GALWAY athletes turned on the style in claiming four gold medals at the National Juvenile Track & Field finals in Tullamore over the weekend. Making the winners’ podium at national level were Emma Moore and Thomas McStay of GCH, Sarah Gilhooley of Athenry AC and Darragh Fahy of Loughrea AC.
Moore was crowned Irish U15 champion for the 800m with a superb record-breaking run of 2.11. This race was the most competitive of Saturday’s programme with the first three girls home breaking the previous record as runner-up Sarah Hosey and third placed Fiona Dillon also dipped under the old mark.
But it was the talented Moore who won out, with her second national record this year, and also adding to her National Indoor and Schools titles already captured. Next up, she will represent Ireland at the upcoming Schools International Track and Field event which takes place in Scotland this weekend.
McStay had a terrific run to claim gold in the U19 boys 3000m race on Sunday evening. He ran a terific time of 8.43, and executed his race to perfection, surging away on the last lap to take gold. He also finished fourth in the 800m final the day before.
GCH also secured other individual medals, with the consistently strong Aoife Sheehy of GCH winning two medals, firstly a silver in the U19 100m hurdles a time of 16.26 seconds, before takinmg bronze in the U19 400m. Ava McKeon also won a silver medal over hurdles for GCH in the U14 75m event in a time of 11.77 seconds. Conor Hoade claimed bronze for the city club in the U15 80m hurdles.
On Sunday, Robert McDonnell won a silver medal in the U17 400m for GCH, clocking 51.19 in the final, and will also represent Ireland in the Schools International in Scotland. Aaron Brennan, also GCH, won a well-deserved bronze medal in the U18 3000m in a fine time of 8.55.
Sarah Gilhooley of Athenry AC ran a superb race over the barriers to take gold in the U18 2000m steeplechase. Liam Shaw, also of Athenry, claimed a national silver medal in the U14 shot putt, throwing 14.15m.
Darragh Fahy of Loughrea AC showed top class sprint speed winning the U12 60m event in a swift 8.26 to take Galway’s fourth gold medal of the weekend.
For more, read this week’s Galway City Tribune.
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€46,000 Lotto winner comes forward as deadline looms
Galway Bay fm newsroom – The Knocknacarra winner of the Lotto Match 5 + Bonus from the 12th of December has come forward to claim their prize, just two weeks before the claim deadline.
The winning ticket, which is worth €46,234, was sold at Clybaun Stores on the Clybaun Road on the day of the draw, one of two winners of the Lotto Match 5 + Bonus prize of €92,000.
A spokesperson for the National Lottery say we are now making arrangements for the lucky winner to make their claim in the coming days.
Meanwhile, the Lotto jackpot for tomorrow night (27th February) will roll to an estimated €5.5 million.
Voice of ‘Big O’ reflects on four decades
From this week’s Galway City Tribune – The daytime voice of Big O Taxis is celebrating four decades in the role – and she has no plans to hang up her headset any time soon.
Roisin Freeney decided to seek a job after staying at home to mind her three children for over a decade. It was 1981 when she saw an advert in the Connacht Sentinel for a dispatch operator.
The native of Derry recalls that the queue for the job wound its way past Monroe’s Tavern from the taxi office on Dominick Street.
“There was a great shortage of work back then. I nearly had a heart attack when I saw the line of people. My then husband who was giving me a lift in never thought I’d get the job, he was driving on past and I said, let me off.
“I got it because I worked as a telephonist in the telephone exchange in Derry. But I was terrified starting off because I hadn’t been in the work system for so long.”
Back then Big O Taxis had only 25 drivers and just a single line for the public to book a cab.
“We had an old two-way radio, you had to speak to the driver and everybody could listen in. It was easy to leave the button pressed when it shouldn’t be pressed. People heard things they shouldn’t have – that’s for sure,” laughs Roisin.
This is a shortened preview version of this article. To read the rest of Róisín’s story, see this week’s Galway City Tribune. You can buy a digital edition HERE.
Baby boom puts strain on Galway City secondary schools
From this week’s Galway City Tribune – A baby boom in the late 2000s has left parents of sixth class pupils in Galway City scrambling to find a secondary school place for their children next September – with over 100 children currently facing the prospect of rejection from city schools.
The Department of Education is now rushing to address the issue and confirmed to the Galway City Tribune this week that it was fully aware of increasing pressure and demand on city schools
Local councillor Martina O’Connor said there were 100 more children more than there were secondary school places for next year, and warned that this would put severe pressure on schools to increase their intake numbers.
“This will put a lot of pressure on schools because they will have been working out the number of teachers and what resources they would need in October or November last year and they could be facing a situation where they will be asked to take an additional eight or 10 students.
“There would normally be a small excess – maybe two or three – but this year, it’s over 100. There is a bigger number of children in sixth class this year and there will be the same issue for the next few years,” said the Green Party councillor.
A Department spokesperson said while there were capacity issues, factors other than numbers could be at play, adding that there were approximately 1,245 children in the city due to move onto secondary school in September.
This is a shortened preview version of this article. To read the rest of the story, see this week’s Galway City Tribune. You can buy a digital edition HERE.