There was an almost carnival atmosphere in Dunboyne with a big crowd turning up for the 2nd Dunboyne Winter Throws Meeting. The event was kicked off by over 200 committed runners putting on a great show in the sun-drenched 5k race. The mood was set for some good things to come, and we were not disappointed as there were over 15 personal best throwing performances – clearly a sign of a solid period of winter training paying off.
The most notable performance of the day came from Dunboyne’s own Padraig White in the Men’s hammer with a massive personal best of 66.09m moving him to the 12th best all-time performance by an Irish thrower. White arrived quietly to the venue, hoodie up and relaxed looking. Competition on…Hoodie off.…only to reveal a new ‘Mohican’ haircut – an admirable statement supporting Cancer Research. This was a great comeback for White who has had a couple of difficult years with niggling injuries and illnesses.
Tom Furlong with 60.75m, James McCabe on 59.88 and Adam King with 62.09 (5k) provided supporting cast in the hammer season opener. Alice Akers was the best of the girls reaching 54.65m with the lighter 3k implement and there were good shows from Aoife Vaughan Witts (47.79m) and a big PB from Caoimhe Morris.
Clonliffe’s Tomas Rauktys led the way in the discus with 53.99m backed up with his best ever series – all his other legal throws over 52 and a foul approaching 55m . Under 17 Eoin Sheridan took no time settling in with his first competition with the 1.5kg discus - his effort of 49.48m passed the qualifying mark for the European Youth Olympic Festival – surely a great confidence booster as he now has two seasons at this implement weight. Marco Pons was just below his best with 46.73m, and in the women’s event Sophie Parkinson-Brown also opened well with 43.00m.
Finn Valley’s John Kelly was best of the Shot Putters achieving a best ever of 16.99m with the 5k, but there is lots more to come with warm up throws going over a metre further. Tomas Rauktys backed up his Discus performance with another win in the senior event with 15.92 despite some technical issues.
All in all, a very successful day in Dunboyne – a great opportunity to assess the effect of winter training, and promise of an exciting year ahead for Irish Throwing.