Christine McMahon proved the star of the large Irish contingent competing at the AtletiGaGeneva meet in Switzerland when she ran a lifetime best of 56.42secs in the 4000m hurdles. Her time was enough for second place in the B race and was an A qualifying mark for the Europeans. McMahon had already run a European Championships B qualifying mark of 57.78 secs last month in Bedford. She ran her previous best of 56.96 secs in 2014.
In the same race, Jessie Barr of Ferrybank, who is attempting a comeback after a long period of injury, finished sixth in 62.03 secs.
Ireland had sent full squads for the men and women’s 4 x 100m relays, and both teams were hoping to nail down their places for the European Championships. In the men’s B race, the quartet of Jason Smyth, Eanna Madden, Marcus Lawler and Craig Lynch) finished second in 39.98 secs and dint’ quite do enough. Finland won the race in 39.55 secs; Great Britain won the A race in 38.61 secs. The Irish men are now 17th on the raking list with the top 16 making it to Amsterdam.
The Irish women will make the trio thanks to their fighting second behind the French U20 squad. Joan Healy, Phil Healy, Sarah Murray and Niamh Whelan were clocked at 44.67 secs; the French four ran 44.58 secs. Great Britain won the A race in 42.92 secs.
Individually, Jason Smyth clocked a time of 10.56 secs in the 100m (race 4), while Jonathan Browning was timed at 10.72 secs in race 6. Marcus Lawler was disqualified from the 200m (race 2); Eanna Madden ran 21.17 for second place in race 5. Over 400m, Craig Lynch of Shercock proved the fastest with a time of 47.31 secs, with Timmy Crowe of Clonliffe clocking 47.46 in the same race. Brian Gregan, who has been ill, ran a time of 47.70 secs and an injured David Gillick 48.37 secs in earlier races.
In the women’s 100m series, Sarah McCarthy of Mid-Sutton proved the fastest with a time of 11.89 secs; McCarthy also won the long jump with 5.87m; 6.55m is the qualifying mark for the Europeans. Joan Healy of Bandon ran 12 secs, Sarah Murray 11.93 secs, Niamh Whelan 11.99 and Catherine McManus 12.19. In the 200m, Whelan ran 24.22. Over 400m, Sinead Denny of DSD, who has already qualified for the Europeans, ran 53.76 secs and Phil Healy 53.87 secs, despite a sudden downpour that caused a flash flood of water on the track and made fast times impossible. The women’s 4 x 400m squad will run in Nivelles next Saturday, with Denny and a few others then running as individuals in Brussels a day later.
AT THE NCAA FINALS IN Oregon, Tara Jameson of Sli Cualann, running for Iona ,finished 7th in the 10,000m in 32:52.92 – inside the European Championships B mark. Jameson also finished 16th in the 5000m in 16:29.18. In the 800m, Siofra Cleirigh Buttner od DSD, running for Villanoava narrowly missed out a place in the final when she finished 10th fastest in the preliminary rounds in 2:04.771. Only the top eight went through; the 8th placers time was 2:04.35. Clare Mooney of St John’s was 15th in 2:05.48. In the men’s hammer Dempsey McGuigan finished 8th with throw of 69.23m