Paddy’s Day Celebrations

Leevale athletes were again in fine form on St. Patrick’s Day, taking to the roads in strength.  The inaugural Paddy Desmond Memorial 5k road race was held in Ballinhassig, while the Market Tavern 60m Dash was held in conjunction with the annual Parade in Cork city.
The course in Ballinhassig was a tough one, very tough.  It comprised one and a half laps that meant the runners had to take in the sharp uphill section twice, the second time led to the finish on top of the hill.  After waiting a while at the start for a couple of steam engines to pass the race started with Leevale’s John Shine and Ciaran O’Lionaird well placed in the leading group, and Bernard Twomey also in close attendance.
By the end of the complete lap Ciaran had control of the race, clear of John and Con Marshall of St. Finbarr’s who were running together, and they in turn were clear of the next runner. Ciaran continued his strong running uphill to the finish, winning in a time of 15:40, while John surged uphill to take second in 16:08, and Bernard finished well to take eight spot in 17:18.
Taking place at the same time was the annual Market Tavern 60m dash, taking place in Patrick’s Street for the first time.  Well, it was supposed to be the same time, but the organisers got it all wrong and it started over an hour late, leaving the sprinters hanging around.
First into action were the women and here Jessika Zebo ran a strong race to win in a time of 7.8, from Orla Coughlan in 7.9 and Donna Hosford third in 8.0.  The men’s race saw another clean sweep for Leevale with Darren O’Donovan getting the better of pre race favourite Jer O’Donoghue, and Greg O’Leary third.  All three were given the same time of 7.0 seconds.
The previous weekend Greg was second in the Irish junior indoor 200m with a time of 23.23, and Derek Duff was a clear winner of the 60m in 7.16 seconds, finishing fourth in the 200m.
Orla Coughlan won the 200m B final in 27.68.
And Carmel Parnell added the Munster vets road championship which was held in Waterford today.  John O’Leary won the over 65 section.