Dublin Marathon 2011 Live Blog

 

A record 14,000 runners have signed up for this year's Dublin Marathon, which for the fifth time in its 32-year history falls on Halloween.

A course record was set last year by Moses Kibet when he turned in an impressive time of two hours, eight minutes and 58 seconds. The Kenyan has returned this year to defend his crown.

13:43 That is where we leave you with the live blog. Best wishes to the thousands of participants still out there as they make their way to the finish line. We hope everyone does so safely. Well done to everybody who finished...whatever the time!

13:23 The costumes are coming in. Jay Johnson (52) from Minnesota in the United States has crossed the line in a grass skirt and nothing else. "It's Halloween," he explained.

13:19 A runner coming around by Trinity College has just collected a toddler (presumably his own child!) and is finishing the race with the youngster in his arms!

13:15 Blood, sweat and tears to the fore at the finishing line but they are all topped with an overpowering smell of deep heat right now.

13:11 The 3.15 balloon man, Tony Brennan is in. "It is my job to run an even race and make sure those aiming for 3.15 get in on target."

13:08 Probably about four hours of daylight remaining, hopefully all those walking can make it before darkness decends.

13:06 At the finishing line, five St Johns ambulance staff rush to the aid of a man doubled with cramps. He will wake a little sore tomorrow!

13:04 As thousands continue to cross the line, the presentations to the race winners have begun.

13:03 Garda Clive Clancy from Carrick-on-Shannon ran with 200 colleagues todays says that the course was "tough". "I hit the wall at 20 miles," she said. The Garda and PSNI officers wore black ribbons pinned to their shoulders in honour of Garda Ciaran Jones and Fillipino woman Celia Ferrer de Jesus who lost their lives in last weeks' floods.

12:56 What you don't get from watching the television coverage is just how often runners spontaneously vomit once over the line!

12:53 Irish womens' champion, Linda Byrne says that she is "absolutely shocked" and "delighted" with the race and her qualification for the Olympics. See you in London for 2012 Linda!

12:51 It is a sea of grimaced faces a mile or so away as runners check watches and realise they are probably too far away to break that elusive three hour mark. It is a case of hard luck but congratulations all in one to those runners, still terrific times even if they are a shade outside of the desired times.

12:48 At the finish line there are tears of joy at long sought personal bests and tears of frustration from those who have missed out by seconds, blistered feet, bloody nipples and everything in between

12:42 "Lot of buzz, lot of people out there," says Paul Hannon, winner of the wheelchair race

12:40 Wheelchairs are being used for some of the shattered athletes now crossing the finishing line. It is exhausting just watching it happen, credit to everybody actually running the marathon!

12:38 National champion Sean Connolly said that he "felt horrendous" at the four or five mile mark but that he was glad he "stuck it out". He added that the conditions were not there for an olympic qualification time, saying that they met a "stiff wind" early on at the top of the Circular Road

12:35 Second Irishman in was Serguiu Ciobanu who finished in a time of 2.20.58. After him was Joe McAlistewith 2.24.43 with Gary O'Hanlon in fourth, Pauric McKinney in fifth, Andrew Ledwith sixth and Declan Reed seventh. All in in less than two hours and 31 minutes.

12:28 The first Irishman in, Sean Connolly, says he didn't get the time he was looking for but that he is "happy with the national title".

12:27 Big smile from Linda Byrne as she finishes as the Irish champion. The ex DCU student has also qualified for the Olympics with a great time of two hours, 36 minutes and 20 seconds.

12:24 Incredibly, the long time pace setter in the womens' race, Radiya Adilo from Ethiopia has been passed by the Kenyan Emily Rotich who has secured the €10,000 second prize. Adilo must settle for the €7,500 third place prize.

12:21 Helalia Johannes has won the womens' marathon and has set a new Namibian national record with a time of two hours 30 minutes and 33 seconds

12:19 Considering the average time from the women and the tough conditions spoken about by the wheelchair athletes, it puts in perspective how incredible it is that Ndungu set such a fast record breaking time today.

12:18 First Paul Hannon and second Jim Corbett wheel chair athletes over the line compared notes on the course. They say that the rain made the road grip a challenge and it was "a wee bit windy".

12:17 The feat of Ndungu will not be repeated by the women. The course record for the women is two hours, 26 minutes and 13 seconds.

12:15 Namibian runner Johannes looking comfortable in the lead as she nears the finishing line.

12:13 The top 10 are all refuelling in the tent with mini-bottles of water. Two of the Kenyans are on the massage tables having their legs pummelled by the physios

12:12 Unofficial finishing times for second and third place in the mens' are as follows. Kiptoo two hours, nine minutes and 52 seconds. Yator, two hours, 10 minutes and 25 seconds.

12:10 Sean Connolly from Tallaght finishing time of two hours 18 minutes and 51 seconds. He will be dissapointed to miss the Olympic qualifying time but still a great race in tough conditions. Well done Sean!

12:06 Johannes looking likely to take the womens' race as she breaks away. Leading for the Irish is Linda Byrne.

12:05 The first five in the mens' race were all Kenyans!

12:05 Coming close to the line now is Sean Connolly who leads the Irish but just misses the Olympic qualifying time of two hours and 15 minutes.

12:02 Second place for the men was Kiptoo, followed by Yator in third and last year's winner, Kibet, in fourth.

12:00 The first wheelchair athlete home in Paul Hannon, a great race from him.

12:00 A new record for the Dublin Marathon, Geoffrey Ndungu with a time of 2 hours, eight minutes and 32 seconds. After over two hours, it was 26 seconds that seperated him from being an ordinary winner to being a record setter!

11:58 He looks at his watch, he knows it and is putting in a final push

11:57 Record in sight and an extra €5,000 euro for him if he can do it!

11:56 Ndungu on College Green, striding out to what looks like an inevitable victory. He looks so comfortable

11:54 Looks like it will be a great finish in the womens' race as Adilo and Johannes both look strong.

11:53 Sean Connolly running nicely and leading the Irish athletes. Overtaking the Russian national champion at present.

11:52 Ndungu passing the Berkley Court Hotel  looks like he could do another 26.2 miles!

11:51 In the women's it is Adilo hanging on to Johannes in first and second place

11:49 Last years' winner and record setter, Kibert, is in fourth place

11:48 It will take a good finish, but Ndungu has a chance here to break the course ercord set last year at two hours, eight minutes and 58 seconds. It is all the more impressive here because of the less than ideal conditions today.

11:46 Trailing him is Kiptoo. Awaiting Ndungu if he can hold on is a €15,000 prize.

11:45 With less than 3 miles to go, he looks completely at ease with only flat road ahead

11:44 The Kenyan has an 80 metre lead

11:40 It is really getting serious in the mens' race now as the leading group drops to four with Ndungu ahead of everyone setting the pace

11:39 The men's leading group is down to five. They are expected to cross the finish line in Merrion Square in about 20 mins.

11:37 The leading group have been spread out by that break, looks like Adilo has been followed by Delume and Johannes.

11:35 Adilo is attempting to make a break as the elite women's laeding group head downhill

11:28 Maria McCambridge coming into Terenure, about a half mile behind the leaders.

11:25 The Irish women have gone through the 15 mile mark in one hour 29 minutes and12 seconds. Maria Cambridge leading with Linda Byrne

11:23 About 15 degrees out there. The lightrain has not deterred the good folk of Dublin 6 from coming out in force to cheer on the runners.

11:22 Elite women on the Templeogue Road, with three obliging men continuing to provide a wind buffer in front of them.

11:19 They are being led by Ethiopian Adilo

11:18 Among the leading women is Kenyan Olga Glock as they pass the 14 mile mark.

11:16 The elite men, at the 16.5 mile mark, are now turning into Orwell Park, rathgar and a downhill stretch. Still no clear leader.

11:13 The leading pack of women have picked up the pace and their pack is down to five. Out in front is Ethiopian Radiya Adilo followed by fellwo countrywoman Shuru Diriba Dulume. Could it be an Ethiopian one and two finish?

11:11 Leaders heading through Terenure down to Rathgar Village

11:08 Kiptoo really forcing the pace for the men

11:07 Just to clarify, it was Ben Mayio who dropped back from that leading group of seven to make it a pack of six.

11:06 Leading the Irish charge in the mens' race is Sean Connolly

11:03 Word from officials is that the halftime split of one hour three minutes and 52 seconds is the fastest time in Dublin Marathon history. Could a new course record be set today?

11:01 Leading group in the men's race is down to six it enters the business end of the race.

10:59 The womens' elite group in a pack of six are now at Dolphins BArn, heading up teh Crumlin Road. Ireland's Ava Hutchinson is about 30 seconds behind.

10:56 The women have passed the 10 mile mark in 58 minutes and two seconds. Ireland's Ava Hutchinson has done the 10 miles in 58 minutes 37 seconds.

10:54 At the halfway mark under the 64 minute mark and the leaders are threatening a record time today in Dublin

10:53 Joining Kibet in the lead group are fellow Kenyans Chepkwony Gilbert Kiptoo and Laban Moiben

10:51 Great scenes from Phoenix Park as the general pack make their way through with a lot of colour.

10:49 Leaders at the 13 mile mark

10:47 The leading male group now comprises seven runners and among them is last year's winner Moses Kibet.

10:45 A group of very chivalrous men running at the top of the lead womens' group, giving the women a nice break from the wind. Let it not be said that chivalry is dead...or perhaps they just can't run fast enough to get away, as the women look quite comfortable behind them!

10:42 The leaders are entering a stretch of tough running now with some uphill parts. After these couple of miles, we should have a better idea of the genuine contenders as well as whether the winner could have a chance of breaking last year's course record.

10:40 Among those running today is former Saw Doctors drummer, Johnny Dennelly, who is running his last marathon fulfilling a promise to compete in a marathon every month for four years. Go Johnny, go.

10:33 Being Halloween, a number of brave souls have decided that the task of running a marathon is not difficult enough and have opted to do it in costume. The man running in a full body, furry yellow costume deserves a special medal if he completes half of the course in that thing!

10:31 The predicted showers have come early but fortunately they are light. It is about 12 degrees at the moment with a light breeze.

10:29 Back at the start line on Upper Fitwilliam Street an army of volunteers are filling giant wheelie bins with discarded tracksuit pants, hats and hoodies. All of it is being donated to charity or recycled.

10:22 It is amazing how casual the top runners make it look. They could be out for a laid-back morning jog but then you realise they are almost through Phoenix Park already!

10:16 A very quick opening mile from the leaders, completing it in four minutes 34 seconds. Expect things to slow down a bit once the adrenaline has subsided.

10:12 A lead group of about 20 runners, made up mostly of Kenyans and Ethiopians, has set the opening pace and lead the race early on.

10:10 Dublin Lord Mayor, Andrew Montague, himslef pleads "a dodgy ankle" but says "I'm in awe of them. I wish them the best of luck".

10:09 It is a fairly humid day out there. Temperatures of 14 to 15 degrees forecasted by Met Eireann. Let's hope that the patchy rain they predict holds off.

9:59 Downhill and wind at their backs to start, not a bad beginning for the amateur athletes...unfortunately, it will get a bit tougher later on. I hope they all have the self-restraint to time themselves!

9:57 A lot of nervous faces on the start line as the general pack set off! 14,000 are now on the road. Good luck guys and safe journey.

9:55 Superintendent Paul Moran will lead 200 garda and PSNI officers in the race this morning. They will be first out in the next batch of runners at 10am. Each of them are wearing a black ribbon pinned to their shoulders in honour of their colleague, Garda Ciaran Jones and Fillipino womanCelia Ferrer de Jesus who lost their lives in last weeks floods

9:51 And they are off. We will have to wait and see if last year's record time can be broken and whether Moses Kibet will defend his crown

9:49 The elite athletes are on their marks

9:45 And we are off! Four wheelchair athletes get the marathon started

9:45 Now that the national anthem is over we are ready to start. A bit of drizzle is threatening, but so far fairly dry on the streets of the capital

9:39 Wheelchair athletes will be the first off at 9.45 followed by the elite athletes at 9.50 before the waved start participants begin at 10

9:36 Good morning from Dublin, where some 14,000 people are now limbering up on Upper Fitzwilliam Street for the 2011 National Lottery Dublin Marathon. Excitment is building.