PBs galore at the Belfast Half Marathon 2015

Bogusboy reports from the City

Belfast Half 20152865 athletes participated in the 3rd annual Belfast City Half Marathon. With a new course, taking in much of the scenic culture of the city, PBs were on offer for the eclectic band of Newcastle AC runners as they departed from the now mandatory meeting place – outside King’s Inn, Castlewellan.  The 7:15am agreed leaving time proved unproblematic for the vast majority, but invariably there is always one that lets the side down. Citing ineffective and speculative communication from Niall King as his excuse for still being in bed, Buffer took the opportunity to have 40 winks as the now disgruntled King recalculated the directions and inputted the data into the sat nav! In his debut half, Buffer was expecting a lift from the door – clearly a boy who will have to input some new data as well after King’s explanation that this service would not be available again!! After complicated handshakes and unnecessary hugging, the posse set sail for the ‘big’ smoke’ – Buffer had a slice of toast in one hand and a toothbrush in the other!  Meanwhile Car 2, a much less salubrious vehicle, was winding its way around the backroads to pick up other peripatetic ragamuffins and strays! This car had all none of the aforementioned technology, but had acquired the additional extras of two wise men in the back seat – namely The Prophet and The Galloping Landlord – who needs a sat nav with this pair of buckos proffering words of wisdom incessantly? All arrived on time and joined the throngs moving towards the start in Ormeau Park, filled with high hopes.

It was a quick one!

The race itself turned out to be a speedy affair with Kimosop and Tanui finishing side by side in an exciting sprint in a tad over 64 minutes for the 13.1 mile course.  Paddy Hamilton was an excellent 3rd in 69:09. Brendan Teer of East Down continued his fine form, finishing 4th in 70:35. Paul Carlin was the best of the NAC contingent in an excellent 23rd overall. O’Hare was 92nd, taking 11 minutes of his time in Lisburn and Brown had a very strong in his first long race in a long time.  McCann recorded his fastest half of the year in his 9th and final outing over the distance in 2015.  The Prophet was close in attendance taking 4 minutes of his time on his last outing, attributing his great run to the fact that he had fire in his bones – a remarkable twist of fate!.  Murtagh was 9th lady overall, smashing her PB by four minutes as she dipped under 1:30 for the first time ever.

No offence meant!

Wonderwall has learnt much about pace and he too recorded a big PB. The sanitised version of his comments post-race can be summarised as follows: I started a wee bit slower than normal, retained my focus through the tough middle section and kept my form right to the end thus securing a new personal best.  Obviously there were a number of more choice adjectives separating each of the words, but this is family-orientated report and the scribe has no desire to offend anyone – a fact that a certain Mr Brannigan would eternally attest to! Norman Smyth was steady and easily beat the 1:30 mark, while Chris Kelly proved the benefits that accrue from a lie in with a highly respected debut time of 1:33:13.  Jinxy continued his comeback with a typically determined run and despite the lack of recent training was home in 1:43:23.


Position First name Last name Cat Finish Halfway Chip time
23 Paul Carlin MO 01:17:01 00:38:09 01:16:59
92 Jack O’Hare M40 01:24:23 00:42:38 01:24:18
107 Aidan Brown M35 01:25:36 00:42:29 01:25:32
110 Joe McCann M45 01:25:43 00:42:41 01:25:38
112 Jerome McCrickard M45 01:25:57 00:42:40 01:25:52
124 Sinead Murtagh FO 01:27:37 00:43:29 01:27:32
142 Noel Gallagher M35 01:28:09 00:44:20 01:28:03
165 Norman Smyth M45 01:29:13 00:43:20 01:29:08
275 Chris Kelly M40 01:33:28 00:47:52 01:33:13
571 Jerome Farrell M40 01:41:57 00:49:54 01:41:23

He’s sure to break three in Dublin!

While others were in Belfast, Brendan Donnelly competed in the Reigate Half Marathon in Surrey on Sunday morning. Our roving reporter was there to see how he got on; evidence of the high levels of support and motivational encouragement on offer to all roadies in the club. On a very flat course on a dead calm day, the erstwhile resident of Newcastle completed the race in 24th place (there were 2141 competitors).  Brendan was extremely proud of the fact that he ran a negative split and is now looking forward to Dublin – let’s hope he understands that a negative split means running the second half faster, a fact that was perhaps lost on him in London (no Brendy we have not forgotten)! With 6 weeks to go to Dublin, it is clear that this athlete has a great opportunity to dip under the magical and often elusive 3 hour mark. Training continues for the marathon group with the Armagh 10 the final road race for many before the marathon on 26 October