Friday 19 January 2018

English shines in record-breaking night at Santry

Athletics Cliona Foley

THREE stadium records fell on the hot and zippy Santry track at the brilliant Morton Games, where Donegal's Mark English (UCD) proved why he's one of the most exciting young talents in the game.

A virus earlier this year has seen the 20-year-old from Letterkenny struggle with his form, but he bounced back in sensational style with an 800m run that should clinch his place at next month's World Championships.

English's winning time of 1:45.32 smashed his previous PB of 1:45.77.

America's Casimir Loxsom was second in 1:45:75 and Kildare's Paul Robinson (St Coca's), who was fourth in the 1500m at the recent European U-23s, also broke 1:46 when finishing joint fourth with America's Mark Wieczorek in 1:45:86.

Cory Leslie won the world-famous Morton Mile in 3:55.85 after a great display of front-running but fellow American Duncan Phillips almost got up to him with a great late dash.

Juan Luis Barrios took third in a new Mexican record (3:57.34) in a race that saw nine break the four-minute barrier – Kilkenny's Eoin Everard did it for the first time (ninth, 3:58.93).

Rising Ferrybank 400m hurdles star Thomas Barr was close to breaking 50 seconds again, a week after doing it at the European U-23 championships.

He still ran his third fastest time ever (50:04) when winning ahead of international team-mate Jason Harvey (52:00) and Britain's Matt Sumner (52:32).

Mullingar's Steven Colvert of Crusaders (10:52) was pipped by America's Rae Edwards (10:51) in the 100m final.

Two men broke the stadium pole vault record (5.55m), with Spanish international Igor Bychkov first to clear 5.56m, followed by British champion Luke Cutts; even after a jump-off, they shared the title.

America's Brie Felnagle also broke a stadium record when she won the women's mile in 4:30.44. Kerry's in-form Laura Crowe ran a personal best of 2:02.63 in the women's 800m but was just overtaken by American winner Kate Mackey (2:02.21).

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