High-flying students represent Wicklow with pride in Tullamore
Wicklow stars compete at All-Ireland Schools finals
The best of Ireland’s school athletes gathered at Tullamore Harriers stadium last weekend to compete at the Irish Life Health All-Ireland Schools Track and Field Championships. Wicklow had several athletes representing their post primary schools with six of them making the podium.
Highlights of the day included multi-eventer Daniel Quirk’s (Temple Carrig Greystones) double gold success in the intermediate boy’s triple jump (TJ) and long jump (LJ) competitions.
Despite Quirk securing gold with a strong advantage on silver position from the first round in the TJ event, he again produced a massive 13.09m with his final attempt extending his lead to just under one metre long.
Similarly, Quirk started very strong in the LJ event. He recorded his furthest jump of 6.44m in the first round to seal his second school All-Ireland title for the day.
Elsewhere in the field events, Ailbhe Gordon (St Gerard’s) gave an outstanding performance in the intermediate girl’s javelin competition to take the silver medal with a 36.46m throw.
In the hurdle events, Adam Nolan (Scoil Chonglais Baltinglass) sprinted his way to gold in the senior boys 110m hurdle event clocking an impressive 14.73s.
Jonas Stafford (East Glendalough) provided another nail-biting, nerve-wracking race in the senior boys 5000m.
At the Leinster finals, Jonas has an incredible win with only half a second separating him from second place.
Yet again, Jonas had a gruelling battle for a podium place with the top four side by side at one lap to go.
After 12.5 laps of the track and one hell of a kick, Jonas managed to sneak in for silver position, only one second separating those top four finishers.
Eleanor Foot (Loreto Dalkey) steeplechased her way to national honours in the 1500m intermediate competition.
Eleanor looked comfortable from the beginning clearing each of the barriers and water jumps with ease.
After 800m, she was leading the way and pushed home from there displaying true class over the rest of the field.
Anna Watson (St Joseph’s Killiney) was next in action in the intermediate girl 3000m.
Anna was racing a very competitive field of runners and from the gun she was in the leading pack.
Eventually, Anna broke away with the top two girls to take bronze medal position in a time of 10.03.92.
Maria Zakharenko (Avondale CC) gave nothing less than 100 per cent in the junior’s girls 800m final, her effort was rewarded with a silver medal in the event and a new PB of 2.16.84. This was Maria’s debut at the event, her impressive performance is an exciting taster of what’s to come.
There was also great success in the field events for the Wright sisters from St Kevin’s Dunlavin, Holly and Cara.
Holly claimed All-Ireland success, taking gold in the Intermediate girls discus and followed this up with a silver medal in the Intermediate girls shot putt. Cara threw an excellent PB to claim a silver medal in the Junior girls discus.
The All-Ireland Schools is one of the largest and highest standards of competitions in the country, to even qualify for the event is a great achievement. Congratulations to all Wicklow athletes that made it there on the day.