On Thursday 17th June post-lockdown club races returned to Ballydrain Harriers as runners donned their blue vests and took to the Comber Greenway to compete for the coveted Ballydrain Cup. This is an open handicap 5K race with runners starting according to their adjusted time based on previous recorded 5K performance. The winner is the first runner over the finish line. This race is all about celebrating the most improved runner and this year Intermediate athlete Paula Gray was our well-deserved winner taking the cup after running the route in a strong 00.21.31. Intermediate athletes Emer James (00.24.00) and David Boyd (00.21.10) took second and third place while fastest male was Matthew Carville (00.16.01) and fastest female was Denise Logue (00.19.23). Fastest group winners were: Fitness Group: Philip Leeper (00.28.26); Progressives Group: Jen Brown (00.23.42); A Group: Luke Wallace: (00.17.32). Congratulations to all our Ballydrain Harriers!

Next up on Saturday 19th June two Harriers took on the Atlas Running “Loop the Lough” race. This is a 53 mile ultra marathon following the shore road from Strangford to Downpatrick, taking in Killyleagh, Ringhaddy, Comber and Ards before following the shore to the finish in Portaferry. Out of the forty-six runners who finished this demanding course James Graham was first to finish in 07.07.33. Daniel Burns was first Harrier home in 09.28.45 closely followed by Donna Cleary who finished in 09.55.31.

On Sunday 20th June the big 10Kof the road racing season was back as East Down’s Athletic Club’s Jimmy’s 10K returned with a new route. Previously held in central Downpatrick, this year twelve Harriers ran the Bishopscourt Racing Circuit to allow for staggered starts and social distancing. The winner this year was Gavin Corey from Strive Racing Club who completed the race in 00.31.56. First Harrier home was Drew Fowler (00.34.29) closely followed by Matthew Carville (00.34.40). First female Harrier home was Heather Stanex  (00.52.25).

Photo captions:

  1. Paula Gray receiving the Ballydrain Cup from Club Chairman Phil Gilmore
  2. Donna Cleary at Loop the Lough
  3. Matthew Carville and Drew Fowler at Jimmy’s 10K

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