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Marvellous Michael awarded with national marathon medal.

Thursday, 16 November 2017

Marvellous Michael awarded with national marathon medal. thumbnail Dublin City Marathon national medal winner, Michael Duncan.

THERE was a great buzz and excitement at the Lifford Strabane Athletics Club this week as the news filtered through from the organisers of Dublin Marathon that master senior athlete Michael Duncan was a recipient of a bronze national marathon medal.

Michael placed fifth overall in his M55+ age category, running a personal best time of 2:59:15, resulting in third placed Irish national finisher in his age category, becoming the firt Lifford Strabane AC athlete to be in receipt of such an impressive accolade.

Everyone at the club is delighted for this athlete, his commitment to his training is unwavering. Just two years ago Michael suffered an injury which resulted in him having to take six months off, but since his return to running he continues to get stronger and faster with every race. Michael had a vision at the start of 2017, which was to run a sub three hour marathon.

He never lost focus, making subtle changes to his training regime and stepping outside his comfort zone, as he knew what he had to do if he was to achieve his goal. Michael acknowledged that what he has achieved would not have been achievable without the assistance of a very high calibre of training "buddies", and a training schedule overseen by senior club coach Michael McKinney that brought out the best in him, to whom he extends his sincere thanks.

Cross-Country On Sunday, November 12, Finn Valley Centre, Stranorlar was the venue for the Ulster Uneven Age Groups & Novice Cross-Country Championships.

The conditions were cold and very heavy underfoot, with all athletes having to endure an extremely muddy, waterlogged course resulting in a very gruelling racing course.


Lifford Stabane AC was represented with a Novice Men Team, Novice Ladies Team, and in the U19's Age Group there were three individual athletes and juvenile athletes competing.

First finisher for the club in the Novice Ladies Race was the ever-improving Jessica Moorehead. Jessica had another impressive run to finish in the top 10, ahead of the winner of the Donegal Novice Cross-Country.

Dympna Houston was next club finisher followed by the final team member Veronika McGillian, both ladies produced a gutsy performance in such trying conditions.

In the Mens Novice Race it was Conor Gallagher that crossed the finish line first for the club. Conor had another great run, powering his way around an extremely difficult course. Garreth Mc- Cullagh was the next club finisher, followed by Kenny Melaugh and Philip Kelly. A gallant effort by all team members.

In the U19's Alan McGinley was the first to finish for Lifford Strabane AC, followed by club athletes Niall Elliott and Charlie McElwaine.

The club would like to take this opportunity in congratulating club members that competed in the Cross-Country Races in the past few weeks. A club spokesperson said: "These club members rose to the challenge and proudly represented our club at these events.


It would hope that we would see more of our club members putting themselves forward for team events in the future." Other racing news: On Saturday, Lifford Strabane AC had six athletes in action at two different events. Brothers Bill and Michael Duncan alongside club athlete Geoff Sproule were at the opening race of The Sperrin Harriers Trail Series, The Davagh Forrest 10K.


At the Tollymore Trail Half Marathon, Maddy Mc- Curdy 2:10:53, John Craig 2:02:06 and juvenile member Mark McCurdy 2:07:30 took to the start line. This was Mark's first experience of running this distance on a very hilly course and he was the youngest competitor on the day.

Training continues for all age groups.

Juveniles Monday 6:30pm and Wednesday 6:30pm (over 10's only). Walking Group Mondays and Wednesdays 6:30pm. Adults Tuesday and Thursdays 6:30pm. All new members welcomed.

Lifford Strabane AC caters for all levels of fitness and abilities.

Lifford Strabane AC's AGM will take place on Tuesday November 21 at 8:30pm at the clubhouse. All members and parents of juvenile members are encouraged and very welcome to attend.

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