Sunday 22 July 2018

Foster proves doubters wrong by smashing 60m record

Foster smashed the Irish 60m record with a run of 7.27, which provided solace after she was left off the Northern Irish Commonwealth Games team. Photo by Sam Barnes/Sportsfile
Foster smashed the Irish 60m record with a run of 7.27, which provided solace after she was left off the Northern Irish Commonwealth Games team. Photo by Sam Barnes/Sportsfile

Cathal Dennehy

It only took 7.27 seconds, but for Amy Foster it proved the most stunning rebuke to those who doubted her talent.

Yesterday afternoon in Abbotstown, the 29-year-old produced the stand-out performance at the Irish Life Health National Indoor Championships, smashing the Irish 60m record with a run of 7.27, which provided solace after she was left off the Northern Irish Commonwealth Games team.

"There was a bit more fire in my belly," she said. "I ran great last year, was consistent and I know I should be going. It's still gutting, and I can't say this makes up for it."

Next up for her is the World Indoor Championships in Birmingham, where the City of Lisburn sprinter believes she can go even quicker.

"It wasn't the perfect race, my start wasn't brilliant," she said.

"But I'm happy to get the rewards for what I always thought I could run."

There was no such joy for Thomas Barr, however. The 400m hurdles specialist dropped down to contest the 200m but could only finish fourth in 21.70.

"I was hoping to run around 21.4, but I was a little bit tentative," he said. "I stumbled in the first couple of strides and I was trying to open up but I didn't find that bit of rhythm today."

Adding

The race was won by Leon Reid in 21.36, adding to the 60m title he won earlier in the day in 6.72.

The Bath-based sprinter, however, remains ineligible to compete internationally for Ireland as he awaits the sport's governing body, the IAAF, to approve his transfer of allegiance.

"I could still go for (Britain), but they said if you run for us and then you want to move, we're going to ban you for three years. I don't want to run for GB, it's not straightforward, there's always politics. It's either Ireland or nothing."

Adam McMullen produced a lifetime best in the final round of the men's long jump, his 7.99m leap just 1cm down on Ciaran McDonagh's national indoor record.

Mark English, meanwhile, couldn't have looked any more comfortable when speeding to victory in the men's 800, dispatching high-quality rivals with a vicious finishing kick to cross the line in 1:53.53.

"I felt really good," he said. "I spoke with (coach) Steve (Magness) and we agreed I'd test the wheels over the last 200m. It worked out really well."

Barry Pender soared over 2.24m to win the men's high jump, while Sean Breathnach broke the Irish indoor shot put record with his best effort of 18.30m.

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