The first ever marathon in South-West Donegal is set to be the biggest single day sports event in Donegal in 2018.
That is the goal of Eunan Quinn as he fulfils a dream to bring people from all over the world to compete along the coastal roads from Killybegs to Glencolmcille on Sunday, 8th July, 2018.
Eunan was in Magee of Donegal on Tuesday as the wheels are put in motion for an event that is already attracting entries from all over the world. Magee have put their name behind the event and Patrick Temple says they are very happy to be associated.
“It’s absolutely fantastic for Magee, as a homegrown Donegal brand, to be sponsoring the Donegal marathon which is epitomising many of the things that Donegal stands for, the rugged landscape, the Wild Atlantic Way and the wonderful lifestyle we have here. I hope people come and enjoy it.
“As a family, we tend to be outdoor people. Most of us have done a marathon. For some of us it’s been a few years, but this will rekindle it,” said Patrick.
Speaking on Tuesday in Magees, the main organiser, Ballybofey man Eunan Quinn, was very enthusiastic about the event.
“The idea came from being involved in sport all my life and the attraction of the beautiful scenery and coastline that we have in Donegal. No event has been done in south-west Donegal. I have had the idea for quite a while,” said Eunan Quinn, who said he was a frequent visitor to the likes of Fintra beach and the Silver Stand beach.
“It is a beautiful part of the county,” said Eunan, who said he started athletics with Finn Valley and then became a triathlete and competed in Ironman events. “I was fortunate enough to go the world championships in Hawaii a few times, in 2002 and 2003. That led to a bit of Ultra Cycling. A couple of years ago I competed in a race around Ireland, myself and Ted McCaffrey from Ballintra.
“That led on to putting on events at scenic areas around Donegal. I would hope that this would become an annual event. Looking around the country you have events like Connemara and Dingle and it’s about time we had this in Donegal,” said Eunan.
The event will also include a Half Marathon, which will start outside Carrick and finish at the same place.
“It will be a challenging marathon, probably one of the toughest in the country,” he said, adding that he hopes also that the event will become a sort of Gathering for people to come back home for the summer.
“Already we have people signed up from as far away as Tasmania, from Australia, the US. We have more than 20 from the London area and from all around the country.
“You can enter online. The registration system is set up on Excel Sports Facebook page.
“It is great also to have Magee on board because their brand fitted in to what we are doing here in Donegal.”
Eunan added that they were hoping that companies and corporations would take part as a sort of inter-firm basis. “We would be hoping to challenge the big corporations to come and use the event as part of their social responsibilities.
“It will also be a huge commercial benefit for the entire area from Donegal to Glencolmcille and it’s my goal to make this the biggest one-day sporting event in the county,” said Eunan.