AAI Juvenile Indoor Championships


Leevale athletes travelled to Nenagh over the weekend to compete in the first two days of AAI Juvenile Indoor Championships. The level of competition was high and medals were hard come by.           
The under 17 60m hurdles was a thrilling affair with Leevale clubmates Patrick Maher and Edmond O’Halloran involved in one of the closest finishes of the weekend.  There was the added problem for finish judges with both athletes drawn six lanes apart.  When that happens the judges usually favour the athlete drawn in the furthest lane when there is a close finish.  The electronic photo finish equipment earns its keep in these circumstances.  On this occasion Edmond was drawn nearest the judges.  Patrick was also a close sixth in the 60m
Both athletes got off to a great start and they both cleared each of the six hurdles practically together.  They both rose together to the last but Edmond landed just a fraction ahead and that was good enough for him to win the title.  His time of 8.56 saw him just one hundredth of a second ahead of Patrick.
Incidentally, Patrick was the recipient of the Waterford Crystal award for Cork at the recent national juvenile awards dinner in Bray.  This was in recognition of a fantastic year in 2007 when he excelled in both hurdles and combined events competitions.
Eric Stam dominated the boys U15 Hugh Jump winning comfortably with 1.70m, smashing his previous best by a whopping 8cm. Robert O’Halloran’s athletic career is beginning to blossom and he finished second in the Boys U14 High Jump.  Daire Walsh was a good second in the U15 60m hurdles. Darren Lee was a good second in the under 13 60m, and finished just out of the medals in fourth in the 60m hurdles.
Christopher Murnane found one too good for him in the under 18 400m.  After a good win in the heats he had to settle for second in the final behind Dara Kervick from Carrick on Suir.  He also had a good outing in the 60m hurdles where he finished third behind Fergus Hannon from Tullamore.
David Quilligan, better known for his efforts in the long jump, showed good speed in the under 19 60m, winning the bronze medal with a time of 7.24.
Clubmate Alanna Quinn was another to win bronze when she finished third in the under 19 400m, while Kate Humphreys ran on strongly to be third in the U17 60m hurdles in 9.69.
Rebecca Corbett was another just outside the medals when she finished fourth in the U16 60m, while Jennifer Murphy was sixth in the U16 long jump.
We look forward to next Saturdays competition when the 200m athletes will be out in force. David Quilligan is one to watch in the Boys U19 long jump.