James Grufferty was first Leevale man home in the Cork Half-Marathon, held yesterday in damp conditions in the Blarney region. James, who has been home now for a couple of years following his Stateside sojourn, is slowly returning to form and continued on his upward path yesterday, breaking the 80-minute mark in finishing 17th in 1:19.53.
Jessica Vonhatten, who has been in spectacular form of late, was only a few minutes behind him, finishing 2nd in the women’s event to Bilboa’s Rosemary Ryan. On this form, Jessica is emerging as serious contender on the Cork athletics scene.
Also in the mix, and running well, were Pádraig Ó Dubhgáin, Denis Metcalfe, and John Hallahan, who finished 44th, 57th, and 162nd respectively, as well as Nollaig Hunter, who finished 7th in the women’s race to help win the team title for Leevale.
Overall, there were an impressive 508 finishers in a record turnout for the annual event, in a race won well by Clonliffe’s Sergiu Turea in 70 minutes.