3,000 Club Athletes Expected For National Marathon Championships

The National Marathon Championships are once again being run in conjunction with the SSE Airtricity Dublin Marathon, which takes place through the historic Georgian streets of Dublin. An expected 3,000 club athletes from all across the country are set to take part on Bank Holiday Monday (27th October) battling it out for the national individual and team marathon titles.

Men's Race

A new winner is guaranteed in the men's race for the national title with defending champion Sean Hehir (Rathfarnham WSAF) not competing, instead choosing to fully recover from his exertions in the European Marathon in Zurich in August where he placed 20th.

Of the men competing Sergiu Ciobanu (Clonliffe Harriers AC) will be out for redemption as he finished in third place last year in the national championships. Ciobanu preparations for the race have included a victory in the Galway Bay Half Marathon in early October in a time of 67.04.

Club mate Gary O'Hanlon will also have his eye on the prize on Monday after a confident boosting victory in the Athlone ¾ Marathon on the 4th of October in a time of 1:45.12. Eddie McGinley (Annadale Striders AC) will be quietly confident of a big performance come Marathon Monday having run some fast times over the half marathon during the summer.

Women's Race

Defending women's champion Maria McCambridge (Dundrum South Dublin AC) is back to defend her title and will also be vying for three national marathon titles in a row having also claimed the title in 2012. McCambridge has found a new lease of life in her running career which has included setting a new personal best of 72.26 at the Charleville Half Marathon in September.

Barbara Sanchez (Clonliffe Harriers AC) represented Ireland at the European Championships in Zurich is also in the line-up. Sanchez has a marathon personal best of 2:37.14 set in Seville in March 2013. Norah Newcombe (Ballina AC), Breege Connolly (North Belfast Harriers AC) and Pauline Curley (Tullamore Harriers AC) have all been racing competitively on the circuit in recent months in the lead to the big race on Monday.

Team Titles

As always there will be a tight battle for the various team titles with medals on offer in the senior, 35+ and 50+ age categories. For any clubs who have not already declared their teams please bring the team declaration forms to the Athletics Ireland desk at the Marathon Expo over the weekend.

Elite Field

2014 European Marathon Bronze Medallist Dimitry Safronov heads up the elite men's field. Safronov has a personal best of 2:09.35 set in the London Marathon in 2011. Esther Macheria of Kenya has the quickest time on paper in the women's race having set a personal best of 2:30.50 last October.