Weather doesn’t deter Springwell

It was another weekend of gale force winds, high tides and rain of biblical proportions, but it still wasn’t enough to deter the Springers from collecting their miles.

At Parkrun there were milestones to be reached and personal bests to be chased, while in ‘catch up’ news...“When is 5 miles not 5 miles?”

AXA Raheny 5 Mile Road Race

Sunday, January 30, saw the return of the prestigious Raheny 5 Mile Road Race hosted by Raheny Shamrocks Athletics Club. As one of Ireland’s most prominent road races, the entries quickly sell out and this year was no exception with just over 3000 athletes taking part.

Ciaran Ferris at the Raheny 5

Having recently broken the club half marathon record, Springwell RC’s Ciaran Ferris travelled to Dublin hoping to maintain his excellent form over the shorter distance, and he didn’t disappoint.

Setting a very fast pace from the start Ciaran ran an evenly paced race to complete five miles in an unofficial time of 25:48, however due to a very unfortunate course error by the organisers there was still another 0.3 miles to run, which meant that Ciaran’s official place and time was 44th in 27.16.

This was a fantastic performance in one of the most competitive fields in the country.

National Indoor Masters Championships

Cancer Research UK - Dorothy Hill, June Skelton, Kenny Bacon, Helen Murphy, Robin Millar and David McGaffin

While weather warnings created race uncertainty and tough conditions last weekend, Seamus McAteer ventured to the TUS International Arena in Athlone on January 30 for the Irish Life Health Masters Indoor Championships.

Seamus was in the 3k race in the M45 age group with 15 laps of the 200m track. A very fast race saw Seamus McAteer finish 6th in 13:22.


It was a well-travelled Parkrun weekend for Springwell as 42 Springers visited ten venues for a sprinkling of personal bests and milestones.

Ingrid Hamilton

Aidan Mooney, David O’Neill and James Weir all recorded personal bests while, at Limavady Janet Patrick completed her 200th event and at Garvagh Forest Colin Connolly reached his 100th parkrun.

With his run at the Garvagh Forest event Ali Shaw now has the full set of Northern Ireland parkruns.

Ecos – Aidan Mooney 29:39 PB

Portrush – Mervyn Thompson 28:07, Andrew Wilmot 33:14, Barry McBride 37:55, Fergal Mackle 37:55, Gemma Craig 38:36, Emer Thompson 53:34, Patricia Craig 53:35

Janet Patrick at Limavady Parkrun

Citypark – David O’Neill 17:58 PB

Castlewellan – Gary Kendall 22:32

Valley parkrun – James Hughes 22:37, Jim Breen 29:12

Limavady – Chris Denton 17:43, James Weir 18:52 PB, Rodney McPhee 19:16, Peter Tees 21:47, John Butcher 22:12, Fergus Thompson 24:01, Adrian Finlay 24:35, David McGaffin 24:36, Deborah McPhee 24:50, Leanne Quigley 25:45, Janet Patrick 25:49, Heather McLaughlin 37:49, Kenneth Bacon 40:05, Karen Robinson 40:06

Vandeleur – Elaine Montgomery 32:43

Lower Drumanns – Alan Platt 23:56

Michael McKeown & Colin Connolly at Garvagh Forest Parkrun

Crawfordsburn – Amanda Scott 31:45, Deborah Archibald 31:50, Bernie Drain 33:49, Catherine Byers 34:23

Garvagh Forest – Ali Shaw 20:27, Judith Buchanan 24:34, Rozzy Skuce 25:16, Roy Buchanan 26:50, Colin Connolly 31:56, Anne Marie McKenna 32:15, Michael McKeown 32:21, Rhona Laverty 37:02, George Mimnagh 37:21, Caroline Owen 49:14

Parkrun doesn’t happen without the great work done by so many volunteers. Many runners have visited Limavady parkrun and often been cheered on with words of encouragement from Springwell’s Ingrid Hamilton as she takes pictures and videos

of participants as they loop the Backburn path on a Saturday morning.

When injury curtailed her running Ingrid turned her attention and enthusiasm to volunteering, and has reached the milestone for volunteering on fifty occasions!

Even on those, not so pleasant mornings, when the wind and rain make their presence felt Ingrid has been there as part of a strong team of volunteers ensuring that parkrun happens.

Why not consider volunteering and helping out your local parkrun venue. Without the volunteers each week the events would not go ahead. Well done Ingrid on reaching a great milestone and for encouraging runners every week

Debbie Tutty Memorial Run

Thank you to everyone who has been in contact with the club since their run on January 30 to remember Debbie.

The donations continued to arrive, and on Friday, February 4, Kenny Bacon handed the magnificent sum of £1,000 to Cancer Research UK.

Speaking on behalf of the charity, Mervyn Ferris, the Chair of the Ballymoney branch said: “On behalf of Ballymoney Cancer Research Committee I would like to thank the members of Springwell for the fitting tribute and morning run in memory of Debbie Tutty which has raised £1,000 for Cancer Research, the charity which she held so close to her heart.

“This was gratefully received by Committee Members on Friday, February 4. Debbie was a dedicated worker and fundraiser for Cancer Research.

“Quietly, with modesty and kindness, she carried out her duties, ever willing to help her colleagues. These characteristics were also evident in the many other organisations in which she was involved.

“Her dedication and enthusiasm are an example to us all. Sadly missed and ever remembered by all her friends in Cancer Research UK.”

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