Unique Donegal athletic double as husband and wife take cross-country titles

Ciaran and Teresa Doherty take respective titles

Tom Comack


Tom Comack


Unique Donegal athletic double as husband and wife  take cross-country titles

Ciaran and Teresa Doherty

Donegal husband and wife Ciaran and Teresa Doherty are celebrating success on the double this week following their wins at the Donegal cross-country championships in the Finn Valley Centre on Sunday.

The couple, who run with two different clubs, claimed what is a unique double. They are the first husband and wife team to win their respective Donegal cross-country championships in one year.

Ciaran Doherty, who runs in the colours of Letterkenny AC, won the senior men's championship for the first time while Teresa Doherty (formerly McGloin) is a member of the Finn Valley club and she was winning a record tenth senior ladies championship. 

“It is a first for me and really it is the first time I was in good shape for the championship,” said the Burtonport fisherman Ciaran.

“Normally, I would be back fishing in September and my preparation would not be the best. But because of Brexit, I haven’t gone back to fishing so my training regime was perfect this time around.

“I also ran the Frankfurt marathon the weekend before last so my marathon training also meant I was in great shape.  

“I also went from Frankfurt to Denmark to take the boat (fishing trawler) home and I spent three days on the boat which meant my running was confined to a few short stints on the treadmill.

“It turned out to be the perfect preparation because I was well rested and I know when I stood on the start line on Sunday I was in perfect shape and I knew if I ran as I could, I had a great chance. 

“It was good to win it because it was something I always wanted to do. I had come close a  number of times with a number of seconds in the past.” 

Former winner of the championship Patrick Brennan, Finn Valley was second and Mark McPaul, Finn Valley finished in third place. 

Teresa Doherty claimed a tenth Donegal senior Ladies cross-country championship when regaining the title she lost last year to Nakita Burke, Letterkenny AC.

“I was disappointed to lose last year so I was determined to win it back this year,” said Teresa. 

Nakita Burke was second with Clare McGuigan, Lifford/Finn Valley AC in third place.