Quest proves challenging

More than 1400 hardy adventurers came to Kerry to run and cycle their way around Molls Gap, Bonane Heritage Park, Esk Mountain and Kenmare town.

Despite some challenging weather for the event the brave souls started and finished their event in the Square in Kenmare, covering as much as 79km in their event. This is the second year Quest Kenmare has taken place, with both events selling out months in advance. Plans are afoot to return in 2020 already. Adventure racers came from as far afield as Australia, the US, France and Spain to take part in the event.
Winners of the Expert route were Mark Nolan and local woman Ellen Vitting, who defended her title successfully from 2019. Winners of the Sport route were Gary Lawlor, Mallow Pain Clinic and Niamh Garvey. Winners of the Challenge route were David White from Clonakilty and Grainne O’Keefe from Carrigaline (see notes for full times and results).
Elite Event Management who produce the Ring of Beara Cycle Kenmare also run the Quest Adventure Series. Race Organiser, Oliver Kirwan, says the popularity of the event is testament to people’s love for Kenmare and adventure racing he said, “We have some fantastic events across Ireland and we are really pleased to come back to Kenmare with even more participants this year.
“We’ve been working with lots of people locally to make sure the event is a challenging and fun one. The residents and land owners have been great. The feedback from the participants has been very positive and we’ll certainly be hoping to return in 2020. I’d like to thank KMEG and all the volunteers who came out and stuck out the bad weather, making the event possible.”
Participants undertook one of three routes, the 28km ‘Challenge’ route, the 43km ‘Sport’ route and the 79km ‘Expert’ route.
Sarah Durkin of Kenmare Marketing and Events Group (KMEG) said, “It’s great to have this event back in Kenmare, especially this early in the year. There was a great atmosphere around town with the influx of participants, friends and spectators and the weather didn’t dampen spirits in the slightest. Kenmare has so much to offer in terms of the outdoors but also in the local hospitality in and around the town. We’ll be looking forward to welcoming Quest and the adventure racers back to town in March 2020.”
Quest Kenmare 2019 will take place on 7th March.

Expert full results

1st male – Mark Nolan (3:20:01)
1st female – Ellen Vitting (3:46:50)
2nd male – Dessie Duffy (3:22:27)
2nd female – Laura O’Driscoll (3:54:49)
3rd male – Sebastian Giraud (3:31:52)
3rd female – Aine Mahoney (4:09:40)

Sport full results
1st male – Gary Lawlor (1:46:56) 1st female – Niamh Garvey (2:12:13)
2nd male – Philip Smith (1:47:06) 2nd female – Nicola Ennis (2:12:23)
3rd male – Bernard Smyth (1:48:31) 3rd female – Regina Sheehan (2:13:21)

Challenge full results
1st male – David White (1:06:41) 1st female – Grainne O’Keefe (1:20:33)
2nd male – Simon Foley (1:11:35) 2nd female – Karena McCarthy (1:21:18)
3rd male – Gary Long (1:12:08) 3rd female – Sarah Cotter (1:21:43)

Over 40s
1st male – Derrick Evans (3:43:50)
1st female – Gillian Power (4:46:12)
1st male – Patrick Fitzgerald (1:57:47)
1st female – Joan Mahoney (2:16:47)
Challenge –
1st male – Adrian O’Donoghue (1:19:36)
1st female – Patricia Gallagher (1:24:44)

Over 50s

Expert – 1st male – Matt Casey (3:29:27) 1st female – Ger Kelly (4:32:52)
Sport – 1st male – Fran Rea (2:21:43) 1st female – Marie O’Connell (3:06:30)
Challenge – 1st male – PJ Fitzgerald (1:12:17) 1st female – Yvonne Jordan (1:29:23)