The Art O Neil challenge January 16

art o niel logo


What is it ? what is it that attracts man to attempt the mad, to attempt the impossible or to tackle stupidity ? is it the need to conquer ones demons or the search for a new rush ? maybe, just maybe its the need to succeed, but succeeding outside your comfort zone ….. is an altogether different feeling, its success multiplied. then add the feeling of completing it as a team, sharing that feeling with others, the banter, the stories the sweat and tears. This is what GoTri Adventure is all about….. helping our members step outside their comfort zones.

The Art O Neil challenge is an ultra run of some 53 km. Yes folks thats 53 kilometers, Yes folks that is longer than a marathon. Yes folks it does involve running over mountains !!! Starting in Dublin castle and finishing high in the Wicklow mountains. One can only say …… its a challenge.

This adventure challenge starts at 2am with athletes running from Dublin castle and is completely unmarked so competitors have to navigate in the dark over the open mountain. A true test of ones capabilities

A little view

The History behind the race 

On January 6th, 1592 Art O’Neill, his brother Henry, and Red Hugh O’Donnell made a bid for freedom from Dublin Castle. It was the middle of winter and Ireland was held fast in its icy clutches but they hoped to reach the relative safety of the remote Glenmalure Valley over 50km away.

Ill equipped and underfed they were the only prisoners ever to successfully escape captivity from Dublin Castle but it was an ill fated journey with Art O’Neill dying from exposure only miles from his goal. Commemorate their great strength of spirit by making your own journey from Dublin Castle to Glenmalure but with a little help from us! Walk or Run you decide but this event is a challenge and adventure for everyone and one you will never forget. The only real question aside from Are you up for it? is…… Will we make it !!!

Art Memorial

Our team

Our teams who are led and guided by the mountain goat Paul Tierney. ( yes we are not too fully sure of how we actually let him talk us into these ideas !!) is made up of Loren Harnet, Stephen Geraty, Dean Rudd, Mairtin Carey, The Meskel brothers, Kieran Bolan and Brendan Cross. The teams will be racing together as two groups. Each with a designated leader.


The training 

There have been some big training days for the group. A few adventurous runs up the Keeper hills around NewPort co.Tipp. Along with the guys each training locally they have taken two road trips to the race venue and done recce’s of the course. Testing new equipment and trying to get to grips with the maps and their bearings.

The goals

First and foremost the lads want to finish, that is the first goal. Everything after that is a bonus, but to be able to enjoy the torture as one might say and to not get injured is another goal. As a group they have put in many big miles and one hopes from the outside looking in that for Paul, if luck is on his side that he might equal or better his 8th place last season.

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The fears 

According to Dean Rudd – “I would say the climb up to Arts cross, 40 odd k into the run, I have done it twice when it was frozen solid ice and today after doing it when the water was flowing down making it a trudge of soft mud, that’s my dred!”

Kieran Boland Believes its the overall distance of the event, “having to run/hike 25km in the dark over unforgiving ground whilst being cranky from a 30km road run”, Kieran paints a beautiful picture for next years team challenge, but this is the reality of what they face.

Loren who conquered his first adventure marathon as part of the groups training is worried about slowing his team mates down or getting a stupid injury. ” Its all about the mental strength to get it done, as long as i have that on event day, it will be grand.”

Martin Carey who is using this as part of his pre The Race training. “its just really about finishing in front of Kieran Boland, and learning from our team leader Paul. Ive looked up to him the last few years on all he has done. He really inspires me and all the lads. Hopefully then it will help give me a mental edge heading to Donegal for The Race in March.”

Paul – I’m really looking forward to seeing how the group respond to this challenge and how they support each other through the inevitable low points to get each other over the line. From a personal point of view I’m going to be trying to improve on 6 hrs 43 mins from last year with less training done so this one is gonna hurt!

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Follow the team

You can check out all about the event at the above web address.

you can also stay up to date on all the lads training and our adventure team on our Facebook page ! check it out GoTri Adventure

suncream not needed


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