On New Year’s Day, 26 East Coast AC athletes completed one of the provinces most popular events, the ‘Race over the Glens’, a six-mile trail race in Glenariff Forest Park.
Justin Maxwell led the ECAC contingent home in 39:28, securing second place overall. Matthew Hewitt, who was representing the club for the first time, clocked 40:11 to take fourth. James Brown recorded 40:32 to claim sixth overall and top spot in the Vet35 category.
Nat Glenn (41:37) took 11th place overall and first place in his Vet45 category. Other selected results: Davey Clarke (42:42, 17th), Andy Guy (43:48, 21st; Greg Lavery (26th, 44:28), James Robinson (31st, 45:30), Murray Deller (37th, 46:04); Stephen Kennedy (39th, 46:15); Stephen McKenna (41st, 46:30), and Corey Urwin (43rd, 46:43).
East Coast AC athletes were also out in force at the annual running of the Castlewellan Christmas Cracker. This event, now in its 30th year, sees athletes paired, both starting and finishing the 8.5-mile event together.
James Brown and Justin Maxwell, who led the club home, finished in 10th place overall with a time of 55:32. Andy Guy and Davy Clarke (57:40), both dressed as superheroes were next to cross the line, in 16th place; this was enough to seal first place in the Male 90-99 category. Greg Lavery and Nat Glenn took 21st place in 58:55, before Daniel Girvin and Paul Hutchinson completed the tough course in 1:04:41 (60th place). Naoise McLoughlin and Penny Lindsay were East Coast AC’s first ‘mixed team’ home, finishing in 1:06:44, securing 85th place overall and 7th place in their MX80-90 category.
Drew Girvin and Danny Hylands completed the route in a brisk 1:10:09 (116th place), while Alex Robertson and Chris Davis (213th place - 1:19:34) led home a list of East Coast AC athletes, with coaches Mark McManus and Jenny Magill (230th place – 1:21:09), sisters Bernadette and Trisha Campbell (241st place – 1:22:23), friends Marty McToal/James Robinson (256th place – 1:24:04) and Stephen Millar / Christopher Dickson (259th place – 1:24:36) all finishing strongly.
Next to cross the crowded finish line were Alan Glover and Patrick Campbell, taking 287th place in 1:27:45, before newlyweds Ryan and Catherine Maxwell (342nd place - 1:39:43) completed the club’s participation. Allan McCullough and Andrene Rennie were forced to withdraw from the event close to the half way mark, when Andrene sustained an ankle injury.