Sunday 16 December 2018

Irish trio claim youth medals

Lara Gillespie after being presented with her silver medal for second place in the women's cycling time trial. Photo by Eóin Noonan/Sportsfile
Lara Gillespie after being presented with her silver medal for second place in the women's cycling time trial. Photo by Eóin Noonan/Sportsfile

Cathal Dennehy

A trio of Irish athletes won medals on the second day of action at the European Youth Olympics Festival in Gyor, Hungary.

The first went to Lara Gillespie of Wicklow, who powered to silver in the 10km cycling time trial. Her time of 15:20.53 was good enough for second behind Swiss gold medallist Ronja Blochinger (15:17.60). The 16-year-old was elated with her effort after scooping the first medal of the Games for the Irish.

"It was hard," she said. "It was easy at the start, but when I turned the corner the wind hit so I pushed on. My mother and sister were cheering me on and they were surprised and happy to see me get the medal. It's been a great experience."

There were two medals in the athletics stadium and they came, coincidentally, in the same two events that Irish girls won medals in the European U-20 Championships last week.

Jade Williams won bronze in the hammer with 58.62m and Patience Jumbo-Gula did likewise in the 100m.

Jumbo-Gula sprinted to third in a close 100m final, the Dundalk 16-year-old recording her fastest ever time of 11.59 with the benefit of a huge tailwind (6.0m/s). Williams, meanwhile, had a breakthrough performance in hammer qualifying, launching a personal best of 61.08m.

In the final, the Bailieborough 16-year-old had a best effort of 58.62m for Ireland's third medal of the day. Action continues today and will run until Saturday, with more medals expected from the 40-strong Irish team.

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