NI and Ulster Athletes Compete in Loughborough and Slovakia

13 March 2019

NI and Ulster Athletes Compete in Loughborough and Slovakia

NI & Ulster athletes travelled to Prestwold Hall in Loughborough for the UK Intercounties Cross Country Championships on Saturday 9th March 2019. The recent NI & Ulster Senior Cross Country Champion, Mark McKinstry (North Belfast Harriers) lead the Northern Ireland Senior Men’s team to 5th place, in a time of 34:35, coming in 27th overall.

The team had a terrific day with Conor Duffy (Glaslough Harriers) finishing in 41st place overall in a time of 34:58 and Declan Reed (City of Derry Spartans) coming in 47th in a time of 35:03. Conan McCaughey (North Belfast Harriers) finished in a time of 35:14 and 53rd place overall, while Commonwealth Games athlete, Adam Kirk-Smith (Derry Track Club) ran a time of 35:19 and finished in 59th place. Newcastle & District AC’s Zak Hanna finished in 79th place in a time of 35:42, with Neil Johnston (Springwell Running Club) coming in 90th place in a time of 35:58.

In the Men’s U20 event, Beechmount Harriers’ Peter Gracey came 47th overall in a time of 31:56, while brother, JJ Gracey (Beechmount Harriers) came 72nd in the U17 Boys event in a time of 20:23.

Willowfield Harriers’ Dylan McBride competed in the U15 Boys event and finished in 24th position, in a time of 13:56. This put Dylan into 4th place overall in the British Cross Challenge.


Junior Mountain Running Champion, Grace Carson (Mid Ulster AC) had a tremendous race to finish in 8th place overall in the Women’s U20 event in a time of 22:09, while Rosses AC’s Amy Greene took 44th place in the Girls U15 event in a time of 15:44.

Jackie Newton, Director of Coaching & Athlete Development: “I am very proud of the performances from all our athletes this weekend. Every one of our athletes look forward to competing in this exciting event each year as it provides them with valuable racing experience.”

Elsewhere this weekend…


Kate O’Connor (Dundalk AC) set a new Irish U20 record at the European Throwing Cup in Samorin, Slovakia. The Commonwealth Games Heptathlete, Kate threw a record breaking 48.95m which gave her 12th place overall.

Kate currently holds the Irish Senior record for the Pentathlon, after breaking her own record earlier this year at the England Athletics Indoor Combined Event Championships in Sheffield. Her new javelin record brings her PB to only 28cm behind coach, Laura Kerr’s NI Senior record of 49.23m