THE Charlie Curran Memorial Run enjoyed its own personal best when it returned to the roads of Carlow for the first time in three years.
“Best year ever, without a doubt,” said race organiser Charlie Curran Jnr.
Just under 450 runners and walkers took part in five-mile road race on the Oak Park Road on Sunday 29 January, but more important than the numbers was return of the atmosphere and buzz associated with the event, which had been badly missed.
“The gap in the last three years … people were hungry and grateful we were back. People come to race, but also to enjoy the day,” said Charlie Jnr. “The event was three years in the making. We have done the virtual event in the last two years, but this was going on in my head for the last couple of years.”
Signs along the route were dedicated to those who had passed away in recent years, including Charlie Curran Snr, in whose memory the event was established; Charlie Snr’s mother Esther, who passed away in November; race stalwarts Ned Buggy and Gary Deevy; and national figures Vicky Whelan and Ashling Murphy.
Around 40 volunteers ensured that things went smoothly, including members of Carlow Lions Club, The Fighting Cocks GAA Club and the beavers of the 5th Town Scouts, along with the Curran family and friends. Carlow Rugby Club, Carlow Tennis Club and Carlow Town Hurling Club also provided great assistance, as did the local gardaí and the Order of Malta. Unum was this year’s main sponsor, with many staff taking part.
There is as yet no firm idea of how much has been raised for the recipient charities Debra Ireland and Feileacáin, with a virtual five-mile fundraiser also open for entries.
More photos in Tuesday’s Nationalist