Shauna Callaghan, Amie Hanly, Jessican Cunningham, Grave Byrne, Louise Callaghan and Siofra O’Halloran, Loreto College, Mullingar, Senior Girls Champions.

Loreto win Senior Girls race at All Ireland Cross Country


Loreto College won the Senior Girls race at the All Ireland Schools Cross Country Championships at Tymon Park in Tallaght on Saturday (March 9). Loreto College secured the team title with impressive showings from team members Grace Byrne, Louise Callaghan, Jessica Cunningham, Shauna Callaghan, and Amie Hanly – plus Siofra O’Halloran and Amie Hanly. Grace Byrne finished sixth.

A number of Mullingar Harriers represented their schools and colleges and competed strongly at the event. The rain came and went during the day but it wasn’t too windy, so conditions weren’t too bad. Athletes representing three Mullingar schools featured but the day belonged to Loreto College, who captured the Senior Girls team title.

Given their form in the Leinster finals and their depth of talent, the Loreto College team in the Senior Girls 3,500m were always the ones to watch and they didn’t disappoint. The team was led home by Grace Byne in a terrific sixth place, and backed up by a strong team who included Louise Callaghan, Jessica Cunningham, Shauna Callaghan and Siofra O’Halloran racing hard to the finish, the girls were rewarded for their great efforts by winning the team title.

Earlier in the day, the St Finian’s College team ran a great team race in the Intermediate Boys 5,000m. Led home by Matthew Molloy, and despite good support from Donagh Carey, Oisin Kehoe and John Glennon the boys finished sixth team, a great effort by all and a creditable finish in an All-Ireland final.

Despite being hit by injuries, the Colaiste Mhuire team gave their all in the final race of the day, the Senior Boys 6,000m. This was a fiercely competitive race and went out hard and fast. The team that included Ross Killalea, John Ryan, Pablo Lozano and Jamie Wallace battled hard for every place and finished fourth team, just out of the medals, but top marks for efforts.

Action-packed Leinster Masters Indoors

The Leinster Senior and Masters Indoors took place in Athlone last Saturday and on an action-packed day there were some great results for the small squad of Mullingar Harriers athletes that competed, all of them winning medals, and some winning more than one.

Early into action was Paddy Boyhan in the masters long jump, where he tied for first place after his third attempt but had to settle for second place after count-back, though still has to be satisfied with a silver medal.

Aidan O’Donoghue competed in the masters pole vault and leaped to a new personal best of 2.20m to win the Leinster title. As it’s a new event this year, his winning vault stands as the championship record.

On the track, Tom Walsh raced to gold in his master 60m, and Aidan O’Donoghue continued his improvement in the master 60m hurdles and set a new championship record of 12.44 seconds on his way to victory, bettering his own record set only last year.

Paddy Boyhan competed in the masters 3,000m race walk but unfortunately he fell foul of the judges in the extremely technical event and was disqualified. Paddy bounced back though in the masters triple jump, where, though he had trouble with his run-up mark for a while, and had three foul jumps, he made a valid jump to secure the silver medal with his last of four attempts.

There was a big entry in the master 200m, where Aidan O’Donoghue ran an excellent race to finish just out of the medals in fourth in 30.34 seconds.

Linda Cunningham (132), Leinster Masters Indoors 800m silver medal winner.

Hoping to run sub-three minutes for 800m, Linda Cunningham was delighted with her effort of 2 minutes 55.97 seconds in the master 800m, which gave her a podium place for the silver medal.

Aidan O’Donoghue rounded off a busy day for him in the masters high jump, leaping to the silver medal place in a close contest.

Tom Walsh returned to competition for his favourite event, the masters 28 pounds weight for distance, recording a best of 7.56m to win gold and round off and excellent day for Mullingar’s master athletes in style.

Well done to all the athletes that competed and flew the flag for Mullingar.

Mullingar teams give spirited performances at Leinster Indoor Relays

The Leinster indoors concluded last Sunday in Athlone with the Leinster Juvenile Indoor Relays. The uneven ages were held in the morning and thanks to a polished performance, Chloe Bell, Clodagh Keane, Amelie Kelly and Liadan Gavin won their heat of the U13 girls 4x200m to advance to the final.

Clodagh Keane, Liadan Gavin, Amelie Kelly and Chloe Bell, Leinster Indoor Relays U13 girls 4x200m, fifth club.

As expected with a Leinster final, the competition was fierce but the Mullingar girls ran their hearts out, and, though they finished out of the medals in fifth place, can be proud of their efforts.

Daniel Cummins, Conor Gavin, Mel Bohan, Jacob Buckley, Olly Wright in Athlone for the Leinster Indoor Relays

The even age relays were held in the afternoon and Mullingar had two teams in the U12 boys 4x200m. With three heats, only the winner of each heat and next three fastest times would qualify for the final, so the competition was tough. Daniel Cummins, Mel Bohan, Conor Gavin, Olly Wright, Fintan Harte, Myles Thornton Sleator, Ryan Kelly, Cillian Gavin, Cian Gavin and Jacob Buckley made up the two Mullingar teams plus subs.

Myles Thornton Sleator, Cian Gavin, Ryan Kelly, Cillian Gavin competed at the Leinster Indoor Relays.

Running in separate heats, the boys combined brilliantly to finish second in each heat but unfortunately they were not quick enough to advance to the final. Well done to our boys teams on their great efforts and though they didn’t advance from the heats, the experience will stand to them for the future.

Athletics Leinster Star Awards for 2023

The Athletics Leinster Star Awards for 2023 were presented by Catriona Duffy, chair of Athletics Leinster, during the Leinster Indoors last weekend. The awards are based on performances in Leinster Championships in 2023. Winning both the indoor and outdoor U19 race walk titles secured the Westmeath Juvenile Girl Award for Aisling Lane.

The Westmeath Senior Award was shared by Claire Fagan and Vinny Connolly, both winning their respective Senior Cross Country titles in Dunboyne last November. Osin Lane was also honoured with the Outstanding Racewalk Award, which was presented to his father and coach, Michael Lane, as Oisin was in Belfast competing for the University of Limerick at the Irish Universities Cross Country.

Having won club team medals in 11 of the 18 juvenile races at Leinster cross country in 2023, it was little surprise that Mullingar Harriers retained the Morrissey Cup for best juvenile cross country team in Leinster, a cup Mullingar has won every year since it was first presented in 2000.

For the record, having won both the indoor and outdoor U16 long jump titles, the outdoor 200m title and a bronze medal in the indoor 200m, Philip Finnan (Athlone AC) was the worthy recipient of the Westmeath Juvenile Boy Award.

Tullamore Harriers AC 5k

Offaly Athletics hosts an annual 5k race series across Offaly, with a race hosted by each of their eight clubs, from March to its conclusion in August. Mullingar Harriers enjoyed great success in the 2023 series. This year’s series commenced last Sunday morning with the Tullamore Harriers AC 5k.

On a grey and misty morning, 432 athletes went to the start line. A looped out and back course took runners through the outskirts of the town and back to finish with a lap of the track in the stadium. Andrew Nevin was always in contention with the leaders and was satisfied with fourth place in 15 minutes 50 seconds, just 11 seconds separating him from the first three over the line.

Eddie Newman won his category finishing strongly in 18:10. Aisling Corcoran led home our ladies team home, placing third in her master category. in a time of 19:46. Orlaith Flanagan (20:27), Claire Ross (22:12) and Siobhan Farry (22:51) making up the team. Michelle O’Halloran made a welcome return to racing and was happy with her time of 23:03. Brigid McCabe finished second in her master category in 23:45, and Michael O’Sullivan finished in 25:42. The race series continues in early April with Banagher AC the host club.

Bohermeen Half Marathon

The annual Bohermeen Half Marathon last Sunday morning attracted a field of 1,450 athletes, for a challenging course with several sharp climbs. Mullingar Harriers had six participants. There were no category places, but all were happy with their endeavours as they target further races in the coming weeks. First home was James Cribbin (1:27:08), followed by Joan Flynn in 1:29:09, then Dara O’Shea with a new personal best 1:30:10 and delighted with his run, while John Keane continued his progress over the distance to record 1:39:09. Emer O’Hanlon got home in 1:42:12 and Conor Corcoran recorded a time of 1:44:24 [MO’S].

Fit 4 Five launched

Our current Fit 4 Life programme ended last Monday evening, when after 10 weeks, our participants had a timed 5k on the club track. In the current programme more 50 participants saw it through the weeks to be ready for a big effort on the night (details in next week’s notes). Following the end of that series, the club launch a Fit 4 Five series aimed at helping returning runners and improvers to gain more experience at running a 5k. The series begins on Monday 25 March with registration at 6.45pm. Details on our website and social media channels.


Finally, the executive and members of Mullingar Harriers wish to express sincere sympathy to Laura and John Whitelaw and the entire Whitelaw family on the death last Friday of their father, Derry. May he rest in peace. Check the club’s website at and Facebook page for all the latest news.

Donagh Carey, Matthew Molloy, Oisin Kehoe and John Glennon, St Finian’s College, Inter Boys sixth team.