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Rockford 4-miler is running late ... with its first start in evening Robinson misses milestone by a whisker Leinster Athletics legend Fitzgerald dies

ONE of the original and best road races is the Rockford Rooftile 4 mile in Tinryland just outside Carlow town. For this year's 31st "Rockford" the organisers have moved to an evening start on Saturday next, August 28 (5.30), with runners and their families invited to make an evening of it.

Good news is that with races in rural locations near Dublin attracting record numbers, entries have been pouring in. On-line entry at just €10 closes tonight, with entry on the day costing just €15. Everyone who runs has a chance of winning a range of top-class spot prizes including a €1,000 holiday voucher. Also scheduled is the popular "Mini Rockford" for children. This mile fun run starts at 5pm -- just before the big race. Already around 50 from the local St Joseph's football club have signed up. No one will go home hungry with a wide selection of food, along with race video, presentations, spot prize draw and live music in the local GAA centre from 8pm.

All ages ready to throw caution to wind

Taking place this weekend at Dunboyne is the annual Irish Throwers Club Two-Day event, which attracts an interesting collection of people who like to throw things, ranking from youngsters still at school and college to oldies, including the Irish Throwers Club president, Eddie Mulcahy, who is a fit and healthy 77 years young.

Pride of place on Saturday goes to the weights pentathlon, with competitors throwing the shot, hammer, discus, javelin and heavy hammer. Also on offer are more exotic throws such as the grenade, Goulding hammer, Greek discus and one-handed hammer. On Sunday, the LSW/WTA World 56lbs Championships take place.

Fancy throwing? See www.irishthrowersclub.com.

Robinson misses milestone by a whisker

Paul Robinson of St Coca's came agonisingly close to breaking the four-minute barrier at a mile race in Finland. Robinson finished fifth in 4:00.93 -- a new Irish junior record.

At the England Athletics U15 & U17 championships in Bedford, Alice Akers of Marian and Finn Valley's Fellan McGuigan made history in an under-15 Irish double in the hammer. At under-17 level, there were wins for Lagan Valley pair Patrick Monaghan and Katie Kirk over 800m and for Grainne Moynihan of West Muskerry in the 300m.

Leinster Athletics legend Fitzgerald dies

Among the spectators at the recent masters' championships in Tullamore was Pat Fitzgerald, secretary of Leinster Athletics for 17 years and one of the unsung heroes of Irish athletics.

A day later came the sad news that Paddy, one of life's true gentlemen, had died suddenly -- just a month after his wife Mary.

May they both rest in peace.