Instead of watching Ireland’s victory over Australia 8,500 runners, joggers, walkers, a group of matadors, a lot of Dublin jerseys and one man in a green mankini took to the Phoenix Park this morning for the 2011 National Lottery Dublin Half Marathon.
Meath club runner Mark Hoey (Star of the Sea AC) took the honours with his time of 1:08:50. 24 year old Hoey said he hoped to finish in the top three but did not expect to win it.
“I did much better than I thought to be honest, I’m delighted. There were some great guys out there. Seamus Power was ahead of us for the most part of the race until he got a really bad stitch and dropped back. He caught up to us later on but I think it had taken its toll, still, he’s a strong runner to be up against”.
Clare runner Seamus Power looked comfortably in the lead up to mile 7 when a stitch forced him to reduce his pace and pull back from the front of the race. The Kilmurray Ibrickane runner came in sixth place over all with a time of 1:10:44.
The rain held off for the duration of the race but a strong wind kept runners on their toes through the 13.1 mile course. Nevertheless, it didn’t seem to affect the pace, especially that of the first woman home, Siobhan O’Doherty, who claimed a new personal best with her finishing time of 1:16:27.
“It was a tough race, very windy at times and it’s a hilly course so I’m thrilled with my time, it’s a PB for me so really happy with that” said O’Doherty “I’m hoping to take on the Marathon next month, if I can remain injury free and get to the start line, I’ll see what happens”.
For a lot of the runners, today was a big test of how their legs would hold up for the big one on the 31st of October. The record number of participants is a strong indication that the numbers for the 32nd edition of the National Lottery Dublin Marathon will follow suit and exceed the 13,000 plus who took part last year.
Entry remains open for the National Lottery Dublin Marathon until Monday 3rd October, see www.dublinmarathon.ie for details.
National Lottery Dublin Half Marathon:
Top Three Men
Mark Hoey, Star of the Sea AC, 1:08:50
Martin Conway, Sligo AC 1:09:29,
Patrick Cassidy, Glaslough Harriers, 1:09:36
Top Three Women
Siobhan O’Doherty Borrisokane, 1:16:27
Annette Kealy Raheny Shamrocks 1:19:15
Lorraine Manning, Raheny Shamrocks, 1:19:56