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Over 10,000 runners crossed the finish line in the inaugural Novosco 10k Grand Prix - a major running series of 13 races across four counties - and it is the veterans who dominate the final standings.

 

The winners collected their awards today at a special event sponsored by Máirtín Ó Muilleoir MLA in Parliament Buildings Stormont, with Ruth Perioli, a 58-year-old athlete from Comber, receiving top prize for finishing first in the table.

 

18 prizes in total were presented at the ceremony, including awards for the top 15 competitors in the final leader board, with a total prize-fund of more than £6,000.

 

61-year-old Mary Mackin from Lurgan finished second in the final standings, with 67-year-old Terry Eakin from Bangor coming in sixth.

 

George Morrow, a 75-year-old runner from Lisburn was presented with a special award for completing all 13 races, an impressive feat for any athlete, alongside Anne Donnelly (60 years) and Michael Kelso (50 years).

 

The not-for-profit Novosco Grand Prix is run by ChampionChip Ireland, and sponsored by technology company Novosco, which has committed to sponsoring the series again in 2017.

 

It is a unique age-graded running competition incorporating 13 well-respected and established 10k races, including the Titanic 10k, the Enniskillen 10k, and the Seeley Cup 10k.

 

Athletes’ average age-graded times over their best six races in the series are used to determine the final standings.

 

Novosco managing director Patrick McAliskey congratulated the winners: “This was the first year of the Novosco Grand Prix and we had fantastic interest from runners of a wide range of ages and abilities across Northern Ireland. The unique age-graded nature of the Grand Prix makes it an inclusive event, with all competitors in with a chance of seeing their name on the leader board. Congratulations to each of the prize-winners, and to those who completed all of the races. George Morrow in particular is an inspiration, completing all 13 at the age of 75. We look forward to 2017 and encourage runners of all abilities to enter and try to get their names on the leader board.”

 

Further information about the Novosco Grand Prix is available at www.novosco10kgrandprix.com

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The Seeley Cup 10k (inc NI & Ulster 10k Road Championships) at the end of November saw the culmination of the inaugural Novosco 10k Grand Prix, a thirteen race series hosted by ChampionChip Ireland in partnership with Novosco.

The unique and exciting Age Graded running competition incorporated thirteen well-respected and established 10k races in Northern Ireland.  Commencing in March with Jimmy’s 10k, followed by Titanic 10k, then Run Armagh 10k, Les Jones 10k, Bann 10k, Enniskillen 10k, Lisburn 10k, Comber 10k, Tandragee 10k, Storming the Castle 10k, Laganside 10k and Bangor Aurora 10k and concluding with the competition finale at Seeley Cup 10k.

The not for profit Grand Prix, which offered generous prizes for both individual athletes and teams, was the brainchild of ChampionChip Ireland’s Glenn Grant and was brought together with the assistance of a steering group which included NiRunning’s Ryan Maxwell, former Athletics NI President John Glover and Novosco employee, keen runner, and Tandragee 10k Race Director Lee Glover.  

Northern Ireland based company Novosco, a leading provider of Cloud Technologies, Managed Services and Consulting, provided headline sponsorship for the Grand Prix along with finish line arch and branding.  Forestside Shopping Centre was the official retail partner.

A total of 374 athletes registered for the Grand Prix (registration was free) and 9,618 competitors crossed the finish line in the thirteen races, with 94 completing the required 6 races to stamp their place on the Grand Prix leaderboard.  

The athlete’s average age-grading over their best 6 races was used and after the Seeley Cup 10k, Ballydrain Harriers’ Vet55 athlete Ruth Perioli was crowned champion, with an age-grading of 89.17% (1stplace).  Dromore AC’s Mary Mackin (Vet60) claimed 2nd place with 88.12%, while North Down AC’s Francis Marsh (Vet50) was the leading men’s competitor, taking 3rd place overall with 88.08% - a mere 1.09% split the top three finishers on the overall leaderboard.

There were prizes for the top fifteen competitors on the leaderboard and this is how the final standings looked: 

  1. Ruth Perioli (Ballydrain Harriers) – 89.17%
  2. Mary Mackin (Dromore AC) – 88.12%
  3. Francis Marsh (North Down AC) – 88.08%
  4. Laurence Johnston (North Belfast Harriers) – 87.27%
  5. David Clarke (North Belfast Harriers) – 87.14%
  6. Terry Eakin (North Down AC) – 86.96%
  7. Ann Terek (City of Lisburn AC) – 86.51%
  8. Debbie Matchett (Ballydrain Harriers) – 85.22%
  9. Louise Smith (North Belfast Harriers) – 85.16%
  10. Patricia Brown (Newry City Runners) – 85.08%
  11. James Wallace (North Belfast Harriers) – 84.98%
  12. Laura Graham (Mourne Runners) – 84.84%
  13. Brigid Quinn (Ballymena Runners) – 83.99%
  14. Norman Mawhinney (Ballydrain Harriers) – 83.93%
  15. Nigel Grier (Dromore AC) – 83.76%

Three runners, Anne Donnelly (Jog Lisburn), Michael Kelso (Unattached) and George Morrow (Jog Lisburn) completed all 13 of the races in the Grand Prix.  Vet60 Anne’s age-grading of 74.75% was the best of the three, with Vet50 Michael following in 68.55% and Vet75 George, who featured in a very popular video aligned with the Grand Prix, notched 66.39%.

The only two athletes who topped the podium overall and made it into the top fifteen of the final Grand Prix leaderboard were Laura Graham (Mourne Runners) and Louise Smith (North Belfast Harriers) – Laura won the Laganside 10k, Bann 10k and Bangor Aurora 10k and finished in 12th place on the GP leaderboard, while Louise won Run Armagh 10k and Tandragee 10k and claimed 9th place on the GP leaderboard.  The fastest times clocked during the 13 race GP was 30:40 by Paul Pollock (Annadale Striders) at Bangor Aurora 10k.  Kerry O’Flaherty (Newcastle AC) was the quickest lady, running 34:20 at the Titanic 10k

In the TEAM LEADERBOARD, North Down AC led the way with 274 points (1st place), with Dromore AC and Ballydrain Harriers battling it out for the runners up spot.  Eventually, Dromore AC took 2ndplace with 322 points and Ballydrain Harriers completed the top three in 347 points (3rd place).

Championchip Ireland and Novosco are delighted to announce that an awards ceremony for the top 15 prize winners and the Club prizes will be held on the 19th of January 2017 at Stormont Parliament buildings. This event will be held over lunch time and invitees, you should know who you are, should aim to arrive no later than 12pm. Further details will be issued by way of the formal invitation which will follow soon.

In summary we would like to thank each and every runner that took part in the competition and congratulate you all for making the Grand Prix such a resounding success in the first year. We very much look forward to seeing you all again at the starting lines of the 2017 races and wish you and yours a merry and relaxing Christmas.

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Happy Holidays from Novosco

Thanks for a great year, Merry Christmas and best wishes for a happy and
productive New Year!

The Novosco offices will be closed from 26th December - 2nd January.

Please see below for our support opening hours and details.

Managed Service & Service Desk

Mon 26th - Tue 27th December CLOSED
Wed 28th - Fri 30th December REDUCED SUPPORT
Mon 2nd January CLOSED

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Mon 26th - Tue 27th December CLOSED
Wed 28th - Fri 30th December OPERATIONAL CHECKS & REDUCED SUPPORT
Mon 2nd January CLOSED

Managed WAN

Mon 26th - Tue 27th December CLOSED
Wed 28th - Fri 30th December REDUCED SUPPORT
Mon 2nd January CLOSED

24/7 Support Customers

Mon 26th - Tue 27th December NORMAL 24/7 COVERAGE
Wed 28th - Fri 30th December NORMAL 24/7 COVERAGE
Mon 2nd January NORMAL 24/7 COVERAGE

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Winners of the Northern Ireland Housing Association Football League were announced last night (Wednesday) at PlayBall at Stormont Pavilion. 

Fold were crowned champions following a 10 week competition, facilitated by the Irish Football Association, which saw eight housing associations from across Northern Ireland battle it out for the title. The nail biting final against Connswater Homes went to penalties before Fold took home the trophy.

Speaking at the awards ceremony Denise Burns from Helm Housing, who are Secretariat for the League, said: “We set this league up to promote health and wellbeing for staff, as well as providing an opportunity for members from all the different housing associations to meet up and have a bit of fun. Everyone seems to have really enjoyed it and got stuck in from the start, so we’re already looking forward to next season. I was delighted that Helm’s own interim Chief Executive, John McPeake was able to join us for the awarding of the inaugural ‘McPeake Cup’, named in his honour. He has been a dedicated advocate for the housing sector in Northern Ireland for many years and a huge supporter of this initiative. We are also particularly grateful to our award sponsors Novosco, who provided the awards, and BT and NIBC who donated the prizes for players of the tournament.”

David Maginnes, Senior Account Manager at Novosco presented the winners with their award. He added: “We are delighted to sponsor this League which is the first of its kind in Northern Ireland. At Novosco we firmly believe in employee wellness, and it’s great to be part of helping to promote this culture within other organisations as part of this great initiative. Congratulations to all those who’ve taken part and who have contributed in making it happen.”

Kris Lindsay, from the Irish Football Association added: “We were charged with establishing the first business football league in Northern Ireland and the Housing Association Football League has more than delivered. The standard of football was much higher than we expected, and it was great to see so many men and women taking part and enjoying themselves. Anything that promotes good health and participation through sport is something we are delighted to be involved in and we look forward to getting behind more like this in the future.”

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Simon Hamilton at Novosco, cloud computing experts.

Novosco's impressive new offices in Belfast were today officially opened by Economy Minister, Simon Hamilton.

Based at the Concourse 3 building at Catalyst Inc (formerly the NI Science Park), the 11,000 sq ft facility represents an investment of over £1million, and more than doubles Novosco's space in the city.

The offices - the company's headquarters - include a gym, a library, a coffee dock, and a virtual reality room for staff entertainment. The architect on the project was Blackstaff Architects Belfast.

Novosco is a managed cloud provider with clients in the public, private and voluntary sectors across the UK and Ireland. It employs almost 150 people and also has offices in Dublin, Cork and Manchester.

Novosco's business has grown significantly as it has won a series of major contracts with organisations including top businesses, leading universities, global financial organisations, and some of the largest NHS trusts.

The company held an official opening event at its new base this afternoon. Speaking at the gathering, Economy Minister, Simon Hamilton MLA, said: "Novosco is making a valuable contribution to growing Northern Ireland's technology sector and the remarkable growth and development undertaken by the business in recent years highlights its confidence in our local talent base.

"Working closely with Invest Northern Ireland, Novosco has almost doubled its Belfast workforce in the last three years and implemented R&D and skills development activities to position itself competitively in the global marketplace. These new offices mark an exciting new chapter for Novosco and I wish the business continued success in the future."

Novosco managing director, Patrick McAliskey, said: "We are delighted to have the Economy Minister with us this afternoon to mark what is a very significant step in Novosco's ongoing journey. We wanted to create a unique office environment to support our efforts to recruit and retain the very best people. We don't think there are any other offices in Northern Ireland quite like those we have created and we feel that they will play a crucial role in the continuing growth of our business."

Founded in Belfast over 20 years ago, Novosco is a market-leading managed cloud provider, and one of the island of Ireland's fastest-growing tech companies. It recently acquired English specialist IT security solutions and managed services expert NetDef in a seven-figure deal.

Novosco has been ranked in the Sunday Times Best UK Companies To Work For in each of the past four years.

Simon Hamilton visits Novosco's new offices