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Cullen’s comeback has the right Jingle as Travers breaks record

Mary Cullen put 10 months of injury behind her to take a classy win at the Donore Harriers Jingle Bells 5km road race in 15:38 in the Phoenix Park yesterday.

Cullen came out trumps in a quality field and finished ten seconds ahead of Ciara Mageean who also ran a quick 15:48. Interestingly neither will run in the European Cross Country Championships in Bulgaria next week.

The North Sligo athlete passed through the first kilometre in circa 3:08 with Mageean of UCD hot on her heels. The second kilometre proved critical with Cullen forging a lead that was insurmountable at the end as she powered to victory.

“I was nervous beforehand,” said Cullen. “I felt very heavy-legged going around. I wanted to break 16 minutes going in so I’m happy with that.” She will now build towards the indoors going into the new year as will Mageean. It should prove to be a competitive group of women going for the 3,000m in Prague.
Ciara MageeanCiara Mageean rolled her ankle a number of weeks ago but has returned in good form with a new personal best over 5km. She had initially planned on running the U23 race in Bulgaria but the injury put aside those plans with an emphasis on indoors.
Mick ClohiseyMick Clohisey set the pace in the men’s race for the first 3km and then local favourite John Travers stepped up the pace to cross the line in 14:06 in a new course record and take home the €200 prize money. Conor Bradley came through for second in 14:20 with Clohisey third in 14:26. Clohisey will lead the Irish men’s senior team as captain at the European cross next week.

Log on to full results

Elsewhere Martin Fagan and Lizzie Lee reigned supreme in the Waterford AC half marathon running 64:16 and 74:30 respectively. Lee gave birth five months ago and has come back better than ever with a new personal best.

For full results click here

Kevin Batt finished fourth in the NCAA division 2 cross country championships but had the consolation of helping his college Adams State to the team title. He will return from the States to run on the senior team in the Europeans.

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Feidhlim Kelly

Feidhlim Kelly

Con Houlihan once told me that tomorrow is now. In taking on this venture I’ve started to try and put his words into action.

I worked for Con from 2007 till his passing in 2012 taking down his copy and a whole lot more. I have a Con Houlihan section which will go in to more depth on that.

I’m a long-time contributor to the Irish Runner magazine and am also working for the Irish Examiner.

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