if you happen to be driving in north Leinster next week, you may spot a lonely figure running along the roads. Ultra runner Tom McGrath is a man with a distinguished record. His most notable achievement was running 3,046 miles across the USA on his honeymoon in 1977, with his wife driving a campervan. In 1983, he ran 650 miles around Ireland in seven days.
In recent years, he has run around Ulster and Connacht for charity and now it's Leinster's turn. Tom is inviting local runners to come and join him next week. He starts in Dublin next Monday heading for Navan, then Dundalk, Carrickmacross, Kells, Mullingar and Enfield, arriving back in Dublin on May 25. All funds raised go to Crumlin Children's Hospital; details www.cmrf.org/fundraiser/show?id=2763.
BRITTON TO STAR AT MCDAID LAUNCH
Another former great of Irish athletics will be honoured on Saturday when the Danny McDaid Athletics Track is officially opened in Letterkenny.
Highlights of McDaid's career include the Olympics of 1972 and 1976 and his 11th place at the 1979 World Cross-Country Championships in Limerick on the day John Treacy retained his world title.
Honouring McDaid's achievements in a top-class event will be the cream of Irish athletics including Fionnuala Britton in the 3,000m, Brian Gregan in the 400m, local boy Mark English in the 800m and John Travers in the men's 3,000m. In the feature mile, Darren McBrearty hopes to record the first sub four-minute mile in Donegal, with a strong international field also invited. Maria McCambridge will line out in the first women's one-hour track race in this country.
DOONEY DELIVERS IN LUCAN 5K
Club runners turned out to support the Lucan 5k, with Raheny's Conor Dooney first in 15 mins 28 secs and DSD's Sarah Mulligan first woman in 17 mins 24 secs. At the Malahide Parkrun, Emmett Dunleavy improved the record to 15 mins 25 secs, while in Marlay Park, Gladys Ganiel O'Neill was sixth and first woman in a women's record of 17 mins 36 secs.
CHRISTIE CLAIMS FIRST FIT CROWN
In the Phoenix Park, Mark Christie of Mullingar Harriers won the Fit Magazine City Series 10k after a long break from running. His time was 30 mins 17 secs. Nine seconds adrift was MSB's John Coghlan with Dan Mulhare of Portlaoise third in 30.34. Raheny's Aoife Talty was sixth overall and first woman in 35 mins 11 secs. A day earlier, also in the Phoenix Park, about 7,000 runners took part in the Pieta House Darkness into Light 5k.
O'HANLON HOME FIRST IN KILDARE
Gary O'Hanlon and Pauline Curley won the Run Kildare Marathon. Meanwhile, Barbara Sanchez of
Raheny finished 11th in the Prague Marathon in 2:42.03. It was her third marathon in as many months – she ran 2:37.14 in Seville and 2:38.41 in Rotterdam.
ENTRY STILL OPEN FOR TERENURE 5
THE big race this weekend is Sunday's Terenure 5-Mile (11am) and entry is still open for runners, walkers and joggers. The race is organised by Sportsworld Running Club and all profits will go to the Jack and Jill Foundation. See www.terenure5mile.com.