KBC Dublin Marathon: Emotions run high as inspirational Team Carrie runs its course
While Dublin Marathon celebrated its 40th birthday it was also a special 10th year for 'Team Carrie', the running club that has helped over 1,000 locals achieve their marathon ambition.
Former Irish international David Carrie set it up after acting as a pacer in Dublin, creating a 22-week multi-level training programme to make sure everyone gets to finish.
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Their team motto is 'Carrying Us Across The Line' and another 140 runners from Team Carrie raced yesterday and were particularly emotional because Carrie has declared his inspirational community project has come to an end.
Among those embodying the great Team Carrie spirit were Claire O'Malley and Paddy Meade who both ran personal bests, a common theme yesterday thanks to perfect running conditions.
"Claire absolutely smashed it, she took 20 minutes-plus off her PB," Meade said. "I was at death's door only for her getting me through the last few miles."
O'Malley was particularly thrilled with her sub-3:17 best, explaining "my PB before having my two babies was 3:35!"
Like all their team-mates they had particularly high praise for their inspirational leader, a postman by day but running guru to so many.
"Team Carrie means you always have someone different to train with every week and everyone supports each other, even out along the course today. You just couldn't get better and I don't know how we'll manage with it," O'Malley said.
Other team members described Carrie as "a brilliant mentor who's always very natural and honest with us," and all stressed his great sense of humour.
There was special mention too for his wife Aileen, reportedly called 'The Sheriff' because "she rounds up the rowdies among us."
Team Carrie will certainly be missed after leading so many people to healthier, happier lives and raising over €250,000 for charities. What a legacy.