Gibbons 3rd in National Novice


The cross country season has ended for another year, with the National Novice and uneven underage championships held in Dunleer, County Louth. Joe O’Flynn did a great job organising travel and accommodation for all the Cork athletes involved, and by all accounts he did a great job.  Best placed finished from Leevale was Claire Gibbons in the womens novice race with third place.  At one stage she looked likely to close on the leader, but faded a little in the closing stages, with just one second separating her from the second runner.  The winner was Carmel Crowley McCarthy from Bandon, who was having just her third race in twelve years.  She used to compete with the likes of Sonia O’Sullivan as a teenager, but ‘retired’ at the age of 18.  Injury and illness made a real mess of the Leevale underage teams.  In the under 17’s Sean Casey was 24th, with Alan Foolkes, just back from a serious chest infection, 35th.  Sean spent the summer sprinting with John Sheehan’s group, so that’s his excuse!!  He did win a silver medal with the Munster team.  Mark Hanrahan was best of the under 15’s in 32nd place.