‘Springers’ on tour in Europe

This week’s running saw yet more European travels with Springwell Running Club members appearing in Munich and The Hague, parkrun was brought to you by the letter ‘Z’ and some Springers happily reported that you still don’t need a passport for the Strabane-Lifford Half Marathon.

Alan Nevin at Strabane/Lifford HM
Alan Nevin at Strabane/Lifford HM

Springers could also be found running up and down Slieve Donard and clocking up a Half Marathon in Chester, and if that wasn’t enough, the club appointed a new president.

Springwell RC President

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Club President of over 20 years, Jim Reid MBE, sadly passed away in March and Springwell RC would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who sent their condolences to the club and shared their many memories of Jim.

Catherine Byers at Zuiderpark parkrun

The next President of the club has some big (running) shoes to fill, but Springwell are lucky to have such an individual in their ranks and are pleased to announce Kenneth Bacon as the new President of Springwell RC.

Kenny has been a member of the club for over 20 years and has served on the committee in a variety of roles, including that of press officer for over 15 of those years. He has always given generously of his time to coaching club members and to the organisation of races throughout the area, and can be regularly seen at the local parkruns, either running or volunteering to ensure the events go ahead.

His commitment to the club over the past two decades saw him being given honorary life membership of Springwell RC in 2021 and members are delighted that he has accepted the position of Club President.

Munich 5k

Jonathan Huddlestone, Pauline Duke & Seamus McAteer at Strabane/Lifford HM

If you listened to the press on Sunday, you will have heard that finishing second in Europe is an excellent result, well Springwell would agree!

Ciaran Ferris produced a fantastic run in the Munich 5k on Sunday where, despite the very warm conditions, all his training and commitment was rewarded with a personal best time of 15:31 and second place on the podium.

Slieve Donard Mountain Race

Starting and finishing in Donard Park, Newcastle, Saturday’s Slieve Donard Race is fairly simple, race to the summit of Slieve Donard and back down again. This very popular event, hosted by Newcastle AC is not for the inexperienced as they have to navigate through three checkpoints along the 10k course with 850m of climbing to test their stamina.

President Kenneth Bacon

The weather on Saturday was perfect for the event with unbroken sunshine keeping the course dry. Shirhaan Hameed made the trip to County Down to represent Springwell and finished 131st with a time of 1:40:52.

Strabane – Lifford Half Marathon

The Strabane Lifford Half Marathon on Sunday, May 15 was one of the hottest outings so far in 2022 with the sunglasses and factor 50 being brought out of storage for this race. This popular race takes competitors from Strabane across the River Foyle to Lifford where they turn left and follow the River Finn towards Castlefinn and crossing the river into Clady and back to Strabane. Springwell RC was well represented at the event with 12 purple vests making the trip to Tyrone.

Springwell RC Results - 45th Alan NEVIN 1:26:22, 137th Judith Buchanan 1:38:59, 210th Michael JOHNSON 1:43:00, 231st Jonathan HUDDLESTON 1:43:49, 364th Geoff ALLEN 1:51:08, 487th Mervyn THOMPSON 1:57:32, 508th Seamus MCATEER 1:58:42, 545th Pauline MULLAN 2:01:29, 681st Pauline DUKE 2:11:39, 804th Alison DUNCAN 2:28:22, 805th Heather MCLAUGHLIN 2:28:22, 848th Andrew WILMOT 2:40:48

Patricia Craig at Portrush Parkrun

Chester Half Marathon

Starting and finishing in the historic city centre, the Chester Half marathon saw over 3000 take to the streets on Sunday, May 15 for the 40th anniversary of this event. Roisin Walker was there to represent Springwell and crossed the line in a time of 2:13:20.


Saturday saw 41 Springers doing their parkrun kilometres at seven different venues with five personal bests recorded.

Patricia Craig reached her 200th parkrun milestone with her run at Portrush while in the Netherlands something unusual was happening. One of the challenges for Parkrunners is to complete the ‘parkrun alphabet’, that is, to complete a run at a location where the first letter of each location completes the alphabet.

The difficulty has always been the elusive ‘Z’ and until recently you would have to go to New Zealand, South Africa or into a very remote area of Poland to find one. Parkrun is continuously growing with new races being established throughout the world and, as soon as Springwell’s Catherine Byers heard about the new Zuiderpark parkrun in Holland, she very quickly put in an appearance to complete her alphabet.

Roisin Walker at Chester HM

Portrush - Maurice WALKER 19:01 PB, David O’NEILL 19:46, Rhys WALKER 20:02, Fergus THOMPSON 23:34, George BRIEN 24:52, Patricia CRAIG 26:18, Maria QUINN 27:08, Liz DOWEY 27:32, Fergal MACKLE 29:22, Andrew WILMOT 29:35, Deborah ARCHIBALD 30:21, Caitriona MACKLE 34:53, Emer THOMPSON 56:19 Castlewellan - Gary KENDALL 22:57 Ellesmere Port - Roisin WALKER 29:33

Limavady - Chris DENTON 17:22, David SHIELS 20:08, Peter TEES 22:44, Gary MOORE 23:23, Alan STEEN 23:46 PB, Darren WALSH 24:05, Pauline MULLAN 24:42, Deborah MC PHEE 24:47 PB, Peter JACK 25:03, Leanne QUIGLEY 25:17,

Alan WHITE 25:51, Janet PATRICK 25:54, David MCCOOL 26:03, Nicola WHITE 28:32, Ingrid HAMILTON 34:04, Heather MCLAUGHLIN 46:19

Birkenhead - Jim BREEN 25:56

Zuiderpark - Lorraine ABERNETHY 31:26, Elaine MONTGOMERY 31:5, Catherine BYERS 31:51

Garvagh - Paul LOGUE 23:06, Majella MCATEER 24:06, Rozzy SKUCE 24:37 PB, Michael MCKEOWN 25:35, Antoinette CONWAY 26:52 PB, Kenneth BACON 41:36.

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