Four of the winning team – Donie Walsh, Richie Crowley, Stephen Hennessy and Pat O’Connell – were in attendance and apologies were received from John and Denis Buckley, Pat O’Riordan and Jackie O’Callaghan. Mary-Pat Hodgins accepted the award on behalf of her late husband Dick. Two other members, Matt Murphy and Liam Horgan, have also passed away since that historic day.
O’Riordan had represented Ireland in the 5,000 meters at the Tokyo Olympics in 1964 after a successful collegiate career at Idaho State University. He had won the prestigious Tullamore road race the previous month but the anticipated tussle between himself and Murphy did not materialise mainly due to the Corkman’s failure to get up with the leaders from the start.
O’Riordan went into the lead, followed by Joe O’Keeffe of Civil Service and Walsh with Murphy back in seventh place. As the Donore man continued to impose his dominance, Murphy started to move through to such an extent that at the finish he was just 18 seconds in arrears of O’Riordan’s winning time of 37:41 to gain a worthy silver. O’Keeffe held on for third with marathon man Mick Molloy from Galway taking fourth ahead of Cork’s second finisher, John Buckley.