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First Sheeps Head Challenge raises more than 3000

September 8th, 2015 12:50 PM

By Southern Star Team

Runners and walkers on the Sheep's Head last weekend

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THE first ever Sheep’s Head Trail Challenge was deemed a success as 189 walkers and runners made the most of the sunshine and stunning West Cork scenery last Saturday.

The world famous Sheep’s Head Way, which in 2009 was selected as a European Destination of Excellence, was the picturesque setting for the charity event which raised €3,215 for Bantry Hospital and the Ahakista Community Association (ACA).

Race organisers were grateful that the showers, which had been prevalent all week, were absent on the day, with the peninsula basked in sunshine as participants made their way from the start line at the Ahakista Bar, before embarking on the 15km route.

The Glanlough Loop offered views of both Dunmanus and Bantry Bay before returning to the finish line in the bar’s garden, overlooking the Ahakista Regatta, which had been postponed previoulsy due to the bad weather.

Edward Casey was the first to cross the finish line in a time of 1:22:56, while Loretto Duggan was the leading female entry, completing the course in 1:40:44, ensuring her visit from Clare was a successful one.

‘I saw the race advertised on Facebook and love this kind of terrain and unique location,’ she said. ‘There was great support from the walkers as I jogged along, all who had all set off an hour ahead of the runners. This was a really great part of the event as they offered great encouragement on the course so a great atmosphere was created. I’m already looking forward to next year.’

Race organiser Declan Whooley, a native of Ahakista, admitted that the event surpassed all expectations.

‘As it was the first year of hosting the event, we really had no idea how many people would show up on the day. We were lucky with the weather, but the effort from all the volunteers, as well as such generous sponsorship, made it a great day out for everyone.’

All proceeds from the race will go directly to the Friends of Bantry Hospital and the ACA and both have already earmarked how the money will be spent.

‘The Friends are proposing to purchase a number of rotational mattresses for the hospital,’ Friends of Bantry chairman Declan Hurley said. ‘These mattresses are designed and developed for patients who are at risk of circulation problems from immobility due to ageing, rheumatoid arthritis, traumatic brain injuries, stroke victims and comatose patients, which often leads to skin breakdown and bed sores.’

Ahakista Community Association PRO Jessica O’Sullivan said that the success of the event will have a positive impact on the funding application for a multi-purpose community centre in the area.

‘Living on a peninsula is unique and the community know how important it is to take care of its residence and visitors to ensure we have a flourishing future. Every cent donated from the Trail will go into this building and we cannot thank the runners and walkers enough.’

TV presenter Graham Norton, who owns a house in Ahakista and is heavily involved in community initiatives, said the ACA and Friends of Bantry Hospital play crucial roles in the area. ‘I am delighted that the day was such a success,’ he said.

THE first ever Sheep’s Head Trail Challenge was deemed a success as 189 walkers and runners made the most of the sunshine and stunning West Cork scenery last Saturday.

The world famous Sheep’s Head Way, which in 2009 was selected as a European Destination of Excellence, was the picturesque setting for the charity event which raised €3,215 for Bantry Hospital and the Ahakista Community Association (ACA).

Race organisers were grateful that the showers, which had been prevalent all week, were absent on the day, with the peninsula basked in sunshine as participants made their way from the start line at the Ahakista Bar, before embarking on the 15km route.

The Glanlough Loop offered views of both Dunmanus and Bantry Bay before returning to the finish line in the bar’s garden, overlooking the Ahakista Regatta, which had been postponed previoulsy due to the bad weather.

Edward Casey was the first to cross the finish line in a time of 1:22:56, while Loretto Duggan was the leading female entry, completing the course in 1:40:44, ensuring her visit from Clare was a successful one.

‘I saw the race advertised on Facebook and love this kind of terrain and unique location,’ she said. ‘There was great support from the walkers as I jogged along, all who had all set off an hour ahead of the runners. This was a really great part of the event as they offered great encouragement on the course so a great atmosphere was created. I’m already looking forward to next year.’

Race organiser Declan Whooley, a native of Ahakista, admitted that the event surpassed all expectations.

‘As it was the first year of hosting the event, we really had no idea how many people would show up on the day. We were lucky with the weather, but the effort from all the volunteers, as well as such generous sponsorship, made it a great day out for everyone.’

All proceeds from the race will go directly to the Friends of Bantry Hospital and the ACA and both have already earmarked how the money will be spent.

‘The Friends are proposing to purchase a number of rotational mattresses for the hospital,’ Friends of Bantry chairman Declan Hurley said. ‘These mattresses are designed and developed for patients who are at risk of circulation problems from immobility due to ageing, rheumatoid arthritis, traumatic brain injuries, stroke victims and comatose patients, which often leads to skin breakdown and bed sores.’

Ahakista Community Association PRO Jessica O’Sullivan said that the success of the event will have a positive impact on the funding application for a multi-purpose community centre in the area.

‘Living on a peninsula is unique and the community know how important it is to take care of its residence and visitors to ensure we have a flourishing future. Every cent donated from the Trail will go into this building and we cannot thank the runners and walkers enough.’

TV presenter Graham Norton, who owns a house in Ahakista and is heavily involved in community initiatives, said the ACA and Friends of Bantry Hospital play crucial roles in the area. ‘I am delighted that the day was such a success,’ he said.

THE first ever Sheep’s Head Trail Challenge was deemed a success as 189 walkers and runners made the most of the sunshine and stunning West Cork scenery last Saturday.

The world famous Sheep’s Head Way, which in 2009 was selected as a European Destination of Excellence, was the picturesque setting for the charity event which raised €3,215 for Bantry Hospital and the Ahakista Community Association (ACA).

Race organisers were grateful that the showers, which had been prevalent all week, were absent on the day, with the peninsula basked in sunshine as participants made their way from the start line at the Ahakista Bar, before embarking on the 15km route.

The Glanlough Loop offered views of both Dunmanus and Bantry Bay before returning to the finish line in the bar’s garden, overlooking the Ahakista Regatta, which had been postponed previoulsy due to the bad weather.

Edward Casey was the first to cross the finish line in a time of 1:22:56, while Loretto Duggan was the leading female entry, completing the course in 1:40:44, ensuring her visit from Clare was a successful one.

‘I saw the race advertised on Facebook and love this kind of terrain and unique location,’ she said. ‘There was great support from the walkers as I jogged along, all who had all set off an hour ahead of the runners. This was a really great part of the event as they offered great encouragement on the course so a great atmosphere was created. I’m already looking forward to next year.’

Race organiser Declan Whooley, a native of Ahakista, admitted that the event surpassed all expectations.

‘As it was the first year of hosting the event, we really had no idea how many people would show up on the day. We were lucky with the weather, but the effort from all the volunteers, as well as such generous sponsorship, made it a great day out for everyone.’

All proceeds from the race will go directly to the Friends of Bantry Hospital and the ACA and both have already earmarked how the money will be spent.

‘The Friends are proposing to purchase a number of rotational mattresses for the hospital,’ Friends of Bantry chairman Declan Hurley said. ‘These mattresses are designed and developed for patients who are at risk of circulation problems from immobility due to ageing, rheumatoid arthritis, traumatic brain injuries, stroke victims and comatose patients, which often leads to skin breakdown and bed sores.’

Ahakista Community Association PRO Jessica O’Sullivan said that the success of the event will have a positive impact on the funding application for a multi-purpose community centre in the area.

‘Living on a peninsula is unique and the community know how important it is to take care of its residence and visitors to ensure we have a flourishing future. Every cent donated from the Trail will go into this building and we cannot thank the runners and walkers enough.’

TV presenter Graham Norton, who owns a house in Ahakista and is heavily involved in community initiatives, said the ACA and Friends of Bantry Hospital play crucial roles in the area. ‘I am delighted that the day was such a success,’ he said.

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