Gideon Opens Irish Tour in Style

It was a lonely trot for Kenya’s Gideon Kimosop as he claimed his third victory in five years at yesterday’s Deep RiverRock Belfast City Half Marathon. Gerrie Short was the first woman home as the continued popularity of road running locally was reflected in over 4000 participants taking to the starting line up for the event.

Gideon breaks the tape in the BCM Half Marathon.

Kimosop, unlike many of his compatriots who prefer to play a waiting game, was already well clear of the pack when he passed the 5K mark with Karol Duggan and Vincent McKenna heading up the spirited but ultimately forlorn chase.

The Derry-based Kenyan had increased the margin to over two minutes as he passed by 10K sign in 32:07 with Acorns AC’s McKenna and Duggan from the Letterkenny club coming through shoulder to shoulder in 34:10. Further back Sperrin Harrier Pierce McCullagh and Willowfield’s Brian Kinsella were prominent at the head of the main field another 200 metres back.

Little changed until the finish with the 30-year-old from the Rift Valley crossing the line in 67:45, his slowest winning time in the race to date. Behind him McKenna dug deep to get the better of Duggan on the homestraight for second place by just two seconds in 71:09.

Adrian Bell ran strong in the latter part of the race to take fourth place ahead of clubmate Kinsella with both timed at 74:11. Foyle Valley’s Craig Simpson completed the top half dozen with a 74:47 timing.

Dub Running Club’s Collette McCourt was the early leader in the women’s race but was overtaken by Gerrie Short when she stopped to take a gel around the 15K mark. The Beechmount Harrier never looked back after that to score what she described herself as an “unexpected” win in 85:32.

Ballymena Runners’ Paula Worthington was always prominent in the women’s field and finished strongly to take the runner-up spot in 86:33. The game McCourt was rewarded for her early efforts with the final place on the podium after recording 87:11 to hold off Ciara McKay by six seconds. Armagh’s Natalie Hall (87:44) and Foyle Valley’s Denise Ward (87:47) rounded off the top six female finishers.

Jim Corbett was given the decision in the wheelchair race after a photo finish with Torque Racing Club colleague Paul Hannan as both men were timed at 67:30.

Gideon was also in action the previous day when he took part in the Omagh Parkrun.  It was the first day of autumn training for the DTC squad who used the parkrun as an AT run followed by a short session.

1 Gideon Kimosop 16:04
3 Cathaoir PURVIS 18:07 JM15-17 74.52%
4 John MC QUADE 18:14 SM20-24 70.75%
5 Paul Barbour ?
7 Se HEANEY 19:44 JM15-17 70.52%
12 Cathal McLaughlin ?
13 Ben MELLON 22:16 JM15-17 61.53%
14 Conor McIlveen 22:18
16 David MELLON 22:22 VM35-39 60.58%
18 Enya HAIGNEY 22:30 JW15-17 67.19%
19 Malcolm MCCAUSLAND 22:42 VM65-69 74.60%
20 Lara SMAILES 22:42 JW15-17 67.40%


Cathal McLaughlin ended a very successful season with a fifth place at the World Masters’ Athletics Championships in Malaga.

Cathal in the thick of the actionof the M50 1500m .

The DTC chairman ran a well calculated race to clock a season’s best of 4:18.33 to finish less than two seconds behind the winner Margus Kirt (4:16.66) and just 0.71 off the medals.

Earlier the Irish champion had qualified comfortably from his heat in 4:25.43 behind Kirt who is the reigning European 800/1500m champion.

“I’m pleased,” said Cathal. “I could not have put any more in or did any better.”

Meanwhile back home 15-year-old Sé Heaney was impressing with an 18:35 timing at the Culdaff 5K.




Harsh New Legislation for Road Races in NI

The future of road running in Northern Ireland is under threat following the introduction of new legislation with the Groomsport Half Marathon scheduled for tomorrow morning being one the casualties.

2 May 2016 – Picture by Darren Kidd / Press Eye.
2016 Deep RiverRock Belfast City Marathon.
The runners head off along Chichester Street, Belfast.

Already more than a dozen races including high profile events such as the Ards and Cookstown Half Marathons have suffered the axe in the wake of the new laws introduced earlier this year.

While the government in the Republic recently published a ten-year plan to increase participation in sport, new road safety legislation could sound the death knell for the majority of small local running events in the Six Counties. Triathlons are also affected by the legislation while cycling races, but not sportives, and parades are exempt.

Even more alarming is that the responsibility for granting permits for events on roads has been transferred from the PSNI to local councils who have absolute authority in deciding whether an event goes ahead or not. It would seem that the days are gone when athletics clubs would work locally with the PSNI to manage an event.

“To go ahead now, race organisers will have to include a professional traffic management plan with their application and any road closures will have to be handled by that professional company,” said Groomsport organiser Conal Heatley who recently attended a cross party meeting about the legislation at Stormont. “That could put thousands of pounds onto the cost of running a race particularly in rural areas.”

The new legislation was passed by the Assembly and signed off by the then Minister for Infrastructure, but local race organisers feel they were not consulted. The bureaucrats met the requirement to publish notice of the intended legislation in the newspapers but sports organisations feel they should have been asked directly for their input.

It will now take a Minister and Assembly to be in place before these changes can be repealed or even amended. No one will be holding their breath for that to happen any time soon and certainly not before Brexit, if indeed even that happens.

However, this could be the cue for more people to take up track running. Already Eamonn Christie, NI Running’s Ryan Maxwell, the North Down club and Acorns AC have shown that track races can be popular, if organised in the correct manner.

Meantime next year’s fixture list looks like being a lot slimmer with a heap of additional work and financial responsibilities being thrown on the shoulders of already hard-pressed organisers.

While the thrust of the Republic’s government is to get as many people into sport as possible with a target of 50% participation, north of the border we seem to be going full speed in the opposite direction with legislation such as this and the charity laws recently imposed on clubs and associations.


DTC Relay Good at Waterside Half Marathon

2 September 2018

David Mellon anchored the DTC men’s team to a comfortable victory in the road relay event held as part of the Waterside Half Marathon in Derry-Londonderry.

David Mellon on the final leg.

David finished off the good work done by John McQuade and Michael Murphy on the early legs.

The DTC Mixed team took second place overall with Robert Bigger, Marina Murphy and Cathal McLaughlin all making sound contributions on their respective legs.

A second mixed DTC team (Lisa McLaughlin, Lara Smailes and Adrian Boyle) produced an excellent result to take third spot overall and complete a clean-sweep of the podium positions in the first year the club has contested the event.

Waterside Relay Results



DTC Athletes in the News

Two DTC athletes have been in the news recently. Adam Kirk-Smith was NI’s only winner in the Manchester International last month. AKS won the 3000m steeplechase despite little track work this summer but caught the eye of the photo editor at Athletics Weekly.

Adam in action in Manchester.

Meanwhile Kendra Semple McMullan has been recognised for her exploits on the football pitch. The NI Ladies captain has been a key part of the DTC Novice cross country squad this past couple of years. She believes this has added to her fitness on the football field.

Kendra receiving her award.

Kendra is currently recovering from an emergency appendectomy but we hope she will be back to full fitness for the Ulster Novice Cross Country Championships in November.


26 August 2018

DTC’s Robert Bigger rounded off probably his best ever season with two silver medals at the British Masters’ Athletics Federation championships ….. and he was not happy.

The Aghadowey solicitor lost out in close finishes over both 800m and 1500m in the M60 age group.  On both occasions he missed out on the gold medal only by a matter of a few hundredths of a second.

Earlier Bigger had taken four titles at the NIMAA Championships before scoring a double at the Irish Masters’ Track & Field the week prior to the British at Birmingham.

The small number of Ulster athletes who made the trip to Birmingham were well rewarded in precious metals. After mainly good conditions on the opening day, there was rain on Sunday but this did not stop Strabane man Damian Crawford picking up a brace of titles in the M50 age group.

The Lifford-Strabane clubman took the shot putt gold with an 11.29m effort before adding his specialist javelin crown with a seasonal best throw of 50.24m. For good measure he added a bronze in the weight throw with a mighty heave of 12.13m.

Expatriate Pat Logan showed a fine turn of speed (pictured) as he took the M55 100m in 12.20. He added to that with a runner-up spot in the 200m in a seasonal best of 25.21 seconds.

Irish News journalist Simon Doyle put the cap on a fine season with a silver medal in the M40 1500m in a time of 4:21.88, just outside his personal best set earlier this year. Age proved no barrier, or more accurately hurdle, to Mid-Ulster’s septuagenarian Earl Taylor who took runner-up spot in 80m and 300m events over the sticks.

The ageless Ulstermen and women can now look forward to pitting themselves against the best on the planet at the world championships that start in Malaga next week.