewer than twelve athletes from St Peterís AC had their first competitive outing of 2013 last weekend, and the results they produced have certainly raised expectations that the Dromiskin-based club will enjoy another highly successful year.

The new indoor arena in Athlone was the venue for the Irish Juvenile Combined Eventsí Indoor Championships on Saturday. Mark Rogers had a great win in the U18 Pentathlon, as he amassed a total of 3630 points. The constituent events of 60m Hurdles, Long Jump, Shot Putt, High Jump and 800m yielded respective performances of 8.77, 6.00m, 12.03m, 1.87m and 2:10.90, of which the first three represented personal bests.

Maria Duffy was also in good form as she claimed a bronze medal in the Over 35 Pentathlon with a total of 1390 points. Contesting the same set of events as Mark, she recorded performances of 12.33, 3.92m, 7.28m, 1.19m and 3:13.83 respectively.

Chloe Finley started well in the U16 Pentathlon, clocking 10.06 in the 60m Hurdles, leaping 4.53m in the Long Jump, and putting the Shot 9.67m. Unfortunately she suffered an injury in the High Jump, in which she cleared 1.34m, and had to withdraw from the 800m.

The following dayís AAI Indoor Games, which is a Senior competition with no age group categories, attracted an international field to Athlone. Conor Durnin produced a personal best of 13.46m for 2nd place in the Triple Jump, having earlier leapt 6.29m in the Long Jump. Also finishing 2nd on Sunday was Emily Rogers, who cleared 1.60m in the High Jump. This was a good performance considering that she is just recovering from a recent injury.

Niamh Fussey flew over the barriers to claim 3rd place in the 60m Hurdles in a personal best time of 9.68. After his epic performance the previous day, Mark Rogers was back in action at the AAI Games. Despite very tired legs he clocked a personal best of 54.05 in the 400m and scaled 1.80m in the High Jump.

Six athletes from the club made the shorter trip to the somewhat less salubrious indoor facility at Cushinstown AC in Co Meath for an Invitation Juvenile Indoor Meet on Sunday. The young squad performed well to win a total of one gold, three silver and two bronze medals.

Katie Murphy smashed her personal best to win the U14 Shot Putt with a throw of 9.56m. She also qualified for the final of the U13 30m and leapt 2.80m in the U13 Long Jump. Emma McDermott threw 8.09m for silver in the U14 Shot Putt and jumped 3.19m for bronze in the U15 Long Jump.

Ciara Murphy was a silver medallist in the U15 60m, which was actually contested outdoors in the car park, having earlier registered 3.17m in the U15 Long Jump. Also winning silver was Martin McGrane, who recorded 9.87m in the U16 Shot Putt.

Ava Brennan took bronze in the final of the U13 30m in a time of 4.9, having earlier leapt 3.04m in the U13 Long Jump. Hazel McDermott clocked 5.8 in the U10 30m final but just missed out on a medal. The youngster also registered 2.00m in the U10 Long Jump.

Training for the clubís younger athletes, who must be at least 7 years old, resumes next Tuesday night (5th February). The annual registration fee is also now due, and should be paid as soon as possible.

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22 January 2013

Next weekend heralds the start of a new era in Irish athletics, as the maiden competitions will be staged in the new indoor arena at Athlone Institute of Technology. This is the first permanent, purpose-built, international standard indoor track on the island, and it will host the Irish Combined Eventsí Indoor Championships on Saturday, followed by the AAI Indoor Games on Sunday.

Dromiskin-based St Peterís AC expects to be represented in both competitions at the brand new Midlands venue. On Saturday Maria Duffy, Chloe Finley and Mark Rogers are due to vie for national championship honours in the Pentathlon in the 35 to 49, Under 16 and Under 18 age groups respectively.

Mark Rogers should be back in Athlone on Sunday for the AAI Indoor Games, in which there will be no age group categories as it is a Senior competition. He is entered for the 400m and the High Jump. Conor Durnin, who has entered the Long and Triple Jumps, 60m Hurdler Niamh Fussey, and Emily Rogers, who is down to contest the High Jump, are all expected to join Mark there.

More athletes from St Peterís AC will have the opportunity to compete in Athlone in the coming weeks, as it will be the venue for all Leinster and Irish championship competitions throughout this indoor season.

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15 January 2013

Last Wednesday night was the occasion of the inaugural competitive outing of 2013 for a St Peterís AC athlete, as Tom McGrane made the trip to the University of Ulsterís Jordanstown campus for the Open Indoor Meet organised by Athletics Northern Ireland.

It proved to be the perfect start to the year for the veteran athlete, as he won the Senior Menís Shot Putt with a lifetime best performance. Tom opened his account in some style with a throw of 9.53m, which added 3cm to his previous personal best. Even better was yet to come, however, as he improved to 9.64m in the third round.

Tom is now hoping that he can maintain this good form into early February, when he is due to compete in the Leinster, Irish and Scottish Mastersí Indoor Championships within a nine-day period. Both the Leinster and Irish Championships will be staged at the new Athlone IT Arena, while the new Commonwealth Arena in Glasgow will be the venue for the Scottish Championships.

Members of the Dromiskin-based club are reminded that the registration fees for 2013 are now due. These have been maintained at the same level as last year. Athletes must be registered in order to compete and to participate in training sessions.

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8 January 2013

Last Saturday night the Athletics Leinster Star Awards were presented at a function in the Seven Oaks Hotel in Carlow. The recipient of the award for the best juvenile male athlete in County Louth for the second successive year was Mark Rogers of St Peterís AC.

These awards are based on performances in Leinster championship competition in 2012. During the indoor season Mark won the provincial Under 17 titles in the 60m Hurdles and High Jump. He also took silver in the Under 17 800m and bronze in the Junior (Under 20) High Jump.

When the action moved outdoors in the summer, Mark added several more Leinster medals Ė three gold, one silver and two bronze Ė to his collection. The golds, all of which came at Under 17 level, were won in the 100m Hurdles, 300m Hurdles and Pentathlon. The silver came in the Under 17 Shot Putt, while he claimed bronze in both the Under 17 High Jump and the Junior 400m Hurdles.

Prior to Mark being honoured for his performances in the past two years, the Dromiskin-based clubís most recent male recipient of this award was high jumper Kevin McManus, following his great season in 2007. Before that javelin thrower and sprinter Peter McDonald was a three-time winner as a result of his achievements in 2002, 2004 and 2005.

High jumper Emily Rogers, Mark's sister, won the female award two years ago. Long jumper and sprinter Hilary Kerr had the remarkable honour of winning the girls' award for four consecutive years from 2006 to 2009 inclusive. Previously Olivia McDonald, now a multiple Irish Senior Javelin medallist, was honoured for the 2005 season, and Shauna Martin, a fine all-rounder, took the laurels for 2004. Another St Peterís AC athlete was the inaugural recipient of this accolade, when middle distance runner Aoife McCarthy (now Coleman) was judged Louthís outstanding juvenile female athlete at the end of the 2000 season.

In the 13 years since the unifying of the sport in Louth and Leinster with the formation of the Athletic Association of Ireland at the end of 1999, St Peterís AC athletes have won no fewer than 14 of the 26 Athletics Leinster Star Awards for the best juvenile athletes in the county. Given the fine crop of young athletes currently in St Peterís, it will be no surprise if the club continues to feature strongly when these awards are presented in the years to come.

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1 January 2013

There were several happy winners of Christmas hampers at the recent fundraising draw in aid of Dromiskin-based St Peterís AC. The first prize went to Leon Reilly, while Conor McMahon, Paddy Bell, Ciara Kirk, Fiona Ward, Pádraic Tinnelly, Oisín Reilly and Darren Moore were also among the lucky ones. In fact Paddy Bell and PŠdraic Tinnelly were doubly rewarded for their generosity in supporting the draw, as they won two prizes apiece.

Ten of the clubís young athletes also won selection boxes or sweets in a special additional draw. These were Luke Finley, Ava Brennan, Ciara Murphy, Heather Rogers, Daniel Finley, Lauren Finegan, Marie Claire Rogers, Emily Rogers, Orlaith McMahon and Eamonn McManus.

The club would like to sincerely thank all who supported the draw in any way, whether by donating prizes, buying lines, selling lines or organising the draw. Club members are reminded that training for the older athletes (from 12 years old upwards) resumes next Tuesday evening (8th January), while the younger athletes will continue to enjoy a break until the end of January.

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