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Reports - July 2014

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29 July 2014

Last Saturday and Sunday eight athletes represented St Peter’s AC on the second weekend of the 2014 Irish Juvenile Championships. Between them they won six medals – one gold, four silver and one bronze – and all of them recorded top six finishes in their events.

Katie Murphy was the star of the show as she won the U14 Shot Putt with a mighty heave of 13.14m – her best ever outdoors and just 3cm shy of her indoor personal best. She thus added the national outdoor title to the national indoor title which she won earlier this year.

Mark Rogers had a very busy weekend and produced some fine performances. He won silver in both the U19 400m Hurdles (57.00) and High Jump (1.85m), and finished 5th in the 400m (52.79).

Conor Durnin leapt 12.48m to take silver in the U19 Triple Jump. He had initially thought that he had won the gold, but one of his rivals was then allowed an extra jump at the end of the competition, as a problem had been identified with one of that competitor’s earlier jumps. It was this final jump which pushed Conor down into second place.

Lauren Finegan, competing for only the third time this year, proved once again what a talented athlete she is with a fine throw of 32.20m to take silver in the U18 Javelin.

Following his silver in the Javelin and bronze in the Discus on the first weekend of these championships, Daniel Finley added bronze in the U19 Shot Putt with a throw of 11.16m.

Chloe Finley finished 5th in the U17 Triple Jump (10.10m), the same place which Gabriel Bell achieved in the U14 High Jump (1.40m), while Martin McGrane finished 6th in the U17 Shot Putt (10.18m).

Last Wednesday night Conor Durnin was in also action for the Dromiskin-based club in the Dublin Graded Meet in Santry. He finished 4th in his 100m race in a time of 11.77.

Catherine Rogers had a great run in the Fingal 10K Road Race in Swords last Sunday week, setting a PB of 52:36, which was the seventh fastest time recorded in the Over 50 age group.

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22 July 2014

The premier event of the domestic Irish athletics season took place last weekend with the staging of the National Senior Track and Field Championships at the Morton Stadium in Santry, Dublin. St Peter’s AC had four athletes in action and it turned out to be a great weekend for the club as two of them finished in the medals.

Emily Rogers took silver in the High Jump for the third successive year. Although she was somewhat disappointed that she was not closer to her personal best of 1.73m, her medal-winning height of 1.68m was the highest she has ever jumped in these championships.

Olivia McDonald also recorded her best ever performance in the Irish Senior Championships as she threw 40.22m – the furthest she has thrown since 2009 – to take bronze in the Javelin. This represented a very welcome return to form for Olivia after quiet years in 2012 and 2013. It was also Olivia’s sixth National Senior Javelin medal, as she had previously won gold in 2009, silver in 2008 and bronze in 2006, 2007 and 2011.

Seventeen-year-old Mark Rogers had a good run from the difficult outside lane to finish fifth in the final of the 400m Hurdles in a time of 56.99.

Niamh Fussey, who won bronze in these championships last year, lined up once again for the final of the 100m Hurdles. However, after getting away well out of the blocks, she was most unfortunate to hit the second hurdle which scuppered her chances this time around.

Thirteen athletes from the Dromiskin-based club competed in last Thursday night’s Louth Junior, Senior and Masters’ Championships in the Lourdes Stadium, Drogheda. They were in truly excellent form, winning a total of 17 gold, 5 silver and 1 bronze medals.

Senior county titles went to Aaron Finley (Javelin), Olivia McDonald (Javelin) and Tom McGrane (Shot). In the Junior (Under 20) age group Conor Durnin (100m, 200m and Long Jump), Daniel Finley (Shot and Javelin), Chloe Finley (Long Jump), Luke Finley (3000m) and Niamh Fussey (100m) all went home with gold medals. Top Masters’ honours in Louth went to Maria Duffy (Shot and Javelin) in the Over 45 category and to David Finley (100m, Shot and Javelin) and Brendan Rogers (Long Jump) in the Over 50 category.

Two other Junior athletes had the satisfaction of improving personal bests while winning silver medals. These were Liam Fussey, who threw 37.45m with the 800g Javelin, and Martin McGrane, who recorded 9.83m with the 6kg Shot.

Earlier last week Mark Rogers had his final competitive outing prior to the Irish Senior Championships when he clocked 53.28 in finishing fourth in a top-class 400m race at the Letterkenny AC Invitation Meet.

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15 July 2014

There were several excellent performances across a range of events by athletes from St Peter’s AC during the past week.

Cork Institute of Technology was the venue for the prestigious Cork City Sports last Tuesday night and, as usual, the organisers attracted a top-class international field to the Munster capital. Emily Rogers was among those who received an invitation to compete and she took a great third place in the High Jump behind Jayne Nisbet of Scotland and Isobel Pooley of England. Emily’s highest clearance came at 1.70m, which is her second best ever in competition.

Some of the Dromiskin-based club’s leading younger athletes were in action on the first day of this year’s Irish Juvenile Championships in Tullamore on Sunday.

Daniel Finley impressed at Under 19 level, winning silver in the Javelin with a throw of 41.55m and bronze in the Discus with a personal best of 35.81m.

Also in the Under 19 age group, Conor Durnin, better known as a triple and long jumper, claimed bronze in the 100m final, clocking 11.59 into a headwind following a 11.69 performance to qualify from his heat. This was Conor’s first time to win a national medal as a sprinter.

Gabriel Bell showed a welcome return to form in the Under 14 Long Jump, as he leapt a PB of 5.08m to take fourth place. Chloe Finley was another to just miss out on a medal, as she threw 10.71m for fourth in the Under 17 Shot Putt.

While Emily was performing so well in Cork last Tuesday night, Tom McGrane was in action at the other end of the country in the North Down AC Open Meet in Bangor. After beginning the evening with a below-par performance in the Senior Discus, in which he finished third with a throw of 19.94m, he more than made amends in the Shot Putt. His best throw of 10.64m added 48cm to his previous PB and earned him second place behind the host club’s Peter Glass, who is due to represent Northern Ireland in the Commonwealth Games a couple of weeks from now.

Closer to home, four St Peter’s athletes ran in the Dunleer AC 4 Mile Road Race on Sunday afternoon.

Catherine Rogers clocked 33:05 to take second place in the Over 50 category behind Rose Lambe from Carrick Aces, who represented Ireland in World Track and Field and Cross Country Championships during the 1980s and 1990s.

Liam Fussey came home in fifth place in the Junior age group in a time of 31:32, over a minute faster than he clocked in this race last year. Frances Rogers finished 22nd in the Senior category, crossing the line in 32:59, while Brendan Rogers clocked 40:23 for tenth place in the Over 50 age group.

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8 July 2014

Last Sunday the Irish Junior (Under 20) and Under 23 Championships were staged in Cork and five athletes from St Peter’s AC made the long trek southwards to the track at the Institute of Technology on the western outskirts of the city.

Mark Rogers got the day’s action off to a great start for St Peter’s when he took the gold medal in the Junior 400m Hurdles.

The Dromiskin-based club’s two Under 23 athletes both won silver medals. Aaron Finley threw 43.38m, close to his personal best, to finish second in the Javelin. Emily Rogers, who has been having a superb season, was a little below her best on this occasion, as she leapt 1.60m for joint second in the High Jump.

Daniel Finley was delighted to throw a PB of 44.34m in the final round of the Junior Javelin, which lifted him into the bronze medal position. Earlier in the day he had clocked a slightly wind-assisted 11.57 in finishing sixth in his heat of the 100m.

Martin McGrane also did well to finish fourth in the Junior Shot Putt with a throw of 9.40m. At just sixteen years of age he will be eligible to compete in this age group for another three years.

Earlier last week, in the Lourdes Stadium on Thursday night, Conor Durnin was just a couple of tenths off his PB when he won the top-flight 200m at the Drogheda & District AC Graded Meet in a time of 23.8.

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1 July 2014

There were a host of excellent performances by St Peter’s AC athletes in last weekend’s Leinster Championships for the U14 to U19 age groups which, as usual, were staged in Tullamore.

Katie Murphy got the weekend off to a great start on Saturday when she won the U14 Shot Putt with a new championship best performance of 12.91m. Daniel Finley also had a very successful weekend, winning gold in the U19 Shot Putt, Discus and Javelin. His winning throw of 34.46m in the Discus added over five metres to his previous personal best.

Mark Rogers also had a very busy and successful weekend in the U19 age group, winning the 400m Hurdles and the High Jump, taking silver in the 400m and coming home 4th in the 1500m. Also in this age group Conor Durnin won both the Long Jump (6.27m) and the Triple Jump (12.87m) and finished 4th in the 100m.

Chloe Finley was another double gold medallist, as she took the top honours in the U17 Triple Jump and Shot Putt. The Dromiskin-based club’s other individual gold medallist was Lauren Finegan who was victorious in the U18 Javelin (29.67m).

Gabriel Bell also finished in the medals with a silver in the U14 High Jump (1.52m) and a bronze in the Long Jump (4.89m). Orlaith McMahon performed very well in the U17 Long Jump, leaping 4.52m to claim 4th place.

Marie Claire Rogers was another athlete who had a very busy weekend. She ran very well to finish 5th in both the U15 80m Hurdles final and the 250m Hurdles final and also came home 6th in her heat of the 100m. Meanwhile Nikayla Hamill put in a battling performance in the U17 800m, while Ava Brennan was also in action in the U14 age group.

Besides this extremely impressive haul of individual medals – eleven gold, two silver and one bronze – eight of the St Peter’s athletes also won medals as part of Louth teams in the inter-county 4x100m relays.

Gabriel Bell and Marie Claire Rogers won gold with the U15 Boys’ and Girls’ teams respectively, while Chloe Finley, Orlaith McMahon and Nikayla Hamill (sub) won silver with the U17 Girls’ team. Conor Durnin, Daniel Finley and Mark Rogers were all in action for the U19 Boys’ team which landed the Leinster title.

All this bodes very well for the club’s prospects in the Irish Juvenile Championships which will be staged on the second and fourth weekends of July.

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