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On Your Marks For Cheetah Run 2024...

Updated: Apr 6

Thursday May 16th 2024 at Fota Wildlife Park.
Bookings Open on Sunday April 7th 2024 at 9am!

Link for ticket bookings:

Nellie Bateman Belgooly AC, Ryan Creech Leevale AC, Freya Bateman Belgooly AC. Photo by Darragh Kane.

We are delighted once again to announce that entries open for our Eagle A.C. Cheetah Run in Fota Wildlife Park, on Sunday 7th April 2024, at 9am. The Cheetah Run is always a hugely popular and fast selling event, so do book your places quickly to avoid disappointment!

Last year your entries raised an impressive €5,500 for wildlife conservation and this was directed towards the Giraffe Conservation Foundation. This incredible initiative helps protect and preserve the Rothschild Giraffe, a species facing numerous challenges and habitat loss across Africa. Eagle A.C. was delighted to be involved in supporting & contributing to vital efforts to secure the future of these majestic animals. We hope this year’s event can be equally as successful.

The Cheetah Run

The Cheetah run offers a truly unique experience to run a 5K race (adults & those aged 16 and above) or a 1-mile race for those aged 11-15 years, within a wildlife park. Your supporters will not only be your family and friends but also all the amazing animals that live within Fota Wildlife Park. The Giraffes, Ostrich's & Zebra’s always take a particular interest on the start line, but you will also run past the Cheetahs, Monkey Island, the Asian Sanctuary and so much more. It truly is a race like no other, and one to be experienced.

Freya Bateman Belgooly AC, Ryan Creech Leevale AC, Nellie Bateman Belgooly AC. Photo by Darragh Kane.

The Cheetah Run Launch 2024 

This year we were delighted to be joined by 3 fantastic athletes to launch both our 5K & 1 mile event.

Ryan Creech is an inspirational Leevale AC athlete who has demonstrated resilience and determination, in becoming one of Ireland's top distance runners.

Ryan’s running career showcases impressive performances across various distances.

In Seville Marathon in February 2023, Ryan made his marathon debut, finishing with an outstanding time of 2:13:03, becoming the second fastest Corkman in marathon history, and ranking 11th overall on the Irish Marathon All-Time Rankings. He returned in 2024 to run a hugely impressive 02:12:28. Ryan was also the second Irish man home in the Dublin Marathon 2023 (02:14:08).

He has achieved remarkable times in other distances such as the half marathon (1:05:49), winning the and the Tullamore Harriers AC Half Marathon Stadium in August 2023 and he was also the winner of the Cork Half Marathon in June 2023 (01:06:45).

Ryan also claimed victory in the AXA Raheny 5 in both 2023 and 2024, displaying his dominance in road races.

With his sights set on a place in the Paris Olympics 2024 we are incredibly grateful to Ryan for taking the time out of his busy schedule to promote our Cheetah Run 5K event.

Nellie & Freya Bateman Belgooly AC, Ruairi Egan & Karen Bevan Eagle AC Race Directors, Conor Kavanagh John Buckley Sports, Ryan Creech Leevale AC, & Roisin Fitzgerald Marketing Manager at Fota Wildlife Park. Photo by Darragh Kane.

We were delighted also to welcome Freya and Nellie Bateman of Belgooly A.C., to promote our 1-mile event for those aged 11-15 years old.

Freya & Nellie are sisters who are rising stars in athletics, and we are thrilled that they have agreed to promote or Cheetah 1-mile event. Between them they have many national indoor, outdoor, and cross-country titles since they started running with Belgooly AC 7 years ago. Freya & Nellie have also experienced UK national indoor events in both Edinburgh and Sheffield over the past 2 years, medalling in both. They both love athletics and are very grateful to their coaches at Belgooly A.C. for the advice, coaching and opportunities they receive. We are sure there is a very bright future in athletics for both Nellie & Freya and we would like to congratulate them on their tremendous achievements so far and wish them the very best of luck into the future.

The Races.

The 1 Mile Race

The 1-mile race for juveniles this year (Ages 11, 12, 13, 14 & 15) will commence at 7:15pm. Due to the popularity of this event we have increased the numbers to 150 places this year. The one-mile race has been measured accurately by Jones Counter, will be chip timed and all finishers will receive a medal. Please note that there are no prizes in the juvenile race.  We would also ask all entrants to please respect the lower age limit of 11 years old for this race as per Athletics Ireland Insurance requirements.


The 5K Race 

The minimum age for the 5K Race is 16 years old as per Athletics Ireland permit requirements. This will commence at 8pm. 

There will be prizes for the first 5 men and women, as well as a generous array of age category prizes. The exact number of prizes for the age categories will be determined after the online entries close with the aim of making each age category competitive.


How to Enter: 

Entry is via 'Eventmaster' and the link for ticket booking is:

The entry fee for the 5k event will be €16 (+ processing fee), entry fee for the 1-mile junior race will be €9 (+ processing fee), the athletics Ireland levy is also applicable to those runners who are not currently members of an AAI club. The places for the 1-mile race are limited to 150 & the 5k places are limited to 850 runners. Each runner can bring a maximum of four visitors along with them free of charge to watch the race, this is a part of race entry. Access will be controlled on the night and gates open at 6:30pm


 What's New This Year

This year we will return to park entry via the main ticket booths and your number collection will be provided from the ticket booths. This was very successful last year and allows entrants to enjoy the wildlife park straight away, avoiding number collection queuing.

The teas, coffees and prize giving ceremony will take place this year in the brand-new Education Conservation & Research Centre. This is an exciting opportunity to see the most recent and extremely impressive developments at Fota Wildlife Park.

 Education Conservation & Research Centre at Fota Wildlife Park.

Following the sell-out event in 2023, we are looking forward to welcoming everyone back again to our exciting and unique race in 2024. We are very grateful to John Buckley Sports & Brooks Running for their ongoing support of this event. We are grateful also to the OPW and to Fota House for their continued support in allowing us to use their property. It is a pleasure to work with everyone at Fota Wildlife Park and we are delighted to again support their wonderful research & conservation projects. 

Freya & Nellie Bateman Belgooly AC, Karen Bevan & Ruairi Egan Eagle AC Race Directors, Ryan Creech Leevale AC,

& Conor Kavanagh of John Buckley Sports. Photo by Darragh Kane.

Fota Wildlife Park

Fota Wildlife Park has been listed as one of Ireland’s Top Ten visitor attractions (CSO 2010) and is the most popular tourist destination in Cork. Hundreds of thousands visit the park every year. Fota is a non-profit organisation and is also a registered charity. It is completely self-financing, relying entirely on gate receipts and membership fees for its income, and any financial surpluses generated are reinvested in order improve infrastructure and promote the company’s core objectives of conservation, education, and research. 


 Our Sponsors 

John Buckley Sports.

Eagle A.C would also like to acknowledge the continuing generous sponsorship of John Buckley Sports for this year’s race. John Buckley’s has been a great supporter of road races and athletics in the Cork region over the years. It is one of the main sports shops in Cork for running shoes & clothing, offering valuable advice and expertise to all customers.

Please note that John Buckley Sports are offering a 20% discount if you bring your race number into their store for the 2 weeks after the race.

Their website can be found at


Brooks Running.

The club would also like to thank Brooks Running another generous sponsor of the race.  Brooks Running are one of the major brands for running gear worldwide and have a wide selection of running shoes and apparel for men and women.

Their website for the UK and Ireland is


Route Maps

 Cheetah Run 1 Mile Route Map Cheetah Run 5K Route Map

If you would like any further information or have any questions please do contact us on

We look forward to seeing you on May 16th!

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