Day 1 of the 2019 cross country season incorporated Juvenile Relays, Masters and Intermediate Championship and was hosted by Gowran AC in Kilkenny in almost perfect conditions on Sunday.
In the relay events Laois had five teams in action. St. Abban’s AC had four teams U-12 Boys, U-14 Girls, U-14 Boys and U-16 Boys and Oughaval AC had their boys U-12 team. There was great team effort from our juveniles especially with most running out of age. The U-16 boys were closest to a medal with a super fourth place finish.
In the Women’s Masters first home was Grace Reilly from Portlaoise AC. Grace was 3rd F35 15:39, next Laois lady was Siobhan Burke (13th F40) from Ballyroan Abbeyleix & District AC in 16:52, 3rd was Maria Cuddy (19th F40) in 18:34 and 4th was Anna Duggan (10th F45) 6th 19:05. Laois were sixth Leinster county team.
For the Laois Masters Men, Tom Lupton from Portlaoise AC was first man home for Laois in 20:05 for 6km. Tom celebrated his 35th birthday in style with a brilliant finish moving from 3rd to 2nd in the home straight.
Tony Reilly from Portlaoise AC was 5th man (1st M45) in 20:33. Stephen Hunter, St. Abban’s AC was 18th (13th M35) in 21:12 and Cyril Cuddy, Portlaoise AC was 21st (5th M40) in 21:18 and clubmate Colm Fitzpatrick was 27th in 21:37.
Tom, Tony, Stephen, and Cyril were the third Leinster team. They were supported by Aengus Burke, Portlaoise AC, in 38th position and third M50. Paul Cuddy, Portlaoise AC was 16th M40 in 22:29.
Paul Burke from Ballyroan Abbeyleix & District AC was 25th M40. John Kirwan was 23rd M35 in 23:49.
Portlaoise AC were 3rd Leinster Club Team. Martin McDonald Ballyroan Abbeyleix & District AC was 1st M60 in 23:30.
In the Intermediate Women, Breda McDonald from Ballyroan Abbeyleix & District AC was first home for Laois in 15:58 in 13th place, not far behind was sister Kate McDonald in 16:03 in 15th position.
In 16th position was Caitlin McDonald from St Abban’s AC in 16:10. Lucy Deegan was 28th in 16:58. All three made the county team that won third place. Supporting the team were Sinead Kelly in 30th the position in 17:15 and Caitriona McDonald was in 41th position in 18:37.
Tom Dunne of Ballyroan Abbeyleix & District was our sole runner in the Leinster Intermediate race and he was 27th 29:54.
It was a great day out for Laois, two Leinster County medals for our Intermediate Women and Master Men and individual medals for husband and wife Grace (3rd F35),Tony Reilly (1st M45), Tom Lupton (2nd M35) and Aengus Burke (3rd M50) from Portlaoise AC and Martin McDonald (1st M60) Ballyroan Abbeyleix AC.