The County Intermediate Cross Country Championships took place in summer like conditions last Sunday in Powerstown Racecourse, Clonmel. In the Ladies race Alvy Carragher of Nenagh Olympic won a great race when adding this title to the County Novice title she won recently. Right from the start Alvy made her intentions known and soon opened up a nice lead on her pursuers, a lead she held all the way to the line to win convincingly in 15 mins 50 secs. The battle for Silver and Bronze was a tight affair with Aine Roche (Clonmel), Clare Kelly (Roscrea) and Catherine Kelly (Dundrum) all in with a chance going out on the final lap. Aine moved into the Silver medal position on the hill and along the top straight increased her lead on the chasing duo of Clare and Catherine to win Silver in 16 mins 59 secs. It came down to a sprint finish to decide the Bronze and here Catherine just held off Clare’s late bid to win in 17 misn 19 secs with Clare in 17 mins 21 secs.
Catherine Rice (Clonmel) was 5th in 17 mins 45 secs, 6th Cliona McGrath (Nenagh Olympic) 17 mins 49 secs, 7th Ailbhe Carroll (Templemore) 17 mins 56 secs, 8th Sinead Oakes (Nenagh Olympic) 18 mins 11 secs, 9th Claire Devitt (Dundrum) 18 mins 15 secs and 10th Donna Nagle (Clonmel) 18 mins 39 secs.
In the team event with three in the top eight Nenagh Olympic won their first Ladies Intermediate Club title with Alvy, Cliona and Sinead. Clonmel won the Silver with Aine, Catherine and Donna. The Dundrum team of Catherine, Clare and Mary Keane, 13th (19 mins 19 secs) won the Bronze medal.
The Men’s race attracted a brilliant entry of 50 athletes and right from the start the pace was strong with the leading group consisting of Shane Scully (Nenagh Olympic) the eventual winner, Kevin Moore (Dundrum), Brian Murray (Templemore), Danny Smith (Ballynonty), Ross Alexander (Coolquill), Shane Mullaney (Thurles Crokes and William Maunsell (Clonmel). Going out on the 2nd lap this group were still intact, then on the descent before going out on the final lap the pace increased and Scully, Mullaney, Moore and Murray opened a lead on the chasing pack. Then as they headed up the hill for the final time Scully increased the pace and along the top as the athletes came into view he had opened a lead and despite the fast flying Moore over the final 300m, he held on to win a great race and followed his brother Gary who was successful twelve months ago as Intermediate Champion, in 29 mins 1 sec. Moore won Silver in 29 mins 4 secs with Mullaney 3rd in 29 mins 9 secs. Murray 4th in 29 mins 25 secs, Smith 5th in 29 mins 41 secs, 6th Kevin Maunsell (Clonmel) 30 mins 1 sec, 7th William Maunsell, Clonmel 30 mins 16 secs, 8th Martin Keane (Dundrum) 30 mins 20 secs, 9th Ross Alexander (Coolquill) 30 mins 28 secs and 10th James Ryan (Dundrum) 30 mins 47 secs.
In the team event, the defending Champions, Dundrum, with three in the top ten retained the Cup in style for another year on 34 points, achieving four in a row, great consistency. The Silver medals were won by Clonmel on 42 points with Coolquill winning the Bronze medal on 70 points. We had six Clubs competing and such was the competition that the top six finishers were all representing different Clubs.