For the second weekend in a row, Moy Valley AC athletes occupied places on the podium at the National Community Games finals in Athlone. They had prepared very well over the summer months and that was evident in all performances.
One of the more high profile races at the National Finals is the 7K “marathon” event for under 17 girls and boys. It is usually a chance for Ireland’s best middle distance runners in that age group to showcase their talents. Taking that into consideration, there was delight in Moy Valley AC when one of our most talented runners, Keelan Kilrehill representing Dromore West and Sligo, won the race and lead his Sligo team to bronze medals in the team event.Almost a year to the day after suffering a career threating injury as he prepared to attend the Community Games 7k in 2015, Keelan returned to compete in the event and put the disappointment of missing out last year to take Gold in emphatic fashion.
In the same race, the much improved Conor McLoughlin won his first All-Ireland medal as a member of the Mayo team which came second in the team event and Conor ran very strongly to finish in 13th place. Conor’s development in athletics has been remarkable and built on hard work and a determination to do his best. Not to be outdone, Bridget Mills secured a bronze with the Mayo team in the girls event making all her preparation work count on the big day.
Another high profile event is the 1500m whereby the best ‘metric milers’ of the next generation showcase their talents. Cormac McDermott won his first individual medal at national level by taking Bronze with an impressive run. Cormac is usually an 800m runner but had to step up in distance on this occasion. This seems to have suited his strong economical running style and Cormac continues to improve and more podium places will certainly come.
Emily Duffy the youngest member of the club competing took home a bronze medal for herself putting with a great performance in the girls under 8, 80m. Emily is a great competitor and a very strong sprinter and looks to have a great future in athletics.
Good performances were also put in by Ashling Gaughan, Michael Caden, Avadh Gaughan, Richie Shelley and Billy Ruane. Well done all. Thanks to all coaches for preparing athletes so well and to the parents who as always gave up their time to travel.