20 March, 2010Report courtesy of Keith Heary...
I made my return to mountain running last sunday after a break of almost 7 months, my break was due to other commitments which included the birth of the new baby and the duathlon season which commenced in january. It was great to be back racing with IMRA again. Im a member of Athletics Ireland, Triathlon Ireland and Cycling Ireland but the friendliness and relaxed athmosphere that exists within the IMRA set up is fantastic and above all others. After the race you can talk to complete strangers as if you have known them all your life. Its great to be a part of and has me eager to race again soon. Anyway to the race. On arriving i had a certain amount of nervousness as i hadnt done alot of the technical running required for mountain running over the winter, i had plenty of miles in the legs but they where all chalked up on the road, the lack of descent and ascent training was to effect me later in the race. The course was fantastic and had you guessing as to what was to come next. I had a great battle with Eoin Brady and Ritchie Mcauley from the very start of the race as we broke away. I felt strong on the trail but when it came to the uphill i was lacking that extra bit needed and found myself having to work hard on the trail sections to bring myself back into contention. Ritchie and Eoin where flying on the ascents and made it look effortless. Around haly way we put a bit of a gap into Ritchie and Eoin in turn put a small gap into me. I sat back and decided to wait till the last trail section where i reckoned i could use my extra weight to glide past Eoin, i of course forgot the last rocky downhill section before we returned to the fire road, here Eoin was amazing and as i planned my route through the rocks, Eoin just glided over the top of them and quickly went out of my vision. I realised now with about 600m to go that i had to settle for 2nd place and could feel the presence of Ritchie behind me. I kept the speed high over the finishing stages and crossed the line in 2nd place. A fantastic race by Eoin Brady, well done. A fantastic race by all and super organisation. i cant wait for the next one, which ive now decided will be the Wicklow Ultra Race