Causeway Chronicle

Fast, furious and long week for Springwell runners

This week has been both fast and furious, and long, very, very long. Springwell RC members have been on roads in Donegal, up and down the Mourne Mountains, and have literally, run all day, and then a bit more. Oh, and there were parkruns, there are always parkruns.

Hill & Dale: Millstone – Thursday 30th May

Thursday will soon be known as Hill & Dale-day as the series hits race week 7 and runners returned to Newcastle for Millstone.

An 8km race with 1,500ft of elevation, runners started off in the forest trails before summitting Millstone mountain, which sits below Slieve Donard, before a fast technical descent to the quarry and back into the forest trails for the finish.

Conor Duffy continued his 100% attendance at this year’s series and finished 213th in 1:07:37.

Next up in the world of H&D, Loughshannagh.

Fureys Insurance 5k – Thursday 30th May

It was a wet night for the last ever Fureys Insurance 5k in Buncrana. Traditionally an extremely fast course, Thursday evening was no exception with some impressive times posted. Christopher McNickle ran 17:00 to finish 31st, and a personal best of 17:42 saw Stephen McLaughlin finish 52nd.

We Run Wild Ni – Saturday 1st June.

8:00am on Saturday saw the start of a mighty challenge with the “We Run Wild NI” 100-mile challenge. This event follows the Ulster Way from Ballintoy, along the beaches and cliff tops of the Causeway Coast, through Portrush and Portstewart to cross the River Bann in Coleraine. From there its back to the coast at Downhill and a climb up the Bishops Road to trek through the forests and trails of the Northern Sperrins, through Drumsurn, Dungiven and Claudy towards Plumbridge and eventually Gortin, nestled in the heart of the Sperrins above Omagh.

After running over 30 miles in six hours and thirty minutes last weekend to win the Sliabh Liag Challenge, Bernadette Quinn could have been forgiven for looking for a quieter weekend, but no. Last weekend was merely a warmup for another well-deserved top of the podium finish, as she ran the 108-mile route in an impressive 25 hours and 31 minutes to finish as first lady.

The event also had a Half Marathon option, starting in Ballintoy and finishing in Portballintrae. A strong run from Andy Whiteford saw him claim top place on the podium with an impressive 1:52:57.

DreamRun Dublin

Established in 2017 by Olympian Paul Pollock, the DreamRun Dublin project selects ten athletes each year to be coached by Paul, with the intention of running personal bests at the Dublin Marathon. This focused, specialist training program gives athletes every opportunity to maximise their potential and achieve their goals.

The coach is only half the equation, and the athlete must have the experience, discipline, and determination to succeed if the formula is to work. This year Springwell RC’s John Butcher is one of the ten athletes selected for the project and brings with him, the experience of 101 marathons and a personal best of 3:06 that was achieved in the 2023 Athens Marathon.

There is the potential for something special at Dublin. Congratulations on your selection John, the very best of luck.

Parkrun

A sunny Saturday saw sixty – one Springers parkrunning at fourteen different venues, with six personal bests recorded. Dara Watterson recorded his at Ecos parkrun, Rachael Campbell and Shirley McGaffin went to the seaside for theirs at Portrush parkrun, Alison Duncan celebrated Limavady parkrun’s 400th event by clocking up hers there, and Rodney & Deborah McPhee made it a family affair with their brace at Limepark Playing Fields parkrun.

Thanks to all the volunteers who make parkrun happen.

Derry City – Pauline MULLAN 23:22

Princes – Nicola WHITE 34:13, Alan WHITE 34:14

Belfast Victoria – John BUTCHER 19:36

Ecos – Dara WATTERSON 24:17 PB, Majella McATEER 24:18, Noelle WATTERSON 35:03

Portrush – Maurice WALKER 19:52, Rhys WALKER 21:23, Adam POLLOCK 21:35, David MCGAFFIN 21:58, Cathy ADAMS 22:44, Shaun CARTON 23:29, Jonno JOHNSON 23:40, George BRIEN 24:03, Mervyn THOMPSON 24:46, Rachael CAMPBELL 25:06 PB, Andrew WILMOT 25:46, Heather SPENCE 26:12, Alan PLATT 26:25, Patricia CRAIG 26:41, Alanna MILLAR 27:15, Paul LAVERTY 28:07, Andrew WILSON 28:22, Roisin WALKER 30:07, Bernie HANNIGAN 30:21, Shirley McGAFFIN 35:27 PB, Aimee MILLER 36:00, Iris WILSON 36:21, Elaine MONTGOMERY 39:34, Deborah PURDY 41:19, Caoimhe QUINN 41:59, Gemma WRAY 57:01, Amanda SCOTT 57:18, Lorraine ABERNETHY 57:19

Enniskillen – David SHIELS 20:55

Ormeau – Ali SHAW 50:52

Castlewellan – Gary KENDALL 22:20, Kay HACK 36:33

Letterkenny – Linda McMICHAEL 30:57

Limavady – Chris DENTON 17:26, Darren WALSH 19:11, Brian MOORE 20:04, Kevin McLEAN 22:09, Alison C DUNCAN 25:04 PB, Gary MOORE 25:33, Alan STEEN 25:44, Sinead GRAHAM 25:56, Leanne QUIGLEY 25:56, Catherine PINKERTON 27:02, Janet PATRICK 27:02, Kenneth BACON 43:00, Katrina ADAMS 49:51, Heather McLAUGHLIN 52:40, Ingrid HAMILTON 52:42

Castleblayney – Emer THOMPSON 34:34

Longford – Catherine BYERS 33:07

Garvagh Forest – Colin CONNOLLY 29:59, Debbie KANE 38:08

Limepark Playing Fields – Rodney McPHEE 18:56 PB, Deborah McPHEE 24:00 PB

Alan & Nicola White at Princes Parkrun Liverpool
Bernadette Quinn 1st Lady Norn Iron 100 Challenge
John Butcher – DreamRun Dublin Project
Linda McMichael – Letterkenny Parkrun
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Maurice Bradley