Santa here, Santa there, Santa is everywhere!
On Sunday huge crowds flocked to Crossgar for the maiden event run by the fast growing Crossgar Harriers AC. The organisers can be extremely proud of their initial foray into the world of running events management as they coped admirably with the huge crowds deciding to enjoy some early festive cheer. The costumes were brilliant and the atmosphere something to behold as the walk, 5k and 10k got underway. The course itself was outstanding with the grounds of the monastery a very suitable environment for the race. There were little twists and turns and a lovely mixture of road and trails to keep all the Santa Clauses, elves, reindeers and other yuletide manifestations happy. The locals came out in force to support the club and made plenty of noise in cheering everyone home. Even better was the hot soup, crusty bread and freshly cut sandwiches on offer in the Villager afterwards. Despite the small NAC turnout, they left with arms full. Patrick Higgins and Mari Troeng left with matching his and hers festive hampers, the reward for finishing first male and first female in the 10k – Patrick got the white grape juice while Mari’s was red, thus keeping both happy as they headed off to round up the cattle. It was like a scene for the Good Life as they ruminated and cogitated how they could best make the produce last well into the New Year. Methinks there will be a bit of freezing, pickling, cold smoking and vacuum packing during Strictly! On a more serious note this was a great event and one which is sure to grow when the word gets out.
European Bronze Medal for Kerry
Kerry O’Flaherty secured a first European Medal as the Irish team finished third behind GB and France. Kerry was 55th overall, running 28:11 for 8,087m course averaging 5:36 mile. On a clam day with little or no wind and on firm going the course had three 4 metre mounds on each lap, deliberately designed to break the rhythm of the athletes. A great achievement – well done.
Sun, Sets and Sangria
DJ Normski (AKA Norman Smyth) travelled to Lanzarote to compete to complete the marathon and spin some discs at some of the island’s top venues. After running a very credible 3:23 less than 6 weeks after Dublin, he treated the islanders to his Saturday Night Fever Megamix and the dance version of ‘hit the diff’. The spinning lasted well into the night, long past the witching hour when the glow sticks ran out of puff. Everyone was impressed by the ‘Bronze Adonis’ performance in both.
The Cracker is coming!
With all places now sold out the Castlewellan Christmas Cracker promises to be bigger and better than ever. Castlewellan will be awash with colour on 28 December as 450 pairs of finely tuned athletes, many festooned in season attire take to the streets. Full preview next week including ‘The Prophet’s Form Guide’ (#cementbeg) and maybe even a few ‘oul sayings’!!!