Race Report 2010

Race report 2010 by Maria Murphy

Camlough Lake Festival

Camlough Lake Festival 17th – 19th September
Camlough Village was buzzing despite the rain and windy weather.
Indeed visitors from as far away as Cork, Limerick, Galway, Drogheda and Dublin turned up to
participate in a weekend filled with water based events at Camlough Lake

Local people turned out in there droves to support the festival which started out as a means to
mark the anniversary of last years Guinness World Record, however as the plans unfolded and
different sporting organizations in the area became involved the festival took on a life of its own.

The Highlights of the weekend events included an Open Water Water Polo Tournament
sponsored by Erdinger Non Alcohol Beer & Magill Financial Services which attracted Male and
Female water polo teams from all over the country.
This event the first of its kind in Ulster which took place on Friday evening and Saturday was a
phenomenal success, with all of the 9 mens and 4 women’s teams looking for registration forms
for next year before leaving for home.

All credit to the organizers and local land owners who pulled out all the stops to provide a first
class venue for the historical event. A special word of thanks must go to O’Hanlon & Farrell
Contractors who transformed the area adjacent to the lake
for the festival. Camping facilities were made available beside the lake for the visiting teams
with access to hot water and toilets Despite adverse weather conditions on Saturday evening
the Belfast based Donegal Diamonds Club won the girls Tornament narrowly defeating their
neighbor’s Cathal Brugha. In the Mens section North Dublin beat Donegal by the narrowest of
margins 1 goal to claim 1st place in the Men’s Competition.

Sunday saw the big Irish Long Distance Swimming Association events take place All of the
events are swam in standard swim suits / togs a challenge not for the faint hearted. Once again
the prestige in which our local open water swimming events are held among the swimming
fraternity in Ireland was mirrored in the caliber of swimmers who entered the four events which
ran over the course of the Sunday

The ILDSA 10km Camlough event was sponsored by M&M Services with prize money for the
winners of 1,OOO. The Men’s race was won by Chris Bryan Irish International Swimmer from
Ennis Co Clare just returned from the European Championships in Budapest in a time of 2:09:15.
In the Female 10km section race local girl Colleen Mallon shone through in her local training
ground finishing in 1st place her time 2.24.15. Colleen has had a fantastic season winning all of
the events she has entered to date in the Irish Calendar, her win in the Great Lake Windemere
17 km swim two weeks ago has resulted in a nomination for colleen for the British long distance
swimmer of the year 2010 fitting reward for a girl who is a true local ambassador for open water
The ladies 10km race also attracted entries from Maureen Mc Coy conquer of the English
Channel, Racheal Doyle, & Alison Cardwell all well know and respected Irish endurance

Perhaps the most notable of Sunday’s events was the ILDSA All Ireland Junior 5km
Championship open to swimmer 14 -18years, This year given the weather conditions the race
proved to be a tough swim, 16year old Conor Smyth from Galway City took center podium
winning his race in a fantastic time of 1:20.48 Newry & Mourne Club swimmer 14year old

Thomas Murphy from lissummon came 2nd his time 1:37.57 The Female section of this event
was won by 15year old Aine McCreesh from Forkhill who also swims for Newry & Mourne
Swimming Club her time 1:22.39.
The senior 5km race was won by Alan Laverty his time 1:31.17, In the female section Bessbrook
lady and swimming legend Brigeen Mallon mother of Colleen took first place in a time of 2hours

There was also a 5km challenge race for those swimmers wanting to compete the circuit of the
lake in wet suits Lurgan Master swimmer Keith Garry cruised home in 1:07.00 with Edel Kildare
leading the ladies home in a time of 1hour 38minutes

The week end proved to be a fantastic opportunity for locals to give it a go many people turned
up and tried out new activities in a safe well supervised environment where there was something
for everyone and the different water sports were all on show. A side show presentation on ‘The
North Channel Swim” known in swimming circles world wide as the Toughest swim in the world
was given by Brian Meegar of Bangor. Brian’s talk provided the perfect finale in Quinns Family
Pub on Sunday evening, an experienced North Channel Pilot who accompanies swimmers
across the stretch of water between Scotland and Ireland entertained those present with tales
of his experiences, only 13 swimmer have been successful in their attempt two of which were
successful this year something for our local hero’s to mull over during the winter months may be
we will have a local success in 2011

All in all the entire week end proved to be a great success plans are already afoot to make this
annual event, Congratulations and well-done to the organizing committee and volunteers who
worked together as a team to make it happen.
Thank you to St John Ambulance personnel who provided first aid cover for the events and all
the volunteers to numerous to name for their help and support in what was a positive portrayal of
the community spirit here in Camlough

Maria Murphy 25/9/2010

Scroll to top