Good news from the Europeam Masters Track & Field Championships in Germany where City of Derry’s Eoghan Furey qualified for today’s M35 800m final after an impressive 2 m. 1.3 secs. semi-final clocking on Wednesday.
The popular Spartan built on his National Masters age group gold last Saturday in Tullamore, knocking some two seconds off his winning time there to finish as the seventh fastest qualifier from the two heats on Wednesday.
He posted his fastest 800 m. clocking in six years and third fastest ever and will now line up today with renewed confidence.
A podium place will be a big ask, but a real crack at breaking the two minutes barrier is a distinct target for the Buncrana man. Here’s hoping he has a good one!
Another Spartan going for glory shortly is top sprinter Jason Smyth who next week heads to London to defend his Paralympic 100m and 200m titles.
Last Wednesday night his family joined the family of another North-West Paralympian, Sally Brown of Ballykelly, on the Templemore Sports Complex track for a BBC Newsline piece to flag up both athletes impending trip.
Jason returns from final preparation in Portugal for the start of the Games in London next Wednesday and has clearly indicated he has put the disappointment of missing out on the recent Olympics well behind him now and will travel next week focused on retaining both his Paralympic sprint titles and setting the scene for his continued assault on Open competition.
Long term coach and mentor, Strabane man Stephen Maguire, will move onto a new top level post in Scottish athletics for the Paralympics but Jason looks likely to resume the connection both of them have forged following their training base in Florida where the Eglinton Flyer worked with a group including Tyson Gay.
He was quoted earlier this week as looking as far ahead as the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio De Janerio so expect a lot more yet from the 25-year-old.
“Dessie’s Run” to
Waterside Half Marathon
Back to road racing and next Tuesday’s Dessies Run 10 Kms. in the Gransha Grounds. A 7.15 p.m. start for this very popular race which caters for runners and joggers of all abilities on the three lap Gransha course.
Entries will be taken on the night at race HQ in the U3A Foyle Building in the grounds, from 6.00 p.m. and all intending participants are requested to arrive in good time to register.
An excellent prize fund, T-Shirts and post-race refreshments, plus a terrific atmosphere will pull in the runners and spectators for this annual classic which commerates the late Dessie McNulty, a former much admired captain of Sparta A.C.
“Dessie’s Run” is used by many as essential preparation for the Waterside Half Marathon, also based in Gransha and which on Sunday, September 9th, will draw big numbers for the 31st staging of the North-West’s top road race.
Entries Flowing In
Entries are flowing in for the event which also offers a three-person Team Relay format, a 10 miles Challange Walk and a 2 Kms. Family Fun Run.
Something for everyone then and more information at www.derrycity.gov.uk/halfmarathon or from St. Columb’s Leisure Centre, Limavady Road, Derry, telephone 02871-343941.