Irish Mountain
Running Association

Trooperstown Hill


Kevin O'RiordanWarren Swords



Warren Swords

Trooperstown is a race that I look forward to and dread in equal measure. I've run it 7 or 8 times at this stage and it never gets easier.

There isn't a single section in the race where you feel comfortable. And the new excellent route piles more pain on an already painful race.

Key to this race is pacing. From bitter experience, going out to quick results in a miserable trudge around the mtn.

With a quick 3, 2, 1 and off we went on a fast downhill start. I made an effort to take it easy in first km and settled in around 7th or 8th place.

After climbing up the steep section through the trees, onto the road, a nice group of 7 or so formed with Diarmaid leading on his own.

I tucked in behind Torben up the first steep climb, using a mixture of hiking and running to keep up. Graham Bushe and Barry Murray were close behind me, with Mikey Fry, Paul Keville and Gerard Maloney ahead.

Approaching the top of Trooperstown, 7 of us were still together with myself hanging off the back. I've made up a couple of places on the undulating section across to the turnaround. At the turnaround, Barry put in a good effort to overtake all of us in the group besides Graham. But we were within 20 seconds of each other so the race for the podium was still very much on.

I was still at the back, moving well on downhills but suffering on the climbs back home. Got over Trooperstown and made my move on the downhill, passing Mikey and Paul with just Graham and Barry left in front of me from the original group.

Pushed hard, took some risks and was starting to close the gap on Barry. But both Graham and Barry were descending well. Onto the fireroad and the gaps remained the same with Graham taking a well deserved, 2nd place, Barry in third and myself in fourth.