Originally started in 1978 the Powley (an area in the hills surrounding Castlecomer) men decided, while playing cards, on St Stephen's day (Boxing day for British readers) to run off the Christmas excess by having a race over a cross country circuit. Not being the type of men that would be caught dead in a pair of Nike's or Addidas runners, let alone actually own a pair, the most obvious foot wear for this type of event was, yes you guessed it, WELLINGTONS.
Now the less said about the amount of alcohol that had been consumed prior to this momentous decision the better but the history books will record that Paddy Phelan became the winner of the first ever Wellington race.
1981 is a year remembered for many events (More about 1981 is available in another part of the site) but without a doubt the most sensational event was the Powley men bringing the Wellington race to 'comer (an affectionate abbreviation for the town of Castlecomer). Following an offer by local publican Jim Bollard to offer a perpetual cup to the winner.
Take a trip down memory lane...
1981 A Year to Remember
January 1 st The First Wellington race takes place in Castlecomer
Greece Joins the EEC
January 5 th Yorkshire ripper arrested
February 2 nd Proceeds of first race distributed.
February 9 th US rocker singer Bill Halley dies.
Mens Race; 1 Michael Coyle, 2 Tom Dunne, 3 Bill Murphy, 4 Harry Roche, 5 Barry Conneely, 6 Stephen Kerr, 7 John Delaney, 8 P.J. Doyle, 9 Philip Fennelly, 10 Tommy Walsh
Apologies to the Ladies competitors due to a mix up at the end of the race the incorrect results were initially announced and thanks to the competitors involved for their understanding a nd patience with us, so the results are;
Ladies Race; 1 Ciara Purcell, 2 Kate Mc Donald, 3 Breda Mc Donald, 4 Theresa Muldowney, 5 Niamh Mc Donald, 6 Caroline Keane, 7 Amy Geoghan, 8 Teresa Joyce, 9 Emily Murphy, 10 Margaret Dillon.
Wellie Race 2013 Gets the "Gathering 2013" off to a blast.
Thousands of people flocked to Castlecomer on New Year's Day to witness the 33rd Wellie Race and the First ever World Wellie Race Championship. As usual the crowds were not disapppointed with the colour and craic generated by the array of ingenious floats.
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