A NORTHSIDE athletics club has announced details of a special race that will take place the week before Christmas.
The inaugural Clonliffe Harriers Christmas Cracker 5k will be held in Santry on Sunday, December 18 at 10am.
This is a road race aimed at everyone, from joggers and indeed walkers right through to elite athletes.
As the race takes place on the last Sunday before Christmas, a festive atmosphere is guaranteed in Morton Stadium.
The event sees the return of road racing to Santry after a long absence. Throughout the 1970s, ‘80s and early 1990s there were road races held on a number of occasions throughout the year in the area.
However, with increasing traffic volumes these races to a large degree disappeared.
The M1 and M50 motorways have, of course, improved traffic conditions dramatically in and around Santry and thanks to the assistance of the local gardaí December 18 will once again see Dublin’s athletes on the roads around Morton Stadium.
The race will start on the track in the stadium. The runners will complete a lap of the track before proceeding onto the Swords Road, turning left and heading northwards and then turning left immediately into Northwood down Northwood Road, left again onto Ballymun Road and then left again back down Santry Avenue before eventually finishing back on the track in the stadium.
A road race starting and finishing on the track is unique in Dublin.
Clonliffe Harriers have teamed up with the European Recycling Platform (ERP) for the event.
ERP is a not-for-profit organisation that is involved in recycling.
On December 18 ERP is offering participants in the race the chance to win a Samsung LCD TV, a Sony MP3 player or a portable DVD player.
To be in with a chance of winning simply bring along a used battery operated/electrical toy or 10 used batteries which will be recycled.
Entrants will be put into a draw and the winners will take home one of these exciting prizes.
It is fitting that a company involved in ensuring a green environment is involved with an athletics event. Running and a green environment are not only mutually compatible but indeed are essential.
Fergal Murray of ERP, race director Tom Griffin of Clonliffe Harriers and Clonliffe athletes Becky Woods and Conor McGuinness attended the race launch. Both Conor and Becky will be participating in the race.
There are prizes for the first six men and women, juniors and masters as well as team prizes.
Entry to the race costs e15, and entries are now open through www.runireland.com or through a link on www.clonliffeharriers.com.
This promises to be a great way to kick off the Christmas festivities and bring the curtain down on the 125th anniversary celebrations of this hugely successful athletics club, which was formed way back in 1886.