Eighty runners scale Sugarloaf
WHILE St. Stephen’s Day is for many a time of rest to recover from days of festive overindulgence, for 80 keen runners this year, it was a day for scaling the Sugarloaf for the annual Charles Barrington Memorial Race.
The race is held to commemorate Bray man Barrington who was the first man to climb the infamous Eiger in Switzerland, and also organised the first ever mountain race in Ireland on the Sugarloaf.
Swiss Ambassador Beat Loeliger togged out, and commemorated the 150th anniversary of Barrington’s climb of the Eiger with an impressive time of 53 minutes 56 seconds.
Rathfarnham man Peter O’Farrell emerged supreme after the group lined up at the foot of the mountain on what was a cold and bright day. Top Irish women’s international Edel Mooney took first in the women’s race.
With a blast from an antique gun brandished by Barrington’s great great grand nephew Ron, the brightly coloured field shot off tackle the tricky climb.
O’Farrell swept to victory in 28 minutes and 38 seconds. Paul Nolan came a close second, and Bernard Fortune third.
The first Wicklow man home was Redcross native Ben Mangan, who took fifth overall. Liz Ryan from Bray was the first Wicklow woman home.
Cllrs Caroline Burrell, and David Grant, Wicklow Heritage Forum and its Chairman Noel Keyes, Bray Town council, Kilmacanogue GAA and Ron Barrington were amongst those helping the Irish Mountain Running Association to put the race together.
The Civil Defence and Order of Malta also provided their invaluable services on the day, and soup and sandwiches in the Glencormac Inn went down a treat later on that afternoon amongst weary sprinters and helpers.
Race winner Peter O’Farrell.
Gerry Brady was in fourth place.
Sixth-placed Tim Grummell.
Maria Dolan in full flight during the race on St. Stephen’s Day.
Paul Nolan claimed second place.
Bernard Fortune was third.
Ben Mangan came in fifth place.