THE WORLD Championship 100m final in Daegu was dominated by reigning champion Usan Bolts dramatic exit via his false start, but local sprint star, Jason Smyth, departed at the quarter-final stage.
Once again this season he faced a strong headwind and a classy field. The Eglinton man ran well enough for fifth place in 10.57 secs. as the winner ran 10.25 secs. and with only the top three in each heat, plus the two fastest losers progressing, Jason bowed out somewhat disapointed that the conditions gave him no real chance to challenge his 10.22 secs. PB set earlier this year in the Bahamas.
Getting beyond his first race was always a long shot but with the weather gods yet again not co-operating his quest for a fast time was mission impossible. However, winning selection to the ‘worlds’ was significant and he will now wind down and begin his preperations for next year with more Paralympian success and London Olympics selection major targets.
Elsewhere there were significant track success for a handful of local Masters athletes at the N. Ireland Masters Championships at the Mary Peters Track in Belfast.
Danea Hereron added the N. Ireland F50 Javelin and Triple Jump titles to the Irish and British titles already secured in recent weeks to end another excellent season for the City of Derry Spartans’ coach.
M40 Philip Donaghy added the N. Ireland 400m and 800m titles to last weekend’s Irish 800m bronze and fellow Spartan, Eoghan Furey, picked up the M35 800m silver medal after a 400m/800m success last Sunday in Tullamore.
Cathal McLaughlin, of Foyle Valley, made his M40 Masters track debut a good one with a battling run for 5,000m gold as local athletes made their mark at championship level once again while Olympian Martin O’Donnell won the M35 gold in the 100 and 200 metres sprints.
In sharp contrast, Allan Bogle was in Newcastle, Co. Down for the testing Donard-Commendagh Hill Race and finished a commendable third. This should be good enough to gain selection on the five man N. Ireland team for next month’s Commonwealth Mountain Running Championships in Llanberis, North Wales.
The Spartan has recently returned home from Spain after a four year soujourn and has quickly re-established himself among the elite in the Irish hill running scene. Hopefully he will be confirmed on the Commonwealth team for the “up and down” 12K Championships next month in Wales.
Staying with hilly terrain and Hannah Shields successfully completed the Tour De Mont Blanc in France over the weekend. Despite storms and sweltering heat and a stop to assist a stricken fellow competitor, Hannah finished in an excellent 27 hours 24 minutes for the mountainous 110K plus challenge.
All Set For “Dessie’s
Run” Tonight at Gransha
The Gransha Grounds tonight (Tuesday), will host the latest edition of the annual Dessie’s Run 10K at 7.15 p.m. Around 200 participants are expected to turn out headed by most of the leading North-West Senior and Masters runners. The field will also include the usual big input of club runners and joggers and weather permitting decent times should be on the agenda.
Defending champions, the City of Derry duo Greg Roberts and Marina Campbell, will be in the upfront line-up with big contingents from the Spartans and Foyle Valley clubs set to face the starter’s gun at 7.15 p.m.
With a generous prize fund on offer and the Waterside Half Marathon less than two weeks away, Dessie’s Run is an attractive race for the club runners and others alike and the action at all levels should be well worth the viewing.
Entries will be accepted at the U3A Foyle premises in the Gransha Grounds tonight from 6.00 p.m. and with T-Shirts guaranteed for the first 200 entries, all participants are advised to arrive in good time to avoid disappointment. The Awards Ceremony and post race refreshments will be hosted in the U3A Foyle building which is right beside the race start.
An additional attraction this year will be the offer from Alison Hill Photography of a staged or action shot from the race. Alison will be available at registration to handle inquiries from interested runners and groups and can deliver “on the spot” prints.