Near WIT Arena
Kilkeny Waterford River
We once again start on The Mall of Ireland’s oldest city and the home of the Viking Triangle. As you stretch your limbs and get psychologically ready for the Waterford Viking Marathon in front of the Bishops Palace, Theatre Royal and world famous Waterford Crystal. You start at 9 a.m. and run down Parnell Street, John Street inside the city walls down towards the new museum and onto Bailey’s New Street. You then pass the infamous Reginald’s Tower (the home of Strongbow), then onto The Quay along the Suir past the Clock Tower, Shaws (almost nationwide) and onto Edmund Rice Bridge (no abstaining here). We drive on towards McDermott Station and out past Newrath along the dual carriageway and into the County of Kilkenny (no passport required). Then onto the N25 heading for the new iconic bridge Thomas Francis Maher Bridge, known locally as the
“Cat Lap”. Then onwards back to the Deise through the toll bridge (no e-card required today), then a little chicane onto the greenway cycle track (Waterford’s latest tourist attraction), along the greenway to Carriganore with the south western breeze in your face and river Suir by your side. What a great way to spend a Saturday morning, then at the bridge at Carriganore where Vikings landed many years before.
The Quarter marathoners leave us here and they will head for their early showers in the most modern of sporting school of excellence in the WIT Arena. The other marathoners will now continue along the greenway to Mount Congreve (the home of the Lord of Waterford). Turning left off the greenway at the place known locally as The Kilns and a sharp intake of breath we rise up to the Cork Road via R. Along the Cork Road past the local hostelry The Holy Cross where a fine culinary feast can be had but not today! As we push on towards the “Motown area of Waterford” past Tom Murphy’s who won’t be out on his own today. Now with nine miles behind us we push towards the college of knowledge WIT main campus. Turning down Paddy Brown’s Road with wind in their back we turn left at the roundabout, as we do so we slip through Lismore Park and onto the Cleaboy Road. Left then up to the Industrial Estate the home of Sunlife and no need of the NCT Centre today. You are purring along (for the half marathoners you can smell the finish). Up past Sanofi and up to Carrickphierish roundabout (when you reach here halfers it is all downhill from here).
The half marathoners continued down to the old Kilmeaden roundabout and right towards Carriganore and you will be cheered all the way home. For the full marathoners follow the halfers halfway down the hill and turn right over Knockhouse lane. As we travel along here past the new pitches of the Roanmore GAA Club onto the top of the hill where you can see a beautiful over the River Suir. Now with the hill over we slip past the Tannery and down into the Metropolis of the City past Logloss onto Gracedieu Road, past the ESB HQ and onto the Hypercentre/Waterford Credit Union corner. Left down the hill to the Rice Bridge, on turning left we run past the Smithwick Brewery no chance of a pint (we leave that ‘til after). Then past the Bilberry Goats with River Suir on your right. Head down now we pass the old Waterford Stanley site. Onward to the greenway which runs along the old Kilmeaden rail line (hope you are on track metaphorically). As you run parallel to the new bridge and Toll Plaza. My colleagues we now reach Carrignaore Bridge again. With a bottle of water we again head out to Mount Congreve in the full knowledge that the end is nigh. Up from the greenway we will travel now again along the Cork Road past The Holy Cross pub again (I know the
temptation is to stop but no). At this stage you are making it look easy. Past the Whitefield Clinic (no need to check in you’re flying now). On you go to Paddy Brown’s Road past the College of Intelligence, onto Lismore Park. Out at Cleaboy Road Roundabout and left. This is the last rise you hit because when you hit the Carrickphierish roundabout you track downhill. The finish line in sight, ears pulled back, let the legs go with the wind in your hair and the sun on your back you head for the finish. Round the Old Kilmeaden Road roundabout and then that rush of emotion and pain as you see the finish line. Push on and cross that line.