The Outsider Magazine Awards took place on Wednesday night in the Sugar Club Dublin.
While most of the categories were judged by a panel of expert judges, some were voted on by the public such as Best Outdoor/Adventure Photo, Best Outdoor/Adventure Event, Best Outdoor/Adventure Film, The Just Eat Fit Food Award & Best Outdoor Escape.
The awards night was attended by a large crowd of inspiring adventurers, explorers and athletes of all sorts and their teams, from open water swimmers to triathletes to climbers to runners. They had a whopping age span of 6-94, showing that age is irrelevant when it comes to exceptional people and that anyone can achieve something amazing regardless of their age.
Audience Choice Award supported by Tullamore DEW
Ciaran Fitzgerald, Ultra Runner
Novice ultra-runner Ciarán Fitzgerald (28) took on a 600km trail run in 2018 to raise money for the ISPCA. The Waterford man ran coast to coast (from Bray Head, Valentia Island, to Marley Park, Dublin) in just six days. He finished three days ahead of schedule!
No stranger to the world of endurance, the avid cyclist has already completed the inaugural TransAtlanticWay, the 2,500km self-supported cycle race between Dublin and Cork via the Wild Atlantic Way, in nine days.
Outsider Woman of the Year supported by Active Iron
Mary Nolan Hickey
Mary Nolan Hickey (66) kicked off 2018 by running around the entire coast of Ireland to raise funds for the RNLI. That’s 1,509 miles in 104 days in the worst winter Ireland has had for years. Not a keen navigator Mary’s plan was simple. It was to just keep the sea on her right when she left her hometown of Arklow, Co Wicklow and eventually she’d end up back in Arklow.
Outsider Man of the Year supported by Columbia Sportswear
Noel Hanna, Mountaineer and Jason Black, Adventurer
For decades, K2, standing at a mighty 8,611m, has pushed climbers and mountaineers to their limits, mentally, physically and emotionally. With just over 300 successful summits and more than 77 fatalities, the stats speak for themselves. For every four people that reach the summit, one dies. Yet still they come, still, they risk it all to climb and try to conquer and tame K2.
A successful summit and descent on K2, one of the most savage mountains on this planet, seemed elusive, out of reach and something that just might not happen for the Irish.
But this year, two Irish men showed up on the Pakistani-Chinese border in July to add their names to the history books. Within hours of each other Noel Hanna and Jason Black successfully did just that.
The Olly O’Neill Most Inspiring Person supported by Great Outdoors
Caroline Heffernan, IRONMAN
Galway woman Caroline Heffernan (48) from Tri Lakes Triathlon Club competed in Ironman Barcelona in 2018 to become, what we believe, is the first Irish person with CF to complete an Ironman.
Since her diagnosis at the age of 13, Caroline has proved a force to be reckoned with, defying the odds at every turn. Her mother was told that she wouldn’t live to reach 20 when she was diagnosed.
Completing an Ironman is an incredible achievement for anyone but doing it with CF is truly inspiring and Caroline hopes it will inspire others to take on a challenge of their own.
Youth Award supported by Fulfil
Joshua Davison, Hiker
At the tender age of just 6 – yes 6! – Joshua Davison recently became the youngest person ever to climb North Africa’s highest peak, Mount Toubkal. Hailing from Killarney in Co Kerry, Joshua scaled the 4,167m peak over the course of two days with his mum Lyndsey.
It was a tough trek and to reach the summit the pair had to battle through snow- and ice-covered slopes, and 40-degree gradients in places
Sarah Brady, Ultra Runner
Tipperary woman Sarah Brady (29) is the one to watch lately on the Irish trail running scene. Less than two years after running her first ultra, Sarah broke the female record for the 127km Wicklow Way Race (16hrs 50mins) and the 70km Sli Gaeltacht Mhuscrai Ultra (9hrs 1min). She started running, like so many women, by doing the Women’s Mini Marathon.
This year alone, she was the pacer for athletes who wanted to finish the Irish 50k championships in 4 hours and 45 minutes and was the third woman across the line at the Glendalough Clover 80k. In March she came in first for women and set a course record at the Slí Mhuscrai. She was the second woman home in the Ballyhoura Mountain Marathon, broke the female record for The Wicklow Way Race, was the second female in The Kerry Way UltraLite and was the sixth female in the Garmin Mourne Skyline race.
Most Devoted Individual to the Outdoor Scene Award: Joe Lalor
Most Devoted Professional to the Outdoor Scene Award supported by Signiatec: Eoin Hogan
Eco Hero Award Supported by Clean Coasts and Leave no TraceGeorgia MacMillan, Mayo Dark Skies Project
Eco Hero Group Award supported by Clean Coasts and Leave No Trace Bray Sea Scouts
The Waterways Champion Award Carrick Cares Day
Just Eat Fit Food Award Chopped
Best Outdoor Adventure Event supported by Fáilte Ireland Quest Killarney
Best Outdoor Escape/Provider Galz Gone Wild
Best Outdoor Adventure Film Supergran, Maureen Armstrong
Best Outdoor Adventure Photo Watson the Adventure Dog
Congratulations to all nominees and winners! Roll on the adventures outside in 2019.