There was a great turnout of clubs today for the national 640kg championship which was held in New Ross. The clubs who attended were Ballinagh, Ballinastoe, Ballyhooly, Boley, Boyneside, Brideswell, Burren, Clonmines, Donoughmore, Farrenreigh, Four Lakes, Glenhill, Gortletteragh, Killoughey, Lakehill, Saltmills, The Shop, Taughmaconnell, Rockies, Streamstown & Stapeltons.
10 teams competed in the senior 640kg event which was run in one group. Boley were very strong as they topped the round robin and were joined in the semi finals by Lakehill, Gortletteragh & Boley B. Connaught rivals Gortletteragh & Lakehill faced each other in what proved to be a very tough semi final. Lakehill were a little stronger in the first end slowly working the rope over the line in a time of around 4 mins. The Mayo team also took the advantage in the second end but Gortletteragh never lost their shape and broke down the Lakehill attack to bring the contest to a third and deciding end. The fitness of the Leitrim team proved decisive as they went on to take their place in the final with a hard fought victory. Boley easily overcame Boley B to join them in the final.
The final, a repeat of the 600kg final was another excellent contest. There was very little between the teams but it was Boley who eventually won the first end in a time of just under 7 mins. Boley dug deep in the second end as their determination won out to take the gold medal and their first national title of the season making it five in a row at this weight category. Lakehill defeated Boley B to win the bronze medal. Glenhill from Co. Cork winners of last year’s novice title added the Div 2 crown this year by defeating Ballinagh from Co. Cavan in the final.
12 teams competed in the 640kg novice championship which was run in two groups of 6 teams. Once again Boyneside were very strong as they emerged from group 1 along with Stapeltons. Ballyhooly & the Shop qualified from group 2. Boyneside defeated the Shop in straight ends to qualify for the final as Stapeltons also enjoyed a straight end victory over Ballyhooly. This left the current top two novice teams in the country competing for the national title. The final was a grueling contest but it was the Boyneside men who won it in straight ends to take the gold medal to add to their 680kg & catchweight titles. Ballyhooly defeated the ever improving Shop club to take the bronze medal.
There was some good pulling the the two ladies competitions as Ballinastoe, Boyneside & Donoughmore competed for the titles. Boyneside added to their outstanding season with a straight end victory over Ballinastoe to win the 560kg title. It was Ballinastoe and the improving Donoughmore team who qualified for the final of the 6-a-side catchweight. Donoughmore provided a great challenge for the experienced Wicklow team bringing the contest to a deciding pull but it was Ballinastoe ladies who went on to take the national title, the first in the clubs history.
See full results on our Results page.
Click here to see photos from New Ross (Note: there are 3 pages of photos). Thanks to Pat Lee and everyone else who provided photos for the website.