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Mageean's Stunning Performance Secures European Bronze at Champs

10 July 2016

Mageean

Photography by Keith McClure

Portaferry's Ciara Mageean produced a stunning performance in today's European Athletics Championships when she snatched a bronze medal in a highly tactical 1,500 metres final. This is the first ever medal for the 24 year old in a major Senior championship and one the first by a NI athlete for many years.

Her achievement is the more memorable because of the nature of the race where athletes covered the first 800 metres in a pedestrian 2 mins 46 secs. The Lisburn AC woman covered the last lap in 59 secs despite being balked in the home straight .The race was won by Angelica Chichoka of Poland in 4 mins 33 secs with Mageean . a mere .02 secs behind favourite Sifan Hassan of the Netherlands in 4.33.78.

A slightly stunned Mageean  who will be racing in the Rio Olympics last achieved international fame as a Junior when she took silver in the World Championships back in 2010 .She commented to the media scrum;

" My aim was to cover all moves in a desperately slow race. I wasn't worried as I can outkick almost anyone. I was a little frustrated at the end at not getting silver as I had loads in my legs. I am now really excited about the Olympics"

"It's been 5 long years since I wore an Irish vest. A year ago I was on crutches.This race was not just about me but  also my coach and everyone in Portaferry who have supported me over the years ".