17 July, 2018 - Tom BlackburnRobbie set this race up a few years ago and at the time I remember wandering where the hill's might be, I am still wandering but no one can deny it is a great run.
We arrived to see Linda and Mairead under a new tent with reg set up and ready for business. The crowd were close behind and soon the car-park was full. The girls identified the route was very short so pushed the start down to the outside barrier in order that the race would be broke up a little before the closed barrier and the single trail. The route was changed last year and is over a km short but it was too late to change the whole course on the night with the maps up and everything in place.
We started out just after 8pm, 80 runners and a mad dash to get to the single trail. I led for a while as I was conscious of getting held up in the narrow paths. As soon as we got back on to fire roads 3 runners passed me Paul Deane, Colm Ryan and Derek Kiely. The pace was lively but it didn't begin to to open up.We worked hard and the pace was quick we were together to the top of the course but when we crossed the river Paul opened up a few yards of a gap on the quad-bike trails and by the second river crossing was 10 yards clear. Colm was second and looking good, I was just a few strides behind Derek but when we got back across the river to the fire roads and no one seemed to be making a move I decided to push on before the Bridge. I passed Derek and tried to narrow the gap to Colm,Trish was stewarding here and as I reached the bridge Paul was just leaving it, Colm was on it and we were heading for a few hard climbs. We worked hard going up the few pulls and Colm was holding the gap but there is a sharp descent half way up and I felt he was getting tierd,the gap narrowed so I went for it Colm had given everything and probably didn't know how close to the finish we were. I squeezed by and just got in ahead of him Paul had secured the win.
It was very fast from start to finish, I think a lot of people got caught by how short it was.
Kealey Tideswell had a great win after the great win she had in the Cahir Half Marathon last Saturday. Debbie Mc Carthy was second Lady and Gwen Conroy was third Lady on the night.
Thanks to Mairead, Linda and All the Volunteers for a well organised event and for the tea and goodies after and the fact that it rained on the night there was fore taught in putting up that tent.