The Evening Echo Ladies Mini Marathon today was once again a resounding success. The glorious sunshine on the day would have done justice to mid-summer and had everyone in the highest of spirits. Well over 4,000 took part in the race, a new record, and well over a thousand more than previous years. From the time the gun went in South Mall it took some fifteen minutes before the last of the entrants passed the Victoria hospital, just a quarter of a mile away. Ann Keenan Buckley again made her way from Portlaois for the race. And there was no hanging around for her as she took the lead immediately after the gun went. Mary Sheehan from Grange Fermoy made a brave effort to keep with her but it was a lost cause with the leader very much in a class of her own. She crossed the line in a time of 26:58, well clear of Mary Sheehan’s 28:36, with Claire Gibbons (left) from Leevale, fast getting back to top form with a good run to take third (28:45). Carmel Parnell from Leevale was fourth (29:13), Colette O’Riordan from West Muskerry fifth (29:46), and Mary Sweeney sixth (30:53). Afterwards Ann Keenan Buckley said her hamstring injury felt reasonably good, but it was the day after the race that would tell the real story. The race itself was an outstanding success. Organised by Cork County Board of Athletics Ireland much of the credit must go to the organising committee who put in long hours to ensure everything went according to plan. And the clubs around Cork county also played a big part, supplying stewards to man all the junctions along the route of the race and record the numbers at the finish. Planning for next year’s race starts in a few weeks with the intention to make the next one bigger and better again.