On a crisp January afternoon, the DCU Schools Invitational kicked off the secondary school’s 2015 cross country season at the DCU sports grounds. Despite the cold frosty weather conditions – schools travelled from far and wide to compete; with St. Kieran’s College from Kilkenny dethroned the St. Aidan’s CBS boys to win the Best Overall boy’s school. In the Best Overall girls school competition, Mount Temple and Holy Child Killiney shared the honours with Colaiste Iosagain a close 3rd. Entries increased again this year from 1028 competing athletes to 1142, this annual event showcasing some of the Ireland’s best future talents in cross country running.
Minor / Junior
Both Minor races produced impressive individual winners with Ella May Cromie (Mount Temple) and Con Doherty (St. Colman’s College, Newry) both powering home to take the Minor titles. The Minor team titles were won convincingly by St Marys College from Naas and St. Kieran’s College from Kilkenny.
At Junior level, Sarah Healy (Holy Child Killiney) who won the minor girls race in 2014, stepped up to take this year’s Junior title, while Cian May (Salesian’s Celbridge) who came 4th last year in the Minor event, made the leap to win the Junior boy’s individual title. Scoil Mhuire from Trim (last year’s Minor girls’ team winners) won the girls’ junior team title from Holy Child Killiney. St. Kieran’s College Kilkenny also secured the boys junior team title from St. Malachy’s of Belfast.
Inter / Senior
Laura Ward (Presentation Carlow) was victorious in the Inter Girls race, just ahead of Aisling King (Loreto Dalkey) and Aoife Colleran (Loreto Foxrock). In the boy’s race, Rory Lodge (St Kieran’s College, Kilkenny) took the individual boys honours followed closely by Niall Harvey (Presentation Carlow) and Sean Carrig (St. Aidan’s CBS). Team honours went to Holy Faith Clontarf and St. Aidan’s CBS respectively.
The final two senior races saw impressive front running tactics from Hope Saunders (Mount Temple) and Cathal Doyle (St. Aidan’s CBS) – both recording impressive wins. Colaiste Iosagain won the senior girls team title with Blackrock College taking the boys team victory ahead of St. Aidan’s CBS.
This was the 11th running of the DCU Schools Invitational cross country – a well-established annual event with over 1100 athletes competing. It is difficult to believe that it is over 10 years since Des Rogers (Coolmine Invitational XC) handed over the reins to the DCU Athletics club – the Coolmine Perpetual Cup for Minor Boys (presented by Des Rogers) was won by St. Kieran’s College from Kilkenny.
Our thanks to Bank of Ireland for their continued generous support, to John Buckley Sports for supplying trophies and spot prizes, to Last Lap for the hot and cold refreshments, to Session Hire for the PA support, to St. John’s Ambulance for their medical support team, to Lindie Naughton from the Evening Herald for her photography and journalistic reports and to the invaluable work done by the DCU Academy and Athletics club athletes. Our thanks also to the Danagher boys from Laois, who provided us with great back drops for the keen photographers by supplying the 2 jumping obstacles of baled hay!