I'll keep this short because it's been a hectic few days.I will have a more detailed race report later in the week,but for now I will give a brief summary of my weekend in Wales.
Firstly I think the guys from Welsh Athletics and the local organising committee deserve an awful lot of credit for putting on a fantastic event.They even arranged the fine weather...even if they did overcook that one !!
On a personal note this race had a different feel to it than other international races.Probably because I was the only Irish representative.
For various reasons unfortunately Ireland were unable to field a team in this years Plate.
The rest of the field was comprised of the cream of Britain's ultrarunners and I think it was fair to say that there was no way I was expecting to win.
My pre race goal was to run a sub 7,but unfortunately the very hot conditions made for somewhat slow times.
In these tough conditions the importance of the support crew is pivotal to performance,and thats where the ever-reliable John Collins comes in.
I can safely say that if it were not for John things would have been much more difficult for me to sustain a strong effort til the end.When my mind starts to wander after hours of running thats when John does the thinking for me.I was also kindly assisted by the Scottish team who were also a great help to me and I think the support they offered me is typical of the ultrarunning community.
Winning the Anglo Celtic Plate has been my greatest athletic achievement to date.I have won my first international competition after just 18 months on the Ultra running scene and hopefully I can gain a lot of confidence from this and go on to even better things in the future.
It's day's like this that makes all the hard work and sacrifices worthwhile.
Anyway I said I would keep this short for the time being but there is one person in particular who if it was not for I would not have been running this race.
Richard Donovan of UltraRunningIreland not only kept faith in my ability,but also financially funded the whole thing in sending John Collins and myself over.
My winning this event is nothing compared to the hard work,dedication and money which Richard has put in to the sport in Ireland.
Also as usual a big thanks to all my sponsors
Pat Foudy Tyre Centre