All the news and happenings from the sports scene in north Antrim

Rasharkin's Niall McFerran who achieved success at Ballymena Raceway on New Year's Day.
Rasharkin's Niall McFerran who achieved success at Ballymena Raceway on New Year's Day.

DUNLOY

Bowling tourney

Dunloy Presbyterian Church Bowling Club are holding their annual singles competition in January 2014 and their chosen charity is the Northern Ireland branch of Marie Curie Cancer Care.

The competition was scheduled to have started in Dunloy Presbyterian Church Hall on Monday 6th January 2014.

Nights of play also include the 7th, 9th and 10th, and 13th, 14th, 16th and 17th January. Finals night will be held on Saturday 18th January 2014.

For more informationcontact club secretary Andrew Sayers on 07736127447 or Derek Fenton on 07999301762.

BALLYMONEY

Darts League

Wednesday 8/1/14 - A league meeting will be held n Joey’s Bar.

All team captains must attend this meeting for 8.30pm sharp

Fixtures for Fri 10/1/14 league week 9

Joey’s Flights v Joey’s Bar 3

Kelly’s Own v Bush House

Diamond Bar v MaKelly’s

Royal British Legion v Joey’s Bar

Blackwater House bye.

BALLYMONEY

Wildcats

Calling all parents and guardians with children aged 5-11 years old; the Ballymoney Wildcats Activ8 Clubs are on the prowl and ready to roar again after the Christmas Break.

The Multi Skills for Sport Club is an excellent way for kids to get their recommended 60mins of physical activity a day and to learn new skills for sport in a fun, safe environment.

January 2014 dates have been released, and will take place at the Joey Dunlop Leisure Centre. 

Your child will be guaranteed a fun and enjoyable time each week, and will learn new skills and meet new friends! 

The details of the club are as follows: Wildcubs 5-6yrs

·         Starts Tuesday 14th January 2014 (10 weeks) 

·         4.30pm - 5.30pm

·         Introduce FUNdamentals of movement and FUNdamental movement skills within a game based environment

Wildcats 7-11yrs

·         Start Wednesday 15th January 2014 (10 weeks) 

·         4.30pm - 5.45pm

·         Develop FUNdamentals and Introduce Sports Specific Skills with Multi-Sport movement and game skills which include a health & fitness focus

·          All clubs cost £25.00 for 10 weeks, or £2.70 “pay as you go”

For more information contact the Sports Development Unit or you can collect registration forms at Joey Dunlop Leisure Centre.

RASHARKIN

Raceway success for McFerran

JUNIOR Rod Racer Niall McFerran from Rasharkin (see picture, right) started 2014 in great style with victory in the Champions’ Challenge Cup at Ballymena Raceway on New Year’s Day but backmarkers almost cost the teenager dearly.

McFerran had built up a handy advantage over the chasing pack going into the closing stages of the Final and seemed to be cruising to success in his Vauxhall Corsa.

However a pair of battling backmarkers delayed the leader’s progress which allowed Aaron Moody and Peter Stewart to close in rapidly over the final two laps.

Luckily for McFerran he had established enough of a cushion to squeeze home just ahead of Irish Champion Moody and and the impressive Stewart who had earlier tasted victory in the first qualifying heat.

* The new season of oval racing starts at Ballymena Raceway on Friday April 4 with a practice afternoon scheduled for Saturday March 29 from 2pm-5pm.

ballycastle

Winter League at Golf Club

The Winter League began this week at Ballycastle Golf Club and the weather lived up to the forecast.

Strong winds and heavy rain battered the course over both days of the weekend but that wasn’t enough to stop the hardy golfers stepping out on the links.

This year’s Winter League is sponsored by P.J. McIlroy & Son and runs for 10 weeks; it is played over 13 holes on both a Saturday and Sunday.

Conor McGarry (10) from Team Fairhead was the top point’s scorer in Division 1 on Saturday. Conor scored an impressive 31 points over the 13 holes in very tricky conditions, runner up was Gerard Waide (11) who also scored 31 points as did third place finisher David Higgins (13), with only their back nine holes separating the three men.

Division 2 was won by Gareth Curran (15), Gareth had two impressive birdies along the way to shooting a brilliant 36 points and record the top score of the weekend. Gerard McCloskey (16) representing Team Glenshesk was the runner up with a super round of 35 points, third place on the podium went to Paul Brogan (17) with a fine return of 33 points.

Sunday’s weather wasn’t much better but there were plenty of entrants who braved the elements to return scores for their respective teams. Division 1 was won by Team Duncarbit’s Michael McAfee with 32 points, in a very consistent round which included 8 pars for the seventeen handicapper. Runner up was Kevin Traynor (16) with 29 points and third place went to Shaun McCook (18) after a round of 28 points.

After Week One of the Winter League, Team Glenshesk led the way from Team Bonamargy, with Team Shangarry in the dreaded “wooden spoon” place.

The New Year’s Day stableford was won by inform Kevin Traynor (16) with 30 points, from runner up Paul Surgenor (11), after Paul recorded a better last nine than Gerry Norwood. Gerry also had 29 points and took the bronze medal and pipped Willis McWhirter in the process as Willis had to settle for 4th place.

Ballycastle’s next competition is Wednesday’s Open Stableford which runs throughout the winter and is only £10 for visitors to enter. For any tee time enquiries contact the Pro Shop on 02820762506.

north coast

Springwell Club

Victories for Springwell’s Eimear Mullan and Chris Denton over a busy Ney Year

Springwell Running Club travelled to CAFRE Greenmount Campus on Saturday for the Antrim AIIF International Cross Country. The event also included the NI & Ulster Senior Cross Country Championships, the Celtic Cross Country Challenge and the British Cross Challenge. The day started wet and dull conditions, but it wasn’t long before the athletes brightened things up and the weather followed suit. There was a full support programme with races for primary school through to veteran athletes.

Springwell Results

Primary School Girls (1100m): Tuloupe Jide-Ojo 6:01, Erin Bratten 7:13.

Girls Under 13 (1800m): Hermione Skuce 7:20, Ellie McBroom 7:25, Niamh Carr 7:45, Amy Fountain. Team finished third.

Boys Under 13 (1800m): Andrew Gordon 6:37, Eoughan Gromley 7:17.

Girls Under 15 (3600m): Abigail McBroom 14:50, Rebekah Hunter 15:35, Molly Brennan 16:04, Aine McKinney 16:08, Aiofe Carr 16:47. Team finished third.

Boys Under 15 (3600m): Oisin Brennan 14:08.

Girls Under 17 (3600m): Aife McSheffrey 14:32.

Boys Under 17 (5600m): Luke Dinsmore 19:37, John Gordon 19:53, Dale Corbett 22:13

Boys Under 20 (5600m): Conor Christie 17:15, Ryan Murray 20:33, Brian Tweedie 20:46.

The International ladies 5,600m race (which included the NI & Ulster XC, Celtic XC Challenge and Veteran Ladies) saw an excellent array of talent toe the line.

International Ladies: 1st Mimi Belete (Bahrain) 18:07, 2nd Maryam Jamal (Bahrain) 18:08, 3rd Almensh Belete (Belgium) 18:21.

NI & Ulster Championship Ladies: 1st Eimear Mullan (Springwell Running Club) 19:42, 2nd Gladys Ganiel O’Neill (North Belfast Harriers) 20:13, 3rd Danielle Fegan (Armagh AC) 20:23.

Eimear’s victory along with some solid performances from the Springwell ladies led to the team winning a silver medal in the team event.

Springwell Times: Eimear Mullan 19:42, Gemma Turley 21:44, Sonia Knox 22:34, Alison Rankin 22:36, Karen Mclaughlin 24:00, Deborah Gilliland 24:40, Catherine Bell-Allen 26:08, Linda Gillen 26:25, Lindsay Holden 27:34, Sarah Chestnutt 27:56, Alison McAllister 28:01, Lynn Montgomery 28:01, Ursula Harper 30:13, Debbie Tutty 30:48, Caroline Taylor 30:59, Angela Calderwood 34:08, Shirley Jackson 35:07, Rozzy Skuce 29:18, Julie Clark 29:32.

The final race of the day was the International Men’s 10,000m race (which also included the NI & Ulster Senior XC and the Celtic XC Challenge) was also an exciting affair.

International Men (10,000m): 1st Japhet Korir (Kenya) 28:40, 2nd Thomas Akeyo (Uganda) 28:42, 3rd Emmanuel Bett (Kenya) 28:43.

NI & Ulster Championship Men (10,000m): 1st Paul Pollock (Annadale Striders) 30:08, 2nd Stephen Scullion (Clonliffe Harriers) 30:54, 3rd Gary Murray (St Malachy’s AC) 31:26.

Springwell Times: Neil Johnston 34:31, Philip Tweedie 35:01, David Jackson 39:09, Stephen Joyce 38:37, Bryan Edgar 39:25, Bryan Edgar 39:25, James McMullan 41:12, Glen Millar 41:27, Thomas Moore 42:32, Nigel Armstrong 44:13, Johnny Goldie 44:13, Jean-Claude Bourgeois 44:39, Robert Workman 44:42 and Darren Alexander.

Springwell’s Neil Johnston was a member of the Ulster Team who won a bronze medal in the U-23 Celtic Challenge event.

On New Year’s Day, Ballymena Runners welcomed a record number of runners to their annual Race over the Glens trail race in Glenariff Forest. In torrential rain, the athletes set off on the tough 6 mile course.

Jarlath Falls (Ballymena & Antrim AC) claimed the ‘King of the Glen’ title for the eighth time after breaking the tape in 38:44. Justin Maxwell finished strongly taking second place in 39:28, just eleven seconds ahead of Newcastle AC’s Seamus Lynch, who crossed the line in 39:39.

Lagan Valley’s Shileen O’Kane secured a well-deserved victory, and the prestigious ‘Queen of the Glen’ title in 46:27. Trudy Brown (Orangegrove AC) looked strong as she crossed the line in 49:19 for second place and Penny Lindsay (East Coast AC) ran an excellent second half to finish third in 50:44.

Springwell Times: Thomas Moore 47:04, Gary Moore 55:40, Catherine Pinkerton-Moore 58:51, David Patterson 1:00:59, Johny Moore 1:01:03, Debbie Tutty 1:08:15, Rebecca Clarke 1:08:15, Caroline Taylor 1:08:49, Sarah Doherty 01:24:30

On New Year’s Eve, eighteen hardy marathon specialists took on the inaugural East Antrim Marathon Series 26.2 mile event, which started and finished at Loughshore Park, Jordanstown.

In very wet conditions, the athletes set off on the ‘out and back’ course, which saw them cover the coastal route between Jordanstown and Cultra Yacht Club, close to Holywood. In the end, it was respected marathon pacer Chris Denton (Springwell Running Club) who claimed victory. Accompanied by the lead cyclist/marshall, Chris cruised along the final stretch towards the finish line, which he crossed in 3:16:53. St Peter’s AC athlete, Barry Shanks, followed closely, taking second place in 3:18:25, before Ali Shaw (3:20:30) made sure that Springwell Running Club dominated the podium, after claiming third place. Gillian Cordner (Seapark AC) covered the distance in 3:47:08 (1st place); this secured seventh place overall and top spot in the ladies category, for the talented Carrickfergus lady.

Portrush parkrun

Sixty five runners started 2014 with a 5K run along East Strand beach in Portrush. With high tide at 06:09 it had over 3 hours to make its way back out, leaving the sand surprisingly firm for the time of year. There was a bit of a headwind on the outward journey but once you turned the flag it was head down and go for it.

There were 7 first timers and 12 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 5 different athletics clubs took part.

First home was Keith Dawson (18:34) and first lady home was Julie Murphy (20:33) of Lagan Valley AC.

Springwell results: Glenn Miller 19:57, Robert Simpson 20:19 (PB), Sonia Knox 20:35 (PB), Karen McLaughlin 21:29, Johnny Goldie 21:39, Robert Workman 22:10, Mervyn Thompson 22:23, Jean-Claude Bourgeois 24.29, Catherine Bell-Allen 24:44, Graeme Montgomery 25.32, Sarah Chestnutt 25.54, Rozzy Skuce 26:29, Lynn Montgomery 26:39, Michael Rankin 26:48 Alison Rankin 26:49, Connor Kendall 29:22, Gary Kendall 29:24, Tracey Mitchell 30:44, Shirley Jackson 32:48, Ruairi Kendall 42:08, Kay Hack 42:16.

Afterwards a small number of brave souls did a Santa splash and had a dip in the sea.

The conditions for Saturday’s Parkrun were reminiscent of conditions on 21 December, with high tide at 8.21am there was very little (and in some cases no) sand to run on.

Nonetheless, 45 runners turned out to take on the course, and apart from getting their feet wet, conditions were fine. There were 5 first timers and 3 runners recorded new Personal Bests with representatives from 7 different athletics clubs

David Stewart (20:27) of Sheffield University Cross Country & AC and Donna Hughes (27:26) was first lady.

Springwell Times: Robert Simpson 21:16, Mervyn Thompson 23.32, Andrew Parkhill 24.53, Peter Jack 25.47, Kay Hack 29.20.

Patricia McNally completed her 50th parkrun, that’s 4 runners at the Portrush event who have earned their red T-shirt and with a number of runners on 40 plus runs, more presentations are expected soon.

Jim and Agnes Platt completed the Waterworks parkrun on Saturday. Jim running 24:47 and Agnes 36:55.