Weekly Roundup: 2019-04-16

Weekly Roundup: 2019-04-16

Need a TARIS this week visiting Ballymena, Castlewellan, Victoria, Brighton, Craigavon, Holywood Exchange and the parks – over the jump!

In a recent survey, we interviewed literally no one, and came up with the statistic that we only run for the free feed that we are now accustomed after pouring our sweat and tears into a race. It was an extensive week for us, lots happening and lots to do – it was hard to keep the finger on the auld pulse, but we think (read: hope) we got there in the end! Later, we’re going to be talking science (yeah!), but for now, let me find my historian hat and fill in some of the missing gaps. Did you know that Beethoven used to chickens? Eventually he had to get rid of the though, because all they said was “Bach, Bach, Bach…” Hold tight, this one is going to be long:

Ballymena Bells 5 Miles
Gentlemen – avert your eyes, as this one is for the ladies only! If you know of the Galgorm – well the Galgorm Industrial Estate was the starting location of this scenic five-mile route. Starting in Ballymena town before rolling out into the Ballymena countryside and looping back in to Gracehill. With the clock changes a cracking Tuesday evening for this unique event brought out twoDubs:

65Danielle McCluskey00:42:42New PB!
98Maureen Oliver00:45:12---

Brilliant running from our super Dub duo!  A special nod to Dannielle – who set yet another personal best to add to the list for 2019! Way to knock it out of the park! I think that we can forgive you both for skipping our training for this event – but we’ll only forgive it just this once!! Post-work, mid-week – a well deserved rest is what most of us would be looking for after an event like that. Facebook is great for finding photos from those events that we can’t get spies out to:

  • Belle: Danielle takes a PB spin to Ballymena!

Hill & Dales, Race 1: Castlewellan
Castlewellan is a-maze-ing, and the twisty forest trail certainly felt like it. With a hefty 300m of climbing, the short and yet somehow really painful course finished up a steep embankment to the castle – because you’ve always thought when finishing a race ‘You know what’s missing here – a big hill’! For a change from last week there was a fully marked out route to follow, so let’s see who didn’t get lost:

24Steve Todd00:35:52M45 Winner!
37Niall McCrory00:37:35---
69Bernadette O'Kane00:39:41---
108Sean O'Hagan00:42:16---
130Paul McFlynn00:43:10---

This series just gets more and more popular each year – which makes getting a rhythm that little bit harder with over 300 taking part on a cracking Thursday evening. A few newbies joining the Dub Goats of Bernie, Niall and Steven this time around, namely Paul Mc and Sean. For someone who was taking it easy on the night (or so he claims) not only was Steven first home but he also bagged the M45 category win too! I’ve been instructed to tell you all that this is probably the most do-able of the Hill and Dales races, in case anyone is planning ahead to 2020 already (you’d have some vision if you cab do that). As always, we have some group photos, though it is not clear if these are before or after shots:

  • Castlewelldone: Niall, Paul, Steven, Sean & Bernie became our Dub Goats for the evening!

Flashmob parkrun: Victoria
I’ve lost count, this is month four – so it must be the fifth flashmob of 2019, right?! Well, either way the sun was shinning on George Best Belfast City Airport, so that meant that that it was also shinning on Victoria Park. Best not to be fooled though – there was a strong headwind around the sides of the park – which added to the challenge of the course for where we all gathered for Nessa’s 250th parkrun milestone. Oh boy, we did gather, one might even call it an Errigle of Dubs:

5Jim Larkin00:18:20Massive New 5k PB!
14Peter Morrison00:19:43
22Ryan Love00:20:16New PB!
25Rob Walker00:20:40New PB!
26Collette McCourt00:20:46
32Brian Derby00:21:06
38James Sheridan00:21:25
45Sarah Maybin00:21:45
46Marie Sweet00:21:51
50Ronan McCaughey00:22:09New PB!
60Ronan O'Flaherty00:22:39
73Nessa Agnew00:23:09
74Roisin Byrne00:23:10
83Maire McCaughey00:23:23New PB!
115Michael Kirk-Smith00:24:52
119Peter Donnelly00:25:06
149Anne Marie Ryan00:26:39New PB!
171Danielle McCluskey00:27:55
220Jane Patterson00:30:38

What a club morning – 19 Dubs, plenty of support and lots of Nessa’s running friends were in attendance at the popular Belfast event! We had a magnificent new all-time 5k PB set by on-form Jimbo.  Meanwhile Ryan, Rob, Ronan Mc, Marie Mc and Anne Marie all bagged precious new course personal bests. It is amazing what friendly running alongside fellow blue tops can do to your times! The day, of course, belonged to third and newest member of the green t-shirted 250 club – Nessa:

  • 250 Not Out: Nessa and the Dubs jumping for joy!

Useless Stat Klaxon
We’re not just going to leave it there though, oh no! When we have one of the recognised parkrun milestone runs we roll out some totally useless yet somehow intriguing statistics about that runner. With Nessa ticking over to 250 this weekend past, let’s relieve some of the magic:

parkrun StatDetails
parkrun Birthday19th November 2011 (elfast Victoria)
250th EventBelfast Victoria (13th March 2019)
Fastest Event00:21:36 (Belfast Victoria, 23rd July 2016)
# Different Events19
PB Streak at Malahide3 in three attemps
Groundhog DayBelfast Victoria 00:22:55 (12th & 19th May 2012)

Craigavon Lakes ¾ Marathon
Craigavon hosts a beautiful parkrun every Saturday, which on a spring day is perfect.  It might well be spring, but clearly everyone in Lurgan collectively left their fridge doors open, with the result that it was very, very COLD.  Six loops plus change of the lakes – for a race set up to suit the all too soon marathons coming up.  So which Dubs wouldn’t be long getting frost bit:

10Steve Todd02:13:24---
17Philip Clarke02:14:47---
43Colette McCourt02:22:38---
54Jim Larkin02:27:56---
57Andrew McDermot02:28:35---
61Brian Derby02:30:49---
171Liam Lavery02:59:18---
204Geraldine Coyle03:07:40---

Someone smart (namely me) asked if this was a training run or a race – never quite got the answer to that one!  Medals, free food and chipped time – sounds like a race to me!  For sure, this was one of the cooler ways to rack up the mileage ahead of the various marathons coming.  With Collette finishing in second place, all round there were some cracking times posted– some solid training and some firm groundwork has been laid.  Some photographic evidence is also required:

  • Freezin' Lakes: Andy after six laps.

MS Subway Half Marathon & 10k
Cast your mind back a few years ago – because this event jumped in the DeLorean and made its way back on the calendar for 2019! The MS Society was the charity of choice on this pancake flat route around the Holywood Exchange roads. Anyone who’s been near there knows that on a still day, there’s a fierce crosswind – so imagine what it was like on Sunday?! There was a choice of half marathon or 10k races available for entrants:

Half Marathon Race
69Brian Jack01:42:31---
10k Race
25Roisin Byrne00:45:05Third Place!

Some consistent Dub running right there – that is one tough route to keep going on, a double lap for the half marathon – you really need to stay focused, as Brian can fully atest to after that race of attrition!  With Roisin posting an impressive time in the 10k race it made for a successful Dub day out!  No photos though, which is always sad!

Brighton Marathon
The destination this time was southern England for this marathon. With this 26.2-mile course starting inline for a quick five-mile loop, before sprawling along the coast line for the remaining 21 miles or so – out and back again. That headwind wasn’t restricted to Northern Ireland – it made an already undulating course just that little bit tougher. Just one Dub Runner crossed the finish line on this one:

2,136Katherine Harkness03:49:35---

Fantastic running Katherine – only one blue top taking part! While conditions were good, it was impressive to hit a sub 3:50 marathon on a day like that! If the smile in the photo doesn’t give it away – you loved this one, and it showed. Now time to go sightseeing and enjoy some time away from reality while gloating that you’ve just completed a marathon!

  • Right-on: Katherine all smiles after a sub 3:50 marathon!

Usually, around now, we write something tongue-in-cheek about how there was a certain flashmob event on this weekend that nearly everyone else was at – but that’s getting boring a predictable at this stage, so regardless of where you were this week the sun was out and that is the only excuse us runners need to get out for a run (okay, we’ll prioritise cake on that list too to keep me happy). So, despite there not being a guaranteed lure of cake at the finish line, we ad some Dubs running at various other events this weekend:

Edward CALDWELL00:24:39
Liam LAVERY00:25:38
Steven TODD00:26:49
Mark HAMILL00:27:27
Joanne MCGLONE00:29:05New PB!
Bernadette O'KANE00:22:432nd Place!
Noel KELLY00:19:313rd Place! Newbie PB!
Marcella CASSIDY00:23:42
Colin Glen
Niall MCCRORY00:19:281st Place! New PB!
Aaron NAGAR00:25:22
Deerpark (Ireland)
Brona SHAW00:29:45Newbie PB!

That was a tough one – no matter what direction the wind hit you from this week – running into the head wind slowed you down, but yt you hardly feel it then when it is on your back!!  Let’s doth our caps to the podium finishers from the weekend, taking the top step was Niall at the Colin Glen event, with Pocket Rocket Bernie storming the beach to take second place at Portrush while Noel got third place at the Enniskillen event! Two new course PBs set this week by Joanne on her return to the Queen’s event and Niall at the Colin Glen event. Finally, some tourism to celebrate with Noel ticking off Enniskillen and Brona visited Deerpark (I wonder how expensive that park is!) So, which page did we have to prowl to find photos for this week:

  • parklife: Brona tackles Deerpark while doing some parkrun tourism!

Please, no one remind us here at Roundup Towers that the next two editions of the Roundup fall over holidays – and that holidays equate to more opportunities for racing (who said it equates to spending more time with family and friends, are you daft?!) Don’t be sneaking in any races – make sure to let us know! I’d like to put on my science hat for a moment and talk about the picture of the black hole (the space one in case there is any confusion) that was released last week. I have to say, if you didn’t find that photo impressive – then I am afraid that you don’t understand the gravity of the situation.

Live long and prosper.

Disclaimer: Every effort was taken to ensure the results above are correct (right, that took a fierce amount of time this week, so try and cross me – go on!) If you’d also like to make a complaint, then you’ll automatically volunteer yourself for writing duties 🙂