| 8.4°C Dublin

Lethargy and lay-off no barrier to Barr's record-breaking run

Close

Thomas Barr's talent was underlined when he broke the Irish 400m hurdles record to quality for the European Championships. Photo: Paul Mohan / SPORTSFILE

Thomas Barr's talent was underlined when he broke the Irish 400m hurdles record to quality for the European Championships. Photo: Paul Mohan / SPORTSFILE

Thomas Barr's talent was underlined when he broke the Irish 400m hurdles record to quality for the European Championships. Photo: Paul Mohan / SPORTSFILE

Thomas Barr has revealed that he broke the Irish 400m hurdles record despite nearly a two-month lay-off and not feeling too great before last weekend's race.

"I had a planter plate injury in my foot and, not long after the National Indoor Championships (mid-February) I couldn't train. I didn't train again until mid-April," the 21-year-old Ferrybank star explained.

Barr broke Tom McGuirk's 18-year-old record by running 49:61 from lane one at a meeting in Oordegem, Belgium in what was only his second race of the year.

"I actually felt a bit tired and lethargic in the blocks beforehand but, once I got into it, it just felt like a normal race," he said.

This is not the first time Barr has come out fast after a long injury lay-off.

He missed a similar block of training last year with a different foot injury, yet still became only the second Irishman to break 50 seconds.

"I'm not sure what it is but rest seems to suit me," he joked. "I was hoping to break Tom's record this summer but I certainly didn't think it would happen so quickly. Thankfully the pressure is off now for European qualifying."

Barr, who completed his final mechanical engineering exams in the University of Limerick last month and is hoping to do a masters next year, will train full-time for the rest of this season.

He will remain in Limerick with Hayley and Drew Harrison's sprint group that includes his training partners Dan Colbert and Barry Upton, along with Niamh Whelan and Clare Murphy and long jumper David Quilligan.

Barr's next race will be in Geneva on June 14, followed by the European Team Championships in Estonia a week later and the European Championships in Zurich in August, when he will also be hoping to run in the 4x400m relay.

Sport Newsletter

Get the best analysis and comment from our award-winning team of writers and columnists with our free newsletter.

This field is required

Barr's older sister Jessie, who is also the Irish champion at 400m hurdles, is herself just back after a foot stress fracture.

She is making her competitive comeback in the Northern Ireland Championships tomorrow when Amy Foster, Jason Harvey, Ben Reynolds and Phil Healy will be among the headliners.

Mark English, who won the 800m in Oordegem, races in Hengelo on Sunday and Rose Anne Galligan competes in Prague on Monday.


Most Watched





Privacy