University records tumble in Athlone
Phil Healy (UCC) delivered the top performance at the Irish University Athletics Indoor Track and Field Championships, held at the AIT International Arena in Athlone, Co Westmeath, last Friday.
Healy powered to victory in the women's 60m event in 7.36 seconds – a new Irish U-23 record, breaking the old mark of 7.37 held by Ailis McSweeney of Leevale AC. The impressive time propels Healy to equal fifth place on the Irish senior all-time list over 60m. Catherine McManus (DCU) finished second in a new personal best of 7.50, with Louise Kiernan, also of DCU, third in 7.59.
Marcus Lawler (Carlow IT) was another in record-breaking form as he set a new Irish junior record in the 200m.
Steven Colvert (DCU) won the 60m title in 6.88 seconds. Colvert, who is now coached by John Shields, had won his heat earlier in the day in a new personal best of 6.87.
Thomas Barr (UL), a specialist at 400m, broke new territory in the 400m flat event. Drawn in lane six, Barr blasted from the blocks with only DCU's Timmy Crowe for company. Barr maintained his lead to win the race in a new personal best of 46.97, with Crowe also setting a personal best in second in a time of 47.47. National Senior Indoor 400m champion Shauna Cannon (DCU) was a clear winner of the women's 400m in 55.75.
European junior silver medallist Sarah Lavin (UCD AC) won the 100m hurdles in 8.36. The time was just outside her personal best of 8.33. Catherine McManus (DCU) finished second in a personal best time of 8.58.
John Travers (AIT) brought the crowd to its feet on his way to victory in the men's 1,500m in 3:42.69. Travers tracked long-time leader David McCarthy (DCU) before upping the pace with 400m remaining to take the victory. McCarthy had run the 800m an hour earlier where he finished third behind Niall Tuohy (UL), who won the title in 1:55.38
There were two impressive performances in the pole vault competitions with Claire Wilkinson (UU) winning the women's title with a clearance of 3.95m and Ian Rogers (DCU) taking the men's event – clearing 4.70m. Both set new Irish university records. Three men cleared two metres in the high jump, with Kourosh Foroughi (DCU) winning the event with a final clearance of 2.05m. Catriona Farrell won the women's high jump in a new university's record of 1.81m.
Sarah McCarthy (DCU) set a new Irish university record in the long jump with a jump of 5.83m. Adam McMullen (UU) achieved 7.26m to win the men's long jump.
The men's and women's 4x200m relay provided a thrilling conclusion to the day's action, with the DCU men's team setting a new Irish university record of 1:28.21.
Dublin City University won both the men's (100 points) and women's (121 points) competition. In the open 800m race, Ciara Everard (UCD AC) was in search of a fast time and national indoor champion Shauna Cannon acted as her pace maker. Everard was on target for the first 400m but struggled to hold the pace and crossed the line in 2:06.06.