Conditions at the Irish Schools Cross Country Championships at Waterford I.T., were the worst in living memory, as the incessant rain of the days before saw the cours turn into a quagmire. Nevertheless, the D.S.D., athletes, who represented their schools, had some great performances, as most were out of their comfort zone from the gun.
First into action was Christine Moran (Coláiste Iosagáin) who showed grim determination in the ankle deep mud, forcing herself to a 3rd place finish in the Minor Girls. In the Minor Boys race Jamie Byrne (Wesley College) also displayed great courage, finishing in 14th position. In the Junior Boys Morgan Clarkson (Coláiste Eoin) did not find the conditions to his liking and struggled to finish in 16th place. The big surprise in this race was Oscar Lubliner (Blackrock College) who qualified for the U.15 Irish team for Schools Home Countries International in Nottingham on the 24th March. Oscar, who has been running for less than a year, looks to have a bright future in distance running. Joining him on the U.15 Girls team for Nottingham will be Saoirse O’Brien (Coláist Iosagáin) who finished 7th in her category. Eimear Maher finished in 15th place, finding the conditions difficult to negotiate. The Senior Girls race was the class race of the day and as expected Sarah Healy (Blackrock A.C/Holy Child Killiney) was out on her own for a comprehensive win from Abbie Taylor (Wesley) 2nd; Niamh Carey (Coláiste Iosagáin) 3rd; Grace Dervan (Wesley) 25th and Faye Dervan (Wesley) 40th. This gave Wesley College a 3rd place finish. Blackrock College also achieved their goal to come home with a medal as they picked up bronze, with Harry Kearns leading the team and supported by Liam Blackburn, Conor Halpin, Fionn O’Connor and Edward McKenna. Brian Maguire (Benildus) finished 22nd in this senior age group.
Well done to all!