Irish Life & Permanent Race report 12th
Wednesday, 12 August, saw the start of the BHAA track races with the IL&P 3000 metres. 90 plus competitors turned up on a balmy summer evening to enjoy a thrilling night of racing. The races were handicapped based on athletes current standards with each standard starting 14 seconds apart. Prizes were presented to the first 6 finishers in each race. Some competitors were quietly surprised at how much their standard has improved over the season. The challenge to the higher standards in each race was to catch the other competitors over the 7 & ½ laps.
First race was for standards 3-8, Kevin Mulligan (10.02) and Donal Iremonger (10.04) held their starting positions until close to the end when Paul O’Connell powered home in 8.59 mins, a performance he repeated in 10 mile race in Phoenix Park on Sat to secure 5th position. The second race (standards 9-12) was a tightly fought affair, Derek Furniss’s finishing time of 9.44 earned him 2nd place to Karl Walsh (10.08) with Sean Healy (9.56) finishing closely in 3rd position. Competition was again intense in race 3 (standards 13-15) with only seconds separating the leading 6. Niall McGeorge (11.04) was the victor on this occasion, followed hot on the heels by Brendan Fox(11.10) and Dave Sheehan (11.11). Sheelagh Jones came in strongly in 4th position in a time of 11.42. Standards 16-19 took part in race 4 and this was probably the most hotly contested race of the night with Mark Foley (11.49) winning by the narrowest of margins over John McCooey (11.51) in 2nd place and Keith Hannon (11.56) in 3rd place. The final race of the evening saw Tommy Armstong take the honours for the BHAA runners and Cormac Fitzpatrick led the non–BHAA runners in a fantastic time of 9:20, with Paul Duffy in quick succession in a time of 9.30 and Colin Bolger in 3rd position (9.56).
Susan Walsh as always did a superb job on race commentary. Declan Horgan ensured a prompt start for each standard. Luckily he knew his 14 times tables! There was no shortage of stewards at the finish thanks to the help from IL&P and the BHAA.
With only 3 races left in the individual summer league, leading positions are still all to play for so make sure you get out to the next 3 races. The next race is on August 26th in Irishtown Stadium and will be hosted by Zurich