Athlone AC half marathon winner Mick Fogarty is presented with his trophy by Athlone AC chairperson Martina Connell.

Fogarty and Travers steal the show at Athlone AC races

The inaugural Athlone Athletics Club half marathon and 10km races proved a major success story on Sunday last, September 24.

The half marathon was won by accomplished local runner Mick Fogarty in a time of 1.11.04. The Athlone man, a member of Ferbane AC, is certainly no stranger to winning races across the Midlands and indeed further afield.

Gareth Murran and Clive Glancy (Carrick-on-Shannon AC) were second and third in the half marathon respectively.

The 10km race was won by John Travers in a superb time of 29.50. The Donore Harriers athlete has local connections in that he is a former Athlone IT student.

Two Westmeath runners were next home in the 10k after Travers: Enda Seery (Mullingar Harriers) and Jimmy Whelahan (Coralstown/Kinnegad AC).

The first lady home in the 10km race was Aine O’Reilly, with Athlone AC’s Anne Marie O’Dowd second and Lorraine Gavin in third.

There was plenty of success for host club Athlone AC, with Monika De Almeida the first woman across the line in the half marathon. The dedicated Monika recorded a time of 1.30.37. Monika finished ahead of Mary Stuart (Mullingar Harriers) and Aine Kenny (Crusaders AC).

Athlone AC’s David Watson was a category prize winner in the half marathon and tenth overall, with Kieran Shine finishing just ahead in ninth. Paddy Hamilton of Athlone AC was also a category prize winner in the 10km.

The event was a fitting tribute to the late Brian Garvey, to whom the team trophy was dedicated. With Damien Mitchell also among those to run strongly, the men’s team event was won by Athlone AC, adding to the host club’s sense of cheer.

Both races - which started and finished at the TUS campus running track - were sold out well in advance of the event. The race director was Michael Macken, who is well known locally for his exploits with Athlone Triathlon Club.

There was a huge volunteer effort from Athlone AC members in terms of acting as marshals and helpers, and indeed in providing the welcome refreshments afterwards.

Even the rain that came towards the end of the half marathon couldn’t dampen the enthusiasm of runners and supporters alike. Overall, it was a day to remember for Athlone AC chairperson Martin Connell, the club committee and the entire membership.