Friday, 25 March 2016


Boherbue to Kiskeam 4 Mile

This is one of the great traditional races on the calendar which deserves all the support it gets. There was one hundred and twenty runners took part today and as always Midleton AC had some representatives there.
Our first man home was Brian Harty in 23.57 which is a great time especially considering he is only coming back from injury incidentally the race was won by his brother Michael.
David Moynihan had another fantastic run with 24.41 coming 25th overall then the mighty Neilus Aherne came 26th in 24.52 taking 1st O/60 with Fergal O'Meara having a great run coming 30th with 25.26 narrowly missing out on a category prize.
Another great outing for our club.

Ballybunion Half Marathon

Maire Walsh and Eugene McCarthy did the Ballybunion Half Marathon on Saturday. They knew it would be hilly etc having done it last year but nothing prepared them for the gale force winds blowing them side ways, backwards and sometimes to a standstill. No PBs were possible but despite that Maire was a minute faster than last year with 1.43 and Eugene was only two down with 1.28. They are more than happy with those times especially considering the horrendous conditions they had to endure. We done guys.

Venloop Report from Bernie Twomey

Before I begin this blog I would like to first of all to thank Mike and Marta McNamara plus Marta’s brother and sister in law Wim and Rinie Ebisch who went above the call of duty taking care of us in Venloop.
March 20th arrived fresh but cold so we were well wrapped up before we ventured into the town in our woolly hats and gloves for what had become our local bus, the Nijmegen bus.  The centre, which we had walked around the day before, was full to capacity, the barriers straining to keep back the crowds who had clappers and Vuvuzela to cheer on the runners.  The local D.J. who along with his eclectic mix of music also had at his disposal a clapping machine which succeeded in whipping the crowd into a frenzy every time a top runner came through.  Each elite runner was accompanied by two cyclists at either side of them and they all looked amazingly fresh.  The winning times for the 10k was for the first man 32.39 and first lady in 37.14. 
Our own half marathon started just a little bit after 2pm and unfortunately we were unable to get into the section we registered for due to a long queue for a portaloo. We had lost our guide Mike at this stage so we headed off to the nearest section papered off with balloons in the national colours, beautifully reproduced on our cool running t-shirts.  What struck us first was the amount of people wearing head phones and the height of the runner think, Henry Cavill, to give you an idea of the side of the men.. this would become an issue later for me as trying to pass these people out who (a) couldn't hear you because of the headphones and (b) couldn't see me!!!  through the narrow streets.  All in all 19,500 registered for the various races and circa 8,000 did the half marathon.
The atmosphere was electric, with people dressed in various garbs from clown outfits, ladies in tutu skirts to a German bakery advertising their delicious cakes on their t-shirts.  We were, and we chatted about this later, the only group in singlets and we marvelled at the amount of clothes the runners had on them. 
We spent the first 3k running through the town on cobbled streets, pass shops, churches, and eventually we came on to a main road again lined with people on either side screaming, waving and continuously blowing those Vuvuzelas.   We dived and ducked through housing estates, all festooned with balloons and flags, these people know how to put on a show. I soon lost my compatriots around the 5k mark and the satellite on my watch so I decided to relax and enjoy the atmosphere. On the website it had mentioned that there was 20 nationalities but no one knew we were Irish as unfortunately the designer, for our singlets ended up in hospital and we didn't become aware of his precarious position until he contacted me later on in the week.  It would have been lovely to fly the flag for Ireland as throughout the run I didn't hear one English voice and we were definitely the only group there from the Emerald Isle.
The sights I saw before me would melt the hearts of any cynical individual.  Think of the supporters in Dublin and treble the attention.  Every kilometre we were greeted by a brass band, children singing Dutch songs and techno music which made every step you took enjoyable. They sat outside their homes, with what looked like the kitchen table dragged out on the lawn, with invited friends and neighbours cheering us on, drinking a few local beers.  The route was flat, smooth with not a pothole or a hill insight, only once when we veered on to a local motorway.
Every 5k we were offered water in cups or energy drinks at either side of the road.  We passed town halls, did loops around roundabouts, we went under bridges, snaked through housing estates, passed cheering nuns and we meandered along a canals while the canal boats sailed alongside us.
Aoife lead the charge picking up another PB which is becoming so natural to her now at 1.46  She was followed closely by Annmarie at 1.48 who came away from Holland with a keen interest in raising bulls, but that's for another day.  The man of the moment, Mike McNamara, knocked 2 mins off his time from last year and came in at 1.49.   Next Midleton’s AC roving reporter of the event, moi, much slower than I expected but I was probably enjoying myself too much.  Next Siobhan who did a fab run considering she had an injury.  Our other compatriot, Mammy Margaret, due to injury, decided to become a spectator on the day and enjoyed the sites and Dutch cuisine with Marta.
The winning times for the half marathon were, first woman 70.33 and first man 59.43.
Words are wasted trying to express our enjoyment of this half marathon and I know a good few of you have been lucky enough to witness the Dutch warmth and generous spirit at other runs.
Definitely a half I would recommend just alone for the Dutch support but for your ‘speedies’ out there you may struggle getting your stride if you don’t select your spot carefully.
I cannot finished this blog without mentioning our hotel… the food….was delicious and the breakfast was a delight to behold.  It had everything from Prosecco to 7 different types of brown bread, I kid you not.  They had to actually turn on the hoover the next day to get us to leave!-- 

Bernadette Twomey



Ballintotis Race Launch

It was sunshine and smiles all the way as this year's Ballintotis '4 Mile Road Race was launched recently at a photocall in the picturesque surrounds adjacent to Loughaderra Lake. A number of race sponosrs joined members of the organising committee along with last year's race winner James McCarthy and ladies winner Anne Marie Holland.
This year's race will be held in just four weeks time on Thursday April 21st and once again will be the first major fixture on the hectic schedule of evening races in Cork. A year ago almost 1200 runners crossed the finish line making it one of the biggest events of it's kind in Ireland. Preparations are well advanced again for this year's race, which wil be the seventh occasion that the East Cork A.C event will take place in the picturesque Ballintotis countryside..

Best of luck to everyone running this weekend especially Cork's own Lizzie Lee who is running in the World Half Marathon Championship's in Cardiff. Don't forget its on the television tomorrow at 1.30 pm.

This is an interesting race that many of our members have participated in over the years and where we have always come away with very good prizes. Full details here

Please keep your reports coming in as they are always welcome.