Weather fails to deter eager mini-marathoners

The weather was about as mixed as the standards as thousands of women and wannabe women pounded out the route of the Evening Echo Cork Mini-Marathon.

Weather fails to deter eager mini-marathoners

The early morning mist and rain cleared as the countdown approached to the start, with the city quays brightened up by a rainbow of colours in the T-shirts of various worthy causes for which vital funds were being raised.

Although a squally downpour arrived just before the start, most finished the four-mile route in pleasant sunshine.

The route brought an estimated 12,000 participants from Centre Park Road, along the Marina to Blackrock village, up Blackrock Road, then downhill onto Monahan Road and on to the finish line at Kennedy Park.

At the elite end of the field, the 32nd running of the event brought a third successive win for a 32-year-old athlete from local club Leevale. Lizzie Lee’s victory came just days after she finished seventh in the Aquathlon World Championships in London.

The event was one of the first that Sonia O’Sullivan took part in before going on to become a world and Olympic medallist, but for most of the annual participants it is a fun run, jog or walk.

Sinead McInerney from Carrigtwohill proudly boasted that she and friend Ciara Cummins broke their own records, although this might not have been too difficult as both were first-time participants.

“It was lashing and gale force winds right at the start, but it was humid at the same time and at least the sun came out,” she said.

“We jogged the first third and walked the rest. We’ll definitely do it again next year,” enthused Ciara Cummins from Ballinagree, both having raised money for autism charity Shine Ireland.

While they were among many first-timers, Sheila Murphy from Ringaskiddy completed her 17th mini-marathon.

“At least it was dry. I did it for a suicide bereavement charity, it’s a cause very close to my heart,” she said.

“I did it many moons ago but I half-ran and half-walked it today,” said her friend Liz McManus from Bishopstown, who raised money for cancer support.

In Dublin, transplant recipients, donors and people awaiting transplants were among hundreds of people who showed their support for organ donation in the Irish Kidney Association’s ‘Run for a Life’ event. They included Thomas Howe from Killarney, Co Kerry, whose second birthday was a week earlier and might need a transplant because of damage to his kidney soon after he was born.

Tadhg McElroy from Bray, Co Wicklow, turned two on Saturday and is on dialysis until he is ready to go on a kidney transplant list.

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