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Reports - September 2013

24 September » 17 September » 10 September » 3 September »

24 September 2013

The athletes of St Peter’s AC have been training hard in recent weeks in preparation for the forthcoming cross country season. The first athlete from the Dromiskin-based club to see competitive action is likely to be Liam Fussey, who is due represent Scoil Uí Mhuirí in the United States this Saturday. The Dunleer school is once again sending a team to the Ocean State High School Cross Country meet in Warwick, Rhode Island.

The following weekend the Louth Cross Country Championships get underway at the Meadowview Sports Ground, as the Novice and Juvenile even age group races will be staged at the Drogheda venue. The weekend after that the focus will shift to Dundalk, where the Intermediate and Juvenile uneven age group honours will be contested.

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17 September 2013

By any measure the recently completed outdoor track and field season has to be regarded as one of the most successful ever in the proud history of St Peter’s AC, as the Dromiskin-based club’s athletes amassed a remarkable medal haul at national, provincial and county level.

Four gold medals were won in the Irish Juvenile Championships, as Conor Durnin (U18 Triple Jump), Lauren Finegan (U17 Javelin), Niamh Fussey (U19 100m Hurdles) and Mark Rogers (U18 400m Hurdles) were all crowned national champions. Conor also added the Irish Schools’ title in the Triple Jump.

Emily Rogers won no fewer than three national silver medals in the High Jump – in the Irish Senior, Junior (U20) and Schools’ Championships. Further silver medals were won by Mark Rogers in the U18 Octathlon and by Niamh Fussey in the Schools’ 100m Hurdles.

Both Niamh Fussey and Mark Rogers completed their sets of national medals with bronzes, which were earned in the Senior 100m Hurdles and the U18 High Jump respectively. Katie Murphy (U13 Shot) and Frances Rogers (U23 Shot) also finished 3rd at national level to bring the overall total to five gold, five silver and four bronze medals.

Apart from these seven athletes who mounted the podium at national level, a further ten athletes from St Peter’s won Leinster medals during the outdoor track and field season. These were Gabriel Bell, Aaron Finley, Chloe Finley, Daniel Finley, Emma McDermott, Martin McGrane, Tom McGrane, Eamonn McManus, James Meenan and Ciara Murphy.

Several other athletes from the club starred in the Louth Championships, with the following all finishing in the medals: Seán Allen, Elizabeth Bell, Judith Bell, Chloe Bolton, Niamh Brady, Ava Brennan, Maria Duffy, David Finley, Luke Finley, Liam Fussey, Philip Larney, Pádraic McGinn, Orlaith McMahon, Craig Murtagh, Dean Murtagh, Andrew Rogers and Heather Rogers.

Apart from winning a national medal of each hue, Mark Rogers set a new Irish record in the U18 Octathlon in a competition in London in May. He was further honoured by captaining the winning Irish U18 Boys’ team in the Celtic Games – an annual Ireland v Scotland v Wales international – in August, in which he finished 3rd in the 400m Hurdles himself.

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10 September 2013

A very successful summer track and field season for Dromiskin-based St Peter’s AC came to an end in the last week of August.

While several of the club’s older athletes were performing so well at the Tartan Games in Gateshead on Sunday 25th August, Judith Bell kept the flag flying strongly closer to home. Competing at the Ardee and District AC Sports, she won silver in the Under 9 60m event and then went on to take bronze in the 200m.

Tom McGrane was in action two days later at the North Down AC Open Meet in Bangor. On a cool, damp evening, which was quite uncharacteristic of the summer of 2013, he won both the Senior Shot Putt and Discus with throws of 9.50m and 19.20m respectively.

Tom travelled north again last Saturday week to compete in the Northern Ireland Masters’ Championships at the Mary Peters Track in Belfast. He claimed silver in the Over 50 Shot Putt (10.16m), bronze in the Discus (24.31m), finished 4th in the Hammer (21.45m), and also competed in the Weight Throw events. Tom’s performance in the Hammer was a significant improvement on his previous personal best with the 6kg implement.

13-year-old Craig Murtagh has been showing some promise as a shot putter this year, but he took to the roads of Kilkerley last Friday week to run in the Kilkerley Emmets GFC 4 Mile Road Race. He crossed the line in a time of 40:15, which saw him finish in 117th place, well within the top half of the field.

The members of St Peter’s AC are reminded that the club training sessions resume this week (on Tuesday 10th September) and will continue each Tuesday and Thursday evening at the facilities of St Joseph’s GFC, starting at the usual time of 6:30 p.m.

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3 September 2013

A team of ten athletes from St Peter’s AC travelled to England the weekend before last to take part in the Tartan Games in Gateshead. This is one of the longest established and highest quality open track and field meets in these islands, and it is staged annually at Gateshead International Stadium – an iconic athletics venue. The competition attracted athletes not just from the local clubs in Tyne and Wear, County Durham and Northumberland, but from right across the north of England and Scotland, along with the Irish contingent from the Dromiskin-based club.

Undaunted by the strength of the opposition, the St Peter’s AC athletes rose to the challenge of the occasion and amassed a remarkable haul of one gold, three silver and six bronze medals. All ten medals were earned in the throws and jumps, making it the second highest medal total in the field events of any club at the competition. Host club Gateshead Harriers led the way with 35 medals, while the Jarrow & Hebburn and Middlesbrough Mandale clubs won nine medals apiece to tie for third place in the rankings behind St Peter’s.

Katie Murphy, the youngest athlete on the team, was the star of the show, as she demolished the Tartan Games record in the U13 Girls’ Shot Putt to win that event with a superb throw of 9.51m. This was her first ever competition with the heavier 2.72kg implement. Katie was also in action in the 100m where she clocked 14.63 to finish 5th in her heat.

Gabriel Bell had a great day in the U13 Boys’ age group. He bettered the Tartan Games record in the High Jump with a clearance of 1.40m, but had to settle for silver as his rival from the host club went even higher. Gabriel also claimed bronze in the Long Jump with a personal best leap of 4.71m, and finished 6th in his heat of the 100m in a time of 14.43.

Heather Rogers scaled 1.35m to take silver in the U17 Girls’ High Jump, and she also recorded personal bests in finishing 5th in both the 300m and the Long Jump with performances of 52.07 and 4.29m respectively.

The club’s other silver medal came courtesy of Liam Fussey who unleashed a big throw of 36.49m in the final round of the U17 Boys’ Javelin.

Frances Rogers, Heather’s older sister, won a brace of bronze medals in the throws in the Senior Women’s category. Her final round throw of 9.70m in the Shot Putt was close to her season’s best, and she registered 19.49m in the Hammer on her competitive debut in what is one of the most technically difficult events.

Tom McGrane also doubled up in the Senior Men’s Shot Putt and Hammer. He threw 9.72m to take bronze in the former and had a best throw of 18.20m in finishing 4th in the latter.

Emma McDermott was another Shot Putt bronze medallist, as her throw of 7.63m with the 3.25kg implement earned her a spot on the podium in the U15 Girls’ competition. She also finished 10th in the Long Jump with a leap of 3.12m.

Martin McGrane, Tom’s son, matched his dad’s performance to win bronze in the U17 Boys’ Shot Putt. He recorded 8.74m with the 5kg implement in what was quite a competitive event.

Ciara Murphy, Katie’s sister and Emma’s cousin, had a busy day. She leapt 3.66m for 7th place in the U15 Girls’ Long Jump and finished 6th in the heats of both of her sprint events, clocking 15.31 in the 100m and 32.51 in the 200m.

Shot putter Craig Murtagh was throwing the 4kg implement for the first time in competition and did well to finish 8th in the U15 Boys’ event with a best throw of 6.85m.

The St Peter’s AC team was accompanied to Gateshead by coaches Paddy Bell, Kathleen McConnell and Angela McDonald. They were delighted with the fine performances and took even further heart from the fact that the majority of the juvenile athletes on the team were competing "out of age". Under 17 athletes Heather, Liam and Martin and Under 15 athletes Emma and Craig will all be eligible to compete in these same age groups again in 2014.

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