Fleet-footed Flynn fastest at Teachers
A record entry turned out for the Teachers Cross-Country races at Castleknock, the first race in the annual BHAA Winter League.
On a fresh morning with a strong breeze, the men and women set off together, with Bank of Ireland's Eoin Flynn pushing the pace from the start and clearly the class of the men's field.
Chasing hard were Darragh Greene and UCD's John Eves and a strong veteran entry including An Post's Mick Traynor, Paul Cowhie of CMS, and Bank of Ireland's Tom O'Connor.
With the women running only two miles, they came home first, with Kate O'Neill managing to hold off the determined challenge of Aoife Talty.
In third place was Donna Mahon of SIAC, another master athlete aiming for international selection next Sunday.
Close behind was Fiona Mahon and then Helen White of Blackhill, who took the over-45 prize.
HSE's Mags Greenan won a sprint for the line to beat Sheelagh Jones of the Teachers team for the over-50 prize, with Mary Jennings first over 55, Joan Coyle the over-60 winner and England-based Maureen Fitzgerald first over 65.
Best of the five teams were the Teachers with AIB second.
By now the men were on their final lap and Eoin Flynn maintained his early lead to win in 20 minutes 50 seconds for the four-mile distance.
Darragh Green was second ahead of John Eaves, with Mick Traynor first of all the master athletes, taking the over-45 prize ahead of Paul Cowhie and Turf Club's P Malone.
Tom O'Connor took the first of what is likely to be many over-50 prizes, while his Bank of Ireland club mate Dan O'Carroll was first over 55.
There were a few surprises among the team categories, with Pfizers beating ESB in grade B and the veteran AIB team of BHAA president Maurice Timmons, Tony Shea and Peter Twomey winning grade D, possibly for the first time ever!
Afterwards,everyone enjoyed the hospitality at Castleknock, with welcome showers for all followed by finger food, sandwiches and brack.
Next BHAA race (apart from the Dublin Marathon) is the Bank of Ireland Beach Race at Dollymount on Saturday, November 13 (11.30) -- a good curtain-raiser for the veteran international at Santry a few hours later.