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‘The Lakes’ 5k and 10k races draw huge crowds of runners to Blessington

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80-year-old Ukrainian runner Orest Dubynyak.

80-year-old Ukrainian runner Orest Dubynyak.

80 year-old Ukrainian runner Orest Dubynyak.

80 year-old Ukrainian runner Orest Dubynyak.

Caer Ni Ghibne and Ruarcan O'Gibne after taking part in The Lakes 5K

Caer Ni Ghibne and Ruarcan O'Gibne after taking part in The Lakes 5K

Aileen Melody and Orla Greaves.

Aileen Melody and Orla Greaves.

3rd Jim Scott, 1st Ruarcan O'Gibne and 3re Oisin O'Gibne after taking part in The Lakes 5K

3rd Jim Scott, 1st Ruarcan O'Gibne and 3re Oisin O'Gibne after taking part in The Lakes 5K

The Start of The Lakes 10K

The Start of The Lakes 10K

Daniel O'Riordan, Shane Connelly, Turlough Kinane and Ultan Downs.

Daniel O'Riordan, Shane Connelly, Turlough Kinane and Ultan Downs.

The Start of the Lakes 5K

The Start of the Lakes 5K

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80-year-old Ukrainian runner Orest Dubynyak.

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The Blessington Lakeshore Striders senior running club hosted the 13th annual ‘Lakes 10k’ race last weekend in aid of the Irish Heart Foundation.

More than 180 competitors turned out to run the 10k route around the Blessington Lakes and the newly adopted 5k race, which used the same starting point at the Blessington Educate Together National School, but looped back on itself half way.

Killian Mooney, of the Dundrum South Dublin Athletics Club, won the coveted 10k men’s title, finishing the race just shy of the course record of 0:30:49 with his time of 0:31:57. Gillian Clyne clinched the women’s 10k crown, with her time of 00:40:21.

The Ace Athletic Club in Louth completed a clean sweep in the 5k race, with Ruarcan O Gibne winning the means with a time of of 0:17:34 and Caer Ni Ghibne clinching the ladies’ title with her time of 0:21:17.

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There were medals awarded to all finishers of the scenic route, as well as cash prizes for the top 3 men and top 3 ladies in the 10k race, and for the winners of the 5K race.

A special mention went to hero of the day Orest Dubynyak, an 80 year-old Ukrainian runner who was the only male in the over 60s category to complete the 10k run. Apparently Orest, whose English is not fantastic, missed the 5k turn and ran the 10k instead!

Deirdre Grogan, a member of the Lakeshore Striders and one of the race organisers said: “A great day was had by all, especially at the start of the race. There was a samba band at the beginning, drumming up some atmosphere and getting everyone going. We also had a local personal fitness trainer from HD fitness put the runners through their warm up.”

The Lakeshore Striders senior running club was formed in 2007 and has around 80 active members, with about 200 in total. They train at 7pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays at their track behind Blessington Community College.

“Earlier on in the year we had some members who had heart issues, so we decided the Irish Heart Foundation would be a great cause,” Deirdre said. “Unfortunately, my own mother passed away recently, so I was running it for her. I raised over €2,200 myself.”

Deirdre went on to explain that, due the cost of hosting the event increasing, the club may look at just hosting the 5k race – which doesn't require road closure or extra volunteers. Despite those costs, over the past three years the race has raised over €52,000 for Cystic Fibrosis Association of Ireland.

For more information on the Lakeshore Striders visit their Facebook page or contact lakeshorestriders@gmail.com


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