Vincent McKenna and Jessica Craig secure Les Jones Memorial 10k titles

18 May 2018

Vincent McKenna and Jessica Craig secure Les Jones Memorial 10k titles

Pre-race favourites Vincent McKenna (QUB AC) and Jessica Craig (North Down AC) lived up to expectation as they led a capacity field home at the 27th annual Les Jones Memorial 10k (Friday 18th May 2018).

The Athletics NI hosted event is a popular annual fixture, organised in memory of late athlete, team manager and Athletics NI Chairman Les Jones, who sadly passed away in 1992.

For the event, Athletics NI worked alongside Action Mental Health as part of the Mental Health Awareness week, which began on 14th May 2018. A donation will be made to the charity from the race entries.

The race started at the Mary Peters Track and took competitors onto the Lagan Towpath towards Shaws Bridge.  Athletes negotiated the infamous climb in Barnetts Demesne on their way back to the finish line on the Mary Peters Track.

The fast improving Vincent McKenna impressed yet again, leading the field home in 34:54 (1st place).  Mark Smith (Mallusk Harriers), who performed well at the recent Larne Half Marathon, claimed the runners up spot in 35:20 (2nd place).  University track star James Smyth (St Malachy’s AC), making his 10k debut, completed the top three in 36:07 (3rd place).

In the ladies race, Northern Ireland international Jessica Craig took top honours in 37:25 (1st place), approximately ninety seconds ahead of in-form Newcastle AC athlete Sinead Murtagh, who recorded 38:57 for 2nd place.  Melissa Eccles looked back to her best with a sub-40 finish for 3rd place, crossing the line in 39:11.

Full results for the event are available HERE.


Northern Ireland men Leon Reid (Birchfield Harriers) and Jason Smyth (Derry Track Club) impressed with wins at the prestigious Great City Games in Manchester, England (Friday 18th May 2018).

Competing in separate 150m races at the unique City Centre event, Leon won in 15.52secs (1st place), while Jason broke the beam in 15.82secs (1st place).