28 November, 2009
Lenihan Skates Home In Doon!
Former World Champion and defending Munster Champion John Lenihan of Riocht, put in a power performance in Doon on Sunday in the second leg of the Munster Mountain Running Championships despite having farm-yard woes back home on the morning of the race, which almost led to his missing the start.
He did not have it easy in Doon either, as the largest entry for the event to date was well peppered with strong opponents. He was part of a three man break-away group from the start that included Tulla’s James Mc Intyre and Tom Blackburn of Bilboa .It was down to Mc Intyre and Lenihan mid-way on the ascent as Blackburn was dropped. Six seconds separated the pair at the barrier as they turned. Lenihan pulled away on the descent and was joined beiefly by club-mate Donal O Callaghan. O Callaghan was over-taken and passed by Blackburn inside the final KM. Mc Intyre had winning very much on his mind and ran doggedly but failed to catch the maestro even though the margin was tight. Lenihan finished on 41.34 to win the race with Mc Intyre coming in second on a very respectable time of 42.07. Blackburn finished 3rd on a time of 43.59.
It was a Riocht double in Doon when Kate Moyna took the Ladie’s Category from the seasoned mountain runner, Teresa Tuohy of Bilboa. The Kerry runner made her move while descending through the Lonergan farm-yard and ran her own race to the line, finishing on 56.14. Teresa Tuohy finished in 2nd place on 56.24, whilst Loretto Duggan of St Mary’s filled the 3rd slot when she finished on 57.47.
We saw mustard keen competition in the M/40 Category when Kilmurray’s James Kenny led Tuam’s
Tommy Joe Whyte and Coolquill’s Tadhg Vaughan home on respective times of 47.23, 47.53 and 47.56.
Riocht’s Mick Mc Auliffe had a run-away victory in the M/50 Category when he finished on 47.11 ahead of Matt Alexander of Coolquill who came in on 52.35 with Joe Aherne of Bilboa filling the 3rd slot on a time of 53.06. Limerick ACs Joe Laffan was the un-disputed winner of the M/60 Category whilst the
lively John Forde of Cork took the M/70 Category. Junior athletes Sam Hand of West Limerick and Paul
Lenihan of Riocht swapped their Claragh Mountain placings in Doon. Hand Led the Kerryman in on this occasion on a time of 48.35 forcing him tto settle for 2nd place on a time of 51.06. Duhallow’s Rose Twohig was the un-disputed winner of the Junior Ladie’s category. Regine Stewart of St Mary’s led Julie Hilliard of Riocht in the F/50 Category.
Doon was an excellent event which was superbly organized by Paddy Lonergan and his team of helpers. He Also sponsored excellent prizes. A word of thanks also to the Officers and membership of Bilboa Club for their kind sponsorshipand to the local entrepreneur who made his fine facilities available to us as Race Headquarters. A very special word of thanks to Kitty Lonergan , neighbours and friends for the generous after-race hospitality extended to all comers in the Lonergan home. The food was simply delicious and the rhubarb tart was something else. Many thanks again, to Paddy , Kitty, relations, neighbours and friends for a memorable day.