Laois Man Colin Maher Wins Mc Mahon's Supervalu 5K; as Over 700 Turn Up in Castleblayney to Take Part.

Last Sunday saw the Castleblayney Faughs hold their annual Mc Mahon Supervalu 5K race which finished on the main street of the town.

The morning time proved to be very miserable and cold but the rain thankfully eased to leave the conditions for the 700 starting participants of the race at 2pm, dry but cold.

It wasn’t long before the serious runners got moving with a group of eight leading the way until after the turn. It was at this point that Colin Maher from Ballyfin in County Laois started to pull away and open up a gap between himself and Brian Mc Cluskey from the North East Runners Club in Dundalk. 

Colin managed to stay ten seconds ahead of Brian, crossing the line in 15:21 seconds, just two seconds outside the course record set by Patrick Hamilton in 2013 with Shane Tonner from Glenmore coming in third. First female home was Amy Hamill from Glaslough Harriers in a time of 19:31, Laura Matthews from North East Runner was second, followed by local athlete Donna Evans in third.

After the race all participants and supporters attended a packed Glencarn Hotel where the staff supplied free tea, coffee and sandwiches to all. The audience was entertained as local athlete Aidan Campbell held a question and answers session with the Godfather of Irish Athletic Frank Greally, Motivational Speaker Gerry Duffy , local athlete Tony Ward and current Irish 800 metre record holder and double Olympian David Matthews.

Matthews, the Club’s special guest speaker on the day was blown away with the event remarking that “I have been amazed at what I have seen today, the community spirit generated by the Castleblayney Faughs at such an event is a great example of what GAA clubs can do within their communities.  I go to lots of different runs around the country but to see the great sense of happiness, achievement and fun all mixed together in one race is truly unique. The fitness programme run by the Club called Operation TransFAUGHSmation is very special; it really does seem to be the “fun way to a healthier lifestyle”,  I would like to congratulate everybody who took part in such a great day”.

When asked about the whole event a clearly delighted Operation TransFaughsmation leader Tom Miller replied “This year was an unbelievable year for everyone involved, you can see the improvements that people have made in their fitness and also in their general lifestyle, the main aim for the guys at the start of the Operation TransFaughsmation programme was to be able to run/walk Castleblayney 5K, we have seen everyone achieve that goal today, we are proud of the every one of them”. The Fastest Faugh for 2015 and Senior Chairperson Stephen Dignam was cleary delighted “It was another great day for the Club, to get that many people to turn up on such a miserable day was great.  We put a lot of effort into both the Operation TransFaughsmation and the run and thankfully everybody has left with a positive impression of both our Club and our town. Next year’s race date will be Sunday 27th November 2016, I recommend that you put the date in your diary, it really is a great occasion. Well done to all".