Mark Christie of Mullingar Harriers notched up another impressive road victory on Sunday in the annual Rathfarnham 5k; an event that attracted a record entry of close to 1,300.
Christie, the national 5,000m champion, finished in 14.37 ahead of Brian Maher of Kilkenny City Harriers in 14.40 and Conor Dooney (Raheny Shamrock AC) in 14.53.
Robbie Matthews from Dunshaughlin AC, winner of the Airtricity Dublin Half-Marathon, finished fourth in 14.57, and Tomás Fitzpatrick of Tallaght AC placed fifth in 15.01 with Gerard Gallagher of Finn Valley AC sixth in 15.12.
Ciara Durkan of Skerries AC was a clear winner of the women's race, finishing in 16.34. Annette Kealy of Raheny Shamrock AC placed second in 16.55 and Maria O'Sullivan (Raheny Shamrock AC) was third in 17.34. Ilona McElroy (Crusaders AC) finished fourth in 18.08 and Niamh Donnelly (Celtic DCH) was fifth in 18.21. Paula Grant (Portlaoise AC) finished sixth in 18.26.
This was another encouraging performance by Christie who also won the Grant Thornton Corporate 5k Team Challenge a few weeks ago. The Mullingar man, now coached by Jerry Kiernan, has yet to decide if he will concentrate on the cross-country season with a view to making the Irish men's team for the European Cross-Country Championships.
"Right now, I am not sure which direction I will be taking," Christie said.
"I will probably run in the National Inter-Counties Cross-Country Championships and take it from there. I have my sights set on running a marathon but that will be a little bit further ahead."
There was a strong performance too by Durkan, who is now coached by Enda Fitzpatrick. The Skerries runner will now turn her attention to cross-country and will hope to achieve a place on the Irish women's team for the European Cross-Country Championships.
This was another excellent and well-supported promotion organised by Rathfarnham/WSAF Athletic Club.
"We were very happy to have received a record entry at a time when there are so many road events on the calendar," race director PJ Claffey said.