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Sean Lawton wants to finish top of the class in schools’ 3000m 

February 19th, 2024 10:40 AM

By Southern Star Team

Sean Lawton wants to finish top of the class in schools’ 3000m  Image
Sean Lawton on his way to victory in the senior boys' race at the South Munster Schools. (Photos: John Walshe)

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SEAN Lawton continued where he left off last year at Munster schools level with a comfortable victory at the South Munster cross-country championships which took place at Tramore Valley Park in Cork.

The Durrus athlete, representing Coláiste Pobail Bheanntraí, was never in any danger as he came home with a clear 32 seconds to spare over runner-up, Ryan McCarthy of Kinsale CS. Third was Aidan Maher (St Colman’s, Fermoy) while the expected challenge of Robert Troy, second last year, never materialised as the Charleville CBS student had to settle for fourth.

Winner of both South Munster and Munster titles 12 months ago, Lawton is mixing indoor and cross-country this season and a couple of weeks ago knocked over six seconds off of his previous best for 3000m when recording 8:35.09 at the AAI Games, an event he is also scheduled to run this weekend at the national senior championship.

‘It was fairly mucky today and hard to pull through,’ he admitted after the tough 5km at Tramore Valley Park. ‘The first two laps were grand so after two kilometres I decided to push it on. I’ve been training for cross-country really so it’s hard to run indoors as well but right now my focus is on the Munster and Irish Schools.

‘Last year was a bit of a disaster at the Irish Schools as I was third with about 10 metres to go so I'll definitely be hoping to win that this year’.

There was further success for the Lawton family as Sean’s younger brother, Finnian, representing Scoil Mhuire, Ballingeary, took third in the intermediate race.

The senior girls’ race saw a fighting performance from Ella Collins of Coláiste na Toirbhirte, Bandon, who finished just three seconds behind race favourite Nicole Dinan of St Angela’s, Cork. Third was Sairise Twomey from St Mary’s, Macroom.

Olive O’Flynn, Sacred Heart Clonakilty, second in the intermediate girls race, pictured with her dad Richard, former Irish international athlete.


Another fine performance came from Olive O’Flynn of Sacred Heart College, Clonakilty, who took the silver medal behind namesake Rachel from Loreto, Fermoy. Third place here went to Eanna Duff of Coachford College. As if a tough 3km cross-country wasn’t enough for Olive O’Flynn, she then promptly returned to her school to turn out later in the afternoon for their senior hockey team in a cup game.

The first four teams in each race, along with the top 15 individuals, qualified for the Munster Schools Championships which will take place at the same Tramore Valley Park on Tuesday, February 27th.


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