Donegal Teams compete in Aviva UK Sportshall Finals 2009

(Ref: UK Sportshall Website)


The 2009 Aviva UK Sportshall Finals marks the climax of this season’s Aviva Sportshall UK Championships with more than 500 athletes descending on the NEC’s LG Arena, Birmingham, next Sunday, to contest the season’s final honours.


Former Sportshall winner Kelly Sotherton, the All-Rounder Champion in 1992, and current World ranked Heptathlete, will be on-hand to welcome the athletes, offer support and encouragement and make presentations. Whilst Kelly of course competed for the Isle of Wight back in 1992, she will no doubt follow closely the performances of the Birmingham athletes, several of whom are fellow members of Birchfield Harriers. Birmingham emulated Avon’s success in the first regional event of the season in securing all four regional team titles. With Derbyshire, Norfolk and West Yorkshire repeating this feat, a number of counties will be out in force supporting their young athletes. The leading teams from each region are joined by the Regional All-Rounder Champions. Suzi Palmer (Derbyshire) and Ryan Stride (Birmingham) return to the UK Finals for one final time having qualified in successive years as Regional winners. Gloucestershire’s Sophie Clifford narrowly missed out on the South West All-Rounder title last year, but following a series of convincing performances in Torbay become’s Gloucestershire’s first ever representative at a UK Final.


A number of athletes are invited to Birmingham on the basis of outstanding performances in their individual events, with one performance standing out above all others. Nikita Campbell-Smith smashed the Under 13 Standing Triple Jump record, extending this from 7.73m to 8.10m, a record that had stood since 1994. Joe Bibby (Oxfordshire) joins the elite group of those having completed 97 in the Speed Bounce and Connor Laverty (North West Wales) set a new Welsh record of 7.95 m in Standing Triple Jump.


The UK Final is being staged at the LG Arena, NEC, Birmingham on Sunday 22 March.  Doors open at 10.30 am and the event starts at 12.00 noon. Admission to all spectators is free.




Donegal’s Young Stars

(Ref Letterkenny AC Website & Eamon Harvey)



An exciting and very talented squad of juvenile athletes from the county are making the long trip to Birmingham. Two teams, U/13 girls and U/13 boys, will represent Ulster as provincial champions, having successfully come through county trials, plus success at the 'West Ulster Finals' in Omagh and the 'Ulster Finals' in Magherafelt. These two teams bode well for athletics in the county as there is no doubting about their talent.


Donegal Sportshall Coordinator Neil Cullen who has attended these trials over many years says “this will be an occasion they will not forget; four hours of all the disciplines in Sportshall athletics against the best young athletes from all over the U.K can only benefit these youngsters in their future development in the sport. Any individual medals would be a great bonus and hopefully there will be some. On behalf of the 'County Athletic Board' I wish both teams every success”.


Neil also wishes to thank the various clubs involved who brought these youngsters to trials and especially last Sunday’s get together of both teams. “I wish to thank the various schools also who have provided sponsorship towards sweat tops and general expenses involved in the trip".


The Donegal teams will be collected at McElhinneys Stores Ballybofey (7.45am), Bonagee roundabout (8.00am) and Kernans Newtowncunningham (8.10am). They should have packed lunch in lieu of the long days travelling and English sterling for pocket money. No football tops are allowed to be worn on her the trip.


U/13 Girls

Kelly McGrory, Karen Tracey, Kate Mc Gowan, Emma Brady (Tir Chonaill) Jade O`Donnell, Caroline Sharkey, Nicole Boyle, Hannah Gallagher (Rosses) Rose Boyle, Clodagh Brennan, Lisa Gibson (LAC) Aine Bradley (Inishowen).




U/13 Boys

Andrew McClean, Eoin O`Leime (Sliabh Liag) Conor Morrison, Shaunie Henry, John Russell (LAC), Christopher Kelly, Darragh McGlynn, David McCarron, Tiernan O`Dea (Rosses), Michael Kelly (Milford), David McLaughlin (Inishowen, Jamie Brennan (Tir Chonaill).




The full line up for Sunday’s event appears below:
Avon u13 girls & boys, u15 girls & boys orange
Birmingham u13 girls & boys, u15 girls & boys maroon
Cheshire u13 girls & boys, u15 girls royal blue
Derbyshire u13 girls & boys, u15 girls & boys red
Derry City u15 girls sky blue
Donegal u13 girls & boys sky blue
Durham u15 boys violet
Dyfed u15 boys white
East London u15 boys grey
Fermanagh u15 boys sky blue
Hampshire u13 girls, u15 boys forest green
Lancashire u13 girls, u15 girls & boys black
Norfolk u13 girls & boys, u15 girls & boys purple
NW Wales u13 girls, u15 girls white
Powys u13 boys white
South London u13 girls & boys, u15 girls grey
Surrey u13 boys, u15 girls & boys navy blue
Tyne & Wear u13 girls & boys, u15 girls violet
Warwickshire u13 boys forest green
West Yorkshire u13 girls & boys, u15 girls & boys irish green
Individuals   lime green