Carrick on Suir A.C.’s 3 Counties Challenge has firmly established itself in the South East Running Calendar since its inception in 2007, with the series growing from a single race with 100 runners to last year’s successful 4 race series with close on a thousand participants.
One of the keys to their success has been the club’s ability to change and improve the series, and 2013 will continue that trend with a new race (now making the 3 Counties challenge a 5 Race series), a new venue and some new sponsors.
Because of the expansion, the Series will now start on Friday 26th April with the first running of the Faugheen 5Km Road race, kindly sponsored by Bobby Fitzgerald Accountants. This flat course will be held on the famous Faugheen 50 Motor bike circuit in the pretty Tipperary village, and we are sure it will become a runner’s favourite very quickly.
This will be followed closely by the second new addition in the series, the O’Neill Pharmacy Tom Jordan Memorial Portlaw 5 Mile Road race on Friday 8th May. This race has been organised by the Portlaw Red Cross for several years, with the help of Carick A.C., so it was a natural progression to include this fantastic 5 Mile Co. Waterford course in the Series.
Feedback from runners in the last few years has been extremely positive about this course, and we think many of the series participants will be eyeing this race for a P.B.!
The third race in the series will see us return to County Tipperary and the ever popular Carraig Hotel Deadman’s 5 Road race on Friday 7th June at 7:30 p.m. Now in its eight year, this race starts outside the beautiful Ormond Castle in the centre of Carrick on Suir, taking in a scenic 5 Mile run around the Deadman’s Boreen (hence the name!) and finishes on a lovely straight stretch passing the tree lined Town Park.
The penultimate Race in the Series sees us visit County Waterford again, and the picturesque village of Rathgormack for the Auto Power Rathgormack 5 on July 14th. This Challenging, undulating course is an ever popular addition to the series, thanks mainly to the beautiful scenery of the Comeragh Mountains and the superb home cooking in the Hiking Centre after the Race.
Finally, the Series will end in County Kilkenny with the Morris Oil Piltown 10Km Road race on Friday 2nd August. Another scenic trek, the race starts in the grounds of the Kildalton Agricultural College, winding its way down by the Lake and tree lined avenue before a circuit of the flat roads around Piltown. Another firm favourite in the series, 2013 will be the sixth running of this race.
The club is delighted to welcome back local specialist running store Outfield Sports of Carrick on Suir as the series sponsor for the seventh year (now promoting its new website,hence the outfieldsports.ie 3 Counties Challenge), and is delighted that International Sports Brand Adidas are also involved as title sponsors.
We are very grateful to our sponsors for their continued support and it is great to see the same names supporting our series year after year. As usual, the message from the club is for all of the series runners to return the support to these businesses who have been good enough to help us, despite the harsh economic climate.
The prize fund for the series will be in excess of €10,000, with €200 First prize for the Men’s and Women’s Races and Prizes in all the usual age categories. There will also be a Team Prize at each race as well as spot prizes all the way down the field. There will also be a race souvenir for anyone running 4 out of 5 Races, as well as a €25 Voucher for Adidas Running Footwear at Outfield Sports.
Pre Entry can be done at www.runireland.com , and up to date information will be available on the club website at www.carrickroadrunners.ie and on our club Facebook page.
Despite all the changes this year there are a few things will remain the same:- A race series that is ideal for new runners to progress from 5km to 10 km through the summer, well stewarded, accurately measured courses, good grub after the race and the famous Carrick AC welcome to all our runners. Looking forward to meeting all our friends (new & old) this summer in the sunny South East!
The club’s Fit-4-Life groups continue to meet every Tuesday evening and all are welcome to come along any Tuesday at 7pm for a fun training run. The groups will meet in the village of Faugheen for the next three weeks, April 9th, 16th and 23rd . This will give all runners an opportunity to sample the race route for the Faugheen 5k Road Race , which will be held on Friday, 26th April at 7:30pm.