Strong runs from Larne’s Beggs, McAllister and Brady

Larne Athletic Club's Phelim McAllister and Bernard Brady at the 26Extreme Trail races. INLT 47-914-CON
Larne Athletic Club's Phelim McAllister and Bernard Brady at the 26Extreme Trail races. INLT 47-914-CON

Members of Larne Athletic Club were at Stormont during the week to take part in ‘Run in the Dark’, a race in aid of the Mark Pollock Trust which supports ongoing research to find a cure for spinal cord injuries.

Though trainers may have been a little muddy, everyone ran with a ‘glow’ and a spectacular sea of red could be viewed running up the hill of Stormont. Runners tackled one or two loops of the grounds to cover the 5k or 10k distances.

First home for Larne was Rachel Bhamra who completed the 5k in a time of 30:57. Jarleth Lennon then leaped across the 10k finish line in 50:27. Speedy Janine Rainey wasn’t far behind in 51:32. Other results: Stephen McManus 54:07, Claire Dickinson 54:18 and Charlotte Hall 58:25.

Braving torrential downpours, nine of Larne’s hardiest runners made their way to Tollymore Forest Park on Saturday for the 26 Extreme organised Tollymore Trail Marathon Events.

In the early hours of the morning, Amy Beggs, the club’s sole particpant in the 40-mile Ultra race, set off with the rest of the field. Her strength and endurance were to the fore as she completed the gruelling three-lap course in 08:16:03, claiming 48th.

Phelim McAllister took part in the marathon and after finishing his first lap in fourth, he dug deep to record an excellent 03:26:14; 7th place overall.

The next event to start, and containing the biggest field of the day, was the half-marathon. Bernard Brady and Keith Hetherington were among the 265 runners who chose to take on the one-lap 13.1-mile course. Brady paced his effort well to move through the leading runners in the latter stages to record a second-place podium finish (01:27:40). Hetherington also ran well, crossing the line in 02:09:26 (145th).

The final event of the day was the 10K and three Larne members took part in this race.

Husband-and-wife duo Stuart and Emma Maxwell, making their first outing for the club, and Robin Alexander, a stalwart of the Larne parkrun, lined up along side 100-plus runners for the event.

Stuart took an excellent 27th-place finish in a new personal best of 52:53. Robin also ran well to claim 53rd overall (59:45). Not to be outdone by her husband, Emma had the run of her life to knock a massive five minutes off her personal best, finishing 92nd in a time of 01:09:52.

Well done to all our runners and to the two parkrun enthusiasts who accompanied Robin, Mark Todd (51:11) and Dom Dorris (53:12).

Thanks to 26 Extreme for organising another unique running experience.