The Australian Ireland Fund was delighted to see the involvement of so many of its supporters on Saturday the 24th of September in the 3rd annual Ireland Funds Global 5k run, in Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne. It was great to see participant numbers in all three cities increase with over 200 runners taking part this year!
The coveted Delta Air Lines flights, awarded to the fastest runners globally, were both won by runners on Irish soil! Paul Robinson in Dublin ran an amazing 14’40” to take out the male prize and, in Belfast, Kathryn Walls won the female prize in a time of 18’42”.
Australia contributed an incredible amount of money to the overall global total, raising more than $23,000 for charities both here and in Ireland.
The Brisbane run was graced by fabulous weather and an enthusiastic bunch of early risers that navigated road closures on Brisbane’s Riverfire Festival Day to get the first leg of the global run commenced.
An intimate group of Irish nationals, Australian- Irish families and Australian friends of Ireland participated in the second year of Brisbane involvement of the global run. First over the line were the Waterford duo of John Walsh and his daughter Poppy with an impressive time.
The group convened on the banks of the Brisbane River to review performances and enjoy a taste of Ireland.
It was a glorious day for what has been our biggest Sydney run to date with over 80 people taking part. We are extremely grateful for your effort and support.
Sydney’s fastest female and male runners were the Young Leaders’ Chair, Andrea McElhinney in a time of 22’23” and Eoin Reville with 17’50”. Sadly neither time was enough to earn them the global fastest, but both were very happy with their times.
We were delighted to have both Eamon Eastwood from Taste Ireland and Jonathan Fletcher from Running Science present on the day to lend their support.
Our post-run Irish BBQ wouldn’t have been possible without our volunteers Tina and Eilish who cooked up a storm for our hungry crowd.
After catching her breath, Sydney Chair, Andrea addressed the crowd to thank them for their support and to mention our upcoming events: The Sydney Garden Party on November 13th and the Young Leaders’ Christmas Drinks at the Opera Bar on November 30th.
Also present to support the global 5k event were former Kerry footballer and Sydney Swans player, Tadhg Kennelly and Australian Ireland Fund Treasurer Yvonne Le Bas who presented prizes to our fastest runners, and also a participation prize to Abigail Smyth.
More than one hundred runners and walkers assembled at Albert Park Lake for the Melbourne leg of the Global 5k.
Yet again, blue skies created a perfect backdrop to start the day as Melbourne Rebels rugby player Jamie Hagan officially started the 3rd leg of the #YLGlobal5k.
Melbourne runners were lucky to have Global Patron and Olympic medallist Sonia O’Sullivan run the course, taking time to chat and encourage participants along the way.
David Earls was first across the line, finishing as fastest male with a time of 18’35”. Shortly afterwards, Sophie O’Sullivan (daughter of Sonia) crossed, setting an impressive benchmark time of 18’56” for the rest of the world to chase. Sophie’s time meant she finished second fastest female globally, just missing out on the Delta prize. In the kids section, Paddy Hanley continues to top the leader board with a brilliant time of 24’55”. Melbourne Rose of Tralee, Meghan Griffin turned up and ran with her sister, Aimee. However they could not be separated, and ran identical times of 23’32”.
Melbourne runners can see their times http://tomatotiming.racetecresults.com/results.aspx?CId=16&RId=28524
Contestants were treated to a feast of Irish delights after the race.
Clonakilty Black Pudding put on their famous sausage and pudding BBQ. Taste Ireland provided refreshments and sauces on the day, along with a special treat for runners (bags of Meanies were consumed in bulk!). While a newcomer this year saw Kerry Gold pleasing the crowd with blocks of Dubliner Cheese!
At the conclusion of the run, Sonia presented prizes to runners and spent time with participants, before officially passing on the baton from Australia to Hong Kong.