Track & Field

Thomas Barr Bidding For 5th Title At GloHealth National Champs

Thomas Barr is bidding for his 5th 400m hurdles title at the GloHealth National Track and Field Championships this weekend (August 8/9) at Morton Stadium as he primes for the World Track and Field Championships later this month.

“It’s the one time of the year where all of Ireland’s best, and up-and-coming athletes, get to showcase their talent in front of a home crowd,” said the World Universities Champion whose biggest rival for the championship will be Paul Byrne (St Abbans).

“Athletes will usually be on top form, as with the case of this year it is in a period where some of us are priming up for worlds, and some are chasing standards,” continued the Ferrybank star.

English V Murray
English gears up for worlds against Murray

UCD’s Mark English will be one of those priming for the world championships and he will face stiff competition in the 800m against Clonliffe Harriers’ Declan Murray.

English bounced back into form at the London Anniversary Games finishing fourth in a season’s best of 1:45.49 and secured a qualifying time for the Olympic Games next year. Karl Griffin, who has had an excellent season finishing 6th in the European U23 Atheltics Championships, is down for the 400m.

Cullen’s comeback

North Sligo’s Mary Cullen goes into the women’s 5,000m in search of a world qualifying time of 15:20.00. Cullen, European indoor 3,000m bronze medallist in 2009, is running her first outdoor national championship since 2007.

Proper looks to hit world standard

Kelly Proper is another athlete looking for the world qualifying time in the 200m (23.20) but is among a group of athletes still inside the new IAAF quota system that could see them secure selection for Beijing.

Relay spots up for grabs
Among the excitement at the national championships will be the men’s 400m where a number of athletes will be looking to get on the team with a strong showing. Brian Gregan is the favourite for the title with a season’s best of 45.85.

Heffernan’s champion return

Defending world 50km race walk champion Robert Heffernan (Togher) will compete in the 10,000m race walk alongside fellow internationals Alex Wright (Leevale) and Brendan Boyce (Letterkenny). All three are Beijing bound later this month.

RTÉ Coverage
There will be an hour’s highlights package on RTÉ 2 at 8:00pm on Sunday evening.
Athletes in contention for the IAAF quota for selection
Link for the athletes quota here.

The quota system is explained on the AAI HP site: here.

EVENT             RANK         NAME              TIME        EVENT QUOTA

4X400m Relay    13           Ireland                3:01.67            16

200m                   51          Kelly Proper        23.24               56

800m                   44          Ciara Everard      2:01.21           48

1500m                 42          Ciara Mageean    4:08.32           45

3000mSC             42         Sara Treacy         9:44.14           45

110m hurdles       36          Ben Reynolds      13.48              40

Shorter with fourth place teammate Kenny Moore
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Gerard O'Donnell

Gerard O'Donnell

Gerard O'Donnell is an athlete, physical therapist, and MSc student. He is current national 110m hurdles champion and ranks 3rd & 5th on the Irish all-time list for the sprint hurdles events. He is occasionally referred to as GOD, not due to his initials, but because of his heavenly beard, which he has sported since the age of 5.

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