LIMERICK athlete Martin Doody has turned his attention to the Dublin Marathon after his Great Limerick Run victory earlier this year.
Doody was honoured last week as the May monthly winner of the Limerick Sports Star Awards.
The Caherdavin man was the first Limerick man to win the full marathon in the Great Limerick Run.
The 40-year-old Limerick AC member won in two hours, 28 minutes and 33 seconds – a new personal best.
“I’m delighted. An Irish runner like me might get to win one marathon in his life. To win in my home town is just fantastic. The weather was nice and cool, so no-one noticed the heat was there. I've been training since January, running anywhere between 60 and 100 miles each week,” said Doody after winning the seven annual event through the streets of Limerick.
Na Piarsaigh GAA club and Caherdavin soccer club occupied his youth, before Doody turned to athletics just over 10 years ago.
“I was a half decent hurler and a half decent soccer player but I do think my best has come since I took up the individual sport of distance running. I tried my hand at shorter distances but I do think I have a diesel engine rather than a high performance one,” outlined the award winner, who recalled the roles of club coaches/officials Willie Logan, Henry Kiely and Tom Foley in nurturing his career.
With three Dublin and one Cork marathon to his credit, Limerick was always his 2016 target.
“I had maybe three lead-up races to Limerick. I did two 4-mile road races and my usual Ballycotton event at the start of the year,” he recalled.
“I had done the half marathon before in Limerick but always had planned to return to do the full event – it’s the only opportunity you get to run around the streets of Limerick!”
Back in May, Doody was ahead of schedule in the marathon.
”I went out hard, well faster than I would have planned. I would have looked at about 74-something for the half way point but I was at 72-minutes,” he recalled.
But Doody held on. On top of winning the Great Limerick Run title, he was also crowned Munster marathon champion as the Limerick event doubled up with that championship this season.
A few weeks later he again tasted success around Limerick when winning a Na Piarsaigh GAA club organised 10k.
Doody is now preparing for the National Marathon Championship, which will be October Dublin Marathon.
“It is a great opportunity to test yourself against the elite. My best in Dublin was 2.31.43 in 2008 so my aim is a PB,” said the May winner.