All roads lead to Munster this weekend, where the Aviva Irish Schools Cross-Country on Saturday is followed by Sunday's 37th Ballycotton '10'.
Defending their Ballycotton titles are Clonliffe's Sergiu Ciobanu and Maria McCambridge of DSD. Coincidentally, both finished third in last Sunday's National Cross-Country.
Ciobanu has won the race for the past three years, while McCambridge, winner in 2011 and 2012, has the two fastest women's times for the course. Also entered is newly crowned national cross-country champion Mick Clohisey, who will be supported by a large squad from Raheny Shamrock, and Galway's Gary Thornton, second behind Clohisey in Dundalk.
WHITE IMPRESSES AT DUNBOYNE
Irish international hammer thrower Pádraig White opened his season with a mighty 57.62m effort at Dunboyne's annual Winter Throws Meet, which launched the club's new Olympic standard hammer cage. In the discus, Eoin Sheridan of North Westmeath won the junior contest with a 54.10m throw, well over the European Youth Standard of 51.25m.
IRISH TEAM TO KICK-OFF IN POLAND
All five members of the Irish team at the World Indoor Track and Field Championships in Sopot, Poland are in action on Friday, the opening day of competition. First up is David McCarthy in the 1500m heats, followed rapidly by Mark English in the men's 800m heats and then Ciara Everard and Rose-Anne Galligan in the women's 800m heats. In the evening session, Claire Tarplee goes in the women's 1500m preliminaries, while David McCarthy closes out a long day in the men's 3000m.
WOMEN'S LEAGUE IS EXPANDED
An expanded Women's Meet and Train Summer League will see four races taking place this summer – one more than in the past.
Griffeen Park in Lucan is the venue for the first race over two miles on Sunday, April 13 (11am). Other dates are Wednesday, May 7 (Irishtown, 3 miles), Wednesday, May 21 (Phoenix Park, 4 miles) and Wednesday, June 18 (Cherryfield Park, 5km). New groups and individuals – especially those training for the Flora Women's Mini Marathon – are always welcome. Entry fee is €20 for the four-race series or €7 per race.
POLLOCK FINISHES THIRD IN BATH
Paul Pollock of Annadale finished third in the Bath Half Marathon in a personal best 63 mins 52 secs – comfortably inside the World Half Marathon qualifying mark of 65 minutes.
At the Reading Half Marathon, Thomas Fitzpatrick of Tallaght finished 10th in 66 mins 36 secs.
ALBERTVILLE SUCCESS FOR BRITTON
Fionnuala Britton finished fifth overall and first woman at the Albertville Five-Mile in Belfast. Her time was 26 mins 43 secs. Raheny's Fiona Stack was first woman at the Bundoran 10-Mile in 59 mins 34 secs, with Breege Connolly of North Belfast Harriers second and Rathfarnham's Caitriona Jennings third. This was a first road race in some time for Jennings, who has turned her attention to rowing in the past year.
REIDY IS FIRST IN AIRPORT QUEUE
John Reidy won the men's race comfortably at the Dublin Airport BHAA Cross-Country at the Alsaa.
Sonya McConnon won the women's race, beating Paula Grant in a sprint for the line.